I am planning a trip to Key West, FL in September 2014 for my birthday and I was wondering if anyone in the community has been to the Dry Tortugas National Park (U.S. National Park Service) there and have any travel tips that would be useful. I am staying a the new Fairfield Inn & Suites Key West at The Keys Collection which shows as opening June 2014. Debating on whether to spend the extra money to travel to the park by sea plane $495 or ferry $170. All input will be greatly appreciated.
You are in for a "Special Stay" at The FF! Think it is one of the nicest I have ever stayed at. They had a nice shuttle to downtown, and it was well worth it.
Don't know about The DT's, but how you get there depends on how much time you have.
Good luck! If you have not been to Key West before, let us all know, we should be able to help with activities. Please go to previous posts to get Key West infor.
We stayed at the old FFI in Key West a few years ago, and while it was nice enough these were the smallest rooms of any hotel in CONUS (continental US) we have ever stayed in. Extremely small, very rustic, and not much light avoidance at night, but then who sleeps in Key West.
Was your stay prior to the hurricane that wiped the FF out?
I stayed there prior and after the hurricane. The new FF is really pretty nice, but again, I have only stayed there two times, they gave me a nice upgrade both times. Since then I have moved to the CY and always had a good experience there.
Key West has got so "Expensive" and "Strange" I have not been for 5 years. Not a place for a family to me.
Like you have said, "Just my take"!
Thanks for the tips.
I have been to the Keys before during one the the famous annual "Fantasy Fests". Had a good time. Lots of bars and drinking going on like a mini Mardi Gras. Definitely not ideal for kids during this time. They also hold the Key West Lobsterfest in August every year which I have heard is a fun and family friendly event.
Looking forward to the trip. Just trying to trim the expenses where I can. I found that the hotel rates in the Keys are much lower in September and October, although September is known as the worst hurricane month in Florida so you have to have some luck when booking trips to Florida during this time.
Call me naive since I am a newer member to the insider community, but I do not understand what you all mean by spam and abuse of the system and as anadyr said "hawking shows by bookmarking them"...did I do something wrong?
My husband and I departed out of Key West and sailed to the Dry Tortugas and had a delightful time. It was a scuba diving trip, and we visited the national park, which was a very neat place to see. You couldn't dive right there, but there was snorkeling close by. They have a nice gift shop and lots of photo ops. There is an old fort type place that surrounds the island. I would take the ferry and enjoy the ride across the ocean. A sea plane has its benefits, but I happen to enjoy ferry trips. Regardless, you will like it. It's different than Key West. The water looks nothing like it does in Key West. Enjoy your time if you decide to go.
Definitely do look forward to doing some snorkeling. What about the lighthouse, were you able to see that on your visit to the Dry Tortugas? I am a big fan of lighthouses. There are so many in Florida. Thanks for the tips.
Yes, we visited the lighthouse and it was a nice experience also. It isn't something we are particularly into, but if you're there, you should do it -- especially if you like those sorts of things. There isn't a lot to see in the Dry Tortugas, so when you are there, you need to experience everything.
We visited the dry Tortugas. We took the Catamaran, and I think it took about 1 hour each way. When we were there (a little over a year ago), there were no seaplanes available unless you privately charted one (very expensive). The websites are still operational, but the companies no longer exist, so check that out before you plan for it. The larger ferry boat is a good option if any of your crew tends toward seasickness, as the sea can get rough. The cat was ok, but we encountered 6 foot seas on the way back, and it felt like we were running over a large washboard.
The fort is very historical, it was the site of Dr. Mud's imprisonment (He treated John Wilkes Booth). Many people felt that he was railroaded by the federal government, anyway that was the origin of the saying: "your name is Mud".
Hope you have a good time.