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Doing Key West on a Budget

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Key West Budget Travel

When you think of budget travel, Key West is probably not one of the first destinations that comes to mind. However, there are tons of free and cheap attractions in Key West. Here are some of my favorites!


Lodging is going to be your biggest expense in Key West. Whether you choose a Bed & Breakfast, a hotel, or a beachfront house rental, you want to save the majority of your budget for lodging. I was reading a post from the Florida Rambler about lodging in Key West. Their suggestion was to find a place with a shared bathroom. If that’s something you can handle, you could save a pretty penny!

Outside of sharing bathrooms, to save the absolute most money, your best bet is to book a Bed & Breakfast in the off-season. Watch out for resort fees, parking fees, and any additional fees they might try to tack on (regardless of where you stay). You’ll want to add these in to get your final total, and compare total to total instead of base price to base price. You’d be shocked at how big of a difference the final price can be, even when several spots have the same base price!

Affordable Fun in Key West

Admission to the Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory is $8.50 for kids and $12 for adults. The whole family will enjoy this place!

The Harry S. Truman Little White House is great for history buffs and political fans alike. You can buy tickets online for $25 each.

The Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum is another one for the history buffs, but everyone enjoys this museum. Admission is $5 for kids and $14 for adults.

Water Fun

Did you know many beaches in Key West have admission fees? If you’ve never visited before, you might be caught off guard! Here is a list of public beaches in Key West. Some beaches are dog-friendly, so be sure to check those out, too, if you brought your furry friend along.

Taking a jet ski tour for two can set you back about $200, but it’s 90 minutes of fun you can’t experience anywhere else. Pair it with a glass bottom boat tour or a snorkeling tour and save some money.

Kayaking is also popular in Key West. It’s more affordable than most people realize. This list of the Top 10 Kayaking Adventures can help you find the best option for your budget.

Oh, and you don’t want to miss the famous Key West Sunset.

Other Fun in Key West

Much like Oahu, Hawaii, Key West is home to many wild roosters and chickens. They’re very vocal, and adorable… until you’re trying to sleep and they’re outside your window crowing all night.

Can’t get enough of the animals? Visit the Key West Wildlife Center.

Take a free historic walking tour by printing this PDF.

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What’s your favorite thing to do in Key West? Let me know in the comments!

Previous Posts in the 2017 Traveling on a Budget Series:

Doing Maui on a Budget

Doing Key West on a Budget #Travel #FamilyTravel - Famous Last Words

Sunday 8th of March 2020

[…] Key West on a Budget… #Travel […]

Sharlyn Lauby

Thursday 2nd of March 2017

On our last trip to the Keys, we did the tour at the Little Truman White House. Very interesting. Walking around Mallory Square at sunset is always fun too!

Janice Brady

Thursday 2nd of March 2017

I love Key West! Many people don't realize how much there is to do there. It's a perfect vacation spot since you can do absolutely nothing mixed in with lots of fun sites.