When you just need some time away from all the common stressors in life, it’s time to pack a bag and head out of town. And the best place to go is Key West. This tiny island city sits at the southernmost part of the Florida Keys and can provide you with the chance to really disconnect from your life at home and recharge with sea, sunshine, and if you want it, solitude. It’s easy to get to, whether you’re flying in or driving down from Miami.
Even if you’ve never gone fishing before, you’re welcome on one of the many fishing charter boats that go out of Key West. There’s no need to worry about fishing gear, permits or licenses, the charter company takes care of all of it. From deep sea fishing to reef fishing or wreck fishing, local captains who know these waters and the type of fish that move through them to increase your chances of an exciting catch. While the area fish can change with the time of year, you can expect to catch fish like gobia, mahi mahi, tarpon, and more.
Have a Picnic
With the services of the Key West Picnic Company, you can indulge in a relaxing and pampering experience where all of the details are coordinated by your picnic concierge and you can simply show up for the most romantic breakfast, lunch or dinner imaginable. Tufted cushions, real plates and cutlery, a vase of freshly cut flowers, and Bluetooth speakers with music are just a few of the small details that make a big impression. Whether you’re looking to celebrate a special occasion or surprise a loved one, a custom picnic is magic.
Eat the Key Lime Pie
No matter how responsible your daily diet is at home, when you’re on vacation in Key West, you should consider trying the key lime pie. It’s a signature dish and even though it pops up in many places across the country, there’s nothing like enjoying a slice in Key West proper. Among the best places to get a slice are Kermit’s Key West Key Lime Shoppe in Old Town Key West. The shop also has a full cafe menu and serves breakfast all day.
Indulge in the Fresh Seafood of Key West
Seafood is pretty much a staple of the Key West restaurant scene; however, Eaton Street Seafood Market and Restaurant really stands out for not only their selection but their preparation and the amazing house-made salads and sauces to accompany it. From the lobster roll to the crab cake sandwich, fried fish basket, grilled lobster tail, and fried shrimp basket, everything is made to order. Don’t miss the blackened shrimp over field greens with Eaton Street’s own key lime mustard dressing, and a side of conch fritters.
Swim, Snorkel, and Kayak at Dry Tortugas National Park
Just a short boat ride away but worth every effort to get there, Dry Tortugas National Park offers visitors a magical underwater experience. Snorkel in crystal clear waters dotted with broad coral reefs, sunken shipwrecks, and wooden pilings home to a variety of sea life. Swim at the beach, kayak around the small islands that make up the park, or picnic on the grounds of Fort Jefferson, where you can easily imagine what it might have been like to be stationed there during the Civil War through historical reenactments and self-guided tours.
Go Italian, Southern Style
At the Seaside Cafe and Bar, friendly waitstaff and skilled chefs serve up exciting Italian and seafood specialties inspired by southern flavors. The honey butter lobster biscuits are a great example, as is the prosciutto caprese sandwich on homemade bread. Located at the charming Southernmost House Mansion, the restaurant’s tables are arranged just feet from the surf for a one-of-a-kind dining experience. There’s an extensive bar menu featuring frozen drinks, wine, and champagne for true vacation style dining.
Hit the Best Beach in Key West
While Key West may not have the miles-long beaches that other warm and sunny islands boast, the beach at Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park has been rated the best. The rocky beach has a wide shoreline for swimmers and snorkelers. Plus, there are biking and walking trails, a historic fort you can tour, a jetty to fish off of, and a cafe on-site so it’s perfect for a last-minute trip to the park–everything you need is right there.
Key West is a great vacation spot when you want to escape from the day-to-day and spend a week, or even a weekend, immersing yourself in all that’s fun and enjoyable. For all its natural beauty, historic landmarks, creative dining scene, and friendly people, Key West ticks all the boxes for a relaxing trip that will have you heading home feeling rejuvenated and ready to return to your routine.