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During our camper holiday in Florida, we spent several delightful days on the Florida Keys. The journey itself is a spectacle, with a 205.2 km drive over the water, flanked by the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Gulf of Mexico on the other. The many islands, or keys, are interconnected by bridges, the most famous of which is the Seven Mile Bridge stretching 11 km. This scenic drive is the perfect introduction to your holiday on the Florida Keys with kids.

The keys are an ideal destination for a few days of sun, sea, and beaches. The atmosphere is a refreshing change from mainland America, offering a laid-back and relaxed vibe. There’s also plenty to keep the kids entertained. If you’re planning a trip to the Florida Keys with kids, this top 10 list will come in handy!

Top 10 Highlights on the Florida Keys with Kids

1. Glass Bottom Boat

Both the kids and I thoroughly enjoyed this activity, although Kev wasn’t as keen due to seasickness. The adventure begins on a large boat in the harbor, featuring a spacious deck where you can soak up the sun and the view. The boat takes you off the coast to a reef teeming with beautiful fish. Once the boat is stationary, everyone can go inside to observe the stunning marine life through the glass bottom of the boat. It didn’t take long for Floris to spot “Nemo” and “Dora” among other recognizable fish.

Location: Key-West

Cost: Kids $27, Adults $43

2. Keys Deer Refuge

Located on the lower keys, the Keys Deer Refuge is home to a unique species of deer found only in this region. This refuge offers a variety of activities for the whole family. You can learn about these special deer, spot wildlife, go fishing, or even take photography courses.

  • Location: Big Pine Key
  • Cost: Free (charges apply for activities)

3. Mallory Square

A visit to the Florida Keys with kids isn’t complete without a stop at Mallory Square. This vibrant spot is best visited towards the end of the day. Grab a bite from the street vendors, sit back, and enjoy the performances. Street performers here are known for their showmanship and thrilling tricks. The fire juggler, in particular, is a hit with kids.

  • Location: Key-West

4. Experience the Thrills of a Ghost Tour

For those who aren’t faint-hearted, a ghost tour offers a thrilling exploration of Key West’s darker side. This isn’t just for the kids, but also for the adventurous parents. You’ll be taken on a trolley ride by a spine-chilling guide who will narrate the ghastly legends and eerie tales that haunt this part of the town.

Location: Key-West

Cost: Kids $24, Adults $34 (when booked online)

5. The Thrill of Feeding Tarpons

Experience the thrill of feeding gigantic Tarpons in Islamorada. Upon arrival, you can purchase a bucket of dead fish and head to the harbor where the Tarpons eagerly await their meal. You can either toss the fish into the water and watch as the Tarpons devour them, or for the more adventurous, lay flat on your stomach and feed the Tarpons by hand. But be warned, Tarpons have razor-sharp teeth. The sight of enormous Pelicans waiting to clean up any leftover fish is also quite a spectacle.

Location: Islamorada

Cost: $2 entrance fee and $3 for a bucket of fish

6. Discovering Dolphins at the Rescue Center

At the Dolphin Rescue Center in Grassy Key, you can learn everything there is to know about dolphins. This research institute studies dolphin behavior, and visitors can observe the dolphins during various sessions. The trainers provide insightful information about these fascinating creatures, and you can even test your knowledge with interactive quizzes.

Location: Grassy Key

Cost: $23 for kids, $28 for adults

7.Discover the Beauty of Bahia Honda State Park

Experience the most stunning beaches of the Florida Keys at Bahia Honda State Park. This park offers more than just sandy shores. Explore the old railroad and enjoy a breathtaking view over the water. Be prepared for a surprise or two, like the black snake that crossed our path during our visit. Bahia Honda State Park offers a variety of activities including kayaking, snorkeling, swimming, and hiking.

Location: Big Pine Key

Admission: Free (activity costs may apply)

8. Visit the Turtle Hospital

Experience a unique attraction at the Turtle Hospital. This is a real hospital dedicated to the treatment and rehabilitation of turtles. Guided tours are available, offering an inside look at how these animals are cared for and prepared for a long, happy life in the Florida Keys.

Location: Marathon

Admission: Kids $12 (free for children under 4), Adults $25

9. Explore Key-West on the Conch Train

The Conch Train is a delightful way to explore Key-West. This charming little train takes you through the heart of Key-West, stopping at all the major highlights and attractions. Learn about Key-West and its history from the knowledgeable chauffeur. We recommend disembarking at “The southernmost point buoy” and strolling back through the quaint streets. Don’t forget to try a slice of the famous lime pie!

Location: Key-West

Admission: Kids $14, Adults $28 (discounts available for online booking)

10. Snorkeling at John Pennekamp State Reef Park

Experience the most amazing snorkeling trips at John Pennekamp State Reef Park. The underwater world here is fascinating and definitely worth a visit. If your kids are too young for snorkeling, you can still explore the underwater life from a kayak or a glass-bottom boat. You can also fully enjoy the aquatic wonders through one of the many diving trips available.

Location: Key Largo

Cost: Free, you pay for the activities

We had a wonderful time exploring the Florida Keys with kids. Apart from the fun sights, the keys also offer fantastic beaches, charming shops, and a plethora of restaurants! If the Florida Keys weren’t on your bucket list before, they certainly should be now!


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