London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies
Florida Keys have been historically a favourite day trip from Miami and Key Largo manatees, paddle boarding, bohemian beach dining and wining at Sol by The Sea, out of world sunset and a great live band spoilt us once again end of December 2021.
We stopped for early lunch at Sol by The Sea and most of Key Largo must sees came our way for the day: manatees, SUP, great food and fabulous cocktails, fishing for the kids and playing on the trampolines in the sea, fantastic sunset with live music, dancing away in the night, campfires by the beach under the stars. So the usual trip to IslaMorada and Marathon had to be postponed for the next trips – all parties were in full agreement on this occassion!
A rustic beautiful beach shack within Playa Largo Resort & Spa, Sol by The Sea feels authentic, chilled and has one great team. We started with a very early lunch on the first floor soaking in the gorgeous views with turquoise water and sipping tropical cocktails and we finished with the same team dancing by the stars on the sand!
We tested the fish tacos, Mac & Cheese and burgers for kids, all parties have been thrilled. Paddle boarding Key Largo shortly after lunch and a certain 8 years old managed a 1 hour ride nicely and smoothly but somehow managed at the end to get slightly stuck in Playa Largo’s coastal mangroves, to be rescued immediately by the WaterSports team who watched slightly amused the funny manoevreing. Well someone asked for adventure, so adventure it was, just like for the rest of the day!
As we sat by the sunset tables in the bay enjoying a Mai Tai post paddle boarding, we figured out we were in for a treat by the jetty. The friendliest of Key Largo manatee joined us for over an hour with her baby and played with the fresh water pipe and hanged around with us. The baby was slightly shier but the manatee mum clearly loved the attention, interraction and even some teen cuddles.
Having dreamt about seeing manatees in the wild for years, Playa Largo Resort & Spa made us fall in love instantly with these massive, gentle, playful creatures. As they dont’t have predators, the manatees are curious and social and we have loved our hour hanging around with the mother and baby, by the jetty as well as in the water, swimming around.
The kids were around for 30 minutes and then eventually dissappeared with their friends, the 8 years old fishing and the 5 years old on the water trampolines. They fell in love Playa Largo Resort & Spa just like us in few hours and ran around with friends testing the table tennis, gym, kids club facilities (not staffed given the pandemic).
We have eventually also resumed our sunset cocktails, dare I say the best table by Florida shores, sitting in the actual bay in the water!
One spectacular sunset with a live Cuban band, camp fires by the shores and another sunset fire party by the sea, we have danced under the stars, sipped more cocktails and dinned on some more Caribbean casual cuisine. So difficult to head back to Miami, for sure next time we are spending the night and a couple of days rather than just a day trip to Key Largo!
For more wildlife inspiration, check our Best places to dive with sharks, Best places to see dolphins in the wild, and 10 best places to see turtles .
Travelling during the pandemic. Being fully vaccinated and travelling to US December 2021 was relatively easy, just a couple of extra forms and tests. Coming back to London in January 2022 from Miami, we booked our private tests 2 days ahead of our travels and thereafter booked for London Day 2 private tests, PCR required at the time. The travelling guidance has been fluid though, always best to check the latest UK Foreign travel advice.
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What a beautiful destination – It looks idyllic. Sounds like the kids had a ball too. How exciting to get up so close to the manatee?!
Spoilt lucky indeed and yes we are dreaming about returning to Florida December 2022!
Seeing manatees is totally top of our family bucket list. Sounds like you had an amazing time! The Boho beach setting sounds just perfect. You have me dreaming of summer sun. #Culturedkids
Likewise daydreaming and counting down to warmer sunnier days! And yes we were so spoilt to hang out with the beautiful manatees!
Ah I love manatees, looks like an ace day trip! #CulturedKids
We are so dreaming abut Florida and manatees, fingers crossed we get to return December 2022!
What a fantastic day trip! The uninterrupted time with the manatee and its cub sounds unforgettable. And a gorgeous sunset too #CulturedKids