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7 Best Beaches in Key West, Florida

Home to some gorgeous natural and man-made beaches, Key West is an island city in the Florida Keys.
Jyoti Babel May 30, 2019
This southern most city in the United States is just four miles in length and one mile in width. But what it lacks in size is made up by its natural beauty, the sunny beaches and a happening nightlife. If you are planning a holiday in Key West, here are the island’s best beaches that you should not miss.

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Smathers Beach

Stretching half mile, Smathers Beach is the largest beach open to the public, in Key West. Lined with fringes of coconut trees, it boasts of sandy shoreline and a picturesque ambience.

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Ideal for sunbathing and swimming, there are also a number of activities that you can indulge in here like kayaking, beach volleyball, parasailing and snorkeling.

The beach is equipped with public amenities like restrooms and shower areas. There are several shops nearby for food and for renting water sports equipment.

South Beach

Located at the southernmost end of the island city, South Beach doesn’t have a shoreline as large as Smathers. But it is popular among tourists and locals alike for its shallow crystal clear waters; especially good for families with small children.
South Beach is great if you consider only lying down on the sand or a cooling swim. There are no public amenities at the beach. However, there is a beach café and a couple of makeshift shops where you can buy cool drinks and refreshments.

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Rest Beach

With a shoreline of just 300 yards, the Rest Beach may not sound very appealing, BUT WAIT! don’t judge a book by its cover. If you want to see the most amazing sunrise on the island, Rest Beach is the place to be. With some spectacular views of the Atlantic, an early morning trip here before sunrise is well worth the hassle.

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Higgs Beach

A small beach with a typical tropical setting of palm fringes, clear waters and a sandy shore, Higgs Beach and its park are among the most visited waterfront areas in the island city.

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Apart from all the regular seaside activities, you can also check out the only African Refugee Cemetery that is located in the Higgs Beach Park. You can also walk over the Pier here to spot Stingrays that are said to be frequent here.

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Fort Zachary Taylor Beach

Boasts of a natural shoreline that is made up of ground coral!

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Fort Zachary Taylor Beach is blessed with rich underwater flora and fauna, making it an ideal location for diving and snorkeling. While you are there, also check out Fort Zachary that dates back to the times of Civil War and houses a huge collection of cannons from the era.

Bahia Honda State Park

Located 37 miles from Key West, Bahia Honda State Park offers some stunning beach views. Clear sandy expanse, shallow waters and a diverse marine life makes it a very popular spot among divers and snorkelers. Camping here overnight is available by reservation. The area is equipped with water, electricity and basic amenities.

Dry Tortugas National Park

Head to the Dry Tortugas National Park situated 90 miles from Key West for a memorable beach day trip. A ferry service will get you there. Unless you opt for a tour that includes meals and equipment, make sure to pack everything you need right from food, water, clothes and water gears as there are no shops in the park.
Soak in the beauty of the Park; indulge in snorkeling, sunbathing, admiring the expansive coral reef system – the third largest of its kind in the world, and explore the 19th century Fort Jefferson.