Trip planning to the tropical islands in the Caribbean can be fun, warm and exciting – but if you’re not keen on all that travel and expense, you can explore the warm tropical weather and island feel close to home in Key West, Florida. Here is how your beach vacation trip starts.
- The Florida Keys were first inhabited by the Tequesta and Calusa Native American tribes.
- Key West connects to the mainland via 42 bridges.
- Celebrating the jaw-dropping sunset in Key West is a major event.
- Hurricane season runs from June – November. However, the heaviest storms are likely to occur in August- October. Mid to late November is a good time to visit if you want a good deal.
- The best way to get around Key West is on foot, mopeds or bicycles. You can also use public bus, taxis or ride hailing services.
- Carry sun protection and plenty of water.
Recommended daily itinerary
Estimated cost: $1000-$1800 per person (Excluding Airfare)
First day of the trip, check in to your hotel and get settled.
- Fly into Key West International airport.
- Checkin to Hilton Garden Inn Key West. Conveniently located just 2 minutes drive from the Key West International Airport and 10 minutes’ drive from Duval Street, this hotel offers free wifi, outdoor pool and fitness center. Guests can take free shuttle to city center and old town or rent bicycle for a fee.
- Rest up and enjoy amenities at your hotel or explore the area on hotel shuttle or bike.
- Enjoy your dinner at The Garden Grille & Bar located onsite at your hotel.
Smathers Beach and Bahia honda state park
Smathers Beach is the largest public beach in Key West, Florida, United States. It is approximately half mile long. The beach is lined with coconut trees and is often crowded with tourists and locals alike. Bahia honda state park features an award winning beach and historic bridge. The park, encompassing over 500 acres and an offshore island offers some of the best snorkeling and beachcombing in Florida.
- Enjoy your breakfast at Two Friends Patio Restaurant. We recommend Steak & Cheese Omelette.
- Make your way to Smathers Beach. You can enjoy the scenery, swimming, watching the planes take off and land. Jet-ski tour with Sunset water sports offers truly unique views of the island and will take you to multiple locations like Key West harbor, Southernmost Point, Florida Keys Wildlife Santuary, Boca Chica Sandbar and a few other secret spots.
- Enjoy your lunch at Goldman’s Bagel Deli. We recommend Lucy’s burger.
- Head over to Bahia honda state park. You can enjoy kayaking, bicycling, fishing or swimming and snorkeling on one or both of world class beaches in the park.
- Enjoy your dinner at Bagatelle. We recommend tuna steak.
Sombrero Beach and Zachary Taylor State Park Beach
One of the best-kept beach secrets in the Florida Keys, Sombrero Beach on Marathon Key is a cozy backyard playground for islanders. Fort Taylor is a perfect example of the wealth of history Florida has to offer. The park, which now covers a total of 54 acres, is a National Historic Landmark that played a significant role in Florida’s early development.
- Enjoy your breakfast at your hotel.
- Head over to Publix super store to pack your picnic lunch to enjoy at the beach.
- Make your way to Sombrero Beach. Fit with barbecue stations, picnic areas, volleyball nets, a pier and public showers – you could spend hours on end at this beach. You can swim just off from the shore but beware of the rocks. Enjoy your beach picnic lunch.
- Drive to Zachary Taylor State Park. Enjoy basking in the sunshine under swaying palm trees, floating around in the warm, tropical waters and indulging in cheap drinks from its beach club and stop at the historical Fort Zachary Taylor to learn about the history of the Keys.
- Enjoy your dinner at Paradise Restaurant. We recommend chicken paella.
Higgs Beach and C.B. Harvey Rest Beach
Higgs Memorial Beach Park is located on the Atlantic Ocean comprises approximately 16.5 acres of ocean front vista. Located on the picturesque Key West shore, C.B. Harvey Rest Beach Park boasts convenient facilities and a little sandy beach with palm trees.
- Enjoy your breakfast at your hotel.
- Head over to Higgs Beach. Enjoy the beach which features volleyball, tennis courts, swimming, kayaks and paddle board.
- Enjoy your lunch at Smokin’ Tuna Saloon. We recommend bacon wrapped meatloaf.
- Make your way to C.B. Harvey Rest Beach. Enjoy the serene waterfront. Stroll through the walkway that passes by West Martello Tower, the Indian Graves and park.
- Enjoy your dinner at Duetto Pizza and Gelato. We recommend Philly Cheese Steak.
Last day of the trip.
- Enjoy amenities at your hotel or attractions nearby until your flight time. Pack your bags and get ready to leave admiring your beach tan.