Historic

The Legend of Black Caesar still haunts the Florida Keys

The Legend of Black Caesar still haunts the Florida Keys

Black Caesar is an elusive character, a pirate of some renown who roamed the Florida Keys, or so goes the legend. We explore his lair, and so can you!

Bedman Creek, a tributary of the Caloosahatchee River near Alva. (Photo: David Blasco)

Along Caloosahatchee River: Kayak trails, rustic scenery & small towns

Between Lake Okeechobee and Fort Myers, a stretch of the Caloosahatchee River offers a taste of Old Florida — small towns, rivers ideal for kayaking and good public campgrounds.

Jan. 20-22, 2017: Homestead Rodeo, where wild west meets the south in the tropics

Jan. 20-22, 2017: Homestead Rodeo, where wild west meets the south in the tropics

Homestead rodeo is the southernmost rodeo in the continental United States. You may be surprised to learn that Florida has a rich history of rodeos in its small towns.

920 Fleming Street, Key West

2016-17 Key West house tours: A chance to peek inside Key West homes

It’s a rare opportunity: You can peek inside the beautifully restored private homes in the Key West historic district on home and garden tours.

Tours open for season of historic Nike missile base in Everglades National Park

Tours open for season of historic Nike missile base in Everglades National Park

In the middle of Everglades National Park is the best preserved Nike missile base in South Florida, a relic of the Cold War and the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. Today it reminds us of those days of John F. Kennedy, fallout shelters and Bob Dylan protest songs.

A post office on Pine Island (Courtesy of Chief Dennis, Tarpon Lodge)

Pine Island: Step back in time, without a tourist in sight

Pine Island never was a big tourist destination. And that’s why it is such a refreshing place to explore today. It’s full of groves and plant nurseries with a few stops that make it worth exploring.

Beach at the Dry Tortugas National Park: Campsites are steps away. Terrific snorkeling is right off this beach along the walls of the fort.

Camping at the Dry Tortugas National Park: So worth the trouble

In honor of the 100th birthday of US national parks, here’s a park that deserves to be on your must-see list. We loved camping at Dry Tortugas National Park off the Florida Keys. It takes some time, money and effort, but, wow, does it pay off.

Marineland: Surprising story of legendary ‘oceanarium’

Marineland: Surprising story of legendary ‘oceanarium’

Marineland was the original oceanarium and the first to discover you could train dolphins to perform. Read its fascinating history, an excerpt from the new book, “A New Guide to Old Florida Attractions: From Mermaids to Singing Towers,” by Doug Alderson.

Calusa Beach at Bahia Honda State Park in the Florida Keys.

Bahia Honda State Park: Nice beaches, but historic bridge is the star

With the best beach in the Florida Keys, Bahia Honda is a popular stop. But don’t miss the real star — the historic bridge. The park is also tops for camping and its cabins, though you have to plan way way ahead for that.

The beach is rocky but beautiful with good snorkeling. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, Key West hidden gem

What took me so long? Like a lot of visitors, I had overlooked Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park on my visits to Key West because it is tucked away out of site. But the historic fort and great beach are worth discovering.

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