Top 10 Experiences in the Florida Keys

Go beyond the beach during your next visit to the Florida Keys. Think outside the box and you are sure to enjoy a truly one-of-a-kind vacation. From nearby excursions and attractions to scenic day trips, explore the top ten experiences in the Keys during your visit using our guide below.

1. Kayaking

Reserve the best seat in the house when you explore the Keys. Get an up-close view of the breathtaking natural landscape as you paddle through the bright blue waters. We recommend heading over to Indian Key, just a few short minutes from our door. Once there, you can go snorkeling in the clear water or explore the overgrown ruins.

2. Swim with Dolphins

One of the most famous Islamorada attractions, the Theater of the Sea is a must for anyone visiting the Keys. Here you can swim with dolphins, sea lions, sharks, and sting rays. They also offer a range of other aquatic activities, including sunset cruises, painting with sea lions, and feeding sea turtles.

3. Dry Tortugas

Carve out a day during your visit to make the trip down to the Dry Tortugas. This must-see Florida Keys attraction is a small group of islands home to the grand Fort Jefferson. Only accessible by boat or seaplane, Dry Tortugas showcases brilliant blue waters and a diverse collection of coral reefs and marine life. Get in touch with our concierge to learn how you can plan your day trip to this iconic Florida Keys destination.

4. The Seafood

One of the perks of visiting a beach town is access to some of the best seafood in the U.S. Always serving up the freshest catch of the day, our local Islamorada restaurants offer a delectable selection of your favorites from the sea. Dig into the flavor of the Keys at local restaurants including our own Atlantic’s Edge, the Lazy Days Restaurant, and Whale Harbor Seafood Buffet.

5. Local Beaches

While it’s great to explore beyond the local beaches, they still warrant a top spot on your Islamorada vacation. Spend a day catching some rays and splashing in the refreshing water. Find some of our favorite nearby beaches just minutes away from our hotel. Top your beach hit list with Anne’s Beach, Holiday Isle Beach, and Long Key State Park.

6. John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

Drive 30 minutes up the keys and find one of the most well-known Florida Keys destinations: John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. This park is approximately 70 nautical square miles and features breathtaking coral reefs and a diverse array of marine life.

7. Seven Mile Bridge

On your way down to the Dry Tortugas, be sure to make a pit stop at the Seven Mile Bridge. The famous bridge connects the Middle Keys to the Lower Keys, and is among the longest bridges in the world. Featuring scenic and sprawling ocean views, you won’t want to miss a photo-op here.

8. Bahia Honda State Park

Found just shy of an hour away, Bahia Honda State Park is another Keys attraction worthy of a day trip. Somewhat of a hidden gem, this state park offers endless opportunity for adventure. From kayaking and canoeing to snorkeling and bird watching, feed your need for exploration at this popular local attraction.

9. Robbie’s Marina of Islamorada

Home to the world-famous tarpon feeding, Robbie’s is a staple of the Middle Keys. Handfeed the massive tarpons, try your hand at a variety of watersports with their rental equipment, or dine-in and enjoy their signature cocktails and classic seafood.

10. Laura Quinn Wild Bird Sanctuary

Spanning seven acres, the Laura Quinn Wild Bird Sanctuary is a refuge for an array of injured birds. From great horned owls to green herons and brown pelicans, grab your binoculars as you try to spot some of the temporary and permanent residents of the sanctuary.

5 Reasons to Plan a Winter Escape to the Florida Keys

The cold winter months getting you down? Cheer yourself up with a getaway to Islamorada in the Florida Keys. Explore the best nearby sights and discover the local beauty as you take in the stunning landscape. Read on to see why winter is better on Islamorada and start planning an unforgettable Florida winter vacation at Cheeca Lodge.

Escape the Cold

Kiss the snow and chilling temperatures goodbye when you set off for our tropical paradise. We keep it warm year-round here in the Keys. Whether you want to head to our white sand beaches or cruise around the crystal-clear blue water, leave your coats at home and soak up some much-needed vitamin D.

Local Experiences

The Florida Keys offer visitors completely unique experiences you can’t find anywhere else. Just a few minutes from our doors, find the Theater of the Sea. Here you can swim with dolphins, sea lions, and sharks as well as meet alligators, sea turtles, and more. Next, thrill your inner adventurer and be an explorer for a day while you discover shipwrecks hidden below the surface.

Break Up the Long Winter Months

Each year, the winter months seem to drag on and on. With few holidays and unfavorable weather, the need for a getaway feels more necessary than ever. Make your escape to our island town and soak up the warm weather. The temperatures of the Keys never dip much below the mid-70s, so visitors can enjoy all that Islamorada has to offer during the winter.

Water Activities

Stay with us in Islamorada this winter and take to the sea where you can enjoy a variety of water activities. Unlike northern beaches, the water in the Keys stays warm all year. Embark on a day full of adventure where you can snorkel, parasail, jet ski, or scuba in the clear blue water. Or enjoy the water from above on a cruise around the scenic Florida Keys landscape.

Winter Sunsets

One of our favorite parts of winter in the Keys are the stunning sunsets. Trade cold gray skies for a vibrant kaleidoscope of color in Islamorada. Each evening around 6:30pm, head to the water and watch as the sky lights up with bright oranges, pinks, purples, and yellows. Snap some pictures and your Florida winter vacation is sure to be the envy of your Instagram feed.

4 Romantic Ideas for Valentine’s Day in the Florida Keys

Set the stage for an unforgettable Valentine’s Day in the heart of the Florida Keys. An intimate and inviting oasis, Islamorada offers visitors an escape from the hustle and bustle of every day. Whether you want to spend the day on the beach, get pampered at the spa, or dine out, delight in the romantic spirit of the Keys.

Couples Massage

Kick off your day of romance with a tranquil and rejuvenating couples’ massage. Soothe your senses and unwind next to your significant other in the comfort of the Spa at Cheeca Lodge. Couples can indulge in a variety of treatments including hot stone massages, body treatments, hydrotherapy, oceanside massages and more.

Beach Picnic

Spend the day under the sun with your loved one at one of Islamorada’s most pristine local beaches. Soak up some rays and feel refreshed in the salt and sand while enjoying a scenic beachside picnic. Quiet and intimate, some of our favorite nearby beaches include Anne’s Beach, Holiday Isle Beach, and Long Key State Park.

Sunset Cruise

What better way to spend your romantic Florida Keys vacation than out on the water? Set sail just before the sun sets – champagne in hand – to see vibrant tropical colors light up the sky as the sun goes down. Toast to the many happy years to come aboard our sunset cruises.

Romantic Dinner

A classic for a reason, nothing goes better with Valentine’s Day than a romantic candlelit dinner. Get the full Florida Keys experience when you sit down for an evening of tropically inspired cuisine at our flagship restaurant, Atlantic’s Edge. Afterwards, stop by our Tiki Bar for deliciously crafted cocktails and sweeping views of shimmering Atlantic Ocean.

The perfect setting for an unforgettably romantic Florida Keys vacation, plan your stay at Cheeca Lodge using our Valentine’s Day guide.

Remembering a Legend: George H.W. Bush

Known for his years of service in World War II and his major accomplishments on the international stage, the late former President George H.W. Bush served our country with respect and dignity during his single presidential term and years of public service. Another lesser known fact about our 41st president is that he always had a fondness for the Florida Keys, often making trips down to our very own Cheeca Lodge.

President Bush visited our Florida Keys resort during the years of his presidency, with First Lady Barbara Bush and a full security detail. The Florida Keys provided President Bush with a calming respite from the world’s most high-pressured job. Always one of the kindest, most thoughtful, and charming guests to grace Cheeca Lodge, President Bush will be remembered as an icon of American history. In his honor, we have created a guide to some of former President Bush’s favorite things to do on a visit to the Florida Keys.

Fishing

Both former President Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush enjoyed a quiet morning of fishing during their stays at Cheeca Lodge. There’s nothing quite like casting off into the calming waters, while gazing out at the stunning surrounding landscape. Whether you want to go out to sea on a fishing charter or enjoy a causal day of fishing off the docks, enjoy the president’s favorite pastime during your stay.

Jogging

President Bush would often kick off his morning with a refreshing jog on the scenic roads near our resort. Often times, guests would catch a glimpse of the president during the daily outings. Explore the president’s favorite trails and other picturesque routes on Islamorada.

Spa Treatments

Perhaps no one more deserving of a relaxing spa day, the president would often request massage treatments – provided on-site – during his stays at Cheeca. Prior to a presidential visit, our team would comb through every detail of his stay, including everything from the rooms, menus, and seating charts, to special requirements, like spa services.

We honor and remember the late President Bush and his legacy, and will greatly miss one of our most beloved guests.