As I was getting burnt out during the last month of my third semester of nursing school, right before summer, I kept imagining what it was I wanted to do this summer. My friends and I were determined to have a bomb ass summer vacation before school starts again & reality hits! Believe me when I say that burn out is R E A L, and it’s dreadful. Although, I finally got my passport this summer, I never quite got the chance to use it, BUT, there is plenty of time for that once I finish school. But, between working 4-5 days, equaling 45-50 hour work weeks, I tried to spend my time outside, exploring, or taking a few days for a mini-vacay somewhere! Outside of working so much, which was a MUST this summer to save money for when I don’t work but 1 day at week between the months of August-December, I wanted to enjoy every second of my time off.
So how did I spend my summer?
Key West 2018
My friends and I sat in lecture during that last 2 weeks of the semester researching and talking about where we were going, and when? We finally decided to plan our trip to the Florida Keys! It was a lonngggg 6 hour road trip (in which I did not do the driving). We went for a long weekend (Friday-Sunday). We packed our bags, got our coffee and we were out the door at 5 am to get to the Keys around 1 pm on Friday!
What did we do with our time?
1. On the way to Key West we stopped at Robbie’s to feed the tarpon fish. That was about an hour out of the keys in Islamorada. This was a fun little stop, and it was cheap. It was 3$ for a bucket of 6 fish. If you have never seen tarpon fish, they are actually pretty large and the pelicans do try stealing the fish right out of your hand and that could result in a lot of blood if they are successful (just a pre-warning). There is a little restaurant there and a couple different outside shops, so you could easily park your car and spend a couple of hours there. **Yes, we were scared, but no we did not fall in or lose any limbs during this process!**
- Starbucks 🙂 (coffee=happy Anna)
- A nice clean pool with plenty of pool chairs and a bar/restaurant outside by the pool which actually served amazing food that was very well priced! Highly recommend!
- The room had 2 queen beds & a mini fridge, which was convenient because we decided to be cheap and bring our own alcohol. The room was very clean and comfortable (but my friends decided to keep it like 67 so I was freezing all night).
- A bus that came to the hotel every hour during the day and every 30 minutes at night to shuttle us to Duval Street because driving would have been way too chaotic! The only disadvantage was that the last pickup time downtown was 11 PM so it really didn’t allow us to stay out that late unless we drove ourselves or Ubered 😦
2. Duval Street: this is where it’s at people! This road runs for about a mile, full of different bars, restaurants and plenty of shops. Every night is party night on Duval Street! We really liked the bar named Wet Willie’s. We went there every day. It was basically an alcoholic slurpee, but there was like 100 different flavors 😍 It was so greatttt!
There was also a 3 story bar with the top floor being clothing optional. It was called Garden of Eden. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the opportunity to go up there because it’s 21+ and with me being only 19, that was a problem. But here’s a picture for proof! 😉
3. Jet skiing!
On Saturday we rented jet skis! It was so reasonably priced and SO worth it. It was 130$ (gratuity optional but included in my price) each for an hour a half. We had a tour guide and he brought us around the entire island and we even went into the ocean, which was super choppy and bouncy but it was a good ass time! Highly recommend doing that. I was to chicken to drive my own jet ski so I stayed on the back of one of my friends while she drove. I’m a chicken, don’t judge!
I’m just out here living my best life, jumping off of jet skis and such (again, ignore my awkwardness)!
4. Southernmost Point: we had to be tourists and go see the buoy that showed “90 miles to Cuba.” And yes, we did try to take hand stand pictures in front of it, and yes, we did epically fail! 🙃
Overall this trip was amazing and so worth it. We were all burnt out after a long third semester and needed to get away for a girls weekend and have some fun. Next time, though, it will definitely be a longer trip!
This was just a day trip but I’m including it because it’s gorgeous and one of favorite spots in Florida now! I took this trip with my best friend, aka the person who is always willing to take random adventures with me at any time. Love you boo ❤
But anyways, yeah this is located in Dunedin, Florida. I recommend getting their pretty early because it fills up quick and will close down and stop letting people in once it is full. I think it opens at 9am and we arrived no later than 10am and it was already busy. We brought our own tubes (just in case) but they have tubes there for people to use, which are actually nice! It costed 22$ per person, which is the only downside, but buying a ticket to float down the river, also gets you into the head springs located 8 minutes from the river and they have more area to swim, walking trails, and gorgeous nature! Unfortunately, after you are done floating you do have to drive to the head springs, which is another inconvenience. But, basically you float down this river for 2 straight hours and it’s so gorgeous and relaxing. There are many kayakers/ canoers as well, so that is also an option. Just like in any spring, there are alligators, fortunately I didn’t see any, only a cute little turtle sitting on a rock🐢.
FORT MYERS/SANIBEL ISLAND
My best friends family has an RV so we spent a long weekend down at Fort Myers beach in their RV and parked right on the water. I drove my car down their with 2 bikes strapped to the back (thank God we didn’t lose them along the way!) I bought a 2 bike carrier for my car from Wal-Mart for 39$ and it was a great investment actually!
We rode the bikes into town most of the time (about 1 mile), instead of driving because it was so close to the RV park and so much more convenient than driving (besides the massive hill we had to endure). Once we got to Fort Myers we got some dinner by the beach and walked around there for a while, which was gorgeous. There was a ton of shops and restaurants on the boardwalk to choose from. The boardwalk was also the place to go at night because they had plenty of stuff to do like get drunk and see karaoke.
We took a trip to Sanibel island on Saturday and spent the day out there swimming, fishing, and boating all afternoon. The houses in Sanibel were huge, gorgeous, and expensive, LIKE 😍 (where’s my sugar daddy at?! LOL totally kidding). We were able to watch the sunset in Sanibel which was gorgeous. I can definitely give Florida props for having some of the best sunsets.
On Sunday we rented a boat for the day on Fort Myers beach which was ah-mazingg! If I could live on a boat, I would. We packed our drinks and lunches and set out for the day. We anchored the boat near a beach and got the chance to swim/tan for a while. We all jumped off the boat and took a dip in the Gulf. Living the boat life is the best life.
Where I was born and raised! (until I was 7). I never appreciated the beauty and wonderful summer weather we had up there until this summer! It was 75 and sunny most days with no humidity (aka I wasn’t dying of heat stroke 90% of my day, unlike in Florida)!
I was born in Marine City, Michigan. The summers are absolutely green and gorgeous, but the winters are long, cold, and brutal. For that reason, and that reason alone I could not survive living in that weather any longer (I have Florida blood now). From where I was staying, you could literally look over the water and see Canada. As a kid we could take a ferry over the water and get off to enjoy Canada, but things have changed and you need a passport now to get in, sooo that wasn’t an option during this trip.
My family and I were able to take a little trip up to Michigan to see my family for a long weekend in July. This was the first time I have seen my family since I graduated high school, 2 years ago. While we were there we got to enjoy the beautiful Michigan weather and sail on a boat through the lakes. On the boat we got the opportunity to go to Harsens Island, which is basically a private island that people live on. The only way they can get to land is via boat (could you imagine what kind of amazing life that would be?!) We parked the boat at a nice restaurant on the water for lunch before we anchored the boat somewhere that we could all swim. It was basically a booze cruise, lake party. Yes, I did get the opportunity to navigate the boat, and by that, I mean I kept my hands on the steering wheel for like a minute while we went in a straight line. Lol (and of course I had to take a pic)! And lake water is so much colder than ocean water, btw!
While we were up there we also had a family reunion where I got the chance to see just about everyone from my mom’s side while we all hung out at my cousin’s house eating and chatting. It was an incredibly great trip. Even though we only spent 3 days in Michigan, we spent every second enjoying it and visiting the people we love the most!
This is my cute fam ❤
Overall, I had an incredible summer. I worked a lot and it was a very long summer that actually seemed to drag somedays (I was just ready to go back and finally finish nursing school)! When I wasn’t on a boat, in the Keys, Fort Myers, or in Michigan, I spent my remaining days off at the beach or at the pool, literally soaking up as much Vitamin D as I could. I was able to spend my summer focused on myself, my goals, my blog and falling in love with this beautiful life. I’m really excited to finish up school, grow my blog, and start making the big bucks so I can discover more of the world outside of Florida. Thank you all for reading! I would love to know what everyone did to enjoy their summer break?! Follow me on: Instagram! 🙂