Underwater Exploration: Key Largo, The Dive Capital of the World Slideshow

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Novice and experienced divers are enthralled by the diving splendor in Key Largo
Must-See Diving

Photo Modified: Flickr / Wilfred Hdez / CC BY 4.0

Don’t miss the Statue of Christ of the Abyss, a famous 4000-pound bronze statue that’s in 25 feet of water. Tucked between coral formations of Key Largo Dry Rocks reef, the statue is so close to the water’s surface that both snorkelers and divers can easily see it.

Must-See Diving

Must-See Diving

Photo Modified: Flickr / Wilfred Hdez / CC BY 4.0

Don’t miss the Statue of Christ of the Abyss, a famous 4000-pound bronze statue that’s in 25 feet of water. Tucked between coral formations of Key Largo Dry Rocks reef, the statue is so close to the water’s surface that both snorkelers and divers can easily see it.

Key Largo Insider Tip

Another must-see in Key Largo? The food cooking demos at the annual Key Largo Uncorked Food and Wine Festival every January. From seafood to desserts to drinks, this festival aims to satisfy your appetite!

Reef Fish

While exploring the reefs off Key Largo, expect to see lots of different fish, including parrotfish, snappers, grunts and barracudas. The reefs here have over 260 species of tropical fish and 80 species of coral.

Key Largo Insider Tip

Whatever your catch-of-the-day, take it to a local restaurant to get cooked. The Buzzards Roost Waterfront Seafood Restaurant has a Hook ‘N Cook program. You catch, clean and filet the fish and the restaurant does the rest! The seafood must be legal size and in season. They can make it into an entree, sandwich or a basket item served with fries.

Wreck Trek

Wreck Trek

Photo Modified: Flickr / jeff~ / CC BY 4.0

Go on wreck dives to explore Key Largo’s shipwrecks and artificial reefs. Make sure you’re licensed and have solid skills before going on a wreck trek.

In Key Largo, check out these wrecks: Spiegel Grove, a 510-foot Navy transport ship that was sunk in 2002; and the Benwood Wreck, a World War II-era shipwreck that’s now home for schools of porkfish and grunt.

Want a sneak peak of a wreck dive? Check out this one of the Duane, a 327-foot Coast Guard cutter sunk intentionally in 1987.

Key Largo Insider Tip

 Key Largo Insider Tip

Photo Modified: Flickr / Larry Hoffman / CC BY 4.0

Take a culinary journey in Key Largo too. Sample local flavors, what Keys’ chef Bobby Stoky calls “a crossroad for many cultures,” including Cuban food and Caribbean cuisine as well as French and English cooking.

Photo Magic

Want to snap great pics of your diving adventures? John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park recommends shooting in natural light around 10:30 a.m. or 11 a.m. That’s when the sun is climbing and many water critters are active. They also recommend using flash, saying it will double the colors in your images. A few other tips: shoot close, low and up to get the best photos.

Key Largo Insider Tip

Check out the catches other anglers are snagging. Browse the social media hashtag: #keylargofishing.Looking at photos of snapper, mahi mahi and lobster, will inspire you to reel in a #bigfish of your own!