Saturday, March 29, 2008

Key Largo, FL to Coconut Grove, FL

After putting on 200 gallons of fuel "Island Hopper" departed the Ocean Reef Yacht Club at 10:30 AM.

Yachts harbored at Ocean Reef's docks

Departing Ocean Reef
Winds were northerly at 5 to 10 , with sunny blue skies. The water was smooth with a light chop, since we were traveling on the inside. Today's route will be traveling up Angelfish Creek into Biscayne Bay to Coconut Grove.
Traveling Angelfish Creek

Captain Kevin must stay alert while traveling Angelfish Creek, due to shallow water depths. We traveled successfully through the creek without a problem. From Card Sound entering Biscayne Bay, the wind was on our nose and the water had a light chop. Crab pots had to be carefully watched, since they are throughout the very narrow channel.

THE GROOVY GROVE

With four marina options and a historic anchorage, Coconut Grove is the yachtsman's Miami. It's the one neighborhood in the city where deck shoes are acceptable dress shoes. (This sounds like our kind of place!!) The area's roots run back to the 1830s-era nautically minded people who worked the Cape Florida Light. Homesteaders, farmers, fishermen and salvors followed. The Peacock family imported Bahamian laborers to build a hotel and other buildings in 1884. The Bahamian link is still evident. Every June, Coconut Grove hosts a lively two-day Junkanoo festival to celebrate Bahamian culture. The area began to attract artists through the 1950's, art galleries appeared in the early 1960's,and in 1963, the Coconut Grove Art Festival - the number one arts festival in the country - was established. It is held annually in February. Debbie & Kevin have attended this festival during their visits to Miami's Boat Shows. On the second Friday of each month there is the Coconut Grove Art Crawl, where galleries open their doors to visitors.

THINGS TO SEE AND DO

The best thing about stopping at Coconut Grove is that there is so much you can see or do on foot or bike. Because south Florida's interior was so difficult, folks traveled among bay settlements by boat. In the 1880's Captain Ralph Munroe gained fame by developing a special swing-keeled craft to negotiate the flats during the 1880's. The Barnacle, his former home, is Florida's smallest state park, offering a fascinating glimpse of 19th century life and early boat building.

RESTAURANTS AND PROVISIONS

Coconut Grove is a mecca for shoppers and hungry visitors. Coco Walk, on Grand Avenue, has fashion shops ranging from Dolce & Gabbana to Diesel. There are numerous restaurants and a movie theater in the open-air complex. There are also eight or so main streets that have cafes and small boutiques. We will be staying at the city's Dinner Key Marina. Although it is larger than other marinas, the city's marina is a bit quieter than the neighboring commercial marinas, due to a fair number of liveaboards, and it is a bit farther from the outdoor clubs and live music.

We walked from the marina to CoCo Walk Area and had lunch at Johnny Rockets. Ian and Joan needed to have a true American lunch. After lunch we went through the CoCo Walk and Mayfair shopping areas. Walking back to the boat we went through the Convention Center's parking lot and noticed many Star trailers and posted security. This is where the 20th Century Fox's crew has set up for the filming of the "Marley & Me", starring Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston. We didn't see any actors, or anyone involved in the movie production. The only problem we have found in the Miami area is the language barrier. Everyone at the Dinner Marina and. the city workers mainly speak Spanish.

Tonight we walked to Monty's Restaurant for dinner. It was a casual dining place on the water.

1 comment:

Christopher said...

Welcome to SE Fla. Looking forward to seeing you as you head up the coast.
Gaffer