But they can get expensive! Free options also exist to help you stay within budget and have a well-balanced vacation. There are many places that you can go with your family, including educational attractions and shops with hands-on exhibits. Beaches with scenic locations and several free shows and tastings can be part of your itinerary, too.
Try a free, self-guided walking tour of the city and wander around the delightful lanes of Key West to explore more than 50 historic houses and buildings. The oldest house in Key West has a free museum inside and a beautiful garden right off Duval Street. You can walk the tour in segments and at your leisure.
Begun in 1863, the West Martello Tower is a Civil War-era fort was never completed. It was used to quarter troops during the Spanish-American War and also housed radio stations during World Wars I and II. By 1949, many wanted it torn down, but Congressman Joe Allen helped save it, and the Key West Garden Club took over to convert it into a botanical garden. Visitors get a spectacular view of the Atlantic Ocean, especially from the beautiful white gazebo at the top of the hill.
A terrible hurricane hit Key West in October of 1846 and washed away the old cemetery. Therefore, in 1847, right in the center of the island, the Key West Cemetery was founded, and old gravestones that date back to 1829 were moved to the new cemetery. The free walking tour guide reveals interesting stories of Key West and its people. A prominent monument stands tall as a dedication to the U.S.S. Maine, in honor of 260 American soldiers that were killed when the ship was blown up in Havana Harbor in 1898.
The Eco-Discovery Center is a kid-friendly place that gives a look into the ecosystems of the Florida Keys. Close to Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, you can find exhibits that include a replica of the Aquarius Underwater Laboratory, a satellite map of the Keys and a 2,500-gallon reef aquarium.
Smathers offers you a picture-perfect stretch of sand and a calm breeze along with a slew of water sports like kayaking, boating, and paddle boarding. With tiki huts, chairs, beach volleyball courts and snack bars, it makes for an ideal day at the beach.
The author is a professional photographer and an avid reader of American history. He likes visiting places of historical importance like to the Key West Cemetery to understand the events of different eras.