In just over 100 miles, the Overseas Highway (or US 1) is one of the most scenic roads in the country. The highway, which joins Florida's mainland to Key West, takes approximately 2.5 hours to complete and spans beautiful expanses of aquamarine waters. Hop key-to-key and explore fun stops, roadside attractions, essential eats, and exactly 42 bridges - including the famed Seven Mile Bridge. Here are 10 things you must absolutely see on your drive along the Overseas Highway.
1. John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
The country’s first undersea park in Key Largo encompasses 70 square miles of adjacent Atlantic Ocean waters. Get in the water via glass-bottom boat, scuba diving, or snorkeling to view up to 55 varieties of colorful corals and 500 species of fish in the preserve. 102601 Overseas Hwy, Key Largo
2. Rain Barrel Village
The Rain Barrel Village open-air complex in Islamorada is lined with specialty shops, galleries, and boutiques. Shop local art and handmade crafts, stroll through the tropical gardens, or take a picture with Betsy, the 30-ft high Florida spiny lobster overlooking the Overseas Highway. Betsy is believed to be the world’s largest lobster sculpture and the second most photographed attraction in the Keys, right behind the Southernmost Point Buoy in Key West. 86700 Overseas Hwy, Islamorada
3. History of Diving Museum
Marine Biologists, scuba divers, and diving historians Dr. Joe and Sally Bauer have spent the last 40 years assembling the largest collection of early diving masks, scuba gear, armored suits, and diving memorabilia in the world. The History of Diving Museum’s unique (and downright odd) relics are a sight to behold. 82990 Overseas Hwy, Islamorada
4. Robbie's Tarpon Feed
Stop at Robbie’s Marina in Islamorada to feed the giant Atlantic tarpon that linger below the docks (by hand!). The “silver kings” can reach colossal sizes of up to 8-ft long and 280 pounds. Admission to the dock is $2.25 per person, with a $4 charge for a bucket of fish. 77522 Overseas Hwy, Islamorada
5. Turtle Hospital
The 13 islands of Marathon are a wonderful place to spot loggerhead sea turtles on the beaches. Learn all about the protected sea creatures at the Turtle Hospital, which rescues, rehabilitates, and releases them to the surrounding waters. Marathon is also home to the Dolphin Research Center, Marathon Wild Bird Center, and Florida Keys Aquarium Encounters. 2396 Overseas Hwy, Marathon
6. Seven Mile Bridge
The world-famous bridge connects Knight’s Key to Little Duck Key and has been featured in international commercials, films, and television series including 2 Fast 2 Furious, Burn Notice, License to Kill, and True Lies. Once one of the longest bridges in the world, the original Seven Mile Bridge was said to be the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Overseas Hwy, Knights Key, Little Duck Key
7. Key Deer in Big Pine Key
Weighing between 45 and 80 pounds fully grown, the petite Key deer lives only in the Florida Keys. Visit the National Key Deer Refuge in Big Pine Key for your chance to spot one of these little creatures on the 8,000 acres bordering the Overseas Highway. 30587 Overseas Hwy, Big Pine Key
8. No Name Pub
The historic No Name Pub is just off the Overseas Highway in Big Pine Key, but the five-minute detour to the “best casual dining experience in the Florida Keys” is totally worth it. The iconic tavern is bedecked with dollar bills (some patrons estimate up to a half million of them) and serves up eclectic pizzas, homemade smoked fish dip, and more Florida seafood-centric dishes. 30813 Watson Blvd, Big Pine Key
9. Iguanas in the Lower Keys
With sunny skies and subtropical temperatures, it's no wonder that iguanas thrive in the Keys. Florida’s booming iguana population is not difficult to spot along the Overseas Highway. You’ll find these green giants sunbathing on the roadside.
10. Mile Marker ‘0’
Commemorate your Overseas Highway excursion where it all ends - at Mile Marker ‘0’ in Key West. The frequently photographed green and white road sign can be found on the corner of Fleming and Whitehead streets. 501 Whitehead St, Key West
Once you reach the end of the road, you’ll need a place to stay. 24 North Hotel is situated at Key West’s port of entry and just 10 minutes from the airport. Our daily shuttle services to Old Town are super convenient to avoid traffic. Take advantage of our best rates and special offers when you book direct. Read more.