Key Largo Florida is the first of the Florida Keys as you drive south from Miami. It’s also the only stop for many visitors who consider the waters around Key Largo to be amongst the finest in the world for diving. In fact, if your vacation is all about scuba, snorkeling, or fishing, Key Largo Florida has everything you need within a short drive from Miami International Airport or even Fort Lauderdale International Airport. There are also world-class resorts here, fine dining, and the best underwater marine state park in the country, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park.
This treasured state park hosts all sorts of marine activities, centered upon the coral reef that runs parallel to the Florida Keys from Key Largo Florida all the way out past Key West to the Dry Tortugas. What makes Key Largo Florida the best place for diving is the proximity of the Gulf Stream to the island itself. Nowhere else in the Florida Keys does the Gulf Stream come this close to the reef, which itself is closer to Key Largo Florida than in other parts of the Florida Keys.
Key Largo Florida is a top destination for vacationing divers, but you’ll find plenty of vacationers here that never actually get into the water. These would be the back country anglers who come for exciting flats fishing in the back country behind Key Largo. Anglers can fish Everglades National Park from Key Largo Florida, since the two are close to each other. A quick ride north from Key Largo lands sport fishermen right in the Everglades for all-day action-packed fishing for bonefish, permit, redfish, tarpon, and whatever else they may encounter in the abundant waters of Everglades National Park.
How about things to do in Key Largo Florida for those who don’t fish or dive? Go to John Pennekamp State Park and discover Key Largo and the coral reef in a variety of other ways. They’ve thought of everything at this multi-faceted state park, and everyone. For those visitors who want a serene, calm look at the coral reef, there’s the Glass Bottom Boat tour, where you are driven out to the reef in a large, stable boat with glass panels in the hull for viewing the reef. This is a great option for families with very young children. You’ll also find canoe and kayak rentals, snorkel trips, ranger talks and a nature trail through the mangroves at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park.
There’s lots more to do in Key Largo Florida and surrounding areas we call the Upper Keys. From mile marker 110 down to mile marker 88 you get Key Largo, Tavernier, and Plantation Key. The water around the Upper Keys bayside provides miles and miles of backcountry within Florida Bay. This is perhaps the largest attraction of Key Largo, after John Pennekamp State Park.