Thursday, March 10, 2016

Key West: It's Not Just About the Pie

In my post on searching for the best key lime pie, I might have given the impression that my entire time in that port was focused on food.  Au contraire.  John and I were able to visit several non-foodie spots, learn a bit of local history, and see creatures that we just don’t see at home.


Our first stop was to the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum, where we learned about shipwrecks and treasure.  Mel Fisher had searched for a particular shipwreck for 16 years; he finally found it and then entered into a court battle over the half-billion dollar treasure.  The Supreme Court ruled in his favor.   The museum displays some of the galleons and silver bars, as well as other artifacts from the ship.

Next, we walked to the Ernest Hemingway House, which is still inhabited by descendants of his 6-toed cats.  We saw his study, where he wrote some of his pieces, and enjoyed the view from his second-story porch.   We learned of his several wives, his struggle with mental illness, and his suicide. 

Photo:  A small round table, with a typewriter on it, sits in a bookcase-lined, light-filled study. An antelope head adorns the wall.

After leaving the Hemingway House, we walked to the other side of the island, so we could take the obligatory “Southernmost Point” selfie. 

Photo:  John and I in front of the marker of the southernmost point in the continental United States

On the way back, we stopped and toured the lighthouse, which is surprisingly inland, but at the highest point in Key West.  We hiked up the steps and visited the museum, where we learned about the men and women who served as lighthouse keepers.  What a hard job it was to keep the lights burning!

Photo:  The top of the Key West lighthouse towers above green trees.
One of the highlights of our time in Key West was purely serendipitous.  As we were walking along the waterfront, we looked down and saw a manatee slowly gliding along in the water.   We also saw some sort of big fish (a technical report this is not) and pelicans of various colors. 

Photo:  A large manatee swims near the boardwalk.

Photo:  Big fish swim in the water

Photo:  A pelican with a yellowish head swims in the water
Photo:  A fluffy brown pelican stands on a boat


After a few brief stops to look at some art galleries and listen to a street performer who was playing a steel drum, it was time to get back on the ship.  Key West was a pleasant place to spend a day—and not just because we got to eat key lime pie!

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Thanks for a delightful day in Key West.

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10 comments:

  1. Sad to see the back of the Manatee scarred by boat propellers. They are such gentle giants.

    Your tours and walks and photos reflect the good time that you had in Key West.

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    1. There are signs up all over advising the boaters to drive slowly and watch for manatees. It was sad to see the scars on his back.

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  2. wow looks like a great place - I used always dream of going and maybe end up there ....you know retired -

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  3. I've always wanted to visit Key West. Your photos are great! Hemingway's house - did you feel any inspiration there?

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    1. Aha! Maybe that's what helped me get back into a more regular blogging groove!

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  4. We are contemplating if on our next trip to the US we should make a tour along the Mexican Gulf coast (Startingpoint Miami, Endpoint Somewhere Texas) or if we should do Highway 1 (Vancouver - San Francisco)
    If we'll do the first one Key West is a place I really want to see. I've seen a lot on tv about it and your posts about it make it even more enticing for me. I never had Key Lime Pie, so I wouldn't know if that's worth it, but visiting the home of Mr. Hemingway and his cats sure is. And Henk just want to drive over that bridge. I've never seen a manatee before, so that's a plus too....
    Well, thanks for sharing. I love travel stories, no matter who or where it is. Love your pic with John on the Southernmost Point. Would be great to make a simular pic with my hubby and myself.

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    1. There was a long line of people waiting to stand by the Southernmost Point; we decided to just sit on a nearby wall and take a selfie. :-)

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  5. I would love to visit Hemingway's homeand meet his cats. I've had 4 wonderful polys (polydactyls) in my life and they have each been very sweet. Sounds like you had a great day exploring.

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    1. I love touring old homes, and this was no exception.

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Thanks for making this a conversation. I love to hear your comments!