The Stonehenge of Florida

Coral Castle entrance and tower.

Coral Castle entrance and tower.

From museums and aquariums to boat cruises and jungle tours, there are so many things to do in Miami that it is difficult to narrow down the list! Yet there is one lesser known destination that you should add to your itinerary. Most people have never heard of “The Stonehenge of Florida,” also known as Coral Castle.

Coral Castle, a sculpture garden made of stone, was built by a single man named Edward Leedskalnin. From 1923 to 1951, Edward secretly carved over 1,100 tons of coral rock. This feat is amazing in and of itself, but even more mind boggling is that the process he used is unknown. The website calls Coral Castle “one of the world’s most mysterious accomplishments.”

Apparently, Edward was a small man, weighing just 100 pounds and standing a little over 5 feet tall. In 1940, he would have charged just ten cents in admission to introduce you to his fantasy realm. Interestingly, no one is reported to have ever seen Edward laboring over his stone carving, and Ed himself would say that he knew the secrets of the ancient pyramids. Since his death, scientists have debated his methods for years.

For anyone who has visited Stonehenge in England, you know how mysterious and impressive that site is. How did the stones get there? Who moved them, and why? Likewise, if you add Coral Castle to your list of Things to do in Miami, you will leave with just as many questions. Why would a man spend sixty years carving his beloved coral? What inspired him? Was he insane, or just passionate? And where does one draw the line between the two?

Today, you can tour the Coral Castle using excellent audio stands, with narration available in English, Spanish, French or German. The museum also offers knowledgeable human guides available to conduct tours. Other highlights of the Coral Castle Museum include a 9-ton gate that moves with just a touch of the finger, a Polaris telescope and functioning rocking chairs – all made entirely of stone.

With a Miami Attractions pass, your admission to Coral Castle is free!


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