Saturday, March 20, 2010

Miami & more... the vacation continues

... so after leaving the West Palm Beach area, we headed to Miami for a few hours on our way towards the Keys. 

It was a gorgeous, sunny day & we headed to downtown first to do some walking around. 

Downtown Miami area
We found a nice outdoor area of shops & restaurants right on the waterfront in the downtown area & enjoyed a beverage after walking around for a few hours.
After leaving the downtown area, we decided to go explore Miami Beach area.  We actually ended up in the South Beach.  After finding parking, we took to exploring... we walked along the beach for a few hours. 

The weather was still cooler than normal, so the beach wasn't crowded & very few were actually in the water, that was also cooler than normal.  We made a nice loop & then decided to hit the strip to find a late lunch... & maybe a cocktail.. and BOY did we!
Now that's a mojito, South Beach style!

After a good late lunch, it was time to hit the road Key Largo, where we'd be staying for the night.  We had a nice hotel in town & after checking in, we headed out for a nightcap.  Stumbled on The Carribean Club, which turned out to be a local's hang out & supposedly a place made famous by the 1940s movie Key Largo.  It was a typical small town bar... our kind of place!
After enjoying our coffee outside, it was time to continue our journey through the Keys...

We walked around at Bahia Honda State Park & we stumbled upon No Name Key Pub when we went looking for the little Key deer on the No Name Key... didn't find the deer but we did find a good, late lunch at a notable spot!

Our next stop was Key West...
We walked around Duval Street on our way to Mallory Square for the big sunset gathering...
It was a WINDY night but it didn't keep the people away!
It looked as if it would be a good sunset until the clouds came in out of nowhere & literally squelched the sunset.  After the sunset, we went back to Duval Street to wander around.  Without knowing it at the time, we hit some of the hotspots...Hogsbreath, Sloppy Joes & Irish Kevin's before calling it a night. 
 It was a fun night... full of good humor & interesting people watching!

The next day we explored Key West...
we checked out the Key West garden club,
found the southern most point in the continental US (supposedly... we don't quite agree, according to our gps),
& rented a scooter to toodle around for a while.

After our scooter adventure, we headed to Kelly's (the supposed southern most microbrewery & also the original home of PAN AM offices) for a late lunch...
& I had an awesome Key Lime martini... with "Key West" even written in chocolate on the inside.  It was delish!

We said goodbye to Key West & headed north.  We planned to hit the No Name Key by dusk in hopes of seeing the Key deer milling about...
& this time we were lucky!  We found several does & even a few bucks.  The pictures don't show it, but these deer come up to Mike's knee & they are full grown!

We headed to Florida City after leaving the Keys in order to grab a hotel & be ready to explore the Everglades... crocodiles, alligators & MORE!

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