Top 10 things to do in Key West

Top 10 things to do in Key West

Top 10 things to do in Key West

Top 10 things to do in Key West

Key West offers unlimited possibilities to explore and experience the outdoors, cultural and historic treasures and sampling the delicious foods from the area. Even with a limited time frame to visiting the Southernmost site of the continental United States, you can cover a lot the attractions visiting Key West. While you can go out and explore on your own to discover the island, here are some my top 10 things to do in Key West which you may want to include in your itinerary. All of these attractions are within the historic district and you can do many of these places in a short time frame or even longer if you extend your visit on the island and savor things more slowly.

 

Fort Zachary Top 10 things to do in Key West

1. Fort Zachary State Park – one of the best places to enjoy nature during the day time and into sunset with fabulous views of the park and coastal areas. The beach is popular for swimming, snorkeling or doing some fun water sport activity (rental sports activity desk is right at the beach). A short walk from the beach is Fort Zachary – an intact and well maintained Civil War fort with ramparts you can climb up to see the views of the ocean or explore the barracks and big guns within the interior walls.

 

 

Key West light house Top 10 things to do in Key West

2. Key West Light house – at the end of an area with old wooden houses built during the 19th century, the Key West Light house was established in 1823 and occupies a prominent spot to assure navigation to both commercial and military vessels traveling through the shallow reefs off the Florida Keys. You can walk the 88 steps to the top with fantastic views of the coastal areas and check out the various belongings and collections in the light keepers house to various families living at the light house.

 

3. The  Little White House – built in 1890 to serve as the naval station’s command headquarters, this historic building also used as the winter White House for president Harry Truman and his family. Today, the home is used as the Key West Museum along with hosting other dignitaries that are visiting the island.

 

 

Historic old Town Top 10 things to do in Key West

4. Check out the Old Town – you can either walk through the historic districts of Key West or  take an old town trolley tour which lets you on and off through some of the main attractions all over the historic district on the island. The fully narrated tour gives fascinating historical facts and trivia while touring some of the exciting attractions around Key West

 

5. Go shopping on Duval Street and along the waterfront area – the main shopping corridor on Duval street is lined with all the galleries, clothing stores, cafes and other gift shops that are open late morning to evening timeframe and is a perfect spot to enjoy a nice long stroll when you are over the sightseeing tours and other attractions

 

Audubon House old Town Top 10 things to do in Key West

6. Visit a museum – Key West is full of beautifully restored historic buildings that have been converted into museums or estates turned into living museums this includes popular attractions like Hemingway’s House, the Audubon House, the Mel Fisher Heritage Maritime Museum, Key West Art and Historical Museum, Key West Heritage House Museum and Robert Frost Cottage. There are plenty of museums to visit above including smaller museum collections in the historic district.

 

Delicious local seafood

 

7. Try some of the famous foods from Key West and the Florida Keys – this includes the tart and sweet Key Lime pie, delicious seafood specialties like pink shrimp, conch, stone crab and Florida Lobster and Cuban inspired dishes including pork and peccadillo sauce, Cuban sandwiches or Cuban entrees served with yellow rice and beans along with sweet plantains. For delicious local and fresh seafood check out popular favorite spot, The Stone Crab located right on Roosevelt Blvd facing a protected marine sanctuary.

 

Southernmost point in the United States and facing Cuba

8. Check out the Southernmost point of the continental United States – A large and colorful buoy marks the southernmost point in the US. It actually is a very large concrete sewer junction that was too heavy to move, so it was painted and disguised as a real buoy erected in 1983. The area around the buoy is beautiful with stately manor homes in the classic Key West style and this is a nice area to just stroll and see the homes created from the Golden Age of Key West.

 

 

Mallory Square in Key West top 10 things to do

9. Mallory Square at Sunset – A bit touristy but fun all the same, the area along Mallory Square and the waterfront is a popular area to visit during Sunset with a slew of street performers, food cart vendors, small crafters/artisans are out in force to wean you of your tourist dollars. The sunsets overlooking the ocean and adjoining islands are actually quite spectacular with those fiery red/orange glows while the sun sets into the horizon.

 

10. Key West Cemetery – If you love quirky experiences, then visiting this cemetery in the old town is worthwhile. Built in 1847, you’ll find some fun epitaphs on many of the tombs, actual ship masts and burial plots with the dead pile on top of each other. This fascinating and morbid cemetery is fun and a great place for doing photography

 

 

Mallory Square in Key West top 10 things to do

Tips before you go to Key West

You definitely need to spend some time researching and booking hotels, car rentals and other activities when you visit because everything books months in advance due to the short visiting season at this park. Here are some suggestions on what to plan and book in advance when you are traveling to Key West which is a popular year round destination. Check out you the Key West tourism website here if you have any tourist related inquiries or details you still need to research.

 

Main Airport at Key West top 10 things to do

Flying into Key West International Airport

Key West International Airport is serviced by many US carriers including: Delta, American and United airlines. To check out the latest prices and schedules you can enter your dates with the search engines listed below for updates.

 

Priceline – Flights to Key West

Travel deals with Travelocity

TripAdvisor – Flights to Key West

 

Booking your hotel

The first thing to work out is where you will stay because hotels do book months or years in advance especially during the peak season. Prices due rise according to limited availability of hotel or BnB housing. You can check out reviews and the latest prices through any of your favorite booking websites below

TripAdvisor Key West smart deals for Key West

Price line current prices and promotions for Key West

 

Booking your car rental

In order to get the best prices for limited inventory, you also need to book your rental car as soon as you can. Depending on location you can book basically from where you fly into.

 

Priceline car rentals and bid up to 40% off current rental rates

Hertz Rental cars, save 40% when you pay now

Expedia Car Rentals for current prices and availability

 

 

Driving through the FLorida Keys - top things to do in Key West

Tour activities at the Key West

You can take a variety of half day to full day tours around the historic district around Key West from classic trollies with guides, museum visits and stopping at strategic places/landmarks to visit and tour. For more information on these tours, check out this website here for details and prices.

 

Small group van tours from Miami to Key West

Taking a quick day tour of the Florida Keys all the way to Key West is a fun and easy alternative way to visit this area. If your adverse to driving through the Florida Keys, why not take a small group tour from Miami to Key West. You can check out these small group tours offered by Tours4Fun here for some of the spectacular tours covering the Florida Keys all the way to Key West and stopping at some wonderful places of interest along the way.

 

 

Hemmingway's House at Key West top 10 things to do

Hemmingway’s House in Key West

 

Thanks for visiting today and checking out this post on Top 10 things to do in Key West, hopefully you will be able to see and experience this fascinating southernmost island in the Florida Keys. If you enjoyed the images and post, could you please share it with any of the social media buttons located around the post.

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Note – I was a guest of the Florida Keys and Key West Tourism office, all thoughts and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links that help to support this website, thanks so much for purchasing directly through Travel Photo Discovery and helping us maintain this website.

 

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12 Responses to Top 10 things to do in Key West

  1. Rhonda Albom October 3, 2016 at 1:41 am #

    I’ve been to Key West but it was many years ago with little children. Thank you for letting me see Key West in a different light.

  2. Irene S. Levine September 29, 2016 at 2:00 pm #

    I’ve never been to Key West. This list is sure compelling!

  3. Carole Terwilliger Meyers September 27, 2016 at 3:55 pm #

    My two favorite things in Key West are the Hemingway House and its cats and Mallory Square at Sunset–does the guy still do an act there with trained cats jumping through hoops? I also liked the little aquarium and . . . I could go on and on.

  4. jane canapini September 27, 2016 at 8:28 am #

    I love the little note about the ‘buoy’ that isn’t! I’ll have to make the southernmost point marker a destination!

  5. Jo - Lifestyle Fifty September 26, 2016 at 5:38 pm #

    Have not had the opportunity to visit Key West, but your post certainly makes me want to visit – if only for the seafood! Seriously though there looks like so many things that would interest us – the museums for one look fascinating.

  6. Sue Reddel September 26, 2016 at 12:08 pm #

    It’s been too long so my last visit to Key West. Your beautiful photos took me right back there! I need a visit to get some of that fresh seafood.

  7. Suzanne Stavert September 26, 2016 at 9:03 am #

    Key West has not been at the top of my list, but after seeing your photos and reading this, I think I need to get there! Thank you!

  8. The GypsyNesters September 26, 2016 at 8:38 am #

    The sunset festival every evening at Mallory Square was one of our favorites. Lots of quirky street performers. Also, the drive over the overseas highway is so worth it that we would recommend flying to Miami, then driving down.

  9. Suzanne Fluhr September 26, 2016 at 8:24 am #

    You managed to come up with about 8 things we didn’t do when we visited Key West. I guess it’s time for another visit to the Conch Republic. Fabulous photos as usual.

  10. Marilyn Jones September 26, 2016 at 4:20 am #

    I’ve visited Key West several times and your article shows me I need to get back there…I have a lot more to experience!

  11. Charles McCool September 26, 2016 at 2:55 am #

    I am glad you went to the cemetery. It is awesome, as far as cemeteries go. Nearby is El Siboney, which has amazing Cuban food.

  12. Rob September 26, 2016 at 2:51 am #

    Wish we had read this article a couple years ago.
    Our tip: Rent bicycles!! We covered A LOT of area in a little time while seeing things up-front and close.

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