With Christmas and the New Year behind us, the thoughts of many caught in the grip of winter inevitably turn to warmer locations, sunshine and, perhaps beaches. But with summer still several months away, we might need something else to sate our desire for warmer climes.
The Keys might well be a way for those of us in Second Life to do so, offering as it does an expansive landscape offering cliffs, gorges, sandy beaches, rolling meadows, secluded glades, all mixed with tree-lined walks, woodlands, coastal paths, and scattered houses beneath a summer blue sky. Such is the genius of the design, it’s at times hard to reconcile it with being confined to a single region.
Featured in the Destination Guide Highlights for Friday, January 8th, 2016, The Keys, while Adult rated, has been created with one thing in mind: photography. But whether you’re into SL photography, or simply enjoy exploring stunning regions, this is a place which should not be missed off any itinerary.
The landmark provided in the Destination guide appears a little off, dropping you neatly into the pool of a Romanesque structure on the west side of the region, so I’m offering a slightly different one here which will hopefully drop you onto the terrace alongside the pool. Just to the north of this structure, beyond a ribbon of tall trees, sits the beach, looking out over a bay which separates The Keys from the more coastal suburban area of neighbouring Anarchist Bay to the west, which can be visited by crossing the bridge linking the two over the water. If you wander the beach, do take care no to disturb the mice as they enjoy their vacation!
To the south of the landing point, the ground slopes gently up to an expense of trees seemingly caught in autumn’s golden crown, a place where mist drifts between the tree trunks, deer graze peacefully and the wanderer might come across sculptures and a secluded gipsy cabin nestled close to high cliffs overlooking the ocean, together with some of the off-region islands which further add to the visual appeal of The Keys – just don’t try walking out to the terrace on the lone finger of rock!
Eastward from the trees, the gently rolling ground is open to the sky and the grass grows tall, mixing with wild flowers. Horses graze here, while those seeking places to sit while or simply to rest can find them among the merry-go-round, pavilion and shaded seating areas scattered along the edge of a broad gorge which cuts into the south-east corner of the land, the canopy of golden trees continuing on the far side, reached via a broad wooden rope bridge, or by following the edge of the gorge inland and then back out again. Even then, the region is not finished with you – beyond the tongue of the gorge, a further bridge spans the void between the land and a small, rugged island on top of which sits a stylish house.
And this is the beauty and power of the region; just when you think you much have reached the end, there’s more to be discovered, making exploration here a genuine pleasure. There are fishing cabins, the coastal areas, secret ways beneath the ground, and one or two little surprises along the way. It’s also a place of whimsy, as can easily be seen in things like the island floating over the north-east corner of the island, stoutly anchored to the hill below, or the steps curling up from the sea to reach a door to… where…?
The Keys is a place which measures up to its description perfectly, making it an eye-catching visit, with plenty of opportunities for both photography and for simply sitting down and enjoying the visual and aural ambience of the place, and letting the world just take care of itself for a change. Don’t miss the Flickr group, either.
- The Keys (Rated: Adult)