Big Pine & Lower Keys Attractions in Florida Keys

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  • Big-name attractions and larger-than-life landmarks shouldn't be missed, but neither should {0}'s less-well-known activities. Dig a little beneath the surface, and check out the neighborhood things to do. These are the activities locals like to do-and tourists would too, if only they knew about them. But, lucky you, you're plugged in. Have fun.

    For more than 60 years, the region of Big Pine Key and the Lower Keys - from the west end of the Seven Mile Bridge at Sunshine Key, mile marker (MM) 40, to Stock Island at MM 5 - has advocated the responsible use and preservation of the vast natural wonders found there. This focus on the environment has earned the region the title of the Natural Keys.

    The Lower Keys are home to two national wildlife refuges, a national marine sanctuary and a state park, and are surrounded by a marine environment filled with abundant terrestrial and marine wildlife.
    The National Key Deer Refuge (est. 1957) protects the endangered Key deer - a subspecies of the Virginia white-tailed deer, ranging in size between 65 and 90 pounds fully grown - and its habitat. Today the refuge encompasses more than 8,000 acres of prime Key deer territory from Bahia Honda Key to the eastern shores of Sugarloaf Key, out to the edge of the Gulf of Mexico.
    In the ocean waters off Big Pine Key, divers and snorkelers explore the spectacular coral and marine life of Looe Key Reef, renowned as one of the world's best reefs for diving. Each July, Looe Key is the site of a popular underwater music festival that promotes the preservation of Keys coral reefs.

    Camping is widely popular throughout the Lower Keys, with multiple campground and recreational vehicle parks. Outdoor activities in the Lower Keys include both inshore and offshore fishing, kayaking through the nearby shallow waters, birding, golfing and walking.

    Bahia Honda Campgrounds

    36850 Overseas Hwy.

    This high-usage park offers three lovely campgrounds which provide immediate access to an array of water sports... read more

    Bahia Honda Wildlife Observation Site

    36850 Overseas Hwy.

    Canoeing through the mangrove narrows offers a chance at real solitude along with the best wildlife viewing opportunities at this busy park... read more

    Sandspur Beach

    user rating

    36850 Overseas Hwy.

    Rare white-sand beach; snorkeling, hiking, windsurfing and kayaking... read more

    expert pick

    National Key Deer Refuge

    user rating

    28950 Watson Boulevard
    Big Pine Key Plaza

    See endangered wildlife up close in their natural habitat... read more

    No Name Pub

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    North Watson Boulevard
    1 1/2 mile north of U.S 1

    Best Pizza, Casual Dining & Florida Keys landmark since 1936... read more

    expert pick

    Looe Key Reef Dive Center

    Mile Marker 27.5
    Highway 1

    Five star PADI dive center, diving Looe Key Reef daily... read more

    Big Pine Kayak Adventures

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    Old Wooden Bridge Fishing Camp
    MM 30, US1

    Nature tours among the mangroves and backcountry...
    read more

    Fantasy Dan's Airplane Rides

    16855 Overseas Highway

    Aerial nature airplane tours of Key West and the Lower Florida Keys... read more

    Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge

    user rating

    P.O. Box 430510

    A safe haven for herons and other birds... read more

    Perky's Bat Tower

    Mile Marker 17
    End of Bat Tower Road

    Weirdly wonderful diversion... read more
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