What’s the Best Time to Visit the Florida Keys?

The Florida Keys are some of the most amazing islands you can visit in your time off! Whether you want to go fishing and boating or simply enjoy a great time with your family, there are dozens of activities you can take advantage of.

I admit it; I’m crazy about the Florida Keys. There’s so much to do there that you may not be able to cover it all on your first visit. I usually visit these islands several times per year, so I know the best times to go there.

Best Time to Visit the Florida Keys

If you’re eager to visit Key West and enjoy its different activities, keep reading. I’ll tell you everything you should know about it.

Pick the Right Time to Visit the Florida Keys According to Your Goals

Florida Keys
Let me start by saying that the “best” time to visit these tropical islands depends on your needs or goals. There are over 1,700 islands that make up the Florida Keys, so if this is your first time planning your trip to the southernmost point of the continental United States, the decision could be hard.

I broke down this guide into two: The best time to visit mostly depends on your goals and the season. These two factors give you all the necessary information to make the right call.

Let’s begin with the first category:

Best Time to Catch Events

Many visit the Florida Keys because of its events. As you may have guessed, there are plenty of them throughout the year!

If you want to attend as many events as possible, I’d say the best time to visit is between January and April. These months cover some of the most popular events, including the Florida Keys Seafood Festival and the Seven Mile Bridge Run.

Best Time to Save Money

Even though visiting the Florida Keys during the high season might be great for meeting new people and enjoying yourself, it will come with a much higher price.

Those who want to save money must book their trip for the months when the weather isn’t the best. These months go from June to September.

You may run into the islands’ rainy season during these months, which may affect the experience. Sometimes, your vacation could even get canceled because of a hurricane.

Other than that, visiting during Summer/Early Fall may give you the best hotel prices.

Best Time for Great Weather

You should visit between March and April if you want to get the best weather and avoid the hurricane season. In my opinion, these are the best months to get the ultimate Florida Keys experience.

Most of the time, you will expect tolerable high temperatures during the day and cool evenings. However, the best part of this season is that you won’t have to deal with such a high risk of rainfall.

Best Time to Visit the Florida Keys Per Season

Knowing what each season brings can help you decide the best time to visit the Florida Keys. Remember, everyone has different needs for a “great experience,” so consider what you want from your trip before picking a season.

Spring | March-May

Spring is the best time to visit the Florida Keys, in my opinion. The weather is cool throughout the day, and there’s almost no rain.

As for the crowds, you can expect plenty of people out there, especially during spring break. However, it’s not an overwhelming amount.

Most hotels will have decent prices, as you’re just leaving the winter period. In other words, you’re getting the most balanced experience among the other seasons.

Some of the events I recommend during spring include:

  • Marathon Seafood Festival – March
  • Florida Keys Island Fest – April
  • Conch Republic Independence Celebration – April
  • Key West Dolphin Fishing Tournament – May

Summer | June – August

Summer might be one of the “riskiest” seasons to visit the Florida Keys. It’s great if you want good hotel prices, but you’ll deal with relentless weather and maybe high crowds, depending on the month.

If I were to describe the temperatures, I would say you can expect a mix of hot and humid climates. Also, you might have to deal with some rain and hurricanes.

I don’t mind the high temperatures of summer since I’m so used to them, but if you’re new to the Florida Keys, take your precautions.

To end on a positive note, I think summer is amazing if you want to go on the water. The ocean will stay warm and clear throughout the season, making it perfect for snorkelers and scuba divers.

Even though it has considerable temperatures, summer is still the peak tourist season in the Florida Keys. Also, it’s the second-busiest season.

Some events to keep an eye out for include:

  • Key West Pride Week – June
  • Key Lime Festival – July
  • Fourth of July Parade and Fireworks – July
  • Lobsterfest Key West – August
  • Key Largo Triathlon – August

You can also visit Old Town Key West during this season, as it has a lot of events you can go to.

Fall | September – November

Fall will give you two different climate experiences. You can expect similar temperatures to summer from September to October.

From mid-October to November, though, you’ll get cooler temperatures. I’d say this is the best time to visit during the fall season. You won’t find huge crowds.

Unfortunately, fall is also known for being dangerous because of rain and hurricanes. Check the refund policies for everything you book, as there’s a slight chance a sudden hurricane could force you to cancel your trip.

Great events during the fall season include:

  • Florida Keys Lionfish Derby – September
  • Key West Fantasy Fest – October
  • Key West Film Festival – November

Winter | December – February

As you may have guessed, winter is the busiest season in the Florida Keys. You’ll get huge crowds, high hotel prices, and mild temperatures.

If you’re willing to deal with the higher prices and the amount of people, this is an excellent time to visit the Keys.

Of course, winter offers the largest number of festivals, which include:

  • Key Largo Bridge Run – December
  • Key West Food and Wine Festival – January
  • Key West 5K and Half Marathon – January
  • Florida Keys Seafood Festival – January
  • Florida Keys Pup Crawl – February

What Should You Pack for Your Visit to the Florida Keys?

You’ll pack similar items regardless of the season you decide to visit in. Some of the things I love to bring to the Florida Keys include:

  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Bathing suits
  • Hats
  • Waterproof sandals
  • Umbrella
  • Bug repellent
  • Camera
  • Snorkel gear

How’s the Weather in the Florida Keys?

Weather in the Florida Keys

The Florida Keys weather doesn’t change too much throughout the year. You can expect warm temperatures regardless of the month, with July-September having the highest ones.

Still, remember you can expect different weather events like storms and hurricanes during some seasons, so do research and check the forecast before planning anything.

If you’re planning your trip during the Atlantic hurricane season (June-November), be careful. Consider canceling the trip if it gets too risky.

Other Florida Keys Guides:

Final Thoughts

I’ve been living in Florida for over 24 years, and I still get excited when visiting the Florida Keys. There’s always something new to discover, people to meet, and experiences to have.

To summarize, visit the Florida Keys in the spring season if you want the most balanced experience. However, if you prefer different climates or are aiming for lower prices, you may want to consider other months.

I hope you have a lot of fun on your visit to the Florida Keys; I can assure you that it’s the experience of a lifetime!

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Tim Schmidt is a 20+ year Entrepreneur and Digital Marketer. A Fort Lauderdale-based "Digital Nomad," he enjoys traveling as much as possible with family and friends. AllWorld is his escape to document all of his adventures, including being a hardcore "foodie." He has property in Costa Rica and visits several times each year and is happy to offer his expert advice for planning your trip.

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