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Key West is the southernmost city in the continental United States, located just 90 miles north of Cuba. The island is known for its vibrant culture and history, with a rich blend of Bahamian, Cuban, and American influences. Key West is a popular tourist destination, with attractions ranging from historic landmarks to natural wonders, such as the coral reefs and the Dry Tortugas National Park. The island is also famous for its lively nightlife, with a variety of bars, restaurants, and music venues that cater to all tastes and preferences. Key West is a great place for outdoor activities, such as fishing, boating, snorkeling, and paddleboarding, thanks to its warm and clear waters and abundant marine life. Key West is a community that values diversity and inclusiveness, with a welcoming and laid-back atmosphere that attracts visitors from all over the world.

15. Stock Island Marina Village 

Stock Island Marina Village

(image via Instagram)

Stock Island Marina Village is a vibrant waterfront complex that includes restaurants, bars, and shops, as well as a marina and charter fishing boats. Visitors can enjoy fresh seafood, live music, and beautiful views of the harbor. Stock Island Marina Village is a pet-friendly destination, with several restaurants and bars that welcome dogs and even a dog park for furry friends to play in.

14. Visit a Rum Distillery

Rum Distillery Key West

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Key West is home to several rum distilleries, including Hemingway Rum- Papa’s Pillar Distillery, and Key West First Legal Rum Distillery. Visitors can take a tour and learn about the history of rum-making in the Keys, as well as sample some delicious rum cocktails. The Hemingway Rum- Papa’s Pillar Distillery offers a unique experience, with the chance to blend your own rum and take home a bottle with a custom label.

13. Visit the Beach

Key West Beach

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Key West’s beaches are some of the best in Florida, with soft sand, clear water, and plenty of sunshine. Smathers Beach, South Beach, and Higgs Beach are all great options for swimming, sunbathing, and watersports. In addition to swimming and sunbathing, Key West’s beaches offer activities such as parasailing, kayaking, and jet skiing.

12. White Street Pier

White Street Pier Key West

(image via Adobe)

The White Street Pier is a popular spot for fishing, sunset-watching, and bird-watching. The pier extends 1,500 feet into the ocean and offers panoramic views of Key West. The White Street Pier is a great spot for stargazing, with unobstructed views of the night sky.

11. Key West Aquarium

Key West Aquarium

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The Key West Aquarium is a small but interesting aquarium that features exhibits of local sea life, including sharks, rays, and sea turtles. Visitors can also interact with touch tanks and learn about conservation efforts. The Key West Aquarium also offers animal encounters, where visitors can feed and touch the marine animals and learn about their behaviors and habitats.

10. Mel Fisher Maritime Museum

Mel Fisher Maritime Museum Key West

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The Mel Fisher Maritime Museum is dedicated to the history and artifacts of shipwrecks off the coast of Key West. Visitors can see a collection of treasures recovered from shipwrecks, as well as learn about the science of underwater archaeology. The Mel Fisher Maritime Museum has a laboratory where visitors can watch archaeologists at work and even participate in the conservation of shipwreck artifacts.

9. Key West Art and Historical Society

Key West Art and Historical Society

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The Key West Art and Historical Society is a museum and cultural center that showcases the art and history of Key West. Exhibits cover a range of topics, from the island’s maritime history to its literary legacy. The Key West Art and Historical Society also hosts temporary exhibitions, showcasing contemporary artists and exploring current issues related to the island’s culture and history.

8. Key West Lighthouse and Keeper’s Quarters Museum

Key West Lighthouse

(image via Wikimedia)

The Key West Lighthouse and Keeper’s Quarters Museum offers stunning views of Key West from the top of the lighthouse. Visitors can also explore the museum and learn about the history of the lighthouse and the lives of the keepers who worked there. The Key West Lighthouse and Keeper’s Quarters Museum is a National Historic Landmark and one of the oldest lighthouses in Florida.

7. Harry S. Truman’s Little White House

Harry S Truman Little White House

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The Harry S. Truman Little White House is a historic home that was used as a retreat by President Truman during his presidency. Visitors can take a guided tour of the house and learn about its history. The Harry S. Truman Little White House hosts regular events such as book signings, lectures, and concerts.

6. Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park

Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park Key West

(image via Wikimedia)

Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park is a great place for history buffs and beach lovers alike. The park includes a historic fort that played a role in the Civil War and features guided tours, as well as a beautiful beach with clear water and soft sand. Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park also offers nature trails and bird-watching opportunities, with the chance to spot rare species such as the White-crowned Pigeon.

5. Southernmost Point Buoy

Key West Southernmost Point Bouy

(image via Wikimedia)

The Southernmost Point buoy is a popular photo spot that marks the southernmost point of the contiguous United States. Visitors can take a picture with the buoy and the colorful marker indicating the distance to Cuba. The Southernmost Point buoy is located just a short walk away from other Key West landmarks, such as the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory and the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum.

4. Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory

Key West Butterfly Garden

(image via Wikimedia)

The Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory is a beautiful indoor garden filled with hundreds of butterflies and exotic plants. Visitors can also spot birds and learn about their habitats and behavior. The Conservatory is also a great place for photography enthusiasts, with stunning photo opportunities of the colorful butterflies in flight.

3. Mallory Square

Mallory Square

(image via Wikimedia)

Mallory Square is the perfect spot to catch the sunset and enjoy some entertainment. The nightly Sunset Celebration features street performers, food vendors, and live music. In addition to the sunset celebration, Mallory Square also hosts a daily Sunset Celebration Artisan Market, featuring local artists and craftsmen.

2. Duval Street

Duval Street Key West

(image via Wikimedia)

Duval Street is a vibrant and bustling street that is the heart of Key West’s nightlife scene. Visitors can find a wide range of restaurants and bars. Duval Street is a perfect place for shopping, with unique stores selling everything from handmade jewelry to quirky souvenirs. It’s also a great place to people-watch or simply take a stroll.

1. Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum

KeyWest Ernest Hemingway Home Museum

(image via Wikimedia)

The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum is a must-visit attraction for literature enthusiasts and fans of the famous writer’s works. The house, built in the Spanish Colonial style, has been preserved as it was when Hemingway lived there in the 1930s. The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum is also famous for its six-toed cats, which are descendants of Hemingway’s own cat, Snowball.


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Explore More

As you can see, Key West has a lot to offer everyone. If you are looking to do more in the surrounding area, check out other weekend trips from nearby Key West, Florida.

These areas are perfect for a quick day trip or a long weekend getaway. Explore our favorite things to do or peruse some pre-built itineraries.

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