comScore
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West

Key Info

Price & Hours

  • Free
  • 7 a.m.-11 p.m. daily

Details

  • Beaches, Recreation Type
  • Half Day to Full Day Time to Spend
3.5
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    5.0
  • Facilities
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    3.0

Read about how we rank Things to Do.

Key West isn't known for its beaches. However, the most bustling one on this island is Smathers Beach, which is particularly popular during spring break. Recent travelers say the beach is clean and peaceful, with plenty of shade and amenities, including bathrooms, food trucks, and chair and umbrella rentals. Visitors also say the views are great.

You'll find Smathers Beach on the southern shore of the island, about a mile from central Key West. It's close to the airport, which can be a pro if you enjoy watching the planes take off and land, or a con if you're not a fan of the noise.

In addition to spectacular sunsets, the beach also offers picnic areas, restroom facilities, volleyball courts, Jet Ski rentals and free parking. The beach is free to visit every day between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. For more information, check out the city's Smathers Beach page.

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Hotels Nearby

  • Thing to Do
  • Hotel
Best Western Key Ambassador Resort Inn

Best Western Key Ambassador Resort Inn ...

  • 0.9 Miles Away
  • 2.5-star Hotel Class
Sunrise Suites Resort

Sunrise Suites Resort ...

  • 0.8 Miles Away
  • 3.0-star Hotel Class
Sheraton Suites Key West

Sheraton Suites Key West ...

  • 0.7 Miles Away
  • 3.5-star Hotel Class
See all hotels in Key West »

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#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 ... Read more » eyfoto / Getty Images

#2 Boat Tours When you're not admiring the waters that surround Key West from the beach, enjoy them from the deck of a boat. Several companies offer sailing, snorkeling and kayaking tours ... Read more » ventdusud / Getty Images

#3 Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory If you love butterflies, this is the spot for you. The Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory is filled with about 50 to 60 species of the colorful winged creatures ... Read more » paleololigo / Flickr

#4 Mallory Square For a great view of the Key West sunset, head to Mallory Square at the northwest tip of the island. During the Sunset Celebration (a free, nightly arts festival that ... Read more » swiatekj / Flickr

#5 Harry S. Truman Little White House The Little White House was originally built in 1890 as naval command headquarters during the Spanish-American War, World War I and World War II. In 1946, President Harry Truman used ... Read more » Mike Cherim / Getty Images

#6 Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum Literary icon and journalist Ernest Hemingway is one of Key West's best-known and well-loved "freshwater Conchs" (a resident who was not born on the island). His former home – which ... Read more » Laurence Norah / Florida Keys News Bureau

#7 Key West Cemetery 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 ... Read more » CedarBendDrive / Flickr

#8 Audubon House & Tropical Gardens Whether you're interested in colonial furniture, period architecture, tropical greenery or naturalist John James Audubon, you'll find a host of curiosities at the Audubon House &Tropical Gardens. Located ... Read more » Courtesy Audubon House and Tropical Gardens

#9 Smathers Beach Key West isn't known for its beaches. However, the most bustling one on this island is Smathers Beach, which is particularly popular during spring break. Recent travelers say the ... Read more » ratulm / Flickr

#10 Southernmost Point One of the most popular things to do in Key West is to snap a photo with the colorful buoy marking the southernmost point of the United States. Sitting at ... Read more » frederic prochasson / Getty Images

#11 Key West Lighthouse & Keeper's Quarters Museum If you can fend off the claustrophobia and don't mind heights, the climb up the tiny and constricting 88 steps to the top of the Key West Lighthouse is ... Read more » Larry Roberg / Getty Images

# John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park Read more » Bob Care / Florida Keys News Bureau

# Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center Read more » Andy Newman / Florida Keys News Bureau

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Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park picture in Key West
Key West Boat Tours picture in Key West
Key West Butterfly picture in Key West
Mallory Square picture in Key West
The Little White House picture in Key West
Ernest Hemingway House and Museum picture in Key West
Key West Cemetery picture in Key West
Audubon House and Tropical Gardens picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Southernmost Point Key West picture in Key West
Key West Lighthouse picture in Key West
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park picture in Key West
Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center picture in Key West
Dry Tortugas National Park picture in Key West
Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park picture in Key West
Key West Boat Tours picture in Key West
Key West Butterfly picture in Key West
Mallory Square picture in Key West
The Little White House picture in Key West
Ernest Hemingway House and Museum picture in Key West
Key West Cemetery picture in Key West
Audubon House and Tropical Gardens picture in Key West
Smathers Beach picture in Key West
Southernmost Point Key West picture in Key West
Key West Lighthouse picture in Key West
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park picture in Key West
Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center picture in Key West
Dry Tortugas National Park picture in Key West

If you get tired of hanging out beachside, stop by the fort located within the Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park. eyfoto / Getty Images

According to recent travelers, no Key West retreat is complete without getting out on the water during a boat tour. Take a sunset cruise to escape the crowds at Mallory Square or join a kayaking tour for a glimpse at the Key West National Wildlife Refuge. ventdusud / Getty Images

The Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory boasts about 50 to 60 species of butterflies. paleololigo / Flickr

Mallory Square is a popular gathering place to watch the sunsets in Key West. swiatekj / Flickr

The residence earned its name as a result of President Harry Truman spending so much time here. It now functions as a museum. Mike Cherim / Getty Images

About 40 to 50 of polydactyl (six-toed) cats live on the grounds of Ernest Hemingway's famous house, located in Old Town. Laurence Norah / Florida Keys News Bureau

Even if you're not into the macabre, past visitors say you should check out the Key West Cemetery for the history and interesting above-ground burial sites. CedarBendDrive / Flickr

This house was actually built by Captain John Huling Geiger, a harbor pilot and master wrecker, but it was named after naturalist John James Audubon. Courtesy Audubon House and Tropical Gardens

Avoid the sunset crowds at Mallory Square and retreat to Smathers Beach instead. Recent travelers said the views are spectacular. ratulm / Flickr

Getting a photo snapped with this colorful buoy is almost obligatory for any visitor to Key West. frederic prochasson / Getty Images

If you don't mind tight spaces and heights, the climb up to the top of the Key West Lighthouse affords excellent views. Larry Roberg / Getty Images

Head to John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park for snorkeling and scuba diving tours, as well as kayak and paddleboard rentals. Bob Care / Florida Keys News Bureau

Head to the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center to learn more about the native plants and animals of the Keys. Andy Newman / Florida Keys News Bureau

Dry Tortugas National Park comprises seven islands, along with protected coral reefs. sframephoto / Getty Images

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