paddleboarding in the Keys

Staying Active on Vacation in the Keys

There are a lot of relaxing temptations when you come down to vacation in the Keys. You can easily while away days lounging on the beach, or by the pool sunbathing. And on the food side, our immersion of South Florida cuisine with Cajun, Cuban, and pan-Carribbean flavors gives travelers a lot of options.

But it doesn’t all have to be about resting, relaxing and dining—there are plenty of ways to stay active and healthy in the Keys. Here are some of our tips. 

Visit the Best Parks in the Florida Keys

When you venture out into the Florida Keys, the number of outdoor destinations is truly breathtaking. Those who enjoy staying active by hiking, kayaking, and swimming might want to consider visiting some of the best parks in the Keys. Right here in Key West, Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park is a spacious landmark and preserved Civil War-era fort, with trails that are great for running (plus a beach for swimming).

Moving a bit north, you can discover dozens more parks to get a good workout in. If walking and hiking are your things, consider the Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge for some backcountry strolling and birdwatching. To get into some swimming and snorkeling, check out Curry Hammock State Park in Marathon. 

Go On A Kayak or SUP Excursion

Standup paddleboard and kayak excursions are another great way to keep active, and bring you out on the glorious Key West waters. A lot of these experiences are considered eco-tours, which travel into the area’s most beautiful and remote spaces with a responsible, leave-no-trace approach. It’s a sustainable and exerting form of tourism. 

One of our favorite companies doing eco-torus is Key West Eco Tours, which leads backcountry kayaking and paddle board tours through the area’s mangrove islands and sandbars. You can also go sailing and snorkeling with this group. All of these activities will add a great workout on top of your adventure. Check out our breakdown of the best local eco-tours for more examples.

Hit Up the Gym

The Parrot Key Hotel & Villas has an onsite, twenty-four hour fitness center featuring free weights and cardio equipment. (Check out the Parrot Key Hotel & Villas resort amenities for more information on how to find places to stay fit on our property, and around Key West.)

…Or the pool

Along with our fitness center, we have four pools, where a few laps can go a long way for keeping the body fit and active on your Key West vacation. If you’d like more space to swim, or to perhaps take a beach run on some sand, you can take our complimentary shuttle service to nearby Smathers Beach.

And don’t forget to refuel

It’s also important that you fuel your body with some healthy eats when staying active. After a workout in the fitness center, or a swim in one of the pools, stop by The Parrot Key Hotel & Villa’s onsite kitchen and bar The Grove. Healthy options like our Florida Citrus salad, and Greek Vegetable wrap are perfect for a post workout meal.


Discover More of Key West

Planning a family road trip getaway to the Florida Keys? Explore our local recommendations on the Parrot Key blog.

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