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The long-awaited Lobster mini season in the Florida Keys kicks off on July 26th through 27th, which means one thing for lobster lovers – the waters surrounding Key West will be enriched with the best, most delicious catch that you can later devour over dinner during your vacation in paradise. Book in advance at Parrot Key Resort and catch yourself a summer escape that is packed with both flavor and fun family activities. Dial 855-327-7200 to speak with an onsite vacation planner.
About Lobster Mini-Season in Key West
Lasting for two days, lobster mini-season brings together a host of lobster hunters, all clawing their way through the coastal waters surrounding Key West to catch the first fresh lobster of the season. This popular crustacean just loves to live in warmer temperatures, making this the perfect time of year to find an abundance of the freshest and tastiest lobster available. If you’ve yet to sample this Keys speciality, your taste buds will be treated to the finest flavors at the end of July.
Important: View Lobster Mini-Season rules and regulations.
Family Fun in the Florida Keys
It’s not just an ideal time of year for lobster lovers, but also for families looking to relax on a summer getaway filled with fun adventures from sunrise to sunset. The warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico will welcome you with a host of water sports straight from the Parrot Key dock, including kayaking and paddle boarding. When it’s time to take it easy, we’ll help keep you cool with ice-cold drinks as you lounge around one of our four sparkling pools, each beckoning you to take a refreshing dip.
Sprawl Out in Luxury
There’s plenty of room to keep all the family feeling comfortable in luxury surroundings during your mini lobster season vacation. Choose a spacious two-bedroom suite or three-bedroom villa and wake up to gorgeous views before you head to our poolside Café Blue for delicious breakfast treats. Little ones and teens will never tire of lounging around on the white sand terraces while you pack up your bag for a day of adventure ahead.
Book Your Stay at Parrot Key Resort
To make the most of your time in Key West during mini lobster season this July, take advantage of our latest special offers or call 855-327-7200 to speak to a member of the Parrot Key team. We’ll help you plan the summer vacation of a lifetime in our tropical paradise.
Ernest Hemingway, one of America’s most notable literary names who once called Key West home, will be celebrated during a week-long festival from July 18-23. Hemingway Days brings together look-alikes, writers, anglers and fans of the late author’s work to honor his legacy after he lived and wrote in Key West for most of the 1930s.
During the celebration, there will be prose and poetry readings, the quirky “Running of the Bulls,” presentations on Ernest and his influence, and a three-day marlin tournament to reflect the author’s passion for angling.
One of the most anticipated events will see Hemingway hopefuls compete in the popular look-alike contest, starring bearded men looking resoundingly like the writer. This will take place at Sloppy Joe’s Hemingway® Look-Alike Contest at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, 201 Duval Street, which was a favorite hangout for Hemingway during his time on the island. Preliminary rounds are set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, July 20 and 21, with the finals at 6:30 p.m. Saturday.
Additional festival events include the 5k Sunset Run/Walk and Paddleboard Race, a DVD premiere of the 2015 performance of “The Hemingway Suite” in Havana, Cuba, a day-long street fair on Key West’s energetic Duval Street, and Sloppy Joe’s annual Arm Wrestling Contest.
To top off the celebration, fans can indulge in a trip to Hemingway’s former home at 907 Whitehead Street which has become the popular Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum attraction set among beautiful grounds.
For further information about the Hemingway Days festival, visit hemingwaydays.net
When you’ve been longing for your dream vacation, you’ll want to maximize every moment of your time in this sub-tropical haven during your stay. Parrot Key Resort is not only minutes away from the energetic buzz of Key West and the beautiful beaches framing the island; it is also home to a variety of relaxing – and adventurous – activities that will keep you indulged and entertained during your entire vacation.
Here are our top activities you can enjoy right here at the hotel when you visit our very own slice of Key West paradise.
Tour the Island Through on the Water
Explore Key West from the ocean with a local guide on a refreshing 25-mile WaveRunner tour. You’ll set off right from the Parrot Key dock and head around the Southernmost Point of the USA, taking in the submarine pits, stopping at a sand bar and having a chance to free-style on the one-and-a half-hour tour. You can currently save $75 on a 25-mile WaveRunner tour around Key West which accommodates two people per WaveRunner, making it ideal for families to enjoy together this summer.
Set Sail at Your Own Speed
Rent a kayak or paddleboard from Parrot Key Resort, and you’ll soon be setting off from our dock to glide through the calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Keep an eye out for beautiful aquatic birds, including the Great Blue Heron and White Ibis, while a colorful collection of fish share the water with you. Our Aqua Fit Package which will give you 50% off the resort’s paddleboard and kayak experience this summer.
Rise and Shine… and Stretch
Whether you’re a beginner or a more experienced pro to this popular form of fitness, all guests are welcome to join the Parrot Key Resort Poolside Yoga class. You will feel energized, refreshed and ready for action (or further poolside relaxation), after a yoga session surrounded by the tropical gardens of our poolside paradise. We’ll see you at 10am Thursdays for your daily dose of body strengthening yoga. Each session is $10.
Keep it “Wheel” in Key West
Feel the balmy breeze through your hair as you discover Key West like a local on two wheels. Our bicycle rentals are available from the Parrot Key Resort watersports pavilion and offer one of the most rewarding ways to explore the island, from its quirky side streets to the traffic-free Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail.
The Happiest of Happy Hours… With Live Music
Every hour of Island Time is happy in Key West, so just you wait until you experience Happy Hour at Café Blue! We’re here to boost your vacation feel-good factor and offer you daily two-for-one discounts on our carefully-crafted cocktails between 5pm and 7pm. We also offer live music Thursday – Sunday from 4pm until 6pm.
Our sandy terraces offer the perfect hangout space for lazy days in the tropical sunshine. Whether you choose to build sand castles with the kids, read a book in the shade, or drift off for an afternoon siesta, you can now enjoy use of our comfy hammocks. You’ll find six dotted around the sandy terraces, so put your feet up and take it easy Key West-style.
We know how much guests love to relax poolside and stay cool, so we have not just one pool but four to choose from. Each of our sparkling pools is hidden among a lush, tropical oasis offering the ultimate in relaxation and privacy. Whether you choose to just sun-lounge or submerge under the water, you’ll feel revived by the surrounding air and sense of seclusion.
Celebrate Sunset in Style
The spectacular Florida Keys’ sunset will remain high on your list of favorite vacation memories. At Parrot Key Resort, you can enjoy the setting sun right from our very own Sunset Pier which creates the perfect spot for an evening glass of wine while you soak up the sight of the sky bursting with the vibrant colors of the Florida Keys.
And finally, for something truly sweet and irresistible this summer you can celebrate all things Key Lime at the 5th Annual Key Lime Festival from Saturday July 1st through Tuesday 4th. Highlights of the festival include the popular Key Lime Sip and Stroll, the Key Lime Pie Hop which showcases the best places in town to try Key Lime Pie, and the much-anticipated Key Lime Pie Eating Championships. The whole family will be entertained during this four-day celebration of Key West’s much-loved tangy-sweet fruit. For more information about the island’s most delicious summer festival, visit www.keylimefestival.com.
Click here for more inspiration on activities to enjoy during your vacation at Parrot Key Resort, or speak to our team of staff to help you plan your trip in Key West.
Summer will be here before you know it and the glorious Key West sunshine will keep you longing for Pina Coladas and a cool dip in one of our four sparkling pools. Welcome to Key West! This beautiful island is soaked in sunshine and the surrounding ocean is waiting to lure you in and cool you down. At the peak of summer, the average high is 89° F (32° C). Luckily Key West doesn’t have any super-highways or urban sprawl to radiate the sun’s heat. Not only that, but our islands are surrounded by cooling ocean waters. View our top tips for family vacations, and also see why families love Parrot Key Resort.
Sunset-loving Floridians from the mainland flock to the Keys on steamy weekends because the air is usually a few degrees cooler here. The water temperature might be in the mid-80s (30° C) but the sea is nevertheless refreshing for swimming, snorkeling or diving. Parrot Key Resort will also help you keep your “cool” with lush shaded gardens or you can try an array of water based activities with special discounts, just for being our guest!
With summer around the corner, you’ll be seeking ways to stay refreshed in the heat during your summer vacation so to give you a helping hand, Parrot Key Resort has selected the best ways to keep cool in Key West, whether you’re after fun, relaxation, an exhilarating experience, or all three put together!
Breezy days on the water
With a huge variety of water-based activities available in Key West, there is every opportunity to cool down while having fun with the whole family. Try a majestic sunset cruise on warm summer nights to enjoy the gentle Gulf breeze and a glowing Florida Keys sunset.
Next, you can explore the island from the ocean with a local guide on a refreshing 25-mile WaveRunner tour. You’ll head around the Southernmost Point in the USA, taking in the submarine pits, stopping at a sand bar and having a chance to free-style on the one and a half hour tour.
Feel the welcoming tropical ocean breeze cool you down as you gently cruise through the water on a paddleboard or kayak. You can take your time to soak up the stunning scenery around you, stopping off at beaches along the way for a swim, leisurely lunch, or just park and keep cool in the shade.
The ultimate cool down involves the wind whipping all around you as you glide over the majestic waters of Key West! Experience the thrill of peacefully floating high above Key West with a unique parasailing adventure.
Would you like to try it all? We recommend the Do It All Key West Watersports Adventure which lets you do just that. Discover an action-packed day of kayaking, windsurfing, banana boat rides, knee boarding behind ski boats, snorkelling, cruising on WaveRunners and water skis, and gliding into the water on a giant slide – you’re certain to feel refreshed afterwards and a cool cocktail will go down nicely at sunset too!
Into the cool, deep blue
For the ultimate cool down, book a Key West snorkel trip and submerge yourself into an underwater paradise. You’ll head out on a power catamaran boat and be whisked away to the Key West coral reef to discover a spectacular biological wonder, filled with a colorful array of wildlife including tropical fish, coral, reef sharks, turtles, and dolphins. Snorkel trips include friendly crew, safety equipment and a selection of refreshing drinks.
Take a refreshing dip at Parrot Key
As you take a walk through the beautifully landscaped (and shaded) gardens at Parrot Key Resort, you will soon discover four sparkling pools hidden among a lush, tropical oasis. Each pool offers the ultimate in relaxation and privacy, allowing you to just focus on cooling down and taking it easy in the refreshing water while the serenity-scented air revives your senses.
Ice cold poolside cocktails
Sipping away at your favorite cocktail in the sunshine defines that moment of relaxation you only ever get during summer vacation. At Cafe Blue, you can get a taste of our drink menu bursting with flavor, from tropical fruit smoothies to our legendary cocktails, all tempting you to take time out and cool down poolside. Cocktails are served from 11am to sunset.
Dip in and out of the ocean at Smathers Beach, enjoying the complimentary Parrot Key Beach Club service that includes a free shuttle transfer, beach towels and beach chairs for the day, allowing the whole family to kick back and relax in absolute comfort. There are plenty of watersports to choose from, or you can just cool down in the shade.
Choosing the right destination for a family vacation can often be a challenging task with so many factors to consider: will there be enough activities to keep all ages entertained? Are the accommodations spacious enough, and will the weather be invitingly warm every day? Key West has all the right answers that will soon see the stress of planning a family vacation slip away faster than a WaveRunner can whizz you round the island! Here are our top reasons why Parrot Key Resort is the ideal destination for a family vacation. Call 855-327-7200 to speak with an onsite vacation planner, chat with us or Book Online Now >
1. Make Waves in Crystal-Clear Waters
There is an activity to excite every age group in the waters surrounding Key West, whether it’s spotting Bottlenose Dolphins, discovering an undersea safari on a snorkeling trip, paddle boarding through the calm ocean, making a splash on a jet ski or touring the island on a WaveRunner. With so many packages available, families can take advantage of Parrot Key Resort discounts on a huge number of Key West water activities.
You can currently save $75 on a 25-mile WaveRunner tour around Key West which accommodates two people per WaveRunner, making it ideal for families to enjoy together. What’s more, it sets off right from our dock so you don’t need to travel far to find adventure in the water. You can also set off from the Parrot Key dock on your own kayak and paddleboard, which can be rented from our water-sports booth.
2. Unwind in Spacious Suites
One of the reasons why Parrot Key is rated among the best Key West family resorts, is that we offer the largest hotel rooms on the island. The resort also features spacious two-bedroom suites and three-bedroom villas that are ideal for families looking to sprawl out in style.
3. Relax Poolside
We know how much families love spending time together poolside, which is why we have created not just one perfect pool to lounge around, but four! Each of our four sparkling pools is nestled in a tropical garden oasis and surrounded by fun art sculptures that you and your children will love. Throughout the day, we can keep you topped up with delicious snacks and island drinks from our poolside Café Blue which also serves breakfast and lunch. View the Cafe Blue Menu
4. Take Time Out On Sandy Terraces
Everyone loves to build a sand castle, no matter how old you are. Take it easy on Parrot Key Resort’s white-sand sunbathing terraces by building castles, reading books, soaking up the waterfront views and breathing in the tropical scent of the Florida Keys. It’s safe for children to play on the terraces as there is no water access. View our suites and villas
5. Save More With Special Offers and Discounts
From booking early and paying in advance, to staying longer and saving more – Parrot Key offers a number of special offers throughout the year to help you plan your family vacation with a super discount. See our latest special offers
6) Venture Out to the Best Key West Attractions
Parrot Key is perfectly positioned to strike the balance between family relaxation and discovering popular Key West attractions. Tucked away in its own safe tropical oasis, the resort is located just three miles from Old Town making it easy to reach a range of family attractions. Popular days out include the unforgettable Conch Tour Train, Key West Aquarium, and the Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory. View nearby Key West family attractions
7) Celebrate Stunning Key West Sunsets
Bringing the family together for a picturesque sunset over the Florida Keys will become one of your favorite memories from your Key West vacation. Head out onto your private balcony to toast the evening sky, or capture the atmosphere at the family-friendly Key West Sunset Celebration at Mallory Square which takes place every day. For a truly special family experience, book a Sunset Cruise to watch the sun go down from the top deck of a 65ft Gold Coast Yacht.
8) Find Adventures on the Beach
Families love heading to Smathers Beach on Parrot Key Resort’s complimentary shuttle service. Just a five-minute drive away, you will all be indulged in a range of activities on offer through our watersports provider, Sunset Watersports. You can do as much or as little as you like, so whether you choose to simply relax on the powder-soft sand, rent a kayak, book a diving trip or go parasailing, time on Smathers Beach is all yours. Money Saver: View our exclusive discounted rates on water activities when booking in advance
9) Privacy in Standalone Units With No Hallways
Don’t worry about disrupting the neighbors. Each individual guestroom, suite or villa at Parrot Key Resort has its own entrance with no hallways so your little ones can run free on vacation. The units also offer ample privacy, with an at-home feel for you and your family. View our Key West accommodations
10) Discover the Best Local Events
A weekend rarely goes by without an event to keep families entertained in Key West. From food festivals and theater productions, to live music events and powerboat races on the waterfront, Key West hosts a fantastic range of entertainment to add extra fun to your family vacation. One festival not to miss is the 5th Annual Key Lime Festival from Saturday July 1st through Tuesday 4th. Highlights of the festival include the popular Key Lime Sip and Stroll, the Key Lime Pie Hop, and the much-anticipated Key Lime Pie Eating Championships. The whole family will be entertained during this four-day celebration of Key West’s much-loved tangy-sweet fruit. For more information about the island’s most delicious summer festival, visit www.keylimefestival.com.
Call 855-327-7200 to speak with an onsite vacation planner, chat with us or Book Online Now >
It’s about to become much easier for residents of Palm Beach County, FL to make their way to Key West. Rather than sit through the long drive south along the A1A highway, Floridians can opt for smoother sailing (or rather, flying) with Silver Airways. The regional airline has announced nonstop flights from Palm Beach International Airport to Key West International Airport starting May 25, 2017, just in time for Memorial Day weekend.
Make a Quick Escape to Paradise
Silver Airways roundtrip flights to Key West will be available Thursday through Monday, making this new route convenient for both week-long trips and weekend getaways. While it’s true that the A1A provides a relatively scenic coastal tour of South Florida, the highway is also prone to bouts of traffic – especially around Miami. Meanwhile, a nonstop flight from Palm Beach Airport guarantees even more time to discover the very best of the Florida Keys, including Parrot Key Resort.
A Hidden Oasis Just Minutes From the Airport
Once you touch down in Key West, you’ll discover how easy it is to navigate to Parrot Key, located just a 10-minute drive from the airport. Offering authentic Florida Keys accommodations with lush garden or breezy water views, our island resort is the perfect place to unwind after your flight. Take a moment to relax on plush bedding and reconnect with free high-speed Wi-Fi access before exploring the property’s many convenient amenities.
Discover Endless Activities in Key West
Guests at Parrot Key have access to four sparkling swimming pools, white sand sunbathing terraces, tropical gardens, on-site dining at Café Blue, and more. In addition, our friendly concierge desk offers bookings for restaurants and the most popular things to do in Key West. Take a tour through the historic district, discover the natural surroundings in a glass-bottom boat ride, or enjoy the local nightlife at the many nearby bars and entertainment venues.
Regardless of how you choose to spend your time at Parrot Key, we recommend checking out Silver Airways for direct flights from Palm Beach. For added convenience, the airline will be offering “Freedom Fares,” which allow passengers to change flights with no additional fees.
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Key West Pride takes center stage from June 7 through 11 when the island will be packed with parties and parades to celebrate the local LGBTQ community. You can also book our Glisten Pride Package at Parrot Key Resort and we will donate 10% of your room rate to GLSEN. GLSEN is the leading education organization creating safe and affirming schools for LGBTQ youth.
Key West Pride 2017
The 2017 schedule features pool parties, nightly drag shows, burlesque dancing, aquatic adventures and a Pride-themed street fair on the lively Duval Street. The Pride celebrations will also include a unique trolley tour documenting the LGBTQ community’s impact on Key West’s cultural diversity. There will also be fascinating curator-led tours of an exhibit chronicling legendary playwright Tennessee Williams’ time on the island.
The many highlights of the five-day festival include the Key West Pride Street Fair on Saturday, June 10th, which will take place in the 700 through 900 blocks of Duval Street. Now regarded as a Key West tradition, the Street Fair will feature fantastic shopping and food alongside colorful entertainment to keep the Pride party in full swing.
On Sunday, June 11th, the much-anticipated Pride Parade kicks off featuring the spectacular 100-foot section of Key West’s famed 1.25-mile-long sea-to-sea rainbow flag. The parade starts around 5 p.m and will head up Duval Street from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. And of course, no Pride Parade is complete without the official after-parade party to bring Key West Pride to a memorable close. Head to La Te Da (1125 Duval Street) for a Pride party to remember.
Stay at Parrot Key Resort
When it’s time to relax from the Pride party, you can head back to your place in paradise to unwind poolside at Parrot Key Resort before resting in the comfort of your room. Our range of accommodation options include spacious three-bedroom villas and stylish guestrooms with a choice of tropical garden or sparkling water views.
When you wake up in Key West during late April through mid June, not only does the warm tropical air embrace you… but you can also hear the sense of calm that comes with one of our most relaxing seasons at Parrot Key Resort. Once the crowds leave their Spring Break vacations and head home, the island resettles and makes way for guests looking for serenity and easy-going adventure. Call 855-327-7200 to speak with an onsite vacation planner, chat with us or Book Online Now >
Events for everyone
With many events to enjoy during a late April through mid-June break, your vacation during these months can be as lively or laid-back as you’d like it to be.
Culture lovers will be entertained at the Key West Fringe Theater during Conch Republic (The Musical) from April 20 through 23, which brings to the stage the story of how the Conch Republic began with plenty of songs, dance and flag displays. The show is part of the 10-day Conch Republic Independence Celebration which kicks off from April 21 through 30, with activities across the island including a wacky bed race and a light-hearted sea battle featuring tall ships.
Paddleboarding fans will love the Key West Paddleboard Classic which starts on April 27 through 30. Presented by Lazy Dog Adventures, the annual challenge includes a 12-mile Elite Race around the island and a 4-mile open race. Even if you’re not paddling through the race yourself, it’s worth watching from the water’s edge or taking part in beach activities during the weekend. The free shuttle service from Parrot Key can take you straight to Smathers Beach for day-long water-based activities and sunbathing.
Another not-to-be-missed event in May is the Key West Songwriters’ Festival (10-14) which brings live music from some of America’s finest performing songwriters. Head from one bar to another in downtown Key West and discover the latest talent in the worlds of jazz, raggae, calypso, blues, country and western and more.
The month of May also means making sure mom is pampered on Mother’s Day (May 14) and our heroes are remembered on Memorial Day (May 29), which make great reasons for a long weekend of celebrations in the Florida Keys – or an excuse to just sit back poolside and soak up the surrounding scene of natural beauty!
As May merges into June, the temperature really starts to climb up the thermometer and the island remains tranquil ahead of the vibrancy of events in the middle of the month, including Key West Pride (7-11). This five-day celebration will feature day-time pool and beach parties, on-the-water adventures, a street fair and a 10k relay for tutu-wearing runners! Many families also start flocking to the Keys as schools close for summer, so a vacation in early June is recommended for couples and seniors looking to make the most of a quieter Key West.
Extra savings with special offers
If you’re looking to find savings on your vacation in May through mid-June, our latest special offers will help guide you to the best package. Take a peek through our accommodation options too and choose your favorite view of lush, tropical gardens or the sparkling ocean. Our guestrooms are the largest in Key West so you can enjoy sprawling out in space and style, making the most of each day in your own piece of paradise. To book your May or early June vacation, visit our reservations page.
Call 855-327-7200 to speak with an onsite vacation planner, chat with us or Book Online Now >
Tips to Pamper Mom in Key West
Parrot Key Resort is celebrating mom throughout May in Key West. Every mom deserves a much-needed break, and if she’s lucky enough to be spending Mother’s Day Weekend (May 14th) at Parrot Key Resort, she is sure to be pampered and indulged in style. View our top tips below, to make Mother’s Day 2017 one to remember. Call 877-746-4701 to book your accommodations today.
Whether mom prefers an action-packed day soaking up the sights of Key West, or a few restorative poolside hours to herself before sampling some of the island’s finest delicacies, there are many wonderful ways to celebrate mom this May 14th. For a memorable Mother’s Day vacation to the Florida Keys, read our guide on the best things to do together in Key West:
Breakfast at Cafe Blue
Surrounded by lush, tropical gardens and overlooking one of our calm, sparkling pools, Cafe Blue is the perfect place to start mom’s perfect day. Sipping a cool, freshly squeezed Florida orange juice, mom can leisurely open presents from the family while breakfast is being prepared. The menu offers healthy options including our tropical fruit plate, omelettes and old-fashioned oatmeal, as well as indulgent treats such as delicious Belgian waffles.
If mom fancies some “me time” on her Mother’s Day getaway, catching up on her favorite book before taking a refreshing dip in the pool, whisk the kids away for a few hours and let mom just be. With four secluded pools to choose from, each surrounded by a tranquil atmosphere and nestled among stunning landscaped gardens, mom will feel completely revitalized and relaxed in her poolside paradise.
Conch Tour Train
Keep the whole family entertained at one of Florida’s most popular attractions. The Conch Tour Train unearths Key West’s quirky history, snaking all over town to explore the island’s special architecture and tropical fauna. It’s fun, informative, and mom can sit back and soak up the beauty surrounding her. The tour takes 90 minutes and departs from Mallory Square all day long.
A leisurely lunch prepared especially for mom with loved ones around, is an absolute must on Mother’s Day 2017, and Key West is teeming with charming restaurants to help set the scene. For a memorable dining experience in the historic Bahama Village, try Blue Heaven (729 Thomas Street) which prides itself on serving quality culinary creations in a quirky environment. Mom will love the menu: there’s Caribbean shrimp deglazed with red stripe, Jamaican jerk chicken, and yellowtail with citrus beurre blanc among others to choose from. Or there’s Nine One Five on Duval Street, a Victorian house boasting a fine menu with plenty of local seafood, including pan-roasted grouper with chorizo, spinach and olives.
Time out beachside
One of the best ways to switch off and escape during your Mother’s Day in the Florida Keys is to head beachside. Take mom to Smathers Beach and enjoy the complimentary Parrot Key Beach Club service that includes a free shuttle transfer, beach towels and beach chairs for the day, allowing the whole family to kick back and relax in absolute comfort. We don’t expect mom will ever feel bored of feeling the powder white sand between her toes as she gazes out across the clear blue waters of the Atlantic, however if she does fancy some action then there is plenty to choose from, including paddle boarding, kayaking, and parasailing which is offered for an added cost.
However you choose to appreciate mom this year, make sure you end Mother’s Day with a celebratory cocktail at sundown. Cafe Blue serves cocktails from 11am until sunset with happy hour between 5pm and 7pm. Treat mom to a Bahama Mama and make a toast as the sun sets on a memorable day in Key West.
2017 looks set to be yet another upbeat year in Key West with an enticing line-up of events, from food and wine festivals to high-speed powerboat racing.
Most weekends will be packed with festivals and celebrations that underpin the diverse and colorful culture of the Keys, with its rich history, artistic flair, fresh cuisine and quirky ambience. Visitors will be spoiled for choice with entertainment on offer for all ages, whether its outdoor adventure you’re looking for or live music to dance along to. Here are the highlights of events not to be missed in Key West throughout 2017:
A foodie’s paradise
With an abundance of fish and seafood surrounding the Keys coupled with a host of talented chefs in the area, foodies will be in their element at food-focused events including the Annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival (Jan. 14 – 15) and the Key West Food & Wine Festival (Jan. 25 – 29). In summer, the island’s signature dessert is celebrated during the Key Lime Pie Festival (July 1 – 4) which brings in pie-eating and cooking contests, Key Lime rum sampling, and a Key Lime martini ‘Sip and Stroll’ event.
At the end of summer, the Annual Key West Brewfest (Aug. 31 – Sept. 4) will quench your thirst with over 150 beers and micro-beers on tap.
Something for art and literature lovers
Join one of the smartest and most high-spirited literary gatherings at the Key West Literary Seminar (Jan. 12 – 15) which welcomes readers and writers to explore a unique literary theme each year. Following the seminar, the Writers’ Workshop Program takes place from Jan. 16 – 20.
In February, Key West’s historic Old Town is transformed into an open-air gallery with creative offerings from around 100 artists on display at the Old Island Days Art Festival (Feb. 25 – 26).
One of the island’s most celebrated literary legends, Ernest Hemingway, has a festival dedicated to his life in July (18 – 23) when Hemingway Days takes place across Key West with literary readings, competitions, a fishing tournament and even a look-alike contest to entertain visitors. Later in the year, sit back and enjoy the Annual Key West Film Festival (November 15 – 19) which features screenings and special events hosted at landmark venues throughout Key West.
Watch a world-class competition featuring elite racing yacht crews from around the world during the 30th anniversary Quantum Key West Race Week (Jan. 15 – 20). If paddleboarding is more your style, head to the Key West Paddleboard Classic (April 27 – 30) and take part in challenges including a 4-mile open race.
The Key West World Championships Powerboat Races is an unmissable event in November (5 – 12) which sees fierce competition between leading American and international racing teams. Ticket options include an all-inclusive VIP spectator package for the Truman Waterfront grandstands.
Take a tour
Key West is home to a range of beautiful homes and gardens, many of which open their doors throughout the year to invite visitors around for a tour. Go behind the scenes of magnificent Victorian mansions and 19th-century cottages during the Annual Key West House & Garden Tours (Jan. 13 – 14, Feb. 17 – 18, March 17 – 18).
Get ready to dance!
Music has an important place in Key West with many bars and theaters staging live music and upbeat shows. One not to be missed in 2017 is Conch Republic (The Musical) which takes to the stage at the Key West Fringe Theater from April 20 – 23. The Key West Songwriters’ Festival is another firm favorite on the calendar, this year taking place from May 10 – 14 with live music performances across the island.
Dress up and party
Join the 10-day Conch Republic Independence Celebration from April 21 – 30 with events ranging from a quirky bed race to a light-hearted sea battle. Then there’s Key West Pride to look forward to in June (7 – 11) when the whole island throws a five-day celebration featuring daytime beach and pool parties, a street fair, pageants and water-based activities including kayaking and boat tours.
In September, REvolution LGBT Art, Food, Wine and Cultural Festival (7 – 11) will bring together local vendors, artists, entertainment, contests and plenty of excellent wine and food to celebrate the LGBT community.
Later in October, the island will embrace its biggest and most outrageous party of the year – Fantasy Fest (20 – 29) – which welcomes visitors from all over the world to dress up lavishly and take part in flamboyant masquerade competitions. The 2017 theme is Time Travel Unravels.
For further information on events taking place in Key West during 2017, visit our Calendar page.