Kourdoglous in Key West: A Honeymoon Guide

So, I spent last night playing with pictures from our honeymoon in the new app, "A Color Story"  by A Beautiful Mess. The pictures were already bright and full of color, and the app intensified the awesome vibes we got while on our honeymoon. I decided to post a few here, along with some of my favorite stops in Key West.

 

Angelo and I woke up the morning after our wedding with growing hangovers and dreamlike happiness. We were married! Not only that but all the stress and time that had gone into planning and organizing our wedding were over! We were hopping on a plane that night to head to Miami.

We drove from Miami to Key West – it takes about three hours – but took stops along the way once we hit the Keys. The weather was perfect, you're surrounded by water, and island hopping from Key to Key when you have no place to be is all different types of relaxing.

Once we arrived, we were there for a little over a week. We spent every day at the beach, we went out to eat every night and our main goal was to unwind and take a step back from the past few stressful months. [Seriously, wedding planning is no joke.]

I had been so busy with wedding stuff that I didn't really make any plans for our honeymoon – which is completely unlike me. But as soon as we arrived, I realized it would be okay. I was there with my husband, the weather was beautiful, my hair air dried wonderfully in the climate and there were random little geckos everywhere – I relaxed and just went with it. Here are a few of my favorite spots from our honeymoon.

 

1. Bien, 1000 Eaton St, Key West, FL 33040. This was the place Angelo selected for lunch one day. I was a little hesitant – I'm not really into Cuban food – but when we pulled up to the tiny pink building, my eyes caught the most beautiful looking corn on the cob I had ever seen and I was sold. All the food was delicious. We sat out front (their seating is outdoor only) and watched the people steadily stop by for lunch. It was, definitely, the best meal we ate in Key West – and we had some pretty epic dinners. Take my word for it and be sure to check it out when you're in the area.

 

2. Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum, 907 Whitehead St, Key West, FL 33040. So, if I'm being honest – Ernest Hemingway was sort of an awful person. [Please don't hate me English majors!] He hunted "big game," he drank way too much and he was notorious for cheating on his wives. But, his house is now a museum and it's crawling with six toed cats! It's worth it to stop by the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum – to roll your eyes at all of Hemingway's awful hunting portrait photographs while seeing if you can stick around for the moment where one of the older guides decides to feed a swarm of cats treats. The whole property is beautiful – just keep in mind that if Hemingway were alive today, he would be vehemently disliked.

 

3. Dry Tortugas National Park, the middle of the ocean, Key West, FL. Our big splurge was to spend the day at Dry Tortugas National Park. Dry Tortugas is one of the most secluded national parks in the country – and that can be attributed to the fact that it's about 70 miles west of Key West and the only way to reach it is by boat, or airplane – if you're that person. [Believe me, there are many of those people, we saw a few planes land on our day trip.] The ride out to Tortugas is beautiful, you can see sea turtles, Keys sinking into the ocean and tons of flying fish. When we arrived at the park, we slathered on copious amounts of sunscreen and went on a tour given by one of the guides because – when you travel two hours by boat to see a historic landmark, you should take the tour. After the tour, we spent the rest of the day snorkeling until it was time to head back to land.

 

4. Blue Heaven, 729 Thomas St, Key West, FL 33040. It wouldn't be a trip to Key West without stopping at Blue Heaven. Our condo was only about half a mile from this restaurant, so we made sure to have breakfast here a few times – which was made oh so delightful (and somewhat creepy) by a rooster who stationed himself next to me while I ate my poached eggs. Yikes. We also stopped by here one night to sit at the bar, listen to the live band and eat a crazy piece of Key Lime Pie. Blue Heaven is so quintessentially Key West, you have to make sure to make a stop there.

 

Honorable mentions? Sure, here's two.

- Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, our condo was right next to this state park so we spent every single day here – lying underneath palm trees next to old biker couples. There's an entrance fee – it's $2 per person (on foot) or $6 per vehicle. There's a snack bar, and the water is to die for. Bring water shoes though – Key West is nothing if not a little rocky.

-Patrick and the Swayzes, we were overwhelmed with the amount of, ah, "jam bands," as Angelo likes to call them so you can imagine my delight when I heard someone singing a gut wrenching cover of "The House of the Rising Sun" while we were waiting for a dinner reservation one night. The band was Patrick and the Swayzes, a surf rock band that we had the luck of seeing twice (first time by chance, second time after an older couple whose dog we were petting recommended them to us.) Basically, if you can only hear so many covers of "Wagon Wheel," and need something a little different – check out their instagram and see where they're playing.

 

Man, it's supposed to snow anywhere from an inch an a half to two feet this weekend (I've heard conflicting reports) and now that I've gone through all these honeymoon memories, I'm ready for summer! Hope I warmed up your day and happy travels to you, readers. Get your butts down to Key West!