Travellers taking cheap flights to the Florida Keys can expect some 200km of pure, unadulterated, tropical island paradise. The Keys are a chain of about 1,700 islands that start at the tip of the Florida peninsula, about 25km from Miami, and arc around to Key West (at this point closer to Cuba than the U.S.) and on to the uninhabited Dry Tortugas islands.
The area offers superlative diving, sports fishing, homey communities, beautiful beaches and a rich heritage.
South of Miami, Key Largo is the first of the Florida Keys that travellers will come across. It's a great base for exploring the more southerly keys.
Islamorada is a village made up of six keys including Plantation Key, Windley Key and Upper and Lower Matecumbe Keys, and is considered the sports-fishing capital of the world with sailfish, bonefish, permit, tarpon, snook and redfish all swimming its waters.
Marathon is at the mid-point of the Keys, home to Crane Point Hammock. From Marathon, the Seven Mile Bridge is the gateway to the Lower Keys and Key West, a pretty town of palm-lined streets and charming Victorian homes. It was also once home to Ernest Hemingway.
Tropical. The sea breezes keep temperatures a little cooler than on the mainland in the summertime and moderate winter temperatures too. Summer highs range between 28 and 32 degrees Celsius. Winter lows drop to about 18 degrees Celsius.Hurricane season starts on June 1 and lasts until November 30. Within that, travellers considering taking cheap flights to the Florida Keys should remember that August 15 to October 15 is the time when the chances of a storm springing up are greatest.
When to fly to Florida Keys
Mid-December through March is high season, and naturally the time when most travellers arrive on cheap flights to the Florida Keys.
Summer is hot and humid and has been the low season traditionally, but it is fast becoming a second peak season due to families taking vacations as well as European travellers discovering the area.