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Key West or Lake George

This or That: Key West or Lake George

On opposite ends of the East Coast, Key West and Lake George are united in their love of festivals, museums, and attractions on the water.

Easy on the Water

Lake George: Kayak the Lake

A paddle and kayak from Green Island’s Lake George Kayak Company, located right on The Sagamore’s grounds, are all you need to explore all 32 square miles of the Queen of American lakes at your own pace.

Key West: Fort Zachary Taylor State Park

This beach at this state park feels seemingly worlds away from the hubbub of Duval Street, even though it’s just a few minutes’ bike ride away. It’s one of the largest and most accessible public beaches in the city, for great swimming, snorkeling, reading a good book, and even fish for snapper off a quiet rock jetty to the west.

Active on the Water

Lake George: White-Water Rafting

A half-hour drive south on Route 9N will take you to the Sacandaga Outdoor Center, where you will find yourself bouncing and tumbling down the Sacandaga and Hudson Rivers on Class III and IV rapids.

Key West: Ultimate Adventure

Fury Water Adventures gets you on the ocean at 10 a.m. for a day truly packed with saltwater pursuits – including snorkeling, kayaking, diving, and fishing – plus, the opportunity to bask on a glass-bottomed boat in between.

Classic History

Lake George: Fort William Henry Museum

The site of a historic wooden fort during the French & Indian War, this impressively detailed replica  features exhibits, reenactments, and dedicated actors who recount what it was like to be a soldier holed up on the shores of Lake George in the 1750s.

Key West: Tennessee Williams Key West Exhibit

Key West has been called home by as many great literary minds as it has rum punches. Few are as fascinating as prolific playwright Tennessee Williams. The exhibit here has first drafts of some of his famous plays, the typewriter he used during his time in Key West, and artifacts from a life well-lived on the Keys.

Odd History

Lake George: The Pember Museum

The Pember is home to more than 10,000 taxidermied animals from the early 1900s, which offer a glimpse at extinct animals, like the great auk and passenger pigeon and plants that populated America and the world.

Key West: Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium

The 550 exhibits here define quirky, as you’ll wander from artifacts like a shrunken human torso and reading glasses belonging to Key West icon Ernest Hemingway to a one-in-a-million stuffed albino buffalo named Miracle.

Top Festivals

Lake George: The American Festival for the Lake

A multi-day, folk and rock music festival on the shores of Lake George, The American Festival is a great time to check out local merchants who show up in droves, then unfold a lawn chair, enjoy some music, and take in the views of the Adirondacks.

Key West: Fantasy Fest

Among a jam-packed calendar, you’ll find this classically Key West laid-back yet risqué alternative to Mardi Gras in late October. Burlesque shows with titles like “The Sexy Side of Star Wars” are paired with a winding Duval Street parade you’ll be talking about for months.

Where to Stay

Lake George: The Sagamore Resort

This AAA Four Diamond resort is home to 18 holes of golf nearby, a sprawling lawn rolling right down to the shore of Lake George, plenty of ways to get on the lake itself, and the opportunity to sip cocktails and watch an Adirondack sunset from La Bella Vita.

Key West: The Laureate Key West

Overlooking the Atlantic from the eastern side of the island, the all-suite retreat is home to 64 accommodations that encourage guests to live the classic island lifestyle, full kitchens, plush bedding, and chic coastal decor welcome you home with open arms.


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