“I doubt that anyone can travel the length of the Florida Keys without having communicated to his mind a sense of the uniqueness of this land of sky and water and scattered mangrove covered islands. The atmosphere of the Keys is strongly and peculiarly their own . . . This world of the Keys has no counterpart elsewhere in the United States, and indeed few coasts of the Earth are like it.” – Rachel Carson, The Edge of the Sea (1955)

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Nicknamed “The Longest Street in the World,” Key West’s famous Duval Street runs from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. Classic Duval Street bard include The Bull & Whistle, Sloppy Joe’s Bar, Hog’s Breath Saloon, The Lazy Gecko, Irish Kevin’s Bar, Rick’s and Durty Harry’s Entertainment Complex, Capt. Tony’s Saloon (1/2 block off Duval), Hard Rock Cafe, Willie T’s, Fat Tuesday, Green Parrot Bar (one block off Duval) and many more.

The marina at the Holiday Inn Key Largo (Mile Marker 100) is home to the original boat used in the classic 1951 movie, The African Queen, which was directed by legendary director John Huston and starred Humphrey Bogart (Bogie won his only Academy Award for his memorable role as Charlie Allnut), Katherine Hepburn (Rose Sayer) and Robert Morley (Rev. Samuel Sayer). The film was adapted from a 1935 novel by C. S. Forester. Built in Lytham, England, in 1912, the African Queen was used by the British East Africa Company on the Victoria Nile and Lake Albert until 1968.

Billed as a “last little piece of old Key West,” the Schooner Wharf Bar is located at the foot of William Street on the Historic Harbor Walk. Don’t miss a chance to catch singer-songwriter Michael McCloud performing every Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 5 PM. McCloud has written a slew of great songs such as “Peace & Quiet,” “Today’s the Day,” “Moments of Weakness,” “Just Came Down for the Weekend,” “Waitin’ Tables,” “Conch Republic Song,” “Most I Miss the Music,” “Memorial,” “Tourist Town Bar,” “Just Another Song” and many more.

“The mere mention of Mel Fisher’s name in any of Key West’s rum-soaked watering holes starts arguments. Whatever the locals say in this Conch Republic of smugglers, millionaires, and edge-of-the-world dreamers, Fisher is a true American hero. Larger than life, he’s the greatest legend and mythmaker here since Hemingway walked Duval Street.” —”Mel Fisher Treasure Hunter,” Sub Aqua Journal, Nov./Dec. 1993