Are you looking for a remote, serene and historical getaway in Florida? Look no further than the Dry Tortugas National Park, accessible only by boat or seaplane.

Dry Tortugas Cororful Water

This 100-square mile national park consists of seven small islands, with Garden Key being home to Fort Jefferson, one of the most recognizable historic forts in the United States.

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With crystal clear waters, coral reefs, beaches, and an abundance of wildlife, the Dry Tortugas is a haven for snorkeling, birding, and exploring 19th century history.

What is Dry Tortugas?

Fort Jefferson, Dry Tortugas

Dry Tortugas is a group of small islands located in the Gulf of Mexico, 70 miles west of Key West, Florida. It is a popular tourist destination known for its snorkeling, birding, and Civil War history. The islands are accessible only by boat or seaplane, making it a perfect escape for those looking for a quiet and remote getaway [1].

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Dry Tortugas National Park is a 100-square-mile park with seven small islands, and its centerpiece is the magnificent Fort Jefferson. The fort is a must-see for history enthusiasts and offers a glimpse into the area’s fascinating past.

The park also offers plenty of opportunities for snorkeling and bird watching, making it an excellent destination for nature lovers. There are a variety of things to do in Key West, and Dry Tortugas is undoubtedly one of the best places to visit [2].

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The Dry Tortugas were named after the turtles that early Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon encountered in the area. The islands soon became a popular shipping corridor, and tales of pirates who roamed the area are legendary [8].

Fort Jefferson, Dry Tortuga National Park, Florida

Despite its popularity, some visitors find Dry Tortugas overrated, especially those who are not interested in the fort’s history. They suggest exploring other snorkeling destinations with smaller charters that offer better value for money [9].

Dry Tortugas National Park

The park’s combination of natural beauty, history, and solitude makes it an excellent place to explore, whether you are interested in snorkeling, bird watching, or learning about the area’s past. So pack your bags and plan your trip to Dry Tortugas today! [10]

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FAQs

Is Dry Tortugas worth the trip?

Yes, Dry Tortugas is definitely worth the trip. It is a beautiful and unique national park that is home to stunning coral reefs, crystal clear waters, and historic Fort Jefferson.

How long is the boat ride from Key West to Dry Tortugas?

The boat ride from Key West to Dry Tortugas takes approximately 2.5 hours each way. However, the actual time can vary depending on the weather conditions and the type of boat you take.

How much does it cost to take a ferry to Dry Tortugas?

The cost of taking a ferry to Dry Tortugas National Park varies depending on the provider and the type of tour you choose.

Typically, the cost ranges from $180 to $200 per person for a full-day trip, which includes transportation, guided tours, and snorkeling gear. However, there are also options for camping trips and private charters that can cost more.

Can you drive to Dry Tortugas National Park?

No, you cannot drive to Dry Tortugas National Park. The only way to access the park is by boat or seaplane.

What is the best month to visit Dry Tortugas?

The best month to visit Dry Tortugas National Park is during the dry season, which runs from December to May.

During this time, the weather is typically sunny and dry, with temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to low 80s Fahrenheit. Additionally, the water visibility is typically better during this time, making it a great time for snorkeling and diving.

Can you stay overnight in the Dry Tortugas?

Yes, you can stay overnight in Dry Tortugas National Park. Private boaters are allowed to stay overnight on their vessels while anchored in designated areas, and visitors can also camp on the island.

Overnight camping requires a permit, which can be obtained from the park ranger upon arrival [13]. There are no public showers on the island, but visitors can use the facilities on-board the ferry as it’s docked, which includes a fresh-water rinse and toilet. There are also composting toilets located within the campground area [18].

Are there bathrooms on Dry Tortugas?

There are no public restrooms available at Dry Tortugas National Park. Visitors will be required to use the facilities provided onboard the ferry. Composting toilets are available for visitors to use within the campground and after 2:30 PM [17].

What is Dry Tortugas famous for?

Dry Tortugas National Park is famous for its natural beauty and its historical significance. The park is home to Fort Jefferson, a massive brick fortress built in the 19th century that served as a prison during the Civil War.

The park is also renowned for its crystal-clear waters, pristine beaches, and vibrant coral reefs, which offer excellent opportunities for swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving. Dry Tortugas is also known for its abundant wildlife, including sea turtles, sharks, and a variety of colorful tropical fish [15].

What is special about Dry Tortugas?

Dry Tortugas National Park is special for its remote and unspoiled natural beauty. The park is located about 70 miles west of Key West and consists of seven small islands surrounded by turquoise waters.

Because the park is so isolated, it is home to a wide variety of unique flora and fauna that can’t be found anywhere else in the world.

Visitors to the park can also explore the fascinating history of Fort Jefferson, which played a significant role in the Civil War and was once a major stopping point for pirates and smugglers in the Caribbean [12].

Additionally, Dry Tortugas offers a peaceful and quiet retreat away from the hustle and bustle of city life, making it a perfect destination for those seeking relaxation and tranquility [16].