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For a Caribbean-style island experience in the Florida Keys, Bahia Honda State Park can’t be beat. It boasts the most appealing beaches in the Keys, slender stretches of natural coral sand along the Atlantic Ocean rimmed with coconut palms. The gentle slope of the sea coupled with clear waters and tropical fish makes this a prime destination for snorkeling. With three campgrounds surrounded by tropical forests, as well as a handful of cabins for rent, it’s one of Florida's most popular state parks, where booking a campsite up to a year in advance is a good idea. Beaches bring the visitors here, but there is so much more to this tropical ...

For a Caribbean-style island experience in the Florida Keys, Bahia Honda State Park can’t be beat. It boasts the most appealing beaches in the Keys, slender stretches of natural coral sand along the Atlantic Ocean rimmed with coconut palms. The gentle slope of the sea coupled with clear waters and tropical fish makes this a prime destination for snorkeling. With three campgrounds surrounded by tropical forests, as well as a handful of cabins for rent, it’s one of Florida's most popular state parks, where booking a campsite up to a year in advance is a good idea. Beaches bring the visitors here, but there is so much more to this tropical island. Since the early 1800s, Bahia Honda has been a notable place for botanical study, home to plant species rarely found elsewhere, such as the silver palm – a nature trail runs through the largest stand of silver palms in America – and the Geiger tree. The park concessionaire offers sea kayak rentals – an excellent way to explore both the island’s outer shore and its mangrove lagoons – and runs snorkeling trips to nearby Looe Key, considered one of the top dive spots in Florida.

Sandra Friend
About the Expert

Sandra Friend has written 12 books about Florida, including the Explorer's Guide (Countryman Press) series to Florida.

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Sandra Friend for Triporati

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