The small town of Homestead is gateway to Everglades National Park’s eastern entrance and to this sister park, where most of what there is to see lies underwater. Depart from the visitors center, which holds exhibits and a small cafÃ©, on boating excursions that include snorkeling, scuba diving, and island hops to unbridged islands that kick off the Florida Keys chain. On the park’s two main islands — Boca Chita and Elliott Key — you can explore some quirky chapters of local history, hike trails, fish, and camp overnight.
Hours: November through April 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily
May through October 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily