United States of America · 7 Days · 15 Moments · December 2018

South Florida and Florida Keys with Family


31 December 2018

Sarasota, FL Our last stop of the trip the Ringling Museum before we head back to Tampa Airport. It’s a beautiful place filled with history, art and architecture. There is something for every age group, the circus museum, arts museum, the gardens and courtyards just to name a few. I highly recommend taking the tours offered here especially the Mable Ca’d’zan tour, where they take you around the Ringling’s winter home from Mrs. Mable Ringling’s point of view, you will feel like you have travelled back in time to the early 19th century. The art museum hosts Mr. John Ringling’s massive art collection. You are guaranteed to google the Ringling brothers after this trip. Tip: This place can keep you engaged for an entire day, there is a lot of stuff to cover. If you want to keep it short do some research and narrow down the things you want to explore.

30 December 2018

West Palm Beach, FL Worth Avenue, home to high end stores and restaurants this resort destination will make you feel like you are in Europe, the cobble stones, the architecture are just a few details that adds to its charm. The Clock Tower next to the beach is a good selfie spot.
Loxahatchee, FL Lion Country Safari, another spot that is fun for the entire family, it’s a good two hour ride through the safari but you will crave for more when it’s done. If you are lucky you will have ostriches pecking at your car window or Zebras, Giraffes and Hippos crossing right in front of your car. You can see the re-creation of the animals original habitat and it’s pretty impressive. A cd given at the start of the safari walks you through its different sections and the animals that live there, very informative! Tip: Get ready to spend half a day here. They have some cool food trucks near the parking lot for the visitors if you want to grab a quick lunch or snack.

29 December 2018

Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park The highlight of this park is it’s historic light house, if there is one light house you have to see in Florida this is it, built in 1825 and restored later this place has a lot of history behind it. Standing right by the Atlantic Ocean the light house from up top has some breath taking views of the ocean and Biscayne bay. One can spend hours on the beach gazing at the light house and still not be tired of it. Tip: If you want to climb up the light house arrive early because they tend to close access to it pretty early like 2pm on week days and may be a little later on the weekends. If you can stay for the sunset do so as well.
Homestead, FL Everglades Alligator Farm, is a fun place where you can get up close to the alligators, r-e-a-l-l-y...up close, like they let you hold baby alligators close (their mouth is closed tight with a band for safety reasons of course), scored some serious parenting points with my kids on this one. They also have an 20 mins Air boat tour of the Everglades where you can a catch glimpse of Alligators in the wild. Along with the Alligators the place is also home to Venomous snakes from around the world and tropical birds. Don’t miss out on some of the training sessions that run through out the day like their Alligator feeding session (It is just Raw). Tip: If you are not keen on getting wet during the air boat ride stick to row 3 and 4 and avoid corner seats. Your feet is guaranteed to get wet no matter where you sit. Air boats can be very loud, so avoid sitting in the back closer to the huge fan.

28 December 2018

Key West, FL Day 2 at Key west was pretty much water sports, some more Duval street and southern most point of continental United States. Highly recommend the jet ski tours it takes you around key west as they stop at different key points of interest. Tip: Do not go to southern most point of continental United States during sunset unless you want strangers to photo bomb your pictures.

27 December 2018

Key West, FL Fort Zachary Taylor park beach, after a dip in the ocean we were all set for another sunset, nature at its best! Next stop Mallory Square and Duval Street they host some really unique shops, Art Galleries, Candy stores, Museums, very cool restaurants with plenty of out door seating and a light house. Tip: Fort Zachary Taylor beach is too rocky exercise caution and wear water shoes. If the water is not choppy and tide is high it’s a good shallow water spot to snorkel as well. Tip: Parking can be crazy near Mallory square and Duval Street, if your hotel offers shuttle service use it or Uber.
Florida Keys First stop of the day, Dolphin research center, Marathon, FL. It’s a nice little place for kids to really observe dolphins and learn a thing or two about them during their training sessions. You can swim with the dolphins have a photo op with them or be a trainer for the day. The free roaming Iguanas there can catch you off guard apparently they are invasive species and can whack you with their tail if threatened. Next stop Key West, FL, the drive from Key Largo to Key West is like ocean zen, literally that’s what there is, bridges that stretch for miles surrounded by ocean and even when you are on road they are right there with you all the way. Tip: If you can book the interactive session with the dolphins ahead of time it’s ideal, so you can pick the session and time you want and are not left to pick from what is available on the day of the visit.

26 December 2018

Little Havana Miami Made it to @Versailles for lunch, this mouth watering Cuban food restaurant is a must try. They are crowded all the time but they seemed to have an efficient system for churning customers in and out at a decent pace. We were able to get in without reservation under 15 mins, not too bad. We drove around little Havana a bit before heading to Bill Baggs Cape Florida state park, Key Biscayne, just in time for the gorgeous sunset. We had to come back to see the light house there since they close access to it pretty early I mean really early. One of the park employee’s mentioned that they close at 2pm week day and might let it go little late on week ends which was no where close to what was on their website. Tip: If you have the time to take a culture/ food tour at little Havana it might be worth it.
Miami Woke up to a really cloudy and windy morning @Miami south beach. After a stroll on the beach left for south pointe park which hosts a pier and is the southern most tip of Miami Beach which has some of the best water views. You can fish here if you are into it, if you are lucky like us you might witness a catch, that sword fish was not a happy camper! Tip: It’s a reasonable distance between the entrance of the park and pier, you can rent city bikes at the entrance and bike your way to the pier.

25 December 2018

Miami at night Lincoln road mall is a must see place at night especially if you are traveling during holidays, the space is well decorated aimed to pump up the holiday spirit. Somewhere between the 16th and 17th street there is a huge Christmas tree that steals the show. Just a fun place to shop and eat, it’s filled with restaurants and cafes with outdoor seating everywhere. Craft fully placed modern architecture is also an eye pleaser. Miami has a lively night life but there is only this much you can do when traveling with kids! Tip: Don’t Uber use the Free trolley service to get around Miami beaches and Miami city.
Peanut Island, Palm beach county, FL Accessible only through ferry service located near the Rivera beach, this island is a shallow water snorkeling paradise. Perfect place to snorkel for the inexperienced beginners. You don’t have to try hard to catch a glimpse of teaming marine life especially tropical fish they are right there near the shore. Tip: (Learnt it from a local) Keep few stale bread handy to feed the fish and in turn to attract them towards you.
Jupiter Inlet Light House, Jupiter, FL Tip: They are closed on all major holidays including Christmas Day, you can get a glimpse of the light house from the park even if you can’t go inside and that’s exactly what we did.
Juno Beach, Jupiter, FL Sunrise at Florida beaches is a feast for the eyes, Juno beach at Jupiter, FL is no exception, so serene, it’s just you ...and the beach.... and the sun of course! Best time to catch a glimpse of beach at it’s peaceful state before it gets crowded with people! Tip: Book rooms with beach views, you will be glad you did.

24 December 2018

Arrived at Tampa, FL and headed straight to Columbia restaurant for some Spanish cuisine for lunch but ended up eating Cuban there! According to their website it’s the oldest restaurant in Florida, it did have a historic vibe to it from architecture to unique pottery displays. After a yummy lunch drove to east coast of Florida specifically Jupiter Florida. This sunset is just the beginning for more to come.