We left Sarasota early Saturday morning driving straight south to Naples where I-75 takes a big left turn and heads due east to Miami. From there you head down the coast by a series of highways until you get to US Highway 1. Yes, that's right - Highway One. US1 is the main drag of the entire Florida Keys and it's mile markers are the primary locator system on the islands as the islands are for the most part very narrow without much land area on either side of US1. When you ask directions to anywhere or are looking for where something is the first direction mentioned is what mile marker is it at. If you asked where a Walgreens was the person you were asking would likely say that its south on 1 at the 65 mile marker. (South = away from the mainland. North = toward the mainland. Even though the islands themselves run northeast to southwest it is said they run north and south.)
When you enter the islands the first large island right off the coast is Key Largo. All the Key islands are in a single county, Monroe County. I thing there is a tad of Monroe County on the mainland but pretty much when you enter Key Largo you are officially in the Keys and Monroe C0unty. Now, The distance from the north entrance of the Keys to the end in Key West is something like 120 miles.
We had arranged to stay in a bed and breakfast in a town called Islamorada, about a third of the way down into the keys. We found the place without too much trouble. I posted a review on TripAdvisor that it was comfortable, clean, present and eclectic bordering in eccentric. I think that that is a very accurate way of describing it. The food was strictly vegetarian but very tasty. We enjoyed our two night stay there.
Ahh, swimming in November.
Next, Key West.