The Perfect Day in Key West

From brunch to beach to happy hour, follow our one-day itinerary of the best nine things to do in Key West.
Article: Kim Cross

9 Things to Do in Key West
8:00 Stroll the Beach
Sugar-white sands draw an active morning crowd (runners, bikers) to Smathers Beach. Rent what you need to get out on the water from Sunset Watersports. sunsetwatersportskeywest.com or 305/296-2554

9:00 Have Brunch, Island Style
At Blue Heaven—the breakfast spot—order the Lobster Benedict or the daily special seafood omelet, and spare a few crumbs of homemade banana bread for the isle’s friendly mascots: the legally protected (and free-roaming) hens and roosters. blueheavenkw.com or 305/296-8666

10:00 Ride a Beach Cruiser
Two wheels trump four in the narrow streets and slow traffic of the historic downtown. Rent a beach cruiser and breeze all over town (it’s only 2 miles wide by 4 miles long). eatonbikes.com or 305/294-8188

11:00 Meet Hemingway’s Cats
The dozens of felines that roam the Hemingway Home & Museum, a Spanish Colonial manse where the author lived throughout the 1930s, are alleged descendants of Snowball, a six-toed kitty that a sea captain gave to Hemingway’s sons. hemingwayhome.com or 305/294-1136

12:00 Eat Local
Charlie Wilson has folks raving about her organic, unprocessed fare at Help Yourself!, from Korean BBQ chicken to healthy smoothies. helpyourselffoods.com or 305/296-7766

2:00 Explore Underwater Gardens
A step beyond snorkeling, Snuba diving gets you eye to eye with butterfly fish without bulky scuba tanks. You breathe through a hose connected to a boat—no diving certification required. snubakeywest.com or 305/292-4616

4:30 Try a Twist on Key Lime Pie
Blond Giraffe improves upon Key lime pie by dipping it in chocolate and freezing it on a stick. blondgiraffe.com or 888/874-7437

6:00 Raise a Glass
Grab a table on the front porch of Nine One Five, a bistro in an 1860s Victorian house. Start with Chipotle Conch Chowder and a glass of wine (they offer 20 by the glass). 915duval.com or 305/296-0669

7:45 Catch the Sunset
Join the crowd at Mallory Square to applaud the sunset. If you’re lucky, you might see the fabled green flash said to occur the moment the sun sinks below the watery horizon.