A Birthday Weekend in Key West


imageimageA Weekend in Key West

Getting to Key West is a quick trip for my husband Terry and I – we live in Ft. Myers, FL.   Our mode of transportation is always The Key West Express, a hydroplane ferry that seats upwards of 400 people. It leaves every day (weather permitting) at 8:30 am and returns each night leaving Key West at 6pm.   Our most recent trip started on a balmy Saturday morning in July.  We were boarding the boat at 7am with an 8:30 departure.  Indoors, the boat has comfortable tables and chairs and lots of big screen TV’s where you can enjoy a movie on your 3 ½ hour ride to Key West.  There is also seating outside, although it gets a little windy for the entire trip.  Best to grab a seat inside and then take a stroll outside during the ride. They also have a food stand where you can get a quick breakfast and a full bar.  After we were underway I got a mimosa!  We enjoyed our ride playing cards and watching a movies.  The ride was very smooth.

We pulled into the Key West Ferry dock about noon and proceeded to walk just two blocks to the bed and breakfast we had booked for one night.  West Winds Inn is a cute bed and breakfast on Eaton St.  They have a main house and other Key West style cottages throughout the property.   We dropped off our suitcase at the desk and was told we could check in after 2:30pm.  From there we headed for the beach and some cocktails… at a new place called Lagerheads Beach Bar.  Our friends Frank and Sherry (who chose to drive from Ft. Myers) got there a little after 1.  We had lunch at Kelly’s Caribbean Grill and then did some shopping at the Key West Legal Rum Distillery where we got to taste some very fancy Chef Rums.  There was a Real Key Lime that was tart and potent!  A Vanilla Brulee Dark that was warm and sweet.  They also feature a Mint Mojito, Glazed Pineapple and Green Coconut.  We chose the Key Lime – my favorite.  We were pretty warm so we headed back to the West Winds for a dip in the pool.  They have two pools at the West Winds surrounded by lush tropical foliage.   That felt amazing.  Later we got cleaned up and went to dinner at Turtle Kraals, which is on the Historic Sea Walk just blocks from the resort.  It was a balmy night and we got to watch the sun set while we were eating with a view of the harbor.  Our food was a taste treat.  I had pan seared scallops with a citrus pepper sauce served with coconut rice with peas that was heavenly.   Afterwards we walked along the Historic Sea walk and stopped at Kermit’s Key West Key Lime Shop to get some frozen chocolate covered key lime pies on a stick.  An amazing taste of sweet dark chocolate and tart key lime pie – with graham cracker crust!  Awesome!   From there we continued on Greene St. to the famous Duval St. Famous for all the bars and restaurants as well as great shopping!  We did a lot people watching, (always an interesting cast of characters in Key West!) did some shopping and looked for an air conditioned bar, after all, it was July and warm.     We stopped into the Sandbar a sports bar for a nightcap.   We walked back to the West Winds and said our goodnights to Frank and Sherry.  10 minutes later about 11, I got a text from Sherry that were locked out of their room.  Turns out they were trying to get in to the wrong entrance.  Frank was frantically banging on doors to get someone to wake up and help them… We walked over and let them know that they were not at the right entrance door – brought them to the right one and they got in… Too funny!!!

Sunday’s breakfast was at Kermit’s Key West Garden café.  I had an amazing bacon, egg and cheese sandwich on Cuban bread.  We had scheduled a Jet Ski tour around Key West for 9am.  We met at the beach in front of the Hyatt on Front and Simonton.  There were a group of about 12 of us.  Terry and I were on a wave runner together.   So were Frank and Sherry.  We had two great tour guides who took us all around the island.  It was really a blast, even though Frank and Sherry fell off theirs at the very start….  It was a pretty choppy day – seas about 3-4 feet, but it was still fun.  The water was a warm 87 degrees and it was a beautiful warm partly sunny day.  The scenery was gorgeous and the tour guides were great!  It was a memorable experience for us!

We walked along the Historic Sea walk again and ended up at the Waterfront Brewery for lunch.  Great food, and lots of craft beers for the guys.  We girls sampled the tropical drinks!  I had a Mermaid’s poison with lime flavored rum – yummy!  I had shrimp lettuce wraps and Terry had the roast beef grilled cheese sandwich!  Yum.  Terry sampled a number of the brewery’s beers.  I wanted another chocolate key lime pie on a stick, but I was too full from lunch.  Oh well, maybe next time.

We checked out of the West Winds Inn and stowed our suitcase there while we took in some more sights before we had to be back at the boat at 5pm.  We went to Irish Kevin’s, Sloppy Joes and then Dante’s where we waited to get back on the boat.  The margaritas were great.  Once onboard, we quickly found 2 seats and proceeded to fall asleep!  It was nice and cool and we slept for most of the trip.  Got back early to Fort Myers and were home by 10:15!  It was a great weekend trip and we will be going back again soon.




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