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Visiting the Coral Castle in Miami, Florida

Coral Castle near Miami in Homestead, Florida

Just south of Miami in Homestead, Florida is the Coral Castle, a marvel carved of over 1,000lbs of coral rock, and all carved and transported by a tiny man that stood 5ft tall and weighed just 100lbs. Learn more about visiting the Coral Castle here.

The Coral Castle History

Coral Castle near Miami in Homestead, Florida

On our way back from our Key West road trip, my friend and I stopped just south of Miami to see the Coral Castle. The building of this castle contains almost as much mystery as the building of the pyramids.

Ed Leedskalnin, who claimed to know the secrets of Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids, built the original “Rock Gate Park” out of tons of coral rock in Florida City sometime between 1918 and 1920. Not a single person has reported seeing him work, and many of his building secrets remain unknown.

He moved his Coral Castle ten miles to Homestead in 1936 because of a sub-division that was being built nearby its location in Florida City. He enlisted the help of only one person with a tractor and trailer to move the stones, but still no one was allowed to see him work. Ed finished the castle in 1940, and he charged 10 cents for tours.

In December of 1951 Ed became ill. He put a sign on the door of his Castle saying “going to the hospital”. He died three days later in his sleep at the age of 64, leaving behind his astonishing masterpiece for future generations to marvel at.

Touring the Coral Castle

Coral Castle near Miami in Homestead, Florida

In the 40s, you would enter the Coral Castle through a three-ton stone turnstile gate. Today, you simply enter through an arch. But you do get the chance to spin the three-ton turnstile on the guided tour. Most of the 1,000lb chairs in the Castle were made to rock, though they have been secured by the museum now so that no toes get crushed beneath them. Despite being carved completely from stone, the chairs are surprisingly comfortable.

Ed’s living quarters are in the upper part of the tower, but he still built a bedroom and bathroom made of stone on the castle grounds. In 1913 he got engaged to Agnes Scuffs, ten years his younger. She called off the marriage the day before the wedding because Ed was too old. But Ed still designed a throne and a bed for his “Sweet Sixteen” and the children they would never have.

Agnes definitely dodged a bullet by not marrying “the original male chauvinist”. Ed had also built a Repentance Corner where if she or the children had misbehaved, they would have stood with their heads put through an opening and be wedged in place with a block of wood while he sat on the bench in the shade in front of them.

Visiting the Coral Castle

Coral Castle near Miami in Homestead, Florida

The Coral Castle is open Thursday through Sunday from 9 a.m. — 6 p.m. with the last tour at 5 p.m.

Prices have gone up since Ed’s day. Admission now costs $18 for adults, $8 for children ages 7 to 12, and free for children 6 and under.

Castle Count: 20

So why does this castle count? The simple answer is that it’s in the name: Coral Castle. Though it is an open-air structure, Ed clearly built it in the style of a European castle. Ed’s living quarters are in the tower that would traditionally be known as the keep. The walls of the Coral Castle resemble curtain walls, though fanciful sculptures guard the walls instead of soldiers. The American mock-castles tend to keep my castle hunts interesting.

Ready to visit the Coral Castle in Miami, Florida? Plan your trip with these tips.

  • Book your flight: Find the cheapest flights using Skyscanner, my favorite flight search engine.
  • Find accommodation: You can find top hotels in Miami using
  • Get packing: Make sure you’ve packed everything you need with my packing list resources.



Visiting the Coral Castle in Miami, Florida

Have you visited the Coral Castle in Miami, Florida? Let me know in the comments!

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