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15 Greatest Issues To Do in Key West, Florida

Key West is a gorgeous island in South Florida, located right at the end of the world-famous Florida Keys. From incredible state parks and kayaking adventures to sunset sails and pub crawls – there is truly something for everyone! I recently moved to Key West for four months and had the time of my life. […]

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Key West is a beautiful island in South Florida, positioned proper on the finish of the world-famous Florida Keys.

From unimaginable state parks and kayaking adventures to sundown sails and pub crawls – there may be really one thing for everybody!

I not too long ago moved to Key West for 4 months and had the time of my life. However should you’ve by no means been, I do know it may be a little bit overwhelming attempting to determine what there may be to do on this lovely place.

That will help you plan your journey, I've put collectively this checklist of my favourite actions for first-time guests and locals alike.

Key West actually is among the best places to visit in Florida, and a high destination in January.

Whether or not you need an energetic day or a calming one, these are among the greatest points of interest that Key West has to supply so that you just get to expertise all that life has in retailer for you down on the southernmost level of the continental USA.

If you're visiting Key West quickly, I like to recommend testing this information on what to pack for Key West.

Here's a checklist of the highest 15 issues to do in Key West, Florida. 

1. Go to Fort Zachary Taylor State Historic Web site

Fort Zachary Taylor State Park is a superb place to be outdoors on a sunny day on this tropical paradise.

The park has glorious trails, each for mountain climbing and biking, and a historic fort.

unique things to do in key west

The historic fort itself is positioned alongside the waterfront of Key West, simply off of Southard Avenue. Based in 1866, it was constructed in an effort to guard the southern docks from would-be invaders in the course of the American Civil Struggle that was raging at the moment.

Though no pictures had been truly fired right here, there are quite a few cannons on show, in addition to a couple of different items of historical past you possibly can see inside.

One other thrilling factor to learn about Fort Zachary Taylor State park is that it's considered a fantastic snorkeling spot and top-of-the-line seashores in Key West.

The water on the seaside at Fort Zachary is crystal clear, and the marine life could be very attention-grabbing to look at. In the event you’re in search of a calming day on the seaside, that is the place to go.

2. Discover the Native Artwork Scene

The native artwork scene in Outdated City Key West is flourishing, with many nice galleries and studios to discover.

Head down Whitehead Avenue or Duval Avenue to find the works of native artists, from painters, photographers, and sculptors to potters in each conventional and trendy types.

The most effective half is that the majority of those artists continuously create artworks impressed by the island that make for superb one-in-a-lifetime souvenirs to take house with you.

A few of Key West's most well-known artists are well-represented right here in their very own studios, however there are additionally a number of smaller galleries which have glorious works so that you can get pleasure from and buy as properly.

Professional tip: The memento store on the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory sells superb Key West-inspired artwork for a good value. They even mail the items to your property should you want them to.

3. Paddle By Mangroves on an Eco-Kayaking Journey

Expertise the mangroves and seagrass of the Florida Keys in an eco-kayak.

Mangrove ecoscapes are stuffed with plant, fowl, fish, and animal life solely present in these habitats. These protected areas are often known as nursery grounds for a lot of marine species.

eco-kayaking adventure in Key West

The mangroves close to Key West are among the most protected in Florida, and a kayaking tour is a good way to rise up shut. You might even be fortunate sufficient to see a manatee or two.

Take a look at this affordable kayak trip which is roughly 2 hours lengthy and features a educated information, gear, security briefing and is even canine pleasant! 

In the event you'd reasonably spend a bit longer on the water, this highly-rated day trip is round 6 hours — however first, you're swept away to clear waters in a catamaran! After you attain the gorgeous place, then you'll begin your paddle journey. Search for dolphins, stingrays, turtles and manatees out of your kayak.

4. Style Contemporary Seafood at one of many Many Eating places

Strive a contemporary seafood dish alongside Duval Avenue paired with a Key West cocktail.

From fish to conch, you're certain to search out something and every little thing that the water has to supply within the many unimaginable eating places on the island, so be sure to strive among the native catch.

A few of Key West's most conventional seafood contains all issues conch, like conch salad, conch fritters, conch chowder, and cracked conch. Apart from, you possibly can even get to strive a conch margarita! It tastes higher than it sounds, belief me.

In the event you're extra of a lobster kind of individual, strive some Key West lobster roll or lobster bisque. I'm completely certain that you'll find it irresistible.

Among the eating places I like to recommend on Duval Avenue are DJ’s Clam Shack, Bagatelle, Caroline’s Cafe and Ocean Grill and bar.

5. Be a part of a Sundown Cruise  

Key West boasts a few of America’s greatest crusing waters, making it a real paradise for any fan of the nice outside.

Set sail on a sundown cruise as you watch infinite shades of purple, pink, orange, and crimson unfold throughout the sky. My favourite factor about Key West sundown cruises is that they all the time have nice meals and an open bar. Additionally, after I went, the crew was simply implausible.

sunset cruise off Key West

Take a look at this top sunset sail on a 70-foot catamaran. The journey lasts round 2 hours and contains glorious appetizers, wine, glowing wine, freshly made sangria and beer. This sundown journey is of wonderful worth. Be taught extra here.

Possibly you'd desire to set sail into the sundown on an precise sailboat? This small-group trip lasts round 2 hours and contains 8 completely different wine samplings or 5 completely different beers. Plus, a number of connoisseur cheeses, meats, crackers, fruits and extra. Be taught concerning the journey here

6. Go to Some Distinctive Bars and Eating places

Key West has many glorious bars and eating places to go to, particularly these round Outdated City Key West. 

Take your choose from quite a lot of dive bars, sports activities bars, and nightclubs the place you possibly can dance the night time away or simply calm down with buddies over a Key Lime Mojito.

Cease by Blue Heaven for a meal of world-famous conch fritters after which head over to Captain Tony's Saloon on the identical block for stay music that may preserve you swaying lengthy into the night time.

After, head to the well-known Green Parrot Bar, one in every of America's oldest bars, to complete the night time on a golden observe.

7. See a Film

Positioned within the coronary heart of Outdated City Key West, the Tropic Cinema is one in every of solely two indoor theaters in all of Monroe County.

The cinema opened in 2004 and goals to convey high quality films to individuals who lengthy for one thing greater than Hollywood blockbusters — with plush seating and a concession that features beer, wine and popcorn with actual butter, it's a fantastic place to beat the warmth!

When dwelling in Key West, that is the place to see unbiased movies, classics and distinctive exhibits. In line with the world, the theater has an unmissable aqua-blue Artwork Deco facade, a sculpture of Marilyn Monroe and a Hollywood Stroll of Fame, with a twist.

The Tropic Cinema is a fairly cool place to expertise and a novel factor to do in Key West. Discover out extra here.

8. Style Key Lime Pie

Mallory Square Dock is a must-see for foodie vacationers when visiting Key West.

The waterfront sq. hosts nightly sundown celebrations with an open-air market stuffed with native artists promoting merchandise and scrumptious meals resembling the standard Key Lime Pie.

taste key lime pie

Key Lime Pie was invented within the Florida Keys and is the island's most conventional dessert, so you possibly can't depart Key West with out attempting it.

When you've got already had your share of the basic pie, strive the chocolate-dipped Key Lime Pie and even Key Lime Pie on a stick (my fave).

Another choice is to mix a little bit little bit of train with a slice of pie. On this relaxed bicycle tour of Key West, you'll be taught all concerning the historical past of Key West, whereas taking pictures and having fun with the views — on the finish, you'll get pleasure from a slice of key lime pie! Discover out extra here.

9. Catch a Drag Present

Drag exhibits are a Key West basic! They typically function among the most gifted performers in a enjoyable bar environment that you just'll should see to imagine. Try Bourbon St. Pub and Parade Lounge. 

Bourbon Avenue Singers carry out each Friday and Saturday night time and make for a really pleasant time! They all the time make distinctive and hilarious interpretations of standard songs that everybody is aware of.

Additionally, to make the nights much more pleasant, the pub hosts nightly drink specials and boasts a powerful dance flooring with bumping music to get your groove on. Be taught extra here.

10. Go to Ernest Hemingway's Home

The Hemingway Home accommodates an in depth assortment of artifacts and presents that Ernest Hemingway obtained all through his profession and has now been was a museum in his honor. 

visiting Ernest Hemingway House, Key West, Florida

Additionally, it provides the uncommon alternative to see the within of a well-preserved Key West house from the nineteenth century and be taught concerning the lifetime of one in every of America's most celebrated authors.

In the event you'd prefer to be taught extra concerning the lifetime of Ernest Hemingway, this walking tour (which incorporates meals!) takes you to all the locations that he visited in Key West.

Some spots embody the place he refereed boxing matches, the place his boat was stored, his first condo, and the place his books had been offered. In fact, the museum and Hemingway Home are additionally included. Discover out extra here

In search of issues to do in different US cities?

11. Go to Fort East Martello

Fort East Martello is a well-known historic website and museum in Key West that was initially constructed as a Civil Struggle fort.

The unique construction of the tower remains to be seen however in the present day accommodates many attention-grabbing artifacts and artwork reveals associated to its historical past.

Some of the curious issues about Fort East Martello is that it's house to Robert The Doll.

Robert The Doll is a toy believed to be haunted, as his proprietor and creator, Robert Eugene Otto reported that it might transfer its head round at night time when the household was not house. It's the doll that impressed horror films resembling Youngster's Play and Anabelle.

12. Discover One of many Many Stunning Seashores

Smathers Seashore is among the hottest seashores in Key West. The sunny white sand and calm waters make it an ideal place to calm down after absorbing all that tradition on Duval Avenue.

Key West Florida smathers beach

Smathers is greatest for sunbathing and practising water sports activities. You'll discover public bogs and showers, chair and umbrella leases, watersport leases, and meals vans.

Higgs Beach is nice for snorkeling however solely alongside the break wall. Facilities embody youngsters's playgrounds, a canine park, tennis and volleyball courts, restrooms, and showers.

South Seashore is extra of a lazing round form of seaside — I by no means noticed many individuals swimming right here. You'll discover chairs out there to hire and a fairly cute seaside café.

Fort Zachary Taylor is an efficient place for snorkeling, paddling and scuba diving as properly. Snorkel gear is accessible for hire, plus you'll discover bogs, showers, and a café. Water footwear are advisable!

13. Have a Drink at The Well-known Sloppy Joe's Bar

Sloppy Joe's Bar is for certain one of the standard bars to go to in Key West!

Not solely does it have a enjoyable environment, however it's additionally rumored that Ernest Hemingway used to spend time there when he was on the town.

At this time, it's house to what locals take into account to be the “greatest rattling” key lime pie on the island and hosts stay music and dancing each night time of the week.

14. Take a Image With the Southernmost Level Buoy

The Southernmost Level Buoy is a well-known landmark in Key West. Positioned on the fringe of Key West, this buoy marks the southernmost level within the continental United States.

Folks from everywhere in the nation and the world journey to take footage with this symbolic icon.

My tip is: get there as early as you possibly can! As with every standard Instagram spot, the Southernmost Level Buoy will get loopy strains and the most effective time to keep away from them is early within the morning.

15. Watch the Sundown at Mallory Sq. Dock

Final however not least, is watching the sundown on the beforehand talked about Mallory Sq..

As soon as the solar units, Mallory Sq. is a gathering place for locals and vacationers alike to return collectively to look at a vibrant out of doors present.

sunset at Mallory Square Dock

Hundreds of individuals collect round to get pleasure from performers resembling musicians, mimes, jugglers and hula hoop artists that placed on a phenomenal efficiency proper earlier than the sky turns pink and orange and nature's mild disappears behind the horizon.

Mallory Sq. additionally hosts a few of my favourite bars in Key West like El Mesón de Pepe Bar and Restaurant. I really like the vibe at this Cuban restaurant and grabbing a drink after an unimaginable day in paradise!

Bonus: Go on a Meals Tour (top-of-the-line issues to do in Key West for foodies)

There isn't any higher method to expertise all of the superb meals that Key West has to supply than by occurring a basic meals tour.

go on a food tour in key west

I like to recommend testing those provided by Key West Meals Excursions, such because the Southernmost Meals Tasting & Cultural Strolling Tour (view on Viator or Get Your Guide), the Historic Seaport Meals & Cultural Strolling Tour (view on Viator or Get Your Guide) and the tremendous enjoyable Key West Pub Crawl.

Uncover the Cuban and Caribbean influences within the meals and pattern Key West favourites resembling conch fritters, key lime pie, fish tacos, and extra. Go to Mexican cantinas, family-owned Cuban eating places, bakeries, and an previous speakeasy!

Word: you probably have the possibility, take into account taking a flight from Miami or Ft. Lauderdale and exploring the Exumas within the Bahamas. The seashores and water are unimaginable! Plus, you've most likely heard of the famous swimming pigs? Properly, they're positioned close to Staniel Cay and are a must-see!

Now You Know What To Do in Key West

That's a wrap! Now all the most effective issues to do in Key West, Florida, and you're able to have the time of your life.

I actually loved dwelling on this lovely island, and I really like writing about it each time I get an opportunity to assist those that dream of visiting it. 

Key West is called America's final Caribbean metropolis, so be sure you pack your baggage and go to this vibrant island paradise stuffed with tradition, seafood, and enjoyable.

It doesn't matter should you keep just for the weekend or for a number of months as I did, you'll all the time uncover new issues to do. Thanks for studying and better of luck along with your journey.

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The submit 15 Best Things To Do in Key West, Florida appeared first on Goats On The Road.

Support author of this article and visit his post, originally published HERE

This post is originally published at Goats On The Road blog and it's not owned by this site! Respect content authors!