Lockdown may have thrown a wrench at our summer travel plans, but it’s not keeping us from escaping to (another) tropical place. That’s because as of June 1, the Florida Keys are reopening to tourists—and that includes vacation-starved locals looking for a quick getaway.
Next month, the popular travel destination, which closed on March 22, is removing its checkpoints that barred visitors from entering and allowing hotels to resume business. Both big resorts and smaller RV parks, motels and timeshares (which the Keys is known for) will be operating at a 50-percent occupancy rate. Similarly, restaurants will reopen at 50-percent maximum capacity. The charming outdoor eateries that account for most of the venues from Key Largo to southernmost Key West and every city in between will not be capped, though social-distancing guidelines will be enforced. Expect to see tables six feet apart and groups of people no larger than 10.
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It’s true that Monroe County’s compact properties and narrow streets aren’t the most conducive to keeping your distance from strangers, but area businesses are doing their best to make sure it’s possible. And if nothing else, the deals are enticing, especially if you book early. Stock Island’s Perry Hotel is offering a 20-percent discount when you purchase a gift certificate for a future stay. While Hawks Cay, the county’s largest most expansive property, offers villas and townhomes for guests looking for extra privacy.
Not sure whether you’re ready to venture out overnight? The relaxed restrictions also mean that the Overseas Highway, one of the most beautiful drives in the country, is yours to experience again. Even if it’s from behind the wheel of a car or just for the day, there’s no better change of scenery.
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