Key West Cemetery

#7 in Best Things To Do in Key West
Key West Cemetery picture1 of 3
Key West Cemetery2 of 3
CedarBendDrive/Flickr

Key Info

701 Pauline St.

Price & Hours

Free
Mon-Sat 7 a.m-7 p.m.

Details

Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing, Free Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
3.6scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 2.0Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

Located in Old Town, the Key West Cemetery has been around since 1847 and is well worth at least a walk-through. The quirkiness of the city's residents extends even to the grave. Tombstones in this 19-acre cemetery don't wear the typical inscriptions. Instead, you'll find epitaphs that reflect the island's casual lifestyle. Some of the more well-known inscriptions include "I told you I was sick" and "I'm just resting my eyes." One tombstone is actually a ship's mast. While you're here, take note that many of these burial plots actually have multiple people stacked on top of one another.

Many recent travelers compared the cemetery to those found in New Orleans, thanks to the prevalence of the above-ground graves. Reviewers also said it reflects the "eclectic" citizens of the Keys.

Key West Cemetery is free for anyone to walk through, but you should also consider taking a guided tour, offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m. for a moderate fee; advance reservations are required. You can also pick up a map for a self-guided tour at the cemetery's front office, which is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The cemetery is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Visit the cemetery's website for more information. 

See all Hotels in Key West »

More Best Things To Do in Key West

Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park1 of 13
Key West Boat Tours2 of 13
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park

For the cleanest beach and best waters in Key West, you should head for the westernmost point of the island to Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park. There, you can sunbathe, hike, bike, fish and get a dose of history all in one place. Recent visitors favor this shoreline over Smathers Beach (the water is clearer, making it an ideal snorkeling spot), but travelers also warn that the sand is not soft and that beach shoes are needed to traverse the rocky terrain safely. While the beach might not be as powdery soft as some other Florida beaches, it does offer some great snorkeling opportunities, according to recent visitors. Along with your snorkel gear, pack some grilling food and charcoal: This beach has plenty of barbecue grills and rental equipment.

If you get tired of hanging out beachside, stop by the historic fort located within the park. The fort was built in mid-1800s and was used during the Civil War and the Spanish-American War. Guided tours are offered twice a day.

Read more
eyfoto/Getty Images
See full list of Best Things To Do in Key West »

Explore More of Key West

When purchasing from our site, we may earn commissions. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.

Recommended

22 Top Sonoma Wineries to Visit

Sip world-class wines while enjoying vineyard and mountain views.

Gwen PratesiAugust 19, 2019

30 Amazing Caribbean Islands to Visit

It's time to plan your next tropical getaway.

Holly JohnsonAugust 8, 2019

The Best Travel Rewards Programs for 2019-20

See which airline and hotel loyalty programs come out on top.

Erin ShieldsAugust 6, 2019

20 Surprising Ways to Earn Loyalty Program Points or Miles

Branch out beyond hotel stays and flights to maximize your earnings.

Christine SmithAugust 6, 2019

The 12 Best Cancun Tours

These excursions will show you what lies beyond the city's bright beaches.

Lyn MettlerJuly 26, 2019

Traveling With Toddlers: 16 Tips to Make Your Vacation Go Smoothly

These expert travel hacks guarantee a happy trip for the whole family.

Kyle McCarthyJuly 25, 2019

The 11 Best New Orleans Ghost Tours

Hear chilling tales of the city's paranormal activity on one of these guided tours.

Kim Foley MacKinnonJuly 25, 2019

The 10 Best Seattle Boat Tours

Take in the Emerald City's top sights from the water.

Kim Foley MacKinnonJuly 24, 2019

The 6 Best Maui Helicopter Tours

Combine sightseeing with a breathtaking adventure on one of these flights.

Gwen PratesiJuly 23, 2019

The 7 Best San Francisco Boat Tours

Take in the city's major sights by water with one of these excursions.

Holly JohnsonJuly 22, 2019