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Christmas questions for 1st timers

Lawrence, Kansas
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Christmas questions for 1st timers

DW and I will be arriving late on Dec 25 and leaving early on the 31 so we have 5 usable days. Staying at Pier House. We like to party, eat, see some history stuff, and people watch. Can take or leave doing anything on water such as sunset cruise. It looks like the late Dec. weather is somewhat unpredictable from the 50's to hi 60's at night and 60's to low 80's during day. I follow this forum a lot so feel pretty comfortable on where we will eat and drink and we won't miss Mallory Square.

1. I know the snorkeling isn't as good there as other places like Hawaii and farther south in Carribean but will the water be too cold to snorkel?

2. Other than Hemingway House, what are the next 2-3 best history things to do.

3. Where can we go to see boats such as schooners, house boats, etc?

4. Any other suggestions for what to do at that time of year?

Key West, Florida
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1. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

I think it will be too cold for snorkeling.

Suggestions for historic things would be the Little White House, East Martello Tower and fort Zachary Taylor.

To see boats, anywhere on the Harborwalk is good. Also, the Westin Pier. From the Beach Bar at the Pier House or Sunset Pier at Ocean Key, there is fabulous boat watching to be had as well

Lawrence, Kansas
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2. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

Thank you Steps for the suggestions. I suspected as much on the snorkeling. Are there any special events going on at that time?

Key West
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3. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

1 The water temp was 84 this weekend and I complained a tad bit about it was getting cold. The water in December is about 70 degrees, it's way to cold for me but for you it may be fine. Hundreds of people a day in December will snorkel our reefs, if you are super worried about being cold you can rent wetsuit.

2.Depends on you, I like to walk in and out of the galleries on Upper Duval Street and view the great art. Go fishing, relax by the hotel pool, rent a bike and check out the neighborhoods.

3 Anyplace along the harbor is good Sit at Schooner Wharf Bar and watch them come in from their afternoon sails or go on a sunset sail on one of them.

4 Here is a great list of Christmas events in old town http://www.keywestchristmas.org/ is for 2011 but the events are the same the dates will be updated soon

Fish hard,

Bonez

Edited: 25 September 2012, 11:08
Kansas City
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4. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

There are 3 things that I recommend that every first timer do: 1. Take the Conch Train, or one of the trolley tours as soon after you arrive as possible, 2. Do at least one thing on or in the water (a sunset cruise is always nice if its too cold to get in), and 3. Go to Mallory Square at least one night for the sunset celebration. I know that you already commented on some of those things, but that's a good three to start with. I also recommend the Truman Little White House. Being in the general area of where Pres. Truman came from makes it a little more interesting. Since your staying at the Pier House (my favorite hotel) you are in a good spot to see lots of boats. If you have an ocean view room just go out on your deck. Otherwise just walk to the bight and do the Harborwalk. Just relax, have fun, and go where the moment takes you. (BTW, in case you cant guess from my screen name I'm a KU alum. Love Lawrence.)

Pjk
New Jersey
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5. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

I've snorkeled in late November but needed a wet suit but I still could not stay in the water as long as I normally do in May and July. Do-able but not all that comfortable.

One of the nicest places in key West is the West Martello Tower and garden club...

http://www.keywestgardenclub.com/

It's on Higgs Beach and you can walk there from most anyplace in Old Town, but it's a nice bike ride.

And there is the Shipwreck Museum with great views of the water and Key West from the tower...

http://www.keywestshipwreck.com/

And I like the Audubon House...

http://www.audubonhouse.com/

Pjk

Edited: 25 September 2012, 16:55
San Diego...
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6. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

I love the Little White House tour. The little railway museum (closes at 3pm) is also a nice little tour.

Key West, Florida
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7. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

The West Martello Tower that Pjk suggests is indeed lovely! The plant life is stunning, as is the view of the water. I love it!

To clarify though, the suggestion of EAST Martello Tower is in response to your question about the best history things to do. The East Martello Tower is out by the airport, so a bike is recommended if you're staying in Old Town. It is full of Key West history, many interesting stories and artifacts, including Robert the Doll, Cuban refugee exhibits and a sizable collection of Mario Sanchez art.

One of the best spots in town and because of its location, a bit of a "hidden gem".

Key West
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8. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

I also like the Little White House Tour. You might also like the Custom House, Eco Discovery Center, and Mel Fisher Museum. Have you gone to the the cemetery? Very interesting, and lots of history!! Hope you have fun!!

Pjk
New Jersey
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9. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

I wanted to add that I think a sail out to the reef on a snorkel boat is worth the price if only to see the water and maybe dolpins. It would be about $40.00 - $45.00 pp on the Fury or Sebago and it takes about 3 hours. You go out to the reef about 7 miles south of Key West, and you can rent a wetsuit on either for $10.00 and try snorkeling until you are chilled, then come out of the water, put on a hoodie, and sip a drink for the sail back. There are even afternoon snorkel / sunset sails for about the same price.

Have fun.

Pjk

Fort Myers Beach...
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10. Re: Christmas questions for 1st timers

To bad you are leaving on December 31. That is NYE which is not to be missed in Key West. Everybody should do it at least once, it's great !