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Key West


The southernmost city in the continental U.S., Key West, Florida, is famous for its gorgeous scenery and relaxed atmosphere. The conchs (locals) are happy to share their piece of paradise, and have a live-and-let-live attitude that makes everyone feel welcome. Ernest Hemingway made Key West his home for many years. Today, guests can tour his house and see the 60 cats that call it home. He's not the only public figure to fall under the spell of the city. Robert Frost wintered here for much of his life, and Harry Truman spent time in the "Little White House." Fishing is a popular activity, especially on the Florida Straits and the shallow flats. During the day, visitors can take in the blue water sailed by Ponce de Leon in 1513 by kayaking, snorkeling, or scuba diving near area reefs. The Dry Tortugas National Park is another great way to experience nature, and perhaps even find long-lost pirate treasure. Whatever you find at the beach, you're sure to see pirate loot at the Pirate Soul museum, which has the only authentic treasure chest in America. Duval Street is one of the most popular Key West attractions, with plenty of shopping and hopping nightlife. The party atmosphere really heats up during the Sunset Celebration on Mallory Dock. Every night when the sun begins to disappear, the informal event takes off, with jugglers, mimes, and musicians bidding adieu to the day. Key West International Airport is served by American, Continental, and Delta, so finding flights to Key West should be an easy task from most cities.

When To Go

Located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, Key West has moderate temperatures throughout the year. The most popular time to visit is during late winter and spring, when the weather is pleasant and dry. The early summer and early winter months experience an ideal mix of fewer crowds, lower prices, and mild temperatures, though these periods are getting busier as the island is fast becoming a year-round destination. The least popular and least expensive time is between August and October, when hurricane season is at its peak and rain is frequent.

high season: January to April
low season: August to October
shoulder season: May to July, November to December

Weather Information

Key West has a subtropical climate, with an annual daily average temperature of 78 degrees, and wet summer and dry winter seasons. Winters are pleasant and warm with clear skies, while showers and balmy weather are common during summer. Hurricane season runs from June through November, and the highest risk of touchdowns comes in September.

Crowd Information

Visitors crowd the city from January through April, and during events such as Pridefest in June, Hemingway Days in July, and Fantasy Fest in October.

Closure Information

Hotels, shops, and attractions remain open throughout the year.

When to Save

The best months to save money are August, September, and October, during which fewer people visit due to wet weather. The most expensive months are February, March, and April, but room rates can also be affected by special events and festivals at any time of the year.

Information provided by the Monroe County Tourist Development Council