Overhyped attractions, Key West
The tourist section of the island is overpriced and overrated in my opinion as most of the shops there all sell the same t-shirts with inane logos about partying and drinking and you will be driven off of the sidewalks by large groups of asian tourists and overweight Northern Floridians that smell of stale beer and sun tan lotion in tacky tight-fitting pastels and flip flops .
Fun Alternatives: go fishing, diving, snorkeling, rent a bike, moped, take a walk along the beach
look at a map...not even the REAL southern most point.
but at least it's free
Fun Alternatives: Other options:
West martello tower--it's free (but nice to leave a donation). nice gardens, hit pretty hard by Wilma but recovering
east martello tower. not free but nice. make sure you don't miss the sculptures in the outside building and Mario Sanchez exhibit indoors.
Save yourself a trip. Stay on the Florida mainland.
Or drive 150 miles, take a picture, and some day you can post it to join the 1300-plus photos of it at:
You can see the sunset from so many places in Key West. Mallory Square and Ft Zach State Park are probably two of the best. So there's really no reason to take a two hour cruise to nowhere. The sunset cruises are equivalent to the spring break crowd's popular "booze cruise" offered on many of the islands in the Carribean. You pay a fee and get all the hangover quality alcohol you can consume. Since booze flows freely throughout Key West and the sunset can be seen from many spots, I'd recommend skipping this one.
Unique Suggestions: Get some photos of the sunset. There really is nothing like it.
Fun Alternatives: Go to Mallory Square, buy a drink and join the revelers watching the sun go down. While you're at it, pick up some conch fritters from one of the stands.
OK, so you are at the southern most point of the US, only 90 miles away from Cuba. What is the big deal??? There is nothing to see at this stop just a stupid red oversized buoy that tells you that are as far south as you can go in the US.
This “attraction” is a sham. An "artist"-type is basically charging gullible tourists $6.00 to see her back yard. They even required the $6.00 fee for my 3 year old. There are a bunch of pretty plants, blah, blah, blah. But is it worth $6.00 to view barely an acre of someone's backyard garden? Just looks like a good way not to actually work for a living. If you are expecting pristinely manicured walkways through lush foliage, you are in for a disappointment. I don't think they believe in rakes or pruning shears. Just leaf-covered dirt paths weaving around a run-down cottage and house that should be condemned. Thinking about renting the quaint cottage - stick with the Marriott. The cottage is one step above a tent, and not really that quaint. Picture a cobweb strewn, musty old hut, that needs a good cleaning. That's it. And don't miss the "Art Gallery". If you paid to see the backyard, might as well see the storage shed too. Didn't see any art, but did see a lot of old junk. In summary a complete farce. Oh yeah, if you still want to go, the directions say "walk down a small lane off of Simonton Street between Southard and Fleming". It is more like walking down someone's driveway - absolutely no signs whatsoever. The only way you know you have arrived is when you step through the gate in the wall and you find the "artist"-types assistant collecting admission (I thought he was homeless at first - he sure did smell that way). You may think I have a grudge or that this review is mean-spirited, but if you go, you will find that everything I said is the 100% truth. My wife and I are in the travel business and have visited many attractions over the years, good and bad. This one doesn't even qualify as an attraction. Don’t waste your valuable vacation time here.
Unique Suggestions: The only redeeming feature of the tour were the various exotic birds, but I could have seen similar in a good pet store and saved my $6.00.
Fun Alternatives: Key West Aquarium
Southern Most Point
Harry Truman Annex
PT Boat Ride in Harbor
Should be call Ship Wreck Histboringem. Luckily, we had a buy one, get one free ticket from the Entertainment Book, or I would have really been mad. It is dark, and low budget. The best part is the tower for pictures.
Fun Alternatives: East Martello Museum & Gallery self guided tour was much better.
Dolphin watching? Don't believe it! :-)
At least we didn't see any, however they were promised.
Unique Suggestions: We saw flying fish instead. A consolation prize, but ok.
Ripley's Believe it or Not - don't do it!
Fun Alternatives: Go on a spooky night ghost tour . . . the history is rich in Key West with stories of pirates and wild eccentrics.