Three Top Beaches To Enjoy in Key West
We love Key West: the relaxed vibe, the amazing food, and the gorgeous sunsets. It is one of our top travel destinations. Yet beach-goers may be surprised to learn that Key West itself has few beaches. It’s good to know before you go how to enjoy the top three beaches in Key West to make the most of your time there.
The Birthplace of the Keys: Coral Islands
Truly, Key West is an island paradise, yet the beaches are few because the Keys are actually coral islands. Back in the day, thousands of years ago, the waters around Florida were deeper and the islands themselves were reefs.
As time passed and the earth’s eco-system evolved, so too did the ocean. What was once a rich marine reef eventually transformed itself into a habitable series of islands–a paradise bountiful in history, natural attractions, and fun things to do.
The beaches that remain in Key West are truly special.
Top 3 Beaches to Enjoy in Key West
Fort Taylor Key West Beach
A state park (Fort Zachary Taylor State Park) and a local favorite, Fort Taylor Key West beach, have the topography of sand and coral rock as well as three stunningly beautiful coves. The beach sand is often replenished. However, hurricanes can wash away the best efforts at beach replenishment and erosion is a concern. Even so, these beaches offer stunning vistas and relaxing times. The waters there are perfect for swimming. Snorkelers will especially enjoy exploring the barrier reef, located just offshore, where many small tropical fish thrive.
Smathers Key West Beach
As the largest Key West beach, Smathers stretches for about 2 miles along the island’s southern shore. This Key West beach is for sun lovers. Lay out your towel and enjoy the relaxing rays to work on your tan. Not only that, you can enjoy beach volleyball. The beach is not appropriate for surfing, but snorkelers can have a ball exploring an offshore area filled with amazing sights.
Dry Tortugas Beach
Another state park (Fort Jefferson State Park) and a local favorite, Dry Tortugas beach is located nearly 90 miles from Key West. People who’ve been here say that it is one of the nicest beaches in the entire chain of Florida Keys, with crystal clear waters and gorgeous fine white sand.
You can get there by via the Dry Tortugas Ferry, but plan for an entire day to do so. Alternatively, you can book the Dry Tortugas seaplane, which offers amazing flights with stunning views of the emerald green backcountry islands.
However, for the ultimate Dry Tortugas Beach experience, we recommend our Adventure Tour: Set Sail for Bliss in the Florida Keys.
This 7 Day Adventure Tour gives you plenty of time to bliss out and relax yet also explore one of America’s national parks that’s a best-kept secret: The Dry Tortugas Islands, located just off the Keys at the very southernmost tip of the United States. This is a bird-watchers and snorkeling paradise, so bring your bird-watching binoculars and your snorkeling gear!