Key West is easily one of the most relaxing places on the planet. There’s something about the vibe here that allows you to unwind without even trying. Whether it’s a day at the beach, leisurely bikes ride around the island or swinging in a hammock underneath the shade of a palm tree, here’s your ultimate guide for relaxing in paradise.
A Day at the Beach
Nothing will put you in the island state of mind quicker than an afternoon at the beach. Arguably the most relaxing beach in Key West is Fort Zachary Taylor State Park & Beach. Its rocky coast is uncrowned, shaded by Australian Pine Trees and it offers up some of the most beautiful views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Key West Harbor. Spread out a beach towel, go for a swim, take a hike on a nature trail or tour the fort, it’s all at your fingertips during a day at Fort Zach. Make a day out of it by packing a picnic or buying a burger at the snack bar when you get hungry.
Snorkel a Coral Reef
There’s something extremely peaceful about floating on the ocean’s surface while snorkeling. Casually swim the underwater ecosystem of Key West as you witness schools of rainbow parrotfish and yellowtail snapper and see purple sea fans glide and sway through the ocean’s mellow current. Since Key West is home to the third largest coral reef in the world, there’s so much to see on a snorkel excursion.
Rent a Boat
Charter a boat, with a captain or be your own! Whether you want to fish, snorkel, cruise around the aquamarine waters of the island or do it all, boat rentals are a great way to spend your time here. There’s plenty to see on and off shore, including the famous Key West sunset. If you want to enjoy time on the water, but can’t make a day out of it, the Key West Water Taxi is another way to get your fix. Budget-friendly and fun, it’s a unique way to get from the north side of the island to the Historic Seaport.
Go For a Bike Ride
Key West is an extremely bike friendly destination. It’s how the locals get around and it’s one of the best ways to get off the beaten path and see a peaceful side of the island. As soon as you exit Duval Street, you’ll discover a world of quaint conch cottages with big front porches shaded by palm trees and punctuated with bright bougainvillea. It’s that island charm that makes people fall in love with Key West.
Explore the Key West Cemetery
While you’re on your bike, route yourself towards the center of Old Town where you’ll find the Key West Cemetery. It’s peaceful and quiet for obvious reasons. Lock your bike up at the gate and grab an information pamphlet for a stroll through this historic cemetery. It will be a relaxing afternoon diversion full of surprises.
Relax on a Sandbar
Maybe you’ve noticed a theme by now, but by far the most relaxing activities in Key West involve the water. Embark on an Local’s Eco Tour for a half-day trip aboard an intimate catamaran. This Fury Water Adventures trip includes snorkeling, kayaking and relaxing on a sandbar beach. It’s an extremely peaceful way to commune with nature and enjoy a day on the water. Cold Coronas and snacks are included.
Pool Time & Cocktails
The Southernmost House is one of the prettiest Victorian mansions on the island and today it’s a bed and breakfast overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. This historic site also happens to have one of the nicest pools on the island and you don’t have to be a guest to enjoy it. Non-hotel guests can purchase a day pass for $10 that includes one free cocktail at the pool bar. Lounge in the sun all afternoon before the nightlife of Key West ramps up.
Lunch & Hammocks
Sunset Key might be a private island, but you can gain access by making a lunch reservation at Latitudes. Take the shuttle over from the Margaritaville Marina and enjoy a peaceful lunch, followed by a relaxing afternoon lazily swinging in one of their dreamy hammocks on the beach.