Hey, guys! I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend! Sadly, I just returned from my vacation to Key West, FL. I can’t believe out of all the years I have lived in Florida, I haven’t managed to make my way down to the southernmost point in the continental United States. When my husband and I finally made plans to fly down to Key West, I started making my list of must see attractions. As a literary nerd, Ernest Hemingway’s House was at the top of my list! Plus, as a cat lover, I was stoked to visit the Hemingway Cats…more about that later!
Ernest Hemingway has always been one of my favorite authors. “The Sun Also Rises” is my favorite of all of his works. The Hemingway House is located in the heart of Key West. The house is slightly obscured from the street by a brick wall and lots of trees. We arrived at the house around 11AM and there was a line formed outside to get in. The line moved very quickly though! Please be aware that only cash is accepted when purchasing tickets. Tickets cost $6 for children, students, and military, and $14 for adults.
The first thing I noticed as I approached the house was all the cats! The Hemingway House is home to 50-60 cats that are direct descendants of Ernest Hemingway’s cat. These aren’t ordinary cats though…they are Polydactyl cats! This means they have 6 toes! So cute! The Hemingway cats can be found all over the house. You’re more than welcome to pet them but can’t pick them up.
As you enter the house, you can choose to do a self-guided tour or wait to take a tour with a tour guide. We chose to do the self-guided tour because we like to take our time reading about all of the exhibits.
It was really interesting to learn that Ernest Hemingway wrote 70% of his works while living in the house. It’s not hard to see why when you see the view from the second story balcony.
After touring the house, we took a walk through the beautiful garden where you can find tall, lush trees as well as a large swimming pool and an additional guest house.
The garden was like it’s own oasis in the middle of Key West. I loved seeing all of the cats hiding out in the garden! The caretakers of the cats even built a miniature replica of Hemingway’s house for them!
In the garden, you can also find a sweet pet cemetery for the cats that have passed away.
We probably spent less than 2 hours at the house, but it was one of my favorite stops in Key West! Even if you aren’t a huge Hemingway fan, it’s worth stopping by even if it’s just to pet some polydactyl cats!
Have you ever visited the Hemingway House? Let me know in the comments below!