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The Ultimate Guide to Key West for Families

Updated: Jun 15, 2021

Quick tips for Key West with the kids

Dreaming of blue waters and golden sand? Make that dream a reality and take the family to sunny Key West, Florida! There is so much to do here from ecological discoveries to sitting on the shoreline, soaking up those sunshine rays. Key West is a city of bustling tourism and a vibrant, charming local’s scenes that welcome newcomers like old friends. Explore all there is in Key West, and find a little something for the whole family with this handy guide to your next dream vacation:

Things to do in Key West

Dolphin Safari

Ride the ocean wave with some aquatic friends! Dolphin Safaris are a great way to get up and personal with the Atlantic Ocean and all of its wildlife wonders! Specifically, dolphins! Dolphins love to play in the presence of boats, jumping from side to side and providing for a spectacular show on the ocean. Boat tours and safari rides are the best way to explore this phenomenon as you have no other job but to sit back and enjoy the ride! All ages will be amazed by what these dolphins can really do!

Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory

Experience the wonder of life and growth right before your eyes! The Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory has been a staple mark in the area for many years. It continues to dazzle locals and tourists alike with its testament to natural life and spectacular color array, thanks to the hundreds of butterflies fluttering about. This will capture audiences from any age range and captivate that childlike sense of wonder for hours. As a general rule, spring is one of the best times to come, both for the blooming flowers and color expanse of the butterflies. However, all seasons have a little something to show!

Higgs Beach

Just what the vacation ordered! Higgs Beach is one of the best options for families because everyone can find their own fun here. Allow your kids to play in the waves while you catch some much-needed Z’s underneath a beach umbrella and start to understand just what relaxation really means. It is also a great area to let your kids release some of that energy in an engaging environment! Be it waves, sand, or beachside sports, there is so much here to keep everyone interested that Higgs Beach can be an all-day affair! Even better, it can be a several day affair as you embrace the true natural beauty of Key West, Florida!

Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center

Discover all there is to Key West at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center! Here, you can spend the day perusing exhibits and learning about some of the most fascinating parts about a city this beautiful. There are numerous plants and animals to view, and knowledgeable workers and tours that make this location both educational and enlightening! Meanwhile, with such a diverse array of attractions, everyone can find their favorites in the Discovery Center! Bring the whole family and see how much you can spot in one of Key West’s premier attractions.

Locals Tip:

Get to the Southernmost Point in the USAbuoy early! This is one of the most popular attractions in the country as you reach the very southernmost border, so it is reasonable to expect crowds! The solution: get up early! Not only will you have more time to explore the city, but you will face fewer crowds and find easier spots for pictures if you embrace the morning light! As touristy as this is, you’re not going to want to miss one of Key West’s title attractions.

Where to Eat

Harpoon Harry’s

Seafood on the shore! As a city on the banks of the Atlantic, it should come as no surprise that Key West knows how to do seafood right! And Harpoon Harry’s is one of the best examples of true Southern Florida excellence. It’s a fun and friendly place to dine for the day that welcomes children and families without seeming like it caters exclusively to the younger demographic. Harpoon Harry’s is a necessary stop for anybody looking to embrace that Key West culture.


As a relative neighbor to Miami, Key West is another Florida city that embraces that Latin fusion! Bien is one of the best restaurants on not just the island, but in the state! It packs a flavorful bite with a complex array of seasonings, while still offering some simpler (but no less tasty items) seasonings for those picky eaters. It is also an incredibly unique ordeal that redefines the meaning of spice! Stop in for a quick bite before the beach, or sit down for a nice family dinner and you’re sure to be impressed by Bien!


Kids, adults, grandparents, couples, locals, tourists… everybody loves a good dessert! And at Mattheessen’s, it is the best! Get a chocolate delight or try something caked in powdered sugar and spend the rest of your days dreaming of a pie this good. They even offer a diverse array of options that allows for people of incredibly different tastes to enjoy the same restaurant! Pastries made here are fresh and delicious and come with only the highest recommendations from those in the area and those visiting from far away. It’s hard to find a better delicacy around than at Key West’s premier dessert eatery: Mattheessen’s!

Locals tip:

Hogfish Bar and Grill is a day saver! It is nestled in such a remote area you’ll wonder if you’re heading in the right direction the whole way: but stay the course! A true Key West landmark -- Hogfish-- lies at the end of this road! It’s hard to find a better place with the same relaxed atmosphere and tasty entrees on the island! While this location used to be a locals-only affair, it has slowly started to embrace more of the tourism scene. It is nowhere as jam-packed and frenzied as other restaurants on the island, but it is thankfully more open to the seasoned traveler nowadays.

Key West is a bustling island with so much to do for every kind of family! Play the day away on a Dolphin Safari, or sit down for a nice family dinner at one of Key West’s many high rated eateries. Whatever you choose to do in Key West, you’re sure to find an adventure waiting for you!

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