Enjoying the sun and surf are among the top things to do in Key West, so consider a few local beaches for cheap family fun. Near Duval Street, you’ll encounter parking for Higgs Beach, a sandy, pet-friendly location with bathroom and shower facilities, a boardwalk and even a playground. It’s also a great place to snorkel and features a number of sights to see, including the African Cemetery at Higgs Beach and the Key West AIDS Memorial (near White Street Pier). Get there before dawn to avoid the crowd and partake of one of Key West’s famous sunrises.
Smathers Beach receives raves for convenience as well as gentle waves, making it another family-friendly option. Want to rent a chair or umbrella? Vendors congregate nearby, which makes renting beach gear and planning activities a breeze. Look for metered street parking on nearby South Roosevelt Avenue.
South Beach, not to be confused with that famous beach in Miami, is also great for families. This beach – located on the southern end of Duval Street — is on the smaller side, so you won’t find bathrooms or as many amenities as the other beaches. However, chair rentals are affordable, about $5. It’s also close to the Southernmost Point, the must-have selfie for any Key West vacation. Your best bet is to walk here if you can; otherwise try your luck with metered street parking.