Key West is absolutely iconic. Known for its laidback lifestyle, exclusive atmosphere, and artistic leanings, it’s a must-visit destination for travelers who enjoy the ocean. Key West is in the Florida Keys archipelago; it’s a small island surrounded by beautiful coral reefs. Of course, while you’re there, you’ll want to explore the ocean, but there’s a lot more to do in this small area.
Key West is one of the most exclusive holiday destinations in the US, so you might struggle when it comes to finding the best places to stay in Key West, particularly if you’re on a budget. That’s why we’ve created this guide, so you can find the Key West accommodation option that’s right for you and your trip and have a fantastic time!
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At A Glance: Where To Stay In KEY WEST
Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Key West.
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Decorated just like its name suggests, this apartment is a clean, comfortable place to stay in Key West. It’s suitable for up to four guests and is located within walking distance of Old Town and all its charms. The apartment includes a private deck, laundry, and a fully equipped kitchen.
Located in the best neighborhood in Key West for couples, this apartment offers breathtaking views of the ocean. It’s in a resort setting with a private beach and offers enough space for two people. The studio contains all the usual amenities, including a kitchen and a private bathroom. There’s a pool and a hot tub on the premises.
This hotel is a good choice when you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West close to everything. Just a few minutes’ walk from the beach and the main street, it offers bright, comfortable furnishings and all the usual amenities for a reasonable price.
Key West is a relatively small island, but there are still lots of neighborhoods to choose from when you’re traveling there. Best of all, because the island is so small, most of them are close to the central areas, so you won’t have to go far to find something to do!
The first area to consider is Mallory Square. This is the best neighborhood in Key West to be close to everything. From beaches and bars to shops and restaurants, this neighborhood has it all. Just be aware that it can get a little crowded sometimes.
The next area is Bahama Village. This is a more local area away from the main tourist drag, so you can get an idea of what everyday life is like on the island as well as better prices.
If you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West for families, try New Town. This sleek, modern area has all the conveniences of home and lots of things to keep the whole family busy for days.
The next area is Duval Street. This is the main thoroughfare, so it can get busy and noisy. But it’s unbeatable for clubs, bars, and restaurants.
The final area to look at is Old Town, where the architecture is cool and the best tourist sites can be found.
Whether you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West on a budget or have money to burn, here’s where to look.
COOLEST thing to do in Mallory Square: Head down to Mallory Dock at sunset for performers, acrobats, and a stunning ocean view of the setting sun.
BEST place to visit in Mallory Square: Key West Aquarium, where you can pet a stingray and get up close to a shark.
Mallory Square is the best neighborhood in Key West for your first time because it’s close to everything. This is where you’ll find the island’s best and most popular restaurants, bars, clubs, theaters, and shops. It’s also close to the most popular tourist sites, so you won’t have to go far to see something amazing.
Another draw of the Mallory Square area is the fact that there are a lot of accommodation options close by. No matter what your budget or taste, you’ll be able to find somewhere that suits your taste.
If you’re wondering where to stay in Key West for couples, this apartment is a good choice. Suitable for up to four guests, the unique decorations and homey feel make this perfect for a comfortable stay. The apartment has a great balcony as well as spacious rooms and all the amenities.
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Located right in the center, this apartment is a good choice when you’re deciding where to stay in Key West for nightlife. It has enough space for up to six guests with two bathrooms and three beds and is only a block from the most popular sites in the city. The furnishings are clean and modern and include everything you’ll need for a short or long stay.
Check out this hotel if you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West on a budget. It’s right off Mallory Square and convenient to everything. The hotel has laundry facilities as well as a bar and restaurant on-site. The rooms are comfortable and come in a variety of sizes to suit all travel groups.
Suitable for tourist and business travelers, this hotel is right in the center of Key West close to all the best attractions. The surroundings are luxurious and designed to help you relax and enjoy your stay, with a pool, hot tub, restaurant, bar, and gift shop on site. The rooms contain all the usual amenities and come in a variety of sizes.
COOLEST thing to do in Bahama Village: Head down to the flea market for souvenirs and a taste of local life.
BEST place to visit in Bahama Village: Have a meal at La Creperie, one of the most famous diners on the island.
Bahama Village is the best neighborhood in Key West if you’re on a budget. Once a little dodgy and known for its high crime rate, this is now a local neighborhood that will give you an insider’s view of the local culture and attractions. It also contains some of the best places to eat on the island, so you definitely won’t miss out on the local delicacies!
Key West is fairly small, so you won’t be far from the center of the city and all its attractions when you stay in Bahama Village. Best of all, it has a flea market that’s the best place on the island for souvenirs and items of all kinds.
The perfect loft apartment for two, this accommodation option offers lots of common spaces, including a pool, and is close to local attractions. Pets are allowed for a fee, and the apartment has one bedroom and bathroom and a small kitchenette that you can use as well as free Wi-Fi.
Bright, colorful, and quirky, this apartment is a good choice when you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West on a budget but still want a little luxury. It’s within walking distance of local attractions and offers a large bedroom, kitchen with bar seating, and a wrap-around porch where you can sit and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere.
Pet-friendly and just a few minutes’ walk from the center of Key West, this budget Key West accommodation option offers air-conditioned rooms with private bathrooms and small fridges. Some of the apartments have a private balcony, and the amenities are budget, but clean and comfortable.
Right in the heart of Bahama Village, this B&B is four-star and offers comfort and convenience in the heart of the neighborhood. It’s close to the center of the city and offers homey, comfortable furnishings as well as an outdoor pool and lots of sporting facilities for travelers who want an active holiday.
COOLEST thing to do in New Town: Go for a stroll on the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail.
BEST place to visit in New Town: Wander around the beautiful Key West Tropical Forest and Botanical Garden.
If you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West for families, New Town is a good choice. Sleek, modern, and convenient, this area doesn’t have the charm of some of the oldest parts of the city, but it does have all the modern conveniences you might need if you’re traveling with kids.
New Town is to the east of the island but still within reach of the main tourist areas. It offers accommodation that’s new and modern and away from the noise and crush of the tourist center.
If you want some space and all the comforts of home, this condo provides. It has a shared pool and three floors of living spaces with an outdoor living area and flatscreen TV. There’s a private parking spot for the condo, and you can even bring your dog for a small fee!
This house is a real find. With three bedrooms and two baths, it’s suitable for up to six guests and is located on the canal in Key West. Bikes, canoes, and other equipment are provided so you can really enjoy your stay. The house is secure, private, and close to local attractions.
With a sun deck, free Wi-Fi, and easy access to the dock, this hotel is a slightly unusual Key West accommodation option. This is mostly because of the fact that you have the choice of staying in a room or a houseboat. If you love the water and want to be close to New Town, this is where you should stay. It’s only a short distance from the center of town and all its charms as well.
Located in New Town, this hotel is a good choice when you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West for families. It offers clean, comfortable rooms with all the amenities, a free buffet breakfast, and is surrounded by local restaurants. The hotel also has a tiki bar, fitness center, and outdoor pool. It’s within walking distance of the main tourist sites.
COOLEST thing to do in Duval Street: Have a drink at the famous Hog’s Breath Salon.
BEST place to visit in Duval Street: Check out the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum for a look at Key West’s artistic side.
Duval Street is the best choice when you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West for nightlife. The street runs from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean and is one of the most popular areas on the whole island. Duval Street has everything, and you’ll never get bored when you spend your time there.
If you’re looking for legendary bars, clubs, or restaurants, you’ll find them on Duval Street. It can get a little crowded, so don’t expect a quiet or relaxing time, but if you’re up for some noise and excitement, this is the area for you.
This apartment is in the best neighborhood in Key West and close to everything. It’s right on Duval Street and has enough space for up to three guests. The balcony actually overlooks Duval Street, so you can watch the goings-on from your own space. A free continental breakfast is served every day in the garden.
Suitable for up to six guests, this apartment is set within a resort that has a tiki bar, quiet gardens, two pools, and a jacuzzi that you can use. The apartment is spacious with modern furnishings and is located within walking distance of Old Town and other local attractions.
Centrally located, this hotel offers the best of both worlds. It’s close to everything you’ll want to see and do but won’t break the bank. The rooms are simple but comfortable, and the hotel offers a complimentary breakfast. Although there aren’t many facilities at the hotel, the surrounding neighborhood will keep you busy anyway.
Located in the best neighborhood in Key West for nightlife, this hotel is close to everything and perfect for travelers who want to spend long days and nights enjoying the city. It offers rooms in a variety of sizes, as well as a hot tub, an outdoor pool, a pool bar, and all the usual amenities for a short or long stay.
COOLEST thing to do in Old Town: Just wander the streets and take in the 187 historic buildings and landmarks.
BEST place to visit in Old Town: Check out Sloppy Joe’s, listed on the National Register of Historic Places and once frequented by Ernest Hemingway.
Old Town is cool. It’s also one of the best choices when you’re deciding where to stay in Key West for couples. It’s a designated US historic district, full of history and significant buildings as well as some of the best tourist sites in the city. It’s also full of fun and quirky places to stay, as well as boutique hotels and luxurious choices.
Old Town is on the west side of the island, and there’s more to it than just old houses. It has amazing restaurants and bars – some with historical significance – so be prepared for a busy holiday with lots of nights out and a dash of history when you stay in this area.
If you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West close to everything, this apartment is your pick. It’s within walking distance of shops, restaurants, and Duval Street, and offers clean, comfortable surroundings for up to four guests. The apartment has a full kitchen and laundry as well as a front porch where you can relax and take in the sights.
This apartment is ideal if you’re looking for affordable luxury. Newly renovated, it’s cheerfully decorated and includes a large living area and bedroom, as well as a balcony where you can watch the world go by. It’s also within walking distance of some of the best sights in the city.
Just a few minutes walk from everywhere, this accommodation is a good choice when you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West on a budget. It’s only a few minutes from Duval Street and all the attractions of Mallory Square and offers homey, comfortable spaces in a variety of sizes to suit every travel group.
This hotel is located in a historic building in the heart of Old Town, close to all the best tourist spots. It’s surrounded by great restaurants and shops and offers a historic feel, as well as updated amenities, including a restaurant, bar, wine tasting lounge, an outdoor pool, and a fitness center. There’s even a spa on the roof to make your stay even more relaxing.
Whether you’re trying to decide where to stay in Key West for your first time or you’re returning for an annual visit, you’ll have lots of areas to choose from. And then it’s all up to you. Prefer to be closer to the action? Choose one of the more central areas. Want to be close to everything but enjoy some peace and quiet at the same time? Move away from the center to more local areas. Whatever you do, you’ll have a relaxed, laidback time on the island and return home with a great tan!
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Born in Los Angeles, Aaron Hovanesian is one of the original staff writers for Hotel Jules. Having backpacked the world as a young man, Aaron now prefers to travel the world in luxury, proudly staying in the world's most amazing hotels and properties. When Aaron is not traveling he lives in Western Colorado he can be found brewing his own beer (probably an IPA) or spending time with his two amazing golden retrievers.