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the Florida Keys

1

The Florida Keys are a coral cay archipelago located off the southern coast of Florida, forming the southernmost portion of the continental United States.

An archipelago, sometimes called an island group or island chain, is a chain, cluster or collection of islands.

A cay, also spelled caye or key, is a small, low-elevation, sandy island on the surface of a coral reef.

Corals are marine invertebrates in the class Anthozoa of phylum Cnidaria.

Florida Travel: The Ultimate Florida Keys Road Trip by VISIT FLORIDA

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They begin at the southeastern coast of the Florida peninsula, about 15 miles south of Miami, and extend in a gentle arc south-southwest and then westward to Key West, the westernmost of the inhabited islands, and on to the uninhabited Dry Tortugas.

A peninsula is a piece of land extending out into a body of water that is still connected to mainland or a piece of land that is bordered by water on three sides but connected to mainland, for example, the upper and lower peninsulas of the state of Michigan, the peninsula of downtown Vancouver, or the Niagara peninsula.

The Dry Tortugas are a small group of islands, located in the Gulf of Mexico at the end of the Florida Keys, United States, about 67 miles west of Key West, and 37 miles west of the Marquesas Keys, the closest islands.

Miami is a seaport city at the southeastern corner of the U.S. state of Florida and its Atlantic coast.

Florida Travel: Key Largo to Key West: Best of the Keys by VISIT FLORIDA

3

The islands lie along the Florida Straits, dividing the Atlantic Ocean to the east from the Gulf of Mexico to the northwest, and defining one edge of Florida Bay.

The Straits of Florida, Florida Straits, or Florida Strait is a strait located south-southeast of the North American mainland, generally accepted to be between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, and between the Florida Keys and Cuba.

The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest of the world's oceans with a total area of about 106,460,000 square kilometres.

The Gulf of Mexico is an ocean basin largely surrounded by the North American continent.

4

At the nearest point, the southern part of Key West is just 90 miles from Cuba.

Cuba, officially the Republic of Cuba, is a unitary sovereign state comprising the island of Cuba as well as Isla de la Juventud and several minor archipelagos.

5

The Florida Keys are between about 23.5 and 25.5 degrees North latitude.

6

More than 95 percent of the land area lies in Monroe County, but a small portion extends northeast into Miami-Dade County, such as Totten Key.

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The total land area is 137.3 square miles.

8

As of the 2010 census the population was 73,090 with an average density of 532.34 per square mile, although much of the population is concentrated in a few areas of much higher density, such as the city of Key West, which has 32% of the entire population of the Keys.

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The US Census population estimate for 2014 is 77,136.

10

The city of Key West is the county seat of Monroe County.

A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish.

11

The county consists of a section on the mainland which is almost entirely in Everglades National Park, and the Keys islands from Key Largo to the Dry Tortugas.

Mainland is a contiguous landmass that is larger and often politically, economically and/or demographically more significant than politically associated remote territories, such as exclaves or oceanic islands situated outside the continental shelf.

Everglades National Park is a U.S. National Park in Florida that protects the southern 20 percent of the original Everglades.

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