The park contains a wide variety of tropical vegetation, shore birds and marine life. While the mangrove swamps and tropical hammocks offer visitors a unique and interesting experience, it is the coral formations and associated marine life that most park visitors come to enjoy. The coral reefs at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park are among the most beautiful and diverse of all living communities. Like the tropical rain forest, the coral reef community is extremely diverse. Living among the corals are sponges, shrimps, crabs, turtles, lobsters, and nearly 600 species of fish. Touching or standing on corals may kill them and is therefore prohibited. Recreation
Scuba diving and snorkeling are the most popular attractions at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. Two beaches, several picnic areas, campground, fishing, wildlife viewing, swimming, canoe trails, and more are popular year-round. Touring the visitor center upon arrival is a great way to orient yourself to the park; highest visitations occurs from late fall to early spring. A private concessionaire within the park offers glassbottom boat tours, and snorkeling expeditions with over 30 years experience. The newest addition is the sailing catamaran. It is the ultimate in a smooth and relaxed ride with a passenger capacity of only 24 making it ideal for those who are looking for a quieter, more relaxed reef adventure. Location
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is located at Mile Marker 102.5, north of Key Largo in the Florida Keys. Climate
Southern Florida lies within a subtropical climate. It is usually hot and humid in the summer with brief afternoon thundershowers. It is not unusual for temperatures to exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit with averages reaching above 83 degrees Fahrenheit (above 29 Celsius). Winters are mild and dry with temperatures averaging above 64 degrees Fahrenheit (above 18 Celsius). The average precipitation for the southeast area is more than 60 inches per year. The powerful rays of the sun make it a good idea to wear hats and sunglasses along with using a SPF-15 (or above) sunscreen when planning outdoor activities. Address
P.O. Box 487
Key Largo, FL 33037 Phone: 305-451-1202
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Expert Review of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
Family Review of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
FamilyExpert Tips & Helpful Hints
- Young kids like the glass-bottom boat tours
- There are beginner snorkeling lessons; kids under 15 must be accompanied by a parent
Parks and Outdoors Review of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
Parks and OutdoorsExpert Tips & Helpful Hints
- Yes, you can camp here. Pennekamp offers 47 full-hookup sites for both tents and RVs. Call 800-326-3521 well ahead to reserve a spot.
- The park offers popular glassbottom boat trips, as well as scuba and snorkeling training and tours.
- If you'd like to paddle Pennekamp's mangrove creeks, the park rents canoe and sit-on-top sea kayaks in the morning and early afternoon.
Active and Adventure Review of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
Editor Tips & Helpful Hints
- If you've seen all the waterlogged marvels of the great "River of Grass," then this is the place to get a different look under southern Florida's aquatic hood. There's great snorkeling and diving, including a 100-foot swim out to the submerged "bones" of a Spanish shipwreck.
- Key Largo's Sundiver Snorkel Tours offers kid-friendly excursions and classes for interested newbies.
Mile Marker 102.5
Key Largo, Florida 33037
Mile Marker 102.5
Key Largo, Florida 33037
Parking: 8a-5p M-Su
Neighborhood: Upper Keys
The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.
Review by Wildernet Copyright © 2010 Wildernet.com all rights reserved.
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