I Wish I Was Stranded On That Island Right Now!
We had a fun and adventurous time with our two children, ages 8 and 12, and their grandparents too!
Due to high winds and rough seas, we were only able to use the island for the last two days of our trip, but we made up for lost time and snorkeled, kayaked and fished ALL day both days. What did we see? Countless tropical fish (including a really fun school of giant parrotfish), sea anemone, urchins, crabs, lobsters, barracuda and a green moray eel (yikes!). There are also several large iguanas that would love for you to bring them some cut up fruit and veggies. Water shoes are a must. I would not recommend for young children...there is no sandy beach and it can be a little tricky getting in and out of the water. The underwater landscape is very unique with several mini-caves just below the surface.
We had no problems with the boat and the island is visible once you leave the canal. Fishing poles and a cooler were provided. The water is fairly shallow, so don't count on catching dinner off the dock. :)
Marathon is a great location. We visited the Turtle Hospital and Sombrero Beach. Our favorite restaurant was Castaways. Winn Dixie, Kmart and Publix are a short drive away. We also visited Theater of the Sea in Islamorada and several places on a day trip to Key West.
The house is on the small side, and better suited for four people than six, but we made it work. The loveseat in the pictures has been replaced by four kitchen barstools, and the remaining sofa was a bit musty. Otherwise, the house was clean and nicely decorated. The kitchen was not particularly well stocked and the appliances were far from modern, but none of these things ruined our trip.
We found the property managers/caretakers Blake and Tim to be both friendly and helpful. Robin made the rental process a breeze and was kind enough to put me in touch with a previous renter to set my mind at ease before we booked, since there were not enough reviews for me to obsess over like I normally do!