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The Florida Keys Travel Guide

What to Pack: Florida Keys

Known for its Key limes and endless vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, the Florida Keys are one picture-perfect getaway. Explore the coral archipelago, which stretches off the southern tip of Florida, via ferry or car, with the windows down while driving the famous Seven Mile Bridge. Best of all (especially if you’ve been suffering the polar vortexes), the Keys have a tropical climate with its own distinctive flora and fauna. Below, some picks on what to bring for a perfectly stylish vacation.


Dive Story

Just a few minutes away from the mainland, Key Largo is a convenient entry point to the Keys. Dive enthusiasts will have plenty to explore, including the reefs off John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. Swim attire is a must, perhaps in a tropical floral with a halter shape top ($52) and matching bottom ($44).

When not wearing a wetsuit, a few cover-up items come in handy, such as this aqua-and-orange-striped dress ($225).

Preppy separates also work for oceanside lunches or a stroll on the Lake Largo boardwalk. White jeans are a great neutral piece to build on ($159).

On top, try a burst of color, like a light Caribbean blue polo ($98.50).

A few sun accessories, such as this straw hat ($58), round out the beach bag.

Island Nights

Given the waterfront setting and vacation climate, the Keys stay relaxed even after the sun dips below the horizon. Flats will do, but if you’re looking for a lift, these gold platform wedges offer three-plus inches on a cushy cork sole ($198).

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When in Florida, both lively prints and hues can come out to play. See: coral pink patterned pants by Lilly Pulitzer ($148).

Knits in natural fibers, such as this cotton-silk blend sweater in cream, offer airy coverage ($245).

Alternatively, this printed rose top with lace back is a romantic take on separates ($365).

Pair with a petal pink skirt with a flattering drawstring waist ($300).


Westward Bound

About four miles long and just a mile wide (read: plenty of oceanfront and private beaches), Key West has a storied history, playing host in the past to writers Ernest Hemingway and Tennessee Williams. Dress for the climate in cotton tees, shwon here in sunshine yellow ($40).

For a bit of flash, try these funky swim shorts ($250) on for size.

Balance out more daring choices with basics like a light gray hoodie in French terry ($128).

A pair of classic tortoiseshell shades will work at home and on vacation ($350).

Kick back in flip-flops and these mainstays: white canvas sneaks ($65).

Main Street

Key West’s main artery is Duval Street where bars and restaurants abound. Pull on lightweight twill pants in washed blue ($189) to stroll the drag.

A white bib-front henley ($150) can sub for your usual tee.

For breezier nights and a bit of pattern play, try this pink and blue plaid shirt ($85) layered under a cardigan with jacquard motif ($149.50).

Keeping with the day’s beach theme, accessorize sparingly. A braided leather belt offers both function and visual texture ($175).

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