Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

The Florida Keys has everything, which is why we return to South Florida again and again. There’s a a laid-back, island vibe that is perfect for relaxation and escape. Mix that with beautiful beaches, crystal-clear water, and abundant marine life for the ultimate vacation.

Plan your trip with our recommended list of things to do in the Florida Keys – only our favorites!

Upper Keys

Stay at Baker’s Cay Resort

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

Baker’s Cay
 is in Key Largo, the northernmost part of the Florida Keys. It’s a Hilton Curio hotel, and is fantastic for families.

The rooms are more basic that the above-mentioned resorts – but it’s the amenities that makes this special!

Your resort fee includes bike rentals, beach chairs and umbrellas, fishing rods and bait, and tons of family activities on the Grand Lawn, like archery (with soft ends), corn hole, ping pong and more. 

There is always something happening on the beach, too. When we visited, the kids were all given bags for s’mores, the staff lit multiple beach fires, and the boys roasted marshmallows before kayaking as the sun was setting. 

Read more about Key Largo

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

Key Largo is one of the first stops along the Overseas Highway and home to one of the most popular state parks in Florida. John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park offers a range of outdoor activities, including snorkeling, kayaking, and fishing.

But what really makes this park so special is its coral reef ecosystem. More than 200 species of fish call this 70-nautical-mile stretch home, along with a wide variety of hard and soft coral. Glass bottom boat tours, which give you a chance to view the reef without getting wet, are also popular in Pennekamp.

Read More: 15 Fun Things To Do in Key Largo Adventurers Will Love

Islander Girl

Islander Girl offers sunset cruises and snorkel tours – but we took them up on a sandbar swim! Islamorada Sandbar is a local’s favorite hangout. Yes, even though there are tours here, Key’s local Captain Chris shared that he and other islanders even head here themselves on their days off. It’s so beautiful and so fun, it’s hard to blame them.

We saw loads of colorful fish, tons of stingrays, and even a turtle! The first stingray we spotted surprised us because it had no tail. The crew explained that he was a regular resident of the sandbar, and a welcome friend they expect to see on almost every visit.

Read More: 5 Epic Florida Keys Water Adventures With Teens

Italian Food Co

A restaurant on a things to do list? And it’s not a seafood restautrant? ABSOLUTELY. Don’t dismiss Italian Food Co because it’s fun AND it’s incredibly delicious!

Our family sampled A LOT of food here, but let me tell you our favorite – hands down. It’s the Cacio e Pepe!

Our server rolled a cart to our table with a HUGE Parmigiano cheese on it… brought in some warm pasta and TOSSED IT inside the cheese wheel with a little pepper. I’ve seen this on TV before but this was the first time I’ve seen it in real life! 

And OMG it was divine! Even my picky little eaters gobbled it up!

More to do here in Islamorada

Robbie’s Marina

Robbie’s Marina is a favorite of the kids. There are all sorts of guided tours, fishing charters and more. But our fave is feeding the tarpon. You’ll purchase a small bucket of fish and have a blast watching the 200lb fish feast on the bait right there on the boardwalk. Just watch out for the pelicans who like to steal the bait!

We also like storlling the outdoor market – it’s always where the boys pick up their souvenier. And, breakfast at the Hungry Tarpon restaurant is fun. Last time we were there, sitting near the water, we saw a few manatee swim by.

Read More: 10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

Middle Keys

Stay at Isla Bella Resort

5 Florida Keys Family Resorts We Highly Recommend

At the top of our list is the Florida Keys resort we come back to again and again – Isla Bella Beach Resort.

Isla Bella is located in Marathon, just before you cross the 7-mile bridge. Marathon is our favorite Keys location for families because it’s close to Key West and all the attractions and celebrations there… but it’s quiet and peaceful. Not to mention, it has its own slew of fun things to do, as well.

Our favorite part of the resort is the gigantic pool. There are multiple pools, but we love the “curvy one” (as my kids call it) near Sunset Dock and the private beach. It includes a zero-entry area, ideal for little visitors, and it doesn’t get too deep.

Read More: 5 Reasons To Stay at Isla Bella Beach Resort in the Florida Keys (Video)

Florida Keys Aquarium Encounters

The Florida Keys Aquarium Encounters gives you the opportunity to interact with all sorts of marine life. Our boys fed giant tarpontouched sting rays, saw baby alligators and turtles, and had an absolute blast!

Above, Cooper is feeding and petting a nurse shark. This cost a little extra, but not much, and was super special since he wants to become a marine biologist. It’s not a large facility, and you can visit everything relatively quickly, but it was super for the kids, and very hands on.

Read More: 21+ Sensational Things To Do in Marathon FL | More about Marathon

Sombrero Beach

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

One of the more popular beaches in the Keys, Sombrero Beach is the place to go for any sun-worshipper. Set along the Atlantic Ocean, this sandy stretch offers sparkling turquoise waters and plenty of beach loungers and umbrellas to protect you from the sun while you relax.

There is also a playground and volleyball court for the kids. We like the rocky peninsula that juts out from the beach. There are usually fishermen there and they like showing off their catch.

There are restrooms here so it’s fun to bring a picnic and make an afternoon of it. You probably want to come early if you’re not visiting in the off-season. The first time we visited it was packed by noon.

Read More: 9 SENSATIONAL KEY WEST BEACHES (+ 3 WORTH THE SHORT DRIVE) | Don’t Miss The Wonderful Sombrero Beach In The Florida Keys

Marathon Turtle Hospital

Although the American alligator is Florida’s official state reptile, the sea turtle might be its unofficial mascot. The Marathon Turtle Hospital works to rehabilitate injured sea turtles and nurse them back to health.

We took a tour here and enjoyed seeing all the turtles in rehab.. and learning about how the hospital is taking care of them. Be sure to check the website for public turtle releases. We’ve never had a trip that overlapped one, but it looks like such a special time.

More Familly Fun Spots

Sunset Grille

For a different kind of relaxation, head to Sunset Grille and Raw Bar — a restaurant/tavern/pool just at the foot of the Historic 7-Mile Bridge.

Pro Tip: Get there about a half-hour before sunset. Order dinner and watch the sunset over the ocean. Get a table by the pool if you can.

More restaurants to enjoy

Old Seven-Mile Bridge

Old Seven Mile Bridge is not the one you drive on from Marathon to Bahia Honda… it’s the older bridge you see on the right – the original bridge which now serves as a pedestrian bridge.

We parked on the Marathon side and walked along, taking in the water, seeing joggers, bikers and even a person rollerblading! It’s about 4.5 miles round trip if you want to walk to Pigeon Key for some snorkeling or a tour.

Just know that you will need to pay to enter Pigeon Key even if you’re walking in and not taking the train tour. Yes, it’s worth it!

Lower Keys

Stay at Ocean’s Edge Resort & Marina

5 Florida Keys Family Resorts We Highly Recommend

If you want to be closer to Key West, Ocean’s Edge is the answer. It actually sits on Stock Island, but it’s just about 6 miles to downtown Key West.

And… there is a free shuttle! The shuttle is luxurious and fantastic, and it’s the perfect way to explore Key West or go into town for dinner without having to worry about parking. We used it several times!

Ocean’s Edge has a feel much like Isla Bella because it’s owned by the same company. But, instead of your balcony view being the beach… it’s the marina. Huge yachts and gorgeous boats made for an alluring background to my morning coffee.

Read More: 5 Florida Keys Family Resorts We Highly Recommend | More about the Lower Keys

Bahia Honda State Park

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

Bahia Honda State Park in Big Pine Key is considered a hidden gem in the Keys. We stop here on every Keys visit because we love how secluded it feels.

The boys like snorkeling here, and I like that there is a VAST amount of shallow water. Especially when they were younger… they had so much more “accessible” water play area than other beaches.

Don’t skip hiking to the railroad bridge here. It’s not the same as the Old Seven Mile Bridge I mention above. I really enjoy this bridge because the view is so nice. It’s a great place to snap a selfie.

More about the Overseas Highway

Get Up and Go Kayaking

Sugarloaf Key is about 30+ minutes north of Key West…but it is a vastly different scene. On a map, it looks like it’s made of multiple islands, but it is truly just one U-shaped piece of land that is peaceful and quiet. It’s the perfect scene for a clear kayaking adventure with Get Up and Go Kayaking!

We paddled along the mangroves as she told us about the sponge farmers, pointed out underwater boat wrecks (so cool in the clear kayak), herons, turtles and more. Then… we took a left and headed through a mangrove tunnel! It was long and winding – my favorite part of the adventure!

Honest Eco

Romantic sunset cruises… rum tours.. there is no shortage of boat excursions in Key West. But if you ask me, Honest Eco Tours is the perfect boat tour for families. SQUID is the boat we took for our dolphin watch and snorkel. It was hand-built and is the island’s first electric-powered charter boat, charged with solar panels (and a diesel generator when necessary.)

Unlike the sandbar snorkel, this water was deeper – but, it was important to continue floating the entire time rather than stand or walk. The area we were in was full of coral and sponges. Dozens and dozens of sponges! And we loved having a marine life guide in the water with us.

More diving and snorkeling here

Mallory Square

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

No trip to Key West would be complete without a visit to Mallory Square in downtown, off Duval Street Key West. It’s fun all the time, but we love going at sunset. The performers, live music and vendor sales people are out… and the sunset here is unbelievable!

Because you’re downtown, there are plenty of great restaurants here… but we like grabbing a piece of Key Lime Pie and a seat near the water to see the sun settle in shades of pink and orange.


Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore

Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum was once home to the famous author and his six-toed cats, whose descendants continue to roam its grounds today. We loved touring the grounds and his house. The kids loved how friendly the cats were… one even “adopted” Cooper and began following him everywhere.

Read more about Key West

Southernmost Point


Take a selfie at the Southernmost Point. You guessed it! This anchored concrete buoy is the southernmost point in the continental United States.

This is a very popular spot, and with only one buoy to snap a pic with, it can get crowded during the day. The earlier you can get here, the better. We just swapped “I’ll take your family pic if you take ours” with the people behind us!

Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory

When the sun gets too high and you need a break from the heat, Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory is our recommendation. home to hundreds of beautiful butterflies and colorful birds. This tranquil oasis offers a welcome break from the bustling city and is perfect for travelers who enjoy spending time outdoors.

Two flamingos steal the show here with their bright pink plumage and quirky personalities. Make sure to get a picture with them!

Read more: Towns of the Florida Keys

Barefoot Billy’s

Barefoot Billy’s Jet Ski Tour was Elliot’s favorite adventure of our Keys trip. This guided tour took us around the entire island of Key West! Our guide was a riot, cracking jokes while leading the way, and a second guide ensured I kept up with my slower pace. We headed to a secluded bay where everyone had the freedom to make waves and watch the more experienced riders jet around.

On the return trip, I gained a little more confidence and was better at keeping up with the crowd . Point is…you will love this tour whether you’re an expert or a newbie like me. The tour was such a hit that my son begged for a second round, proving that it’s a fantastic way to entertain kids.

Dry Tortugas NPS

Dry Tortugas National Park, located 70 miles off the shores of Key West, is known for its beautiful natural scenery, including crystal-clear waters teeming with colorful fish. You can only way to get to the park is via boat or seaplane, so you can go for a day trip or make reservations at one of their campsites.

Read More: 9+ Florida Keys State Parks (+ a Dreamy NPS) That You Can’t Miss


Follow us here: Facebook | X | Instagram | Pinterest | YouTube | MSN | TripAdvisor | Flipboard | NewsBreak

All articles belong to 365 Atlanta Family LLC, and all photos belong to us as well, unless otherwise noted. It’s all copyrighted. Please don’t repost anything elsewhere without asking me first. All rights reserved. This site uses cookies to enhance your experience.

We make no guarantees of any price listed on our site. We are not responsible for content on external web sites linked from ours, including linked resources, an external blog post, any partner site, hotel property sites, or affiliate sites. We only write about places we love in an attempt to help you in your adventures, but we can’t guarantee you will love them, too.

Posts may contain affiliate links at no cost to you. Several of our trips are also compensated by the respective tourism boards for the city or state we are visiting, restaurants, attractions or brands. This never impacts how we share the destination with you – opinions are always our own and we pride ourselves on that. We do not sell links or accept unsolicited guest posts under any circumstances. Don’t even ask.

United States Copyright, 365 Atlanta Family, LLC

View our Privacy Policy | Subscribe to our Newsletter | Contact Site Owner | View Terms & Conditions | About Us

Things To Do in Florida Keys: 21+ Fun Options You’ll Adore