Last updated on April 4, 2024 by Stefano Ferro, founder of MEL365, following extensive travelling in Florida, Keys & Miami

Unique Florida Keys itinerary in 3, 5 or 7 days

This guide provides all you need to design your Florida Keys itinerary with maps and day-by-day activities for a stay of 3, 4, 5 or 7 days.

My suggested itineraries are not only based on the length of your vacation but also your type of trip (couples, families, beach lovers, action addicted, or a bit of everything)

Let’s go straight into it

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South, North, East, West....The Florida Keys are far away from the business time in the cities
South, North, East, West….The Florida Keys are far away from the business time in the cities

Best Florida Keys Itinerary – In a nutshell

Here down a few quick points, however, keep reading for more detailed information

  • How many days in the Florida Keys: in 10 days you will have plenty of time to experience most of the keys. With one week you can see a lot, especially if planned in advance. In 5 days you will be able to experience a couple of islands and possibly a day tour on a third key. In 3 days or less, you will spend most of your time on one island and maybe you can organise a day tour to another destination. 
  • Florida Keys itinerary in 3 days: the archipelago is over 120 miles long (almost 200km). In 3 days, you will scratch the surface. For this reason, I suggest staying either in Key West or Marathon Island, depending on your type of trip. From there, you can organise a few unique day or half-day trips. There are, however, other options. Read below for more details on a Florida Keys itinerary in 3 days.
  • Itinerary in 4 or 5 days: with 4 or 5 days, you can even think to split your stay between two islands and explore the Florida Keys from there. It will all depend on the type of vacation you are after. Read below a few options for 5 days in the Florida Keys.
  • Itinerary in 7 days: You will have enough time to see most of the top attractions in 7 days. You can even think to split your stay between 3 islands. There is more time wasted in check-in/out but you will get to experience more, both during the day and the night. Read more below on my 7 days options below
  • Just 2 or 3 days in Key West: Key West is the place to be if you don’t have a car because it will all be within a short walking distance. This is also the most iconic destination in the Florida Keys. If you just have 2 or 3 days, check out my customized itineraries in Key West and the best places to stay in Key West.
  • 5 Must do attractions in Florida Keys: listing only 5 is always problematic, even more in the Florida Keys where you have so many things to do and places to experience. Personally, I suggest the Dolphins Plus Bayside for swimming with the dolphins, the Keys Cable Park for a day of wake boarding, beers and live music, Mallory Square in Key West for sunset, the full-day Watersports Adventure Tour for a day of fun activities and the Jet Ski Island Tour for a real adventure around Key West. You can read my guide to 33 things to do in the Florida Keys for more ideas.
  • Best 5 beaches in the Florida Keys: Another hard choice, because there are so many beautiful beaches in this archipelago. I start with Smathers Beach, the most popular of all located on the south coast of Key West, Dry Tortugas Island, remote (2 hours by ferry) but totally worth a trip there, Sombrero Beach in Marathon Island, Bahia Honda State Park in Islamorada and Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park, not only for the beach but also for a visit to the fort. 
  • Best island to stay in the Florida Keys: as you can already imagine, it all depends on the type of holiday that you are planning: couples or family, action or relax, and I could keep going. I wrote a guide on the best islands to stay in the archipelago with a map too that can help you make your selection so much easier.

The best, quickest and most flexible way to get around the Florida Keys is by car.

You can think even to fly to Miami and rent the car there and drive down to the Florida Keys. 

It may come out actually much cheaper, because of more economical flight tickets as well as car rentals.

Moreover, the road trip to the Florida Keys is absolutely amazing

I usually book my car on DiscoverCars.com, an online price comparison website where I usually shop for my vehicles. It offers the most competitive prices (read the cheapest)

Check car availability

You can also fly directly to the Key West Airport, usually more expensive than flying to Miami, but you will be straight into the middle of the action. It works better for a short stay.

The last option is by bus.

FLiXBUS runs busses from Miami Beach and Miami Downtown that stops in a few keys along the route.

Key West Transit also runs busses within Key West and to Marathon Island.

Florida Keys Itinerary for 3 days

This is a very brief visit to the Florida Keys, an archipelago stretching over 120 miles (around 200km). 

I recommend staying in one accommodation and exploring nearby attractions from there.

The best islands to stay are either Key West or Marathon.

Key West is the real center of the Florida Key with plenty of activities, bar and restaurants.

Marathon is in a central location of the Florida Keys archipelago.

Both locations have great advantages, however, they are so different in character and style

For more information, I highly suggest reading this comprehensive post with day-by-day plans of possible 3-days Florida Keys itineraries based on your kind of holiday (beaches, couples, families, action or everything), including maps as well as photos.

3 days itinerary guide to Florida Keys

Florida Keys itinerary 3 days
Florida Keys itinerary 3 days

Florida Keys Itinerary for 4 or 5 days

I would lie if I tell you that 4 or 5 days are enough to explore all of the Florida Keys.

In saying that, you can most definitely experience a lot, especially if you plan well in advance.

You can decide to stay in one accommodation and explore from there, and in this case Marathon Island is an ideal Key, being central to the archipelago.

Or you can split your stay between two locations, which works great if you are driving to the Keys.

In this case, I suggest staying a couple of days in Key West and the remaining part of the vacation in another key, based on the type of holiday you are after.

You should read this full guide to 4/5-days itineraries in Florida Keys based on your kind of holiday (beaches, couples, families, everything), including day-by-day plans with excursions, maps as well as photos.

4/5 days itinerary guide to Florida Keys

Florida Keys itinerary 5 days
Florida Keys itinerary 5 days

Florida Keys Itinerary for 7 days

With 7 days in the Florida Keys, you can definitely plan an exhaustive itinerary to enjoy this archipelago at its best.

You can plan some diving as well as swimming with the dolphins.

Or you can enjoy a romantic getaway on a remote beach, hiding from any sort of civilization.

And why not enjoying some snorkeling, parasailing and jet ski with your family. The kids will love it.

There are plenty of possibilities and for this reason I have written an ultimate guide to one week in Florida Keys where you can see three day-by-day plans based on your type of holiday: romantic, family, or just everything. It’s a great reference with maps and photos.

One week in the Florida Keys

Florida Keys itinerary 7 days
Florida Keys itinerary 7 days
Stefano Ferro - MEL365.com Founder and Editor

About the Author

Stefano is a seasoned travel expert and the visionary founder of MEL365.com, a leading travel website with traffic across 6 continents. With a rich background in the travel industry, Stefano spent four pivotal years at Amadeus Travel Distribution System, gaining invaluable insights into travel technologies and distribution.

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