The John Pennekamp State Park

My Key West Getaway….The Last Day

Submitted by Hitty Gale

No motor trip to the Florida Keys would be complete without a visit to the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park.

The first day of our trip, we were told by the staff at the Key Largo welcome center, that the park was almost full.  We decided to stop on the way back home from Key West.

The state park is America’s first undersea park.  It is located at Key Largo at the 102.5 mile marker along the Overseas Highway.  The park extends 3 miles into the Atlantic Ocean and is approximately 25 miles in length.  The park was established to protect and preserve the only living coral reef in the continental United States.  It is the third largest barrier reef in the world and a scuba diver’s paradise.

The world famous “Christ of the Abyss” statue is easily accessible to both divers and snorkelers.  It was donated by an Italian dive group and placed in the park in 1965.  

  We did not do any snorkeling or scuba diving during our visit to the park.  We ate our picnic lunch and visited the beach before we started on our journey home.

That night, as I snuggled beneath the covers with my favorite teddy bear, I was thinking, “There’s no place like home and sleeping in your own bed.”

Home Sweet Home

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