Cheap and Free Things to do in Key West

We have some great options for you if you’re looking for free, cheap, and fun ideas to do in Key West. Although this tropical paradise can be expensive, it doesn’t have to be!

Free Things to do in Key West

Get your picture taken in front of the Southernmost Point and Mile Marker 0.

These iconic locations offer a free and fun way to see the island. The large painted buoy was established as a tourist attraction in 1983 and has remained popular ever since. Arrive early (or late at night!) for a prime photo opp since there’s often a long line. But you can enjoy the gorgeous turquoise water views while you wait. You’ll find the Southernmost Point at the corner of Whitehead St & South St in Old Town. And here you’ll be closer to Cuba (90 miles to be exact) than the rest of the Continental US.

Another iconic Key West landmark is Mile Marker 0, which signifies the end of US-1 that runs all the way up the East Coast to Maine. You’ll find this unassuming green sign at the intersection of Whitehead and Fleming streets and can be easily missed if you’re not on the look out. Just like the Southernmost Point, this landmark is one of the most photographed places in Key West and a must-see on your next trip.

Take a Stroll down world-famous Duval Street

Running the full length of Key West from North to South, this famous road boasts an array of unique bars, restaurants, shops, and more. If you’re looking for the action, you’ll find it here! Spend a full afternoon window shopping, people watching, and grab a drink or two while you’re at it!

Take a photo in front of Sloppy Joes, Irish Kevins, Hogsbreath Saloon, The Bull Bar, and any of the iconic establishments that line this strip.

Mallory Square Sunset Celebration, a must free thing to do in Key West

One of the most popular free things to do in Key West is to take a walk on Mallory Square, besides the stunning sunset on display every night from this perfect viewing location, you can see a plethora of entertainment acts at this famous Key West spot. During the day Mallory Square serves as the docking space for incoming cruise ships and it’s otherwise empty. But at night this spectacular square comes alive! Thousands of people flock here for the nightly festival. Here you’ll see magicians, jugglers, clowns, psychics, local musicians, artists, and food vendors that combine for an incredible cultural experience.


Take a walking tour of the Historic Seaport

This charming corner of Key West offers a look at what this island was like in years past. Coastal charm lines its walkways and there’s no shortage of delicious waterfront restaurants with the days freshest catch. Key West Historic Seaport is located along the harborwalk waterfront at the ends of Front Street, Greene Street, Elizabeth Street, William Street & Grinnell Street. For a relaxing afternoon, head over to the Seaport for some classic Key West scenery.



Enjoy a beach day at Smathers Beach

As with any other tropical island, the number one free thing to do in Key West is to spend the day at the beach. Smathers Beach is the largest public beach in Key West. Located on the south side of the island  along the Atlantic Ocean, this beach is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Known for its pristine blue water, Smathers offers a stunning backdrop for the ultimate cheap Key West adventure. There are several vendors on-site if you want to rent water sports gear and beach chairs, but you can easily bring your own gear and a picnic lunch to enjoy for free.

Take a tour of Key West Cemetery

This historic cemetery attracts visitors from all over the island. Established in 1843, this eery tourist attraction draws crowds for its above-ground vaults, similar to the cemeteries in New Orleans, since the space for below-ground burials has become increasingly limited. When you’re there make sure to see the historic Angel grave marker and many headstones dating back to the mid-1800’s.

Not Free, But Cheap

Rent bikes for the day and tour the island on two wheels

This is the perfect way to cruise around town in comfort and see all that Key West has to offer. Key West Bicycles offers all day rentals for just $18, which gives you plenty of time to see the whole island. They also offer 2, 3 and up to 7 day rentals so you can use for your entire trip. Their really reasonable rates make this a must have when traveling around Key West. You can book online and some companies also offer discounts for multiple days purchased.

Spend the day at Fort Zachary Taylor 

Pack your own cheap breakfast or lunch and head to Fort Zachary Taylor on your rental bike for a full day of fun. We recommend filling your cooler bag with a couple sandwiches from Cuban Coffee Queen or a delicious Publix sub, and some drinks of choice of course. When you arrive by bike you’ll only pay $2.50 per person ($6 per vehicle with up to 8 people), which gives you all day access to the full park. You can even leave and come back, just make sure to stop at the entrance for a hand stamp before leaving.

This state park offers the best beach in Key West with calm blue water and lots of shady palm trees for when you’ve had too much sun. Tip: arrive by 10am (park opens at 8:00) to secure a free picnic table in the shade. You can use the table as a home base while you swim and walk around the park. The park also offers lounge chair and umbrella rentals for a reasonable rate if you prefer that.

The park also has a cheap concession stand, Cayo Hueso Cafe, offering hot dogs, burgers, quesadillas, sodas, waters, beer, and more. Very reasonably priced if you’d rather not bring your own lunch and beverages.

Take an Old Town Trolley Tour

If you’ve been to Key West chances are you’ve seen the Old Town Trolley cruising around the streets even if you haven’t taken a tour yourself. Well, we highly recommend it! Its a cheap and fun way to stay cool while seeing all the exciting sights and attractions of Key West. You can use the trolley to learn about the history of some of the islands most famous places but you can also use it simply as your transportation around the island, hopping on and off as you’d like. And right now they’re offering tons of discounts as part of their summer promotion. An all-day, 1 day pass will run you $45 for adults and $16 for kids. The Conch Train tour is a little less, at $35, which is also a fun way to see the town.

Another favorite is the Ghosts and Graveyards nighttime tour where you’ll explore some of Key West’s most haunted sites. One hour ghosts tours are only $37 after their Summer discount, and run nightly starting at 7pm. A fun and spooky way to enjoy your vacation!

Stroll through the Truman Annex and tour Harry Truman’s Little White House 

One walk through the Truman Annex and you’ll fall in love with its quiet, tree lined streets and quintessential Key West homes. This residential section of the island surrounds the beautiful former home of Harry S. Truman where he lived, worked, played, and held important government meetings. Take a guided tour inside this stunning period home. Tickets are only $22.20 ($9.68 for kids) when you purchase online, thats a savings and discount of over $2 vs. buying on-site.

Harry Truman’s Little White House is a must do attraction and one of the most popular in our list of cheap and free things to do in Key West.

The home, museum, and grounds offer a look into Key West history and a quiet refuge from the excitement of Duval street.


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