My recent trip to Key West was a lot of firsts for me and the hubs, a couple of life-long Maine residents.

First, we had never been on a destination vacation. We do family camping trips during the summer here in Maine but never have we flown somewhere together.

Also, it's the first vacation where it was just he and I, no kids.

Lastly, it was our first time in Florida, for both of us.

Townsquare Media Bangor, Sarah Nickerson
Townsquare Media Bangor, Sarah Nickerson

We didn't know what to expect being a couple of Maine kids in the south, like the super south- the most southern part of the United States.

So, when we got down to Key West, after months of penny-pinching and extra jobs we were hit with a lot of things that were completely unexpected from the actual heat and humidity of September Florida weather to general Key West essential experiences and do's and don'ts.

During my experience down there we planned on not keeping an eye on the accumulating bills and to live as we'd never visit Key West ever again - do the things we feared, eat the things we had never eaten, dine in places we really couldn't afford in "real-life" and make decisions that we otherwise wouldn't make (well, reasonably).

We stayed at a beautiful hotel to celebrate the wedding of friends and now my husband James and I have a great experience to look back on as a lot of firsts and, hopefully, many more to come.

Townsquare Media Bangor, Sarah Nickerson
Townsquare Media Bangor, Sarah Nickerson

For those Mainers looking to Key West for their "destination vacation," here are a few tips and a few things to give you a heads-up on to anticipate your trip if you want to make it down to this beautiful, small-town tourist destination of Key West and to have a great time.

25 Essential Things Every Mainer Should Know About Visiting Key West

Mainers thinking about going down to Key West should know these essential things before heading down to the 'Southern-most' everything in the United States. Keep yourself cool, open to new experiences, and beware of the roosters with these tips of being a Mainer who is thinking of visiting the tiny and fun island of Key West, Florida.

Or maybe you want to stay close to home.  Here are some great places to getaway if you don't want to go too far.

This $1500/Night Lubec Oceanside Rental Is The Maine Getaway Of Your Dreams

Located on Boot Cove on a private beach, this Airbnb offering may be pricey but it's amenities, indoor space and unbelievable coastal views is what dreams are made of for the ultimate Maine getaway.

Beautiful Maine Barns to Book For Your Rustic and Rural Getaway

Barn getaways have become a great way for Maine farms to bring in extra income and Airbnb renters are all about them. Check out four Maine barn stays here in the State of Maine offered on the Airbnb rental website and feel inspired to book your getaway to a Maine barn location.

Or go all out and visit some national parks!

RANKED: Here are the most popular national parks

To determine the most popular national parks in the United States, Stacker compiled data from the National Park Service on the number of recreational visits each site had in 2020. Keep reading to discover the 50 most popular national parks in the United States, in reverse order from #50 to #1. And be sure to check with individuals parks before you visit to find out about ongoing, pandemic-related safety precautions at

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