Key West Is Actually Cool: 12 Not-for-Tourists Reasons to Visit Now

Kiteboarding in the Keys courtesy of Florida Keys News Bureau

 

Key West isn’t exactly known for its refined elegance—in fact, outsiders may know the Floridian island mainly for its sunburned cruise ship crowd and for debaucherous Duval Street. And while that scene certainly does exist, there’s also a healthy crop of authentic, tasteful, even hip elements to the island, catering to a new generation of travelers in search of a little quirk with their sunny, sandy fun.

You’ll find the driest weather in the Keys starting around December, which is about when that beach craving is likely to kick in. (If you go for New Year’s Eve, don’t miss famous local drag queen Sushi descending upon Duval Street in a giant shoe.) Start planning now, and add these stops to your to-do list.

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