Located at Little Crawl Key, Curry Hammock State Park is embraced by Florida’s group of archipelagic Keys, just about one mile north of Marathon. Resting between the world’s second-largest ocean, the Atlantic, and the massive Gulf of Mexico, this 1,000-acre park welcomes you to an array of astonishingly diverse habitats including the mangrove swamp, rock land hammocks, wetlands, and seagrass beds. If you want to witness raw nature at its finest, then this heavenly piece of land would easily qualify as your dream destination. Established in 1991, Curry Hammock State Park is named after Lamar Louise Curry, a historian and Miami schoolteacher whose father owned major pieces of the park’s land.
Boasting the rich diversity of natural habitats, Curry Hammock State Park takes visitors breath away with a wide variety of wildlife on display throughout the park. The more common wildlife creatures on display are egrets, ibis, and plovers. The park is brought to life with numerous recreational activities going on all year round which includes snorkeling, swimming, hiking, bicycling and many more. The most ideal time for a visit is in the winter, but the park welcomes visitors all year round. Also, the park serves as an outstanding RV camping destination featuring 28 water and electrical hookup camping sites. The campsites are located at the front side of the Atlantic Ocean, inviting RV campers to indulge in an unforgettable RV camping experience.
Curry Hammock State Park is situated one mile from the Overseas Highway, to the north of Marathon. The park is easily accessible from both sides of US-1. Drive 11 miles to the west of Long Key and Curry Hammock’s entrance appears in the view. The park sits halfway between Key Largo and Key West. From Key Largo, it takes less than an hour to reach the park via the Overseas Highway and US-1.
The ranger station can easily be located near the park entrance. The picnic pavilions can be located on the southeastern side of the park. The general picnic area is spread out at the beachfront. The beach is just a short walk away from the campgrounds. Well-equipped restrooms are available both inside the campground and the beach area. While biking inside the park, it is recommended to wear helmets.
If you enjoy beachgoing, you are going to want to stop and visit some of the other beaches along the way such as the Key Colony Beach, which is just four miles to the southwest or Vaca Key, which is 2.3 miles to the northeast. You can also visit the small island of Duck Key or the tiny island of Conch Key, which are both just a few miles to the northeast.
There are a lot of parking options available inside the park. In fact, there is one gravel parking area dedicated to each camping site, but these parking lots are not spacious enough to accommodate RVs over 70 feet long.
The park provides 28 beach campsites that are well-equipped with water and electric hookups, a picnic table, and charcoal grill. Sewer hookups are not available, but an ADA-compliant restroom provides composting toilets along with solar-powered showers. A dump station is also located within the campground. The campsites are situated on an exotic location with the Atlantic Ocean exhibiting its splendor in the backdrop. The campground is conveniently positioned at a location far away from the highway to avoid noise pollution and serve a serene environment.
Among the 28 campsites, 25 are available for online reservations. The rest are reserved for walk-in registrations. Sites can be reserved up to 11 months in advance and not for more than 14 days. All campsites provide a gravel parking area for RVs no larger than 70 feet. Tents can also be pitched in sandy areas near most of the campsites. The campsites are generally very crowded during winters. Site 1 is ADA-compliant, while campsites 13 to 15 have direct access to the beach. Most of the sites are pet-friendly. The use of generators is not permitted after sunset.
Three sites are reserved for first-come, first-served at the campground.
In the sweltering summers of Florida, paddle away all the heat and sweat at Curry Hammock State Park. Canoes and kayaks, as well as human-powered boats, can be launched into both the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Florida. Motorized boats are not permitted in the water. The water is generally shallow, and the waves are calm and gentle enough to enjoy a hassle-free paddling. The park offers canoes and kayaks for hire every day. Moreover, park rangers lead a kayak tour on most Wednesdays. A gorgeous mangrove creek can also be explored while paddling.
This is a great place if you are bringing the bike in your RV. Your bicycling needs are well taken care of in Curry Hammock State Park as the park heartily welcomes its visitors to ride their vehicles on the roadways as well as the two-mile Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail, which provides easy access to the city of Marathon. The nearly two-mile Curry Hammock Nature Trail smoothly transitions into the rock land hammocks promising you an unforgettable visual delight. The four-mile Grassy Key Trail overlaps the Overseas Heritage Trail and serves as a passage between Marathon and Grassy Key.
There can’t be a better time than winter for an outdoor picnic in Florida. The weather is most delightful, and the picnic perks can be wholeheartedly enjoyed owing to the pleasantness of the weather. So, when the “outdoor party” mood kicks in, head straight for Curry Hammock Park’s picnic area. The park’s picnic area presents four picnic pavilions at the southeastern end of the park; all well-equipped with barbecue grills and picnic tables. Pavilion 1 is ADA-compliant. The pavilions are open for reservations in all seasons. If not pre-booked, the pavilions can be acquired on a first-come, first-served basis. A general picnic area is also situated along the beachfront.
The diversity of wildlife inhabiting the park is stunning. If you are a wildlife enthusiast then Curry Hammock will blow your mind away with many species of rare wildlife nestled up in various sections of the park. Pelicans, osprey, and bald eagles can be observed reaching for the skies in the grasslands. Herons can also be found nearby. With raptors, hawks, herons, egrets, ibis, plovers, and sanderlings habituating the park, Curry Hammock Park can easily be marked as an ideal bird-watching destination.
If you have never tried kiteboarding, this park is the perfect place to start. This sport is great for those who enjoy both kite flying and surfing. All you need is a power kite and a wakeboard. The power kite is a special type of kite made of inflatable foil or a leading-edge type of inflated material. There are many types of kites and boards you can choose from. Do some research to find out what is best for you before you get out there on the water.
Every Saturday, the park’s astronomy group sits down to aim for the stars in the sky. You can join them too to be mystified by the wonders of the universe. Immerse in the study of stars in a natural setting and look for elusive patterns in the sky during your RV trip to Curry Hammock State Park. Star charts can be acquired from the Ranger Station. Do your homework so you can point out the constellations to the kids.
Curry Hammock State Park is sparkling with opportunities when it comes to water adventures and recreation; snorkeling is one of them. Float underwater in Curry Hammock State Park along with fish and underwater invertebrates. The most striking feature of snorkeling is that non-swimmers can also take advantage of a snorkel and some fins to submerge under the waters to peek at the underwater life. Moreover, non-swimmers get an extra edge as the park’s water is generally shallow, so it is safe for first-time snorkelers and non-swimmers.
Have you ever wondered what was swimming around in the water below you? You can see some of the aquatic critters by snorkeling but the best way to see those really vibrant species is to do some scuba diving. If you are an experienced scuba diver, you can bring your own gear in the RV. However, if you are new at this water sport, you may want to hire a guide to show you the ropes. Be sure you bring along an underwater camera because the amazing things you can see down there need to be shared with others.
If you have a drone, pack it in the motorhome before you take off to Curry Hammock State Park. This park is a great place to enjoy flying your drone because there is so much open air space and, if you have a camera on your drone, you can get some fantastic photos. Better yet, a drone with video capabilities is awesome because you can send it out over the ocean where you can get some videos of schools of fish, dolphins, and other amazing views of the water you cannot get from shore. Make sure you follow all state, federal, and local laws.
Be sure to pack your fishing poles and tackle box in the rig before you head out to Curry Hammock State Park. The best time to fish here is in the fall from September through November. You can catch bonefish, snook, snapper, and even sharks. You will need to have a Florida fishing license and follow the state’s rules and regulations. You can head out on a paddleboat, canoe, or any other small boat you can paddle by hand or just fish from the shoreline. Spearfishing is not allowed anywhere in the park.