There are a ton of cool things to do in the morning in Key West, Florida. Especially when it comes to watersports! In fact, this post was supposed to detail my amazing water adventures in Key West. I had bought a waterproof camera and was all set to take amazing underwater pics of coral reefs while snorkeling and shots of the ocean from 100 feet in the air during a parasailing trip.
But then it rained eight inches in two days, and everything was canceled. The morning of my parasailing appointment, it was windy, so the boats were grounded due to the threatening skies. Lame!
Although my parasailing tour got rained out, I still recommend these tours as a fun morning option. Most of the time, the tours run as scheduled, and you can hang up there in the sky above the boat with a parachute behind you. How cool! Here’s the top-rated parasailing tour that we recommend – tours start as early as 9 am. You can also try snorkeling and dolphin-watching tours!
RECOMMENDED MORNING TOURS IN KEY WEST:
Since my tour was canceled, however, I had to find some other ways to occupy my time when my friend and I found ourselves with nothing to do at 7 am. Here’s how we spent our morning – and how you can kill some early-morning hours if you find yourself in Key West as well.
What I Did Instead on a Sunday Morning in Key West
With nothing else to do, it was time to wander around the small town and check out the rest of the sights. And there was plenty to see. First up was the Southernmost Point, the city’s most famous tourist attraction. At this early hour, only a handful of people were crowded around it, so I got my pictures in less than five minutes and was out of there.
You have to visit the Southernmost Point while you’re in town, so why not do it early in the morning when the crowds are sparse? If you’re arriving in Key West on a cruise or every-morning flight and need activities to keep you busy, stop at the Southernmost Point first.
Next, we walked past the Ernest Hemingway Home, the 1930s residence of the legendary author. Hemingway’s residence opens everyday at 9 am, so it’s a good morning activity. If you find yourself wandering town before 9, you can still see the outside of the home, as I did. Note the cat in the lower right. Forty cats live on the premises, and the guides claim that many are direct descendants of Hemingway’s own cats. That’s cool, I guess?
Mallory Square is another good option for morning explorers. The plaza is a super-popular spot for viewing the sunset. Why not go there to view the sunrise instead? You may have the place to yourself at that hour!
Then it was through the ritzy part of town, passing impressive houses as we headed in the direction of Zachary Taylor State Park. This park opens at 8 am (yay!) Pedestrians are charged $2.50 to enter, while vehicles are charged $4.50 and up (depending on the number of passengers). You’ll see lots of Civil War military equipment here.
Key West has plenty of bars and nightlife, and even at this early hour, a few revelers had begun hitting up places like Sloppy Joe’s.
Sloppy Joe’s opens at 9 am, so if you want an early-morning bite or brew, that’s a good option. They don’t appear to serve breakfast, but their website lists an extensive menu of snacks.
Also consider trying Schooner Wharf, another bar/restaurant which opens at 7 am! This place does serve a proper breakfast, and they actually have happy hour from 7 am to noon everyday!
Walking Around Town to See Random Attractions
I recommend just walking around to experience the city. Key West is an extremely laid-back place. It reminds me of a cross between New Orleans and Santa Monica. You have your completely non-self-conscious people riding granny bikes, even in the pouring rain, and you have your surfers and hippies who just chill and hang out all day.
And you have your wild chickens, who wander around town like they own the place.
We found a coconut lying around – they’re everywhere – and proceeded to spend the next half hour painstakingly ripping it open as we walked. It was a nice snack but took way too much work. I also found an avocado on the sidewalk that had fallen from a nearby tree. It’s pretty cool that you can just walk down the street and find fresh produce!
Lots of people get around Key West by renting bikes or motorized scooters. As of this writing, Key West still doesn’t have a bike sharing program like other cities. But they do have some private companies who rent bikes by the day. (Obviously, this will only help you if you’ve rented the bike the previous night.)
Others use the shuttles and trolley buses that are everywhere. Double-check the price before getting on, though – some cost as much as $18!
Cinema Tropic reels in passers-by with its Marilyn Monroe tribute. I won’t show you the close-up, because they didn’t do a good job on her face.
Any time you get to see “Mile 0” of a major highway, that’s a cool sight.
Then, it was off to a local bakery, because you can’t visit Key West without eating Key Lime Pie. This establishment offered several different types. We tried the traditional variety, which was slightly too tangy but tolerable, and the pineapple flavor, which was too overpowering and completely drowned out the lime. I like limes, but I won’t be racing to eat Key Lime Pie again anytime soon.
Summary: Things To Do in Key West in the Morning
-Visit the Southernmost Point
-Walk around town and appreciate the architecture and houses
-Pass through Mallory Square
-Sign up for a morning parasailing or snorkeling adventure
-Visit the docks, watch the water, the birds, the ships
-Take an early morning bike ride
-Visit a restaurant/bar, like Schooner Wharf (opens at 7 am)
-Visit Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park to see Civil War history (opens at 8 am)
Do you have any more ideas for how to spend the early morning hours in Key West?