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Key Largo   Key West   Islamorada   Marathon    Tavernier

"The heart of the Keys"

Halfway between Key Largo and Key West is Marathon at MM50. The middle Keys between MM61 and MM47 includes Conch Key, Duck Key, Grassy Key, Crawl Key, Fat Deer Key, Key Colony Beach, Stirrup Key, Boot Key, Pigeon Key, Knight Key and the largest Key Vaca Key, which was named by the Spanish for its large population of sea cows (manatees) because "vaca" is the Spanish word for cow. Marathon is one of the largest cities, and has an airport, a large hospital Fisherman's Hospital serving the middle Keys, and has many historical treasures.


This area was home to New England Fishermen in the 1800's and then to Bahamian farmers in the late part of the 19th Century and then later to Henry Flagler's railroad workers who set out to build a bridge across seven miles of open rugged ocean to connect the chain of islands by railroad. These railroad workers accomplished their task and now you can still see reminiscent parts of the old seven mile bridge that still provides a route to Pigeon Key a museum and natural history display open to the public. The old bridge is still in demand by fishermen of today who have found its pillars and piers to be great fishing sites. The new 7 mile bridge is provides great views of the Keys above the water and is home to the annual running race appropriately called "The Seven Mile Bridge Run". This event brings runners and spectators from all over the world and is one of the most scenic races in the USA.

Can you imagine the old 1950's TV Show called FLIPPER? Well if you can remember the skiff, the boat, the boys and Flipper, then you can imagine the middle Keys!!! The area of the middle Keys is where Flipper was filmed and the Dolphin Research Center (MM59) was home of the original Flipper. Now the Dolphin Research Center is a non-profit educational facility and offers public swims, classes and programs all about these marvelous sea creatures and what we can do to live in harmony with them. The middle Keys are serene, yet teeming with fish and wildlife and magnificent hues of blue clean crystal clear waters and forever views. Whale sharks, wild dolphins, sea turtles, giant sting rays, manatees, spotted eagle rays and seemingly endless bird life abound on, in and around these precious (aquarium like) waters. You can just imagine the Audubon Society here filming and taking photos of the beauty of the area. Who know perhaps National Geographic is out there right now uncovering a fish tale.

On the ocean side, anglers will find the "Marathon West Hump" which is and underwater platform that attracts blue and white Marlin, Black fin Tuna, Mako Sharks and other big game fish. On the gulf side, shallow waters and vast natural ledges, artificial reefs and old wreck offer anglers mangrove snapper, Spanish mackerel and Cobia. The Marathon Fisheries (MM46.5) is the place to find fresh fish in case you're too tired to cook up the fish of you caught, and its home to the tasty "Lobster Rueben" sandwich.

If the seas are too rough to go out, on, or in them in Marathon there is plenty to do on the land too: Crane Point Museum and Nature Center (MM50), Pigeon Key (MM47), Sombrero Beach (MM50), The Turtle Hospital (MM48.5) a non-profit education and rehabilitation facility, The Wild Bird Rescue Center (MM50) and Curry Hammock State Park (MM56). Sunset celebrations and great sunset views can be found at Island Tiki (MM54) bayside and Keys Fisheries (MM49). Great Oceanside dinning can be found at Lazy Days South (MM47) and other great restaurants are plentiful like The Cracked Conch (MM49.5) Leigh Ann's Coffee House (MM51) Seven Mile Grill (MM47) and Sarky's Landing (MM53.5) to name a few.

More Keys:
Islamorada   Key West   Big Pine   Marathon    Tavernier

Pat Ketchum

Cell: 305-923-9424

Email: Pat Ketchum at

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