BEST PLACE TO KAYAK Virginia Key Marine Sanctuary Put in either at Crandon Marina on Key Biscayne or from the Virginia Key beach. Your destination is the northwest quadrant of Virginia Key's offshore waters, an area from which all powered vessels are banned. What you'll see once you get there: rays lounging on patches of sandy bottom, manatees year round, all manner of wading birds, a decent variety of fish, and the occasional pack of cruising sharks. You'll also discover (sooner or later) the natural lagoon that penetrates deep into the key. It's startling to look up from this pristine marine environment and gaze across the water toward the mainland. Brickell high-rises loom as if from a different world. Note: Avoid low tide if possible -- and please don't tell anyone about this secret place.