Get ready for a photo-heavy post! I’ve lost the ability to sort through the beautiful photos Frank took so I’m sharing entirely too many with you. Prepare yourselves!
I love to snorkel. It is one of my favorite things to do and we have the good fortune to live just a few hours away from the Keys so we decided that as a pre-anniversary trip and last hurrah, we’d head down for the weekend.
Dedicated to our goal of hitting all the national parks, our first stop of the weekend was near Miami in Key Biscayne where you have to get into the water, to experience the park – madness! Our boat captain gave a thoroughly PG-13 tour of the history of the Key Biscayne area which included the words concubines, barnacle lashing and at least a dozen slave references. Thank goodness that children rarely listen to boring dirty old boat captains because their minds would have been BLOWN by the graphic stories he shared with us. In an effort to wash our minds clean of his filthy images, we eagerly jumped into the ocean and onto the reef (if eagerly jumped is defined by me wading in and nearly losing a fin, that’s exactly what we did). We had heard that it was beautiful and it had some of the most beautiful coral we’d seen… but don’t take my word for it! (Insert Reading Rainbow theme song here)
We made a quick pit-stop at Robert Is Here as it is against state law to be within 15 miles and not stop for one of their delicious milkshakes. Florida has some seriously crazy laws and you know how I’m a rule follower, so, I reluctantly got a strawberry/coconut and Frank chose an orange/banana. Then we hopped back into the car to finish our road trip down to Key Largo. This was our second time staying at the Coconut Palm and it was as beautiful as we remembered it from our last trip – but as our last trip was in August it was even better because the weather was absolutely perfect! The kind folks at the resort recommended a restaurant we hadn’t been to before called the Kaiyo Grill which was a bit like Roy’s on a smaller scale and was, obviously, delicious. If you’re in the area, you should check it out.
We spent the next day laying in hammocks reading, kayaking and relaxing before going to John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park for another snorkeling adventure.
This was our third time to Pennekamp and it was another great visit. We always use the Reef Roamer tour folks for their Sunset Sail and while the staff always seems like they’re rolling in after a nine-day bender, they are super friendly (once they accept that they actually have to work today), give a fabulous reef tour and are always quite generous with their dangerous rum punch concoction – and how can that go wrong?????