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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Dry Tortugas National Park and Key West

 After spending a weekend in Titusville with Laura's family, we headed south to Key West to catch a ferry to the Dry Tortugas National Park. The park is a mere 70 miles west of Key West, accessible by boat or plane only, and 95+% of it is underwater. Although camping at the park was an option, we opted for a day visit as do most folks. It has three main attractions:  Fort Jefferson, its birds, and its beautiful crystal clear waters with incredible snorkeling. Snorkeling was by far our favorite!

Key West is very touristy and, yes, we did some of it! We saw the 90 mile bouy, watched the sunset at Celebration Square, heard roosters crowing at all hours, and searched for the ultimate key lime pie.
The fort was built to protect one of the busiest shipping lanes in the 
mid 1800s. Never finished, it remains one of the three largest forts
ever built in the US and played a key role in the Civil
War blocking Southern shipping. It's impressive! 

The moat around the fort protected it from assault and rough seas.
Now it is the part-time home of the resident crocodile, Cleatus, which
is thought to have been blown out to the park by a large storm.
That must have been one wild ride!  Note all that sunshine, take lots
of sunscreen and water with you.

The Yankee Freedom III, our ride to the park.
Book early as it does fill up.
Other options for getting there too!
Old coal docks, the BEST place to snorkel. 

Beautiful snorkeling especially among the old coal pilings.

Lots of campers at the fort!
A Banyan Tree in Key West!
Southern most point, 90 miles from Cuba.
Sparties are in Key West too.
Lots of chickens wander around Key West!
And chickens DO FLY!
Cool street art in Key West. It gets 800 smiles per gallon!
Our vote for best key lime pie - Blue Heaven's

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