This was featured as one of our “See the USA” posts. We worked through destinations alphabetically and this week we have the letter K and Key West, Florida. I am excited to have Craig and Bryanna from Crazy Family Adventure sharing the top 5 family friendly things to do in Key West, Florida. I’ve never been, but they make me want to visit!
What To Do in Key West with Kids
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Key West has amazing family friendly activities that you can do both on, off, and in the water. Here are our Top 5 Family Friendly Things to See in Key West:
1. Fury Water Adventure in Key West
If you can only do one thing while you are there, make it Fury Water, the ultimate Key West boat adventure! You are on a large catamaran boat where you are served breakfast, lunch, and all you can drink soda, lemonade and beer and wine after the jet skiing. The total adventure is about 6 hours long.
During the 6 hours you will be snorkeling, driving jet skis, parasailing and playing on inflatable climbing equipment in the middle of the ocean. The 6 hours totally flies by and when it is done, you aren’t ready to return to land!
The staff is amazing with kids and are super helpful with making sure everyone is comfortable on the jet skis, snorkeling and parasailing. You do have to be six years old to parasail, so keep that in mind.
We loved all of the activities, but also enjoyed being out on the beautiful waters of Key West. It’s about an hour boat ride out to the snorkeling spot (they try to get by the Florida Reef if weather cooperates), so you get a relaxing ride where you can eat your breakfast and watch the ocean go by, or go up to the top deck and dance to the music! If you’re looking for fun things to do in Key West, this is it!
2. Visit Key West Aquarium
In true Key West style, the aquarium has an open shark tank where you could literally reach in and touch them. Of course they don’t recommend that, but it is both scary and cool to be so close to sharks!
They also have a touch tank and a sting ray tank where you can pet the rays. There are multiple programs throughout the day where you can learn about the wildlife and watch them feed a shark. If your kids are brave enough, there is an opportunity for them to feed the sharks as well!
The aquarium isn’t very large, but with the programs and the sea life you can see and touch (plus being able to feed the sharks), it is totally worth it!
3. Visit Fort Zachary Taylor
Fort Zachary Taylor state park is a fun place where you can walk the grounds of the old fort and learn all about the history of Key West. Afterwards, head over to the beach area to hang out in the sand (mind you Key West beaches have sand that is more sand/rock) and swim in the ocean. You can also go snorkeling in Key West right off of the beach!
There is a concession stand so you can grab lunch, showers, and plenty of room to walk up and down the beach to take in the beauty that is Key West. It is also a great location to catch the sunset.
4. Outdoor adventures in Key West
If you are looking to get back out on the water, Danger Charters has a great trip that will take you out on a sailboat to a location where you can snorkel and then kayak. We saw a Hawksbill Sea Turtle on our snorkel trip!
Next up, they take you to one of the many small islands in the Keys where you can take a kayak (they let my husband and I kayak with 2 kids each) and kayak around the island. You see so many amazing birds and may even see an old washed up boat or two.
The water is crystal clear so you can also view fish and barracuda swimming right under your boat! Just like on the Fury Adventure they offer all you can drink soda and water plus you can bring your own snacks. This is always important with kids. Plus the staff was awesome and they even let the kids drive the boat.
5. Sunset Celebration and Mallory Square
The kids loved watching the shows at the sunset celebration at Mallory Square in Old Town Key West. The shows range from jugglers to tight rope walkers to sword swallowers. There are a bunch of food stands where you can sometimes (it varies who is there) get a coconut to drink, fresh off the tree.
All the shows are free, but the performers ask for tips at the end so be prepared. For the most part the shows are family friendly, but there may be a few innuendos said that will go over most kids heads.
When the sun is setting everyone gets really quiet and watches the sunset together. Assuming there isn’t a big cruise ship blocking the view it is an amazing place to watch the sun go down. You can see all the sunset cruise sailboats out on the water so it is a great picture opportunity.
There is so much more to do with kids in Key West and up the Florida Keys. The whole Florida Keys stretch over 100 miles and you are surrounded by beautiful blue, green, and turquoise water the whole way! You will definitely want to allow time for all of the best beaches in Florida Keys.
Key West may be best known for its party scene, but it also delivers a ton of family fun. We have been there multiple times for the sunset and always felt comfortable and safe. We knew after dark wasn’t the best time for kids, so we would head home once the sun set.
If you are looking to stay overnight in Key West, we recommend heading to the east side closer to the southern most point of the US. It definitely seemed quieter and less busy.
About the author: Bryanna, her husband Craig, their 4 kids and 2 dogs sold their house, everything in it, and bought an RV and are now traveling around the US. They blog about their adventures at Crazy Family Adventure. Their goal is to inspire families to get out and travel more! When they aren’t out hiking to the top of mountains you can find them on the beach or at the local donut shop searching for the best donut in the US!