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Scuba Diving – Scuba Diving the Wrecks in Florida Keys

By Lilah Tusko

If it weren’t for the coral reef located in the Florida Keys, the United States would have nothing to offer as far as scuba diving and coral reefs are concerned. In addition to the living coral reef that has been a main scuba diving attraction of the Florida Keys for more than 35 years, numerous dive able wrecks are scattered throughout the waters providing exotic and breathtaking artificial reef habitats.

scubadivingwithfishes_serkan icer

Here is a brief overview of some of the wrecks you can visit while scuba diving in the Florida Keys:

Benwood – The Benwood is perhaps the oldest scuba diving wreck site to be found in the Florida Keys. This WWII ship was sunk in 1942 when it collided with another whip while dodging German U-boats near the coast of Florida. While the wreck is not intact (it was blown apart because it presented a boating hazard) it is home to a wide array of marine life. Scuba diving near the Benwood will bring you face to face with critters such as Pork fish, grunts, lobsters, moray eels, glassy sweepers, Sergeant Majors, Goatfish, and Christmas Tree Worms. Since the ship had run aground before it was blown up, the dive is a relatively shallow one and great for novice divers as well as advanced divers.

Cayman Salvage Master – This wreck that can be seen while scuba diving in the Florida Keys is a Cuban refugee vessel that was confiscated by the US government. The ship was tied up to a dock where she sank before she was re-floated. Then, during her burial voyage of 1985, she sank in about 90 feet of water coming to rest on her side. Recently, Hurricane Katrina righted the ship and now divers can swim along the hull and deck hoping to spy huge Jewfish and moray eels that reside in the open hatches of the wreck.

Duane – If you’re experienced at scuba diving, you might want to pay a visit to the wreck Duane while you’re in the Florida Keys area. This US Coast Guard Cutter was intentionally sunk in 120 feet of water in the year 1987. Due to the strong Gulf Stream current and depth associated with the wreck, only advanced divers are allowed to dive this site. The Duane is home to grunts, sponges, chubbs, jacks, barracuda, and numerous tropical fish.

In addition to these three wrecks that can be seen while scuba diving in the Florida Keys, there are several other wrecks in the area that have been intentionally sunk to become artificial reef habitats. Each offers a different experience and a unique look into how the ocean transforms a foreign object into a beautiful habitat where marine life can grow and thrive.

About the Author
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Vacation Ideas – Weekend Getaway at West Palm Beach, Florida, USA


By Connie Limon

At West Palm Beach there are sunny skies and almost perfect weather year-round.

Enjoy a wide variety of outdoor and cultural attractions at West Palm Beach, Florida in the U.S.A. There is golf at several pristine local courses. The Lion Country Safari is a unique place to visit. Take a look at African chimps and endangered species like the Southern White rhinoceros as they wonder around freely in a natural habitat at the Lion Country Safari.

Other vacation ideas and attractions at West Palm Beach include:

• Peanut Island at 2400 North Flagler Drive, West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.A. feature day tours as well as group tours. Telephone: 561-966-6600 or 88-366-5004. Peanut Island has a dock, anchorage, designated swimming area, snorkeling, sandbars, picnic areas, restrooms, showers, camping facilities, footpath, museum and presidential nuclear bomb shelter.

View crystal clear blue water on incoming tides. The large ships at Port of Palm Beach and the famous homes of Palm Beach are nearby. Peanut Island is manmade out of a huge pile of dredged sand created over the past 80 years. The name is derived from a peanut oil shipping terminal that at one time was to be built there.

• The Lion Country Safari located at 2003 Lion Country Safari Road, Loxahatchee, Florida, U.S.A. features giraffes, apes, rhinos, African chimps and more roaming free in a drive-thru wildlife preserve. Telephone: 561-793-1084.

• Shopping at City Place is popular among visitors and residents. The architecturally unique for southern Florida shopping center looks like a European town and includes more than 50 well-known retail shops. Restaurants and fast-food eateries are also available in this shopping center at 700 S. Rosemary Avenue, West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.A

• Golf at the Emerald Dunes Golf Course that is especially known for the Super Dune. The Super Dune is a peak with a spectacular panoramic view of the surrounding areas. This is a very popular golf course that includes three tees, three greens and a gorgeous cascading waterfall. Emerald Dunes Golf Course is located at 2100 Emerald Dunes Drive, West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.A. telephone: 561-687-1700

• The Norton Museum of Art: Is the largest art museum in Florida and has recently undergone a multi-million dollar renovation. The permanent collections at Norton Museum of Art include masterpieces by artists such as Picasso, Monet and Matisse. Norton Museum of Art is located at 1451 S. Olive Avenue, West Palm Beach, Florida. Telephone: 561-832-5196

Where to stay when you get there

If you prefer luxury hotels, review the following for vacations ideas:

• The Breakers is extremely popular in West Palm Beach, Florida, U.S.A. with rooms starting at $289

Moderately priced hotels include:

• The Hilton Singer Island Oceanfront Resort with rooms starting at $145.

• Hotel Biba in West Palm Beach with rooms starting at $59.

If your weekend getaway vacation ideas include traveling on a budget, review the following hotels:

• Crowne Plaza West Palm Beach with rooms starting from $126.

• Comfort Inn Palm Beach Lakes have rooms starting at $69.

About the Author

Important Disclaimer: The URL address in the resource box of this article is not associated with any of the restaurants, businesses or attractions mentioned in this article. We do not promote any of them. This article and the web site are offered as a resource for formulating vacation ideas.

© 2007 Connie Limon All Rights Reserved. For more vacation ideas visit
For a variety of FREE reprint articles and special topic articles rarely found elsewhere visit Camelot Articles at

Exotic Vacation Destinations

By A. Lee

We all need vacations to recharge and refresh our perspective on daily living. While we all fantasize about vacationing in exotic locations, many of us don’t really know what we want.

So, for a change, I recommend that this year, you won’t copy-cat the vacation ideas of your neighbors, friends or family. Nor that you’ll be lead by vacation package offers and deals. Sure, learn from others’ insights and travel tips and hints. But this time, why don’t you stick to your goals and create your custom vacation. Only by centering your trip around your need can you create your true dream vacation.

When planning your vacation this year, take some extra time to consider why you need a vacation. Moreover, decide what you really want to do during your vacation. Is it discovering new cultures? Is it adventure trailing? Is it sun tanning on the beach? Is it exploring antique castles? Once you have determined what you want to do during your vacation, it is real easy to decide on a vacation destination.

Here are 3 special destinations that will allow you to have very different dream vacations.

1. The Regions of Italy.
Adjacent to France, this historically rich and magnificently beautiful country is a prime destination within Europe. If you love to explore history by being there, if you crave good wine and one of the world’s finest cuisines, then, ah, consider Italy. Oh, did I mention its astounding cheeses for sale at local markets at a fraction of the cost of what we pay in the US?!

Italy is an amazingly varied country, which features mountains areas which are ideal for skying in winter and hiking or biking in summer. It world famous buildings such as the tower of Pisa or the Basilica in Florence. It has wide sand beaches and top notch resorts in places like Rimini and Riccione. It has whole cities that could be classified as ‘living museums’, such as Venice, the city of water ways, gondolas and romance; or ancient Rome, which features sights from several civilizations all within a single city block. And then, of course, there is the world of design in Milan and the world of the elite in nearby Lake Como.

Because of its culinary peak, its sophistication, its beautiful, varied nature, and rich cultural background, Italy is a must-see destination in a lifetime. Oh, did I mention that it’s usually sunny??!

Key West Resort, Florida, US - photo by Leo Synapse

2. Key West, Florida, in the United States
For leisurely, beach-side fascination, places like Key West in Florida come to mind. Driving along the row of keys leading up to this famous resort destination is a treat in itself. Key West has been sought-after by famous writers and other artists. There are some great luxury resorts to be found in Key West, as well as private villa rental accommodation. The old tabacco plantation houses and old villas result in an far-away island feel. However, this sunny island that is far south but still part of the US is within easy reach of most of us.

3. Tokyo & Kyoto/Nara, Japan.
Japan is an island that does not feel islandish, but instead represents one of the more sophisticated cultures in the world. Wtihin Japan you can have a very varied vacation. You can go hiking on Mount Fuji to see the sun rise, or trotting the philosophers’ path in Kyoto down to your Ryokan (Japanese-style inn) after having visited gorgeous Buddhist temples & gardens and having sipped tea at world-famous Japanese tea houses.
No trip to Japan is complete without a visit to the vibrant capital city of Tokyo. Tokyo has many unique areas that are destinations within themselves. I suggest you pay a visit to its electronics district Akihabara, the Emperor’s Palace and serene gardens in Chiyoda-ku, its haute couture fashion district called Ginza, and its entertainment area called Roppongi. Oh, there is so much more to see and explore, but these are highlights. All areas are easily accessed by subway.
What makes a trip to Japan adventurous is that there isn’t a single street sign you can read. Everything is written in Japanese, which gives you a very foreign sensation. Oh, don’t worry. Subway signs are in English and taxi drivers know their way around. You won’t get lost. However without trying, you are immersed in a unique and very attractive Asian culture.

These three top vacation destinations can help you sort yourself out, and plan a dream vacation, that is customized to be exactly what you need.

About the Author

A. Lee

A. Lee is a travel writer. She is the owner of this blog: .
Leave a comment if you like her ideas.