"Key Worst" (Key West) options???
Another novel here...
Section 1 is military options/procedures/warnings to help you out...
section 2 is civilian options/opinions/reviews
if you're eligible for base privs on NASKW (Navel Air Station Key West) has two marinas
, the only deep water marina and one that takes liveaboards is at the Boca Chica Navel Air Base, west end of the base/island, overseas highway roadside gate is at mile marker 8 so it's outta town an officially not in Key West.
Its a drive to Key West and has a waiting list though...
Really pretty quite/secluded except the "Sound of Freedom" (Jet Noise) but has all facilities fuel
, pump outs, showers except mail, you'll have to either get civilian P.O. box around town or be like the rest of us and acquire a box at the Sigsbee base navy
exchange which rents P.O. boxes by month, semi or annual basis, at time of writing rates are $10 monthly, $75 annually and they will not forward mail period so you can't do mail forwarding sadly. You can however have someone with base privs check and forward your mail unoffically...what most do-leave your box key with trusted privliged source.
The marina bar there is called Navigators with its beach has paddleboard and kayak
rentals, is nice place to hang but you get "Sound of Freedom" (jet noise-even some sonic booms) as well as a lot of functions going on as the individual tikis can be rented for private functions. Kinda fun as most the Air Combat instructors eat lunch there/hang out and listening to them unoffically evaluate the squadrons in training overhead/their landings will keep you rolling in stitches...taking them/going on day sails
is a blast too!!!
The deep water marina at Boca Chica has pump out, fuel and trash services and many people with military credentials/base privs who are passing thru on their vessels use this marina to do their boat biz here instead of services in Key West area or even transient dingy dockage while short term transient anchoring
in the anchorage between south side (Hawks Channel) of Boca Chica and Stock Island.
You don't wanna try to squat in the anchorage and use this dock daily via dink on an extended timeframe though, not intended for this and you will get a warning from the dock master and eventually get a letter of reprimand from the base commander for this and lose your NASKW base privs if you try to be sneaky and continue this dishonorable practice of landing ashore via dink and especially if they find you are keeping your POV parked at the marina parking lot (losers have tried this and it's why now the penalties are so serve!) much same reasoning why non active duty personel can't utalize the DFAC))
number to the marina (any military marina) are easily found online for more info, but you have to come in person (don't have to bring your boat) with military I.D./Vessel registration/proof of liability insurance
for said vessel to get on the slip/mooring ball waiting list/much like getting on the wait list for Rainbow Marina @ Pearl Harbor or pretty much any military installation
marina-kinda standardized policy for most base marinas
if not all???
The other military oppertunity in Key West is Sigsbee marina which is a shallow water/powerboat/shoal draft
day use marina-kinda more the fishing
boaters/power boaters (stink pot) marina. Has fuel, water, and people use showers down the road in the campground.
They rent offshore
boats as well as 16 foot fishing skiffs thru MWR.
You will need the coasties approved/power squadron safety
course cert to rent any powerboats there like most rental companies require.
They have an awesome boat launch for trailered vessels, recovery & wash out as well as long term storage
for trailered vessels too (lotta the RV snowbirds who winter on Sigsbee in the RV. Park yearly have a trailered offshore fish
boat they've kept there on yearly basis as it's most secure place in KW) their fish
boats often cost more than their fifth wheel
trailers and duelie trucks?))
Also gets a lotta retired/military privileged people from mainland on vacay with fishing/trailerable M/V using this option weekending and what not...mini season on sigsbee with all the infux is worse than fantasy fest influx on Sigsbee.
People with military base privileges often anchor
sailboats short term (3 day limit) coasties/FWC will let you slide a week maybe two?))
Just be sure you respect the required minimum 100ft off shoreline of Sigsbee and dink it into the marina for water, fuel and to use the exchange/commissary which is about 3/4 mile walk from marina dock-bring a granny grocery rolling basket/buggy or bicycle...you can throw trash here as well, though it's frowned upon (only military base I've ever seen with an attitude about throwing trash-"cartage" issue as it's so expensive to remove trash from key west to the mainland)...
Again, habitually using this powerboat marina @ Sigsbee for dink parking extended periods will get you noticed and again, a letter of reprimand/loss of NASKW base privs...they don't want anyone trying to live on boats/squatting anchored off Sigsbee longterm using the sigsbee marina like a dink dock for extended periods/parking your POV....
But passing thru, they are quite understanding/teamwork military mentality/eager to help. a better place for coming ashore when anchored in Sigsbee Ledge area/bay side is to land the dink on the beach in front the sunset grill
on Sigsbee (closer walk to commissary-base exchange) go about 4pm and have a drink at bar (prolly end up drinking with the off duty coasties who patrol Sector Key West or FWC guys, crowd here is pretty awesome!)
it's best to have your military I.D. visible anytime landing any watercraft on a military base shoreline (if you get that close without being confronted?) best to have it on a neck badge holder highly visible to everyone when coming ashore. Most bases with shoreline have on the water security
forces but Sigsbee does not as there is nothing but housing and family
support services/recreation. There is however shore based patrol Master at Arms (Navy talk for military police) this practice of visibly wearing your credentials makes you appear/seen as legit/makes it aware you privileges and not a threat or unauthorized.
-----section 2 civilian options/opinions/reviews-----
About Key West civilian marinas...
Sunset Marina @ stock island favorable to me cuz it's the healthiest choice for me...but sadly it's across from the main Monroae County Jail and you tend to hear the Jail P.A....see the jail, see the jail traffic as well the homeless shelter is under the jail, so daily you have a parade of homeless people walking down the marina road which is shared by the jail. If driving gotta be careful of people pulling a "Michael Brown" (walking carelessly down middle of the road blocking traffic) between 7-8pm and leaving between 5-8am the parade of homeless heads out towards key west...repeat daily...repeat daily...watch the revolving door spin and spin...somewhat depressing...
I notice females tend to get nervous/insecure about/around homeless people so prolly not an option for OP of this thread...much less any guy trying to be a player and trying to impress women/anyone else...
Sunset Marina is a cheaper marina in KW and what I explained above about jail/shelter/homeless people is the reason why...great sunsets and decent bar though the condo owners tend to be pretentios beyond belief-elitists doesn't begin to describe their flavor IMO!
Sunset marina does have some of the best paddleboarding/kayaking out the marina enterance around cow key channel, also really close to the college if you want to go to the best non university oceanography school
in US or a nice marine mechanic
Also where the lap swim crowd works out for fitness/KW triathlon club does training sessions, you can put kids
in camps/it's on the best roadracing bicycle training loop in KW area.
Lastly really nice sheltered marina unless you get a blow from the north which causes waves from Florida
bay to come into the marina directly via the inlet...
Ill agree with others that south side Stock Island Marina is the nicest/posh marina in stock island. Big bummer of southern stock island marinas is going to/from the marinas by land!!!
You have to ride thru the ghettos/trailerhoods/slums of KW and this can be intimidating especially for females and especially at nite. Robbie's is a dump...lastly stock island is where the worst crime in KW seemingly takes place sadly...read the local papers, you'll see...
Back on "the two by four" (KW) Garrison Bight slips (my absolute fave-sailfish gangway) IMO awesome for me it's centrally located on North Roosevelt to any and everything I do in paradise (I'm all over town plus the 4 military compounds) though the salty dogs/ambiance at Key West Bight at the notorious Schooner Warf Bar and pool party next door @ Dontes offer the best exciement off your boats gangway
If you want to impress others, Key West Bight is the epic center/place to dock your vessel as well as if you're a player/Capt Chaos type trying to impress women/pick up women.
Nice short walk down Caroline st from Duval where there is always another cruise
boat of sexually adventurous/permiscuoius woman who is already tired of her girlfriends she's traveling with in port, fresh off a cruise
boat looking for fun...great perk I find is they get back aboard said cruise boat and leave port that same day by 5pm generally too. I've never found a better place for one night stands for sailors...as Maverick said in Top Gun "This is a target rich environment"
Quietest/most regal/laid back option IMO is renting
someones sea wall/quay (look for ads for this in Key Haven hood-still key west address but it's out a bit at mile marker 6ish)
...that's my Key Worst rundown...have fun in Paradise and do a pub crawl to my fave bars, capt Tonys, green parrot, the bull/whistle/garden of Eden, bicycle your "today's Girl of the day" on your tandem bicycle over to Schooner Wharf Bar & if it's all going well take her aboard your vessel for some adult fun but set the alarm
clock so you're sure she doesn't miss her ship outta Paradise and wreck your nite with your steady GF who is broke and needs a day job...A.K.A "girlfriend day care"