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Long Key State Park: A Timeless Retreat in the Heart of the Keys

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Welcome to Long Key State Park, the hidden gem of the Florida Keys! It's where the melodies of history and nature sing in perfect harmony.

Here, the Atlantic's gentle waves tell tales of the past while endless adventures beckon from every corner.

A paradise that promises both relaxation and excitement, this park is a must-visit for anyone looking for an unforgettable escape.

So, why is it so special? Let's unpack its allure and see what makes it truly stand out!

A Virtual Glimpse into Long Key State Park

If you're the type who likes to see before you go, you're in luck!

Beach scene with driftwood at Long Key State Park in the Florida Keys

There's a captivating TikTok video by @thingstodoinflorida that gives you a sneak peek into the wonders of Long Key State Park.

From the turquoise waters to the lush trails, this quick virtual tour offers an appetizing sampler of what awaits you.

Trust us, after watching it, you'll be packing your bags faster than you can say 'Florida Keys!

@thingstodoinflorida Long Key State Park | Florida Keys #floridastateparks #floridakeys #thefloridakeys #islamoradaflorida #islamorada #marathonfloridakeys #marathonfl ♬ Bloom (Bonus Track) - The Paper Kites

A Glimpse into the Past

Long Key wasn't always a state park. In the early 20th century, it was the site of Henry Flagler’s Long Key Fishing Camp, a luxury destination that was part of his ambitious railroad project extending to Key West.

This upscale retreat attracted celebrities, renowned saltwater anglers, and even U.S. presidents.

Notable figures like author Zane Grey were frequent visitors, indulging in the island's beauty and its world-class fishing opportunities.

However, the Labor Day Hurricane of 1935 brought an abrupt end to this glamorous era. The devastating storm destroyed the entire facility, and it never reopened its doors.

Fast forward to 1969, and the location was transformed into the stunning Long Key State Park, a place where history and natural beauty intertwine.

Modern-Day Adventures

Today, Long Key State Park is a hub of recreational activities.

Campsite at Long Key State Park in the Florida Keys

Whether you're a nature enthusiast, an adventure-seeker, or someone just looking to relax, this park has something for everyone.

Recreational Activities

Looking for some fun activities at Long Key State Park?

How about kayaking along the natural shoreline, where you can spot diverse wildlife in the mangroves and enjoy the pristine waters?

If you're more into hiking, there are two fantastic trails - The Golden Orb and The Layton - showcasing the rich plant and animal life of the Keys.

Golden Orb Trail Boardwalk

Bird lovers, you're in for a treat! The park is a hotspot on the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail.

And for those into fishing or seeking a modern-day treasure hunt, the park offers top-notch sport fishing and an exciting game of geocaching.

Whatever your interests, there's something for everyone!

Staying Overnight

For those looking to extend their visit, camping is a fantastic option.

Although the park faced significant damage from Hurricane Irma in 2017, restoration efforts are underway.

Presently, the park offers hike-in, tent-only campsites with breathtaking ocean views.

Ensure you stay updated with the park's restoration progress if you're planning an overnight visit.

Park's Offerings

The park is well-equipped to ensure visitors have a comfortable experience.

From accessible amenities such as beach wheelchairs and restrooms to pet-friendly policies, Long Key State Park has thought of it all.

For campers, facilities include picnic tables, grills, and hammock stands.

Campsite at Long Key State Park in the Florida Keys

And for those looking to minimize their environmental footprint, the park encourages visitors to refill their water bottles at the available stations.

Planning a Visit to Long Key State Park?

Here's what you need to know! The park is open from 8 a.m. and stays lively till sunset.

When it comes to admission, the fees can vary depending on how many of you are coming, and prices are subject to changes — so it's a good idea to double-check on their website.

If a night under the starry sky calls out to you, they offer tent-only sites for $22.50 a pop. But heads up, these prices might shift too!

Ready to reserve? You can book online or ring them up at 800-326-6521.

Getting to Long Key State Park

Heading to Long Key State Park? It's a breeze!

Nestled in the heart of the Florida Keys, it's just a drive away on US Highway 1 (Overseas Highway); aim for mile marker 67.5.

If driving's not your style, hop on a bus heading towards Marathon or Islamorada.

For those with sea legs, approaching by boat is an option, though remember the park lacks boat ramps.

Always check local weather and traffic, and peek at the park's official site for any updates before setting sail or hitting the road.

Wrapping Up Your Long Key Adventure

As you set forth on your travels, remember that places like Long Key State Park aren't just destinations – they're experiences waiting to be embraced.

Hiking trail at Long Key State Park in the Florida Keys

Every trail you tread and wave you witness tells a story, both of the land's rich past and its vibrant present.

So, as you explore, take a moment to absorb, reflect, and grow from the natural beauty and history that surrounds you.

Your journey in Long Key might end, but the lessons and memories will stay with you forever. Safe travels!

Florida's beauty doesn't stop here. We've handpicked more state parks for your next adventure:

Caladesi Island State Park: Florida’s Untouched Coastal Haven

Bahia Honda State Park: An RVer’s Ultimate Guide To Beach Camping

 
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