Virginia Key, a barrier island connected to the mainland by Rickenbacker Causeway, is better known as the home of the Seaquarium than for its mile-long historic beach, formerly Miami's "colored only" beach. Reachable only by boat when it opened in 1945, It drew over 1,000 visitors each weekend in its heyday, many coming for baptisms, sunrise services and church socials. It fell into disuse after segregation except for some families, gay couples and nudists. Today the refurbished 82-acre park has bike and kayak rentals, hiking trails, a boardwalk over the mangrove swamp, children's playgrounds and pavilions for picnics, birthday parties and weddings, but it still has a haunted feel on weekdays. Entry fee by car, pedestrians and cyclists free.
Historic Virginia Key Beach Park, Virginia Beach Drive, Key Biscayne, FL, United States