You’ve seen photos, you’ve heard people describe it, but nothing compares to witnessing a Key West sunset with your own eyes. It’s one of nature’s most magnificent phenomena and once you see it, you’ll understand why the Southernmost City is deemed as one of the top places in the world to view the sun as it makes its dramatic departure into the sea.
1. Mallory Square Sunset Celebration
An authentic Key West experience, the Mallory Square Sunset Celebration is not just a tradition, it’s a must-do. Where else in the world is an entire party built around the sun setting? The fun starts in the late afternoon as street performers (sword swallowers, tightrope walkers, magicians and more) get ready to entertain you, and local artists bring out their masterpieces. Come early, grab a mojito and a conch fritter, then find the perfect spot near the water’s edge to witness the light show–you’ll be dazzled by the fiery reds, oranges and pinks that take over the sky.
2. Fort Zachary Taylor
Home to the best beach in Key West, Fort Zachary Taylor State Park is one of the top places to watch the sunset. It’s a picture-perfect experience and also the perfect way to end a day at the beach! Bring a chair or spread out a blanket and take in the beauty of nature’s splendor.
3. Key West Harbor docks on either side of the Pier
Just next to Mallory Square, the Key West Harbor docks offer unobstructed views of the sunset over the water. It’s a short walk away from all the activity and partying of the nightly Sunset Celebration at Mallory Square–one of the best places to watch the Key West sunset without the crowds.
4. Truman Waterfront
Located at the end of Southard Street, this waterfront spot is where many folks come to enjoy the Key West sunset. It’s a quiet alternative to the Mallory Square celebration, but provides a picturesque view for those seeking a more tranquil experience.
5. Historic Seaport (“The Bight”)
The Historic Seaport or The Key West Bight, is where local fisherman moor their boats and unload the day’s catch. It’s often mulling with people and is a great place to see the Key West sunset while sipping a cocktail, listening to live music or enjoying the day’s catch served up at one of the many seafood restaurants close by.
6. Sunset Sails and Cruises
Climb aboard, let your hair down and get ready to experience the Key West sunset as it was meant to be seen–out on the water! The island offers many different sunset sails and cruises–from the romantic to the raise-a-raucous and many other options in between. Choose the one that fits and you’ll soon be experiencing something unforgettable!
Fury’s Commotion on the Ocean Sunset Sail
The setting sun makes the perfect backdrop for this onboard party of live music. Drink, dance and play the night away as you sail to the perfect spot to witness the sunset. As the most popular sunset sail in Key West, Fury’s Commotion on the Ocean is a one-of-a-kind party.
Island Adventure + Sunset Cruise Combo Trip
For those who love adventure and nature! First, spend the day exploring areas of Key West that only the locals know about–snorkel in the warm waters, take a guided kayak tour through the mangroves and soak in the sun on a sandbar–then chase down the Key West sunset as you sip champagne and revel in the perfect day in paradise.
Rum & Reggae Sunset Sail
Don’t worry, be happy on Fury’s Rum & Reggae Sunset Sail, a favorite among music lover’s! Start with a reef snorkel at North America’s only living coral reef then sail into the sunset to Reggae rhythms and rum punch!
Glass Bottom Boat Sunset Cruise Combo
See the colorful world under the sea as you glide above the reef on Fury’s state-of-the-art Glass Bottom Boat. This is the perfect union of adventure and family-friendly fun! After observing the fascinating marine life from a comfortable air-conditioned cabin, celebrate the beauty of the sun as it sets over the water.
Dolphin Watch & Sunset Combo
Spend the day marveling at dolphins in their natural habitat with Fury’s family favorite, Dolphin Watch & Sunset Combo tour. Safely watch Bottlenose dolphins in their natural habitat then snorkel the Florida Keys backcountry as Fury’s expert guides reach you about local marine life. Then prepare for the best sunsets in the world aboard a power catamaran, as the colors of the sun fading into night glimmer over the turquoise warm waters of Key West.
7. Oceanview Restaurants
Gaze out at the sea and watch the sunset on the horizon as you dine on local seafood, Caribbean cuisine and an array of palatable dishes served by one of Key West’s many oceanview restaurants.
Sunset Tiki Bar at the Galleon Resort
You’ll have a front row seat to the beautiful Key West sunset as you enjoy your favorite cocktail, delicious food and the laid-back, poolside atmosphere at the Sunset Tiki Bar.
Sunset Pier at the Ocean Key Resort
Pastel colored bar stools cozy up to umbrella-shaded tables by the sea, infinite ocean views provide the palate for a striking Key West sunset. Gather your friends and head to Sunset Pier at the Ocean Key Resort to celebrate the sunset with drinks, dinner and a dazzling light show in the sky.
Cheekie Hut at Hampton Inn
Enjoy the views of crystal clear warm waters from the Cheekie Hut, their poolside bar and grill. Take a break from lounging poolside and toast to the breathtaking views of paradise with one of their classic frozen cocktails. Their menu includes salads, sandwiches, local favorites, and of course classic grilled bar bites, making it one of the best places to enjoy a Key West sunset.
Hot Tin Roof at Ocean Key Resort
Tennessee Williams’ most famous play, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, is the inspiration for Ocean Key Resort’s signature restaurant. This local favorite is one of the most popular locations for a classic Keys-style waterfront dining experience. Detailed teak woodwork, hand painted murals and ceiling, and wild sculptures bring whimsy to the beautiful island style lounge and dining room. The appetizing menu features a variety of flavors from Florida and the Caribbean, or ‘Floribbean’ as they playfully refer to it.
Lagerheads Beach Bar
Considered by many to be Key West’s most popular beach bar, Lagerheads provides the perfect beachfront spot to witness the sunset, along with fresh fish tacos, ceviche (and many other mouthwatering menu options), cold drinks and a relaxed, friendly vibe. Grab a chaise, dip your toes in the sand or find a spot on the dock, sit back and enjoy!
With their evolving menu of fresh dishes prepared with locally sourced seafood, vegetables and fruits, Latitudes is a favorite among Key West diners. Make a reservation (they book up quickly) and get set for a special evening–their waterfront location provides breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico and is the idyllic destination to witness a Key West sunset.
Shor at Hyatt Centric
Savor the flavors of local seafood and seasonal produce, plus a killer Key lime pie. The Hyatt’s signature restaurant includes seating on a breezy veranda overlooking the ocean. If you plan to go deep-sea fishing, don’t miss the “Dock to Dish” menu for a truly one-of-a-kind meal. This Key West favorite offers breathtaking views of the sunset paired with one of the finest meals on the island!
8. North Roosevelt Boulevard Promenade
With its new seawall and expanded sidewalks, North Roosevelt Boulevard Promenade has quickly become a favorite place to watch the sunset. Stroll along the promenade and find the perfect vantage point on the seawall–then be awed by the brilliant colors that take over the sky.
9. White Street Pier
Located on the east side of the island, White Street Pier juts far out over the water and is nestled between Higgs Beach and Rest Beach. It’s here that locals come to fish, kick back and just hang out as the water gently brushes up against the sides of the pier. Stroll down the wide concrete walkway and take a seat anywhere you’re comfortable–you’ll feel right at home among others who’ve come to catch the gorgeous sunset as it paints the horizon.
10. Rent bikes from Fury for a leisurely exploration of the island
One of the best ways to explore the island is with Fury’s Bike Rentals. These premium bicycle rentals are available hourly, daily, weekly. Discover Key West on two wheels and get lost in paradise. Take in picturesque views of the unique architectural beauty and ocean views surrounding the Conch Republic.
An extraordinary everyday experience
As one of the earth’s most extraordinary marvels–people from all over the world come to experience a Key West sunset. From quiet spots to those that draw a crowd, you’ll find there are numerous locations to witness the dramatic light show that takes place as the sun makes its fiery descent off of the horizon.