Cindy Lewis, director of Keys Marine Lab on Long Key, is a woman of diverse talents. A respected specialist in marine biology and coral restoration, she is an American Academy of Underwater Science diver and a National Association of Underwater Instructors dive master. She also plays the French horn with a concert band.
On Labor Day 2013, Diana Nyad walked ashore onto Key West's Smathers Beach — becoming the first person to swim from Cuba to the Florida Keys without a shark cage. Keys Voices marks the 10th anniversary of Diana’s iconic feat with a look back at the challenges and perseverance that led to its accomplishment.
When the “real world” seems especially stressful, escape to a place that recharges the body, soothes the soul and inspires reconnection with life’s natural rhythms. The Florida Keys backcountry is that place — a realm of wild beauty and tranquil waters, with one of the most diverse assortments of marine life on the planet.
In the Middle and Lower Keys and Key West, personal renewal, wellness, mindful pursuits, and enriching experiences take center stage to create an unforgettable vacation. Visitors can stroll a historic bridge between seemingly endless sea and sky, taste tropical fruits in a hidden grove, kayak to discover secret mangrove realms, and much more.
The Florida Keys are a relaxing and renewing locale with a unique natural environment designed for meaningful, enriching getaways — ideal for visitors craving restorative experiences for body and mind. In the Upper Keys, opportunities for self-care include inspirational guided art experiences, healthful yoga sessions, serene sunset cruises and tranquility-inducing spa treatments.
Billy Litmer is the founder of Key West’s Honest Eco tours, specializing in wild bottlenose dolphin-watching and nature charters. Designer and builder of the island’s first lithium-ion battery-powered hybrid charter boat with electric motors, he shares his love for the Keys’ wildlife and environment with guests — inspiring them to cherish both.
A trip to the Florida Keys during the warm summer months means a terrific choice of sea-based activities for nature lovers, adventurers, and those seeking serenity and calm. Whether enjoying paddleboarding, kayaking or snorkeling, enthusiasts need just one basic ingredient to have a memorable outdoor experience in the Keys this summer: saltwater!
It’s not always easy to stay afloat. Especially if your vessel is made of a 4-by-8-foot sheet of plywood, two 8-foot-long two-by-fours, a roll of duct tape and a pound of fasteners. But staying afloat is the goal for teams in the Schooner Wharf Minimal Regatta, a Key West Memorial Day weekend tradition.
John Mirabella, owner of the Castaway restaurant in Marathon, could well be called the “Lionfish King” of the Florida Keys. The affable natural storyteller is known as a pioneering lionfish hunter, recognized for spearheading efforts to remove the invasive non-native species from Keys waters — and for serving the flavorful fish in numerous ways.
Brian Vest, founder-president of the Conch Republic Marine Army, a nonprofit organization created to restore Florida Keys marine habitats, has taken more than 4,000 volunteers to the Keys backcountry. Nearly every Saturday, groups of up to 10 volunteers commit to a five-hour experience to clear debris washed up on remote, uninhabited islands.