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Best Time to Travel to Key West, Florida (by Season)

| Updated Dec 6, 2023

What qualifies as the BEST time to travel to Key West varies for everyone. The best could mean the most events or the fewest crowds. That's why we're breaking it down by season, weather, and crowds!

You can always be sure that you will have an excellent time at the Florida popular destination, Key West! Known not only for its tropical weather, swaying palm trees, and gorgeous beaches but also its delectable key lime pie!

It's one of the best places for a “beachy” road trip for snowbirds or the whole family. with the best places to see and experience in the Keys.

The following is my guide to the best time of year to visit Key West. But since “best” means different things to different people, I've broken it down by season. That way you can judge for yourself if the best is peak season, cheaper months, hotter months, or so on.

Peak Season / Shoulder Season in Key West

Best Time to Travel to Key West
Key West March to May

Generally speaking, the best time to see Key West is during its high season which occurs from March to May. March is the busiest month because the weather is perfect. Most days stay around 75 degrees, and there is low humidity.

However, you will see higher rates for hotel rooms and campsites, as well as flight costs, during this time of year.

April then has a small dip in the crowds, making May an excellent shoulder season to visit. The weather is still nice, and fewer crowds to share space with.

Visiting in February, toward the end of the month, is also an excellent time to visit, There are fewer crowds and great deals that you can find. There is also less precipitation during February, and you are on the cusp of March's “best weather.”

Spring Break

Another busy time in Key West is spring break. The tropical climate promises temperate weather with gorgeous ocean views. It is no surprise that college kids and families like to come during this time of year.

Schools have different spring breaks and it changes from year to year, so I can't say exactly when to avoid those crowds.

Your best bet during spring break is to avoid the week before and the week after Easter. Not all schools and universities plan their spring break around the Easter holiday, but many do.

You can also check out some of the Florida University college breaks to see when they are having their time off. But do note that this location attracts many students from outside of Florida as well.

Rainy Season

Best Time to Travel to Key West
Key West rainy season

The rainy season in Key West lasts from May – October. If you visit the area during that time, there's a good possibility of lots of showers and thunderstorms. One nice thing about not visiting during peak time is that you will have fewer crowds to contend with.

But don't equate rain to cold! Surprisingly, the rainy season is also the warmest season in Key West. The temperature usually ranges from 75 to 90 degrees.

Hurricane Season

Hurricane season in the region lasts from June – November, with September being the month when tropical storms hit most often. That means you can probably score cheap rates on travel, but you may have to cancel your plans should a hurricane occur.

Some people think this is a great time to visit because the risk of inclement weather is worth the least amount of visitors.

Best Time to Travel to Key West

Just because there is a peak season when visiting the Florida Keys, does not mean that is the only time you should go. Each season brings its own activities, each offering a good time. The following is my guide to excellent things to see and do in Key West during every part of the year!

**NOTE: At the end of this article, there's a list of articles about many of these ‘top things to see and do' during the different seasons. Be sure to check them out!

Best time to travel to Key West might be Spring:
March – May

best time to travel to key west
Key West in Spring

Many folks love getting down south during the spring. It is definitely the most popular time to visit Key West!

While temperatures and humidity levels are near perfect, you can bet that your visit will cost a little more.

Water-related activities hit a high during the spring season. If you love any and all water sports, this may be your ideal time to visit.

Top Things to See & Do in the Spring:

  • Dry Tortugas National Park
  • Fort Jefferson National Park
  • Fishing Tours
  • Dolphin Watch Tour
  • Parasailing
  • Snorkeling
  • For Zachary State Park
  • Paddleboard Tours or Rental
  • Smathers Beach
  • Jet Ski Tour
  • Key West Bike Tour or Rental
  • Boat Tours or Rental
  • Kayak Tours or Rental
  • Mallory Square

Best time to travel to Key West might be Summer:
June – August

best time to travel to key west
Key West in Summer

The summer months see warmer temperatures and provide a perfect backdrop for catching sun rays. The water is also warmer, so water sports are very popular during this season.

You can expect a daily shower, but the evenings are usually great to stroll down Duval for dinner or catch the fireworks on Independence Day.

Top Things to See and Do During Summer:

  • Key Lime Bike Tours
  • Snorkeling Tours
  • Jet Ski Tours & Rentals
  • Mallory Square (sunset celebration)
  • Parasailing
  • Sunset Sailing Tour
  • Kayak Tours & Rental
  • Fishing Charters
  • Key West Aquarium
  • Dry Tortugas Beach
  • Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory
  • Higgs Beach
  • Smathers Beach
  • Fort Zachary Taylor Beach
  • Key West Lobsterfest
  • Key West Pridefest (June)
  • Key Lime Festival (July)
  • Fireworks on the Water (July 4th Cruises)
  • Lobster Season (mini-season in late July, regular season begins on August 6)

Best time to travel to Key West might be Fall:
September – November

best time to travel to key west
Key West in the Fall

Fall is also an excellent time to visit Key West. It's the time of year is when the temperatures cool off a bit. Enjoy snorkeling the reefs, or take your significant other for a romantic getaway!

Top Things to See and Do in the Fall:

  • Duval Street (shopping, dining, bar hopping and street performers)
  • Bike Tours
  • Parasailing
  • Snorkeling in the Reef
  • Mallory Square (sunset celebration)
  • Glass Bottom Boat Tour
  • Key West Cemetery
  • Live Music Sunset Cruise
  • Key West Womenfest (September)
  • Key West Musicians Festival (September)
  • Goombay Festival (October)
  • Fantasy Fest (late October)
  • Ghosts & Gravestones Tour (Halloween & year-round)

Best time to travel to Key West might be Winter:
December – February

best time to travel to key west
Key West in Winter

Does winter really exist in Key West? You be the judge!

These three winter months are the coldest months of the year in Key West. Temperatures in January, the coldest month of the year, can be anywhere from an average low of 64 degrees and an average high of 76 degrees.

Many people have a great time in Key West in “winter” because they come from places that are a whole lot chillier. They even have a name for these people, which I'm sure you're familiar with: Snowbirds!

We even have a great podcast with Tips for Florida Snowbirds.

Top Things to See and Do in Winter:

  • Key West Aquarium
  • Harry S. Truman Little White House
  • Key West Shipwreck Museum
  • Audubon House and Tropical Gardens
  • Mel Fisher Maritime Museum
  • Mallory Square (with its sunset celebration, shopping and dining)
  • Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory
  • Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum
  • Key West Lighthouse and Keeper's Quarters Museum
  • Custom House
  • Martello Gallery Key West Art and Historical Museum
  • Pub Crawl
  • Sunset Sail
  • Florida Keys Eco Center
  • Southernmost Point Buoy (southernmost point of the continental United States)
  • Glass Bottom Boat Tours
  • Key West Cemetery
  • Key West Lighted Bike Parade (December)
  • Key West Holiday Parade (December)

More Info on the Best Places and Events!

Best Key West RV Parks - best time to travel to key west
More on Key West

We've actually written about many of the best things to do and see above. So, I recommend you check out the following articles:

Or, get a whole Florida Keys itinerary laid out for you (see below!)

What About the Florida Keys?

Best Time to Travel to Key West, Florida (by Season) 1

Do you want to hit Key West, the Everglades National Park, and all the other great things the Keys have to offer? Well, we have just the thing for you. Jennifer and I love traveling to the Keys, so we've created a complete 7-Day RV Adventure Guide: Florida Keys. This downloadable guide includes a suggested itinerary and a list of the best RV parks along the way.

We also have a 7-Day RV Adventure Guide to Florida's Atlantic Coast and Florida's Gulf Coast. If you're interested in all three, you should check out our Florida RV Travel Guide Bundle.

Best Time to Travel to Key West, Florida (by Season) 2

Mike Wendland

Published on 2022-01-06

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

One Response to “Best Time to Travel to Key West, Florida (by Season)”

April 01, 2024at2:54 pm, Don Stolier 623-273-0661 said:

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