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Disney Cruises from Florida: Ships, Ports, and Itineraries

Florida is home to two primary Disney Cruise Line ports — Port Canaveral and Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale) — with departures also previously having taken place in Miami. If you’re ready to embark on a Disney cruise, Florida is the place to be! This article covers which Disney cruise ships leave these three ports, how to get to the Disney Cruise Line Terminals, and what itineraries are available for Disney cruises from Florida during 2024 ,  2025 , and 2026 . Let us help you plan a magical Florida Disney cruise!

Want even more help planning a Disney Cruise from Florida?  Contact the DCL experts at our favorite Disney Travel Agency, The Vacationeer !  Their planning services are free of charge, so get your free quote today (and find out how much you can save with their generous onboard credit program!)

Which Disney Cruise Ships Sail Out of Florida?

Disney Cruise Line has five ships based in Florida for at least part of 2024, 2025 and 2026: Disney Dream , Disney Fantasy , Disney Magic , Disney Treasure, and Disney Wish .

There are currently no Florida departures scheduled for the Disney Wonder through 2026.

Where do Disney Cruises go from Florida?

There’s nothing quite like setting sail from the Sunshine State. When you cruise with Disney, you can choose from a wide range of itineraries that currently depart from two Florida ports: Port Canaveral (Cape Canaveral) and Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale). PortMiami (Miami) has also hosted some Disney departures in the past.

Whether you’re looking to explore the Bahamas, relax in the Caribbean, or take a transatlantic voyage, Disney Cruise Line has a perfect cruise for your family. And with their world-class amenities and entertainment, you’re sure to have a magical time onboard. Most Florida sailings also include a Castaway Cay day (visiting Disney’s private island in the Bahamas) or a day at Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point (Disney’s new private destination on Eleuthera).

From Florida, Disney Cruises sail to the following destinations:

Bahamian cruises.

Take an exciting trip to Disney Castaway Cay, Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point, Nassau, Key West, and other tropical hotspots.

Caribbean Cruises

Enjoy a rejuvenating voyage to Disney Castaway Cay, Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point, Barbados, Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and beyond.

Transatlantic Cruises

Discover Europe ‘s ports of call, plus spend more time at sea enjoying the ship’s amenities, entertainment, and magic.

See below for more specific itineraries of the Disney cruises from Florida.

Where are the Florida Disney Cruise Line Terminals located? 

There are two active, year-round Disney Cruise ship terminals in Florida. Disney Cruise Line offers departures from Port Canaveral Terminal and Port Everglades Fort Lauderdale Terminal. Previous departures also took place from the Miami Port Terminal, though nothing is currently scheduled from there.

Below we list everything you need to know about Disney cruise ships departing from Florida, including the specific addresses of the terminals.

Departures from Port Canaveral, Florida

Port Canaveral

Port Canaveral, FL | Image © Disney

Which Disney cruise ships sail out of Port Canaveral Terminal?

The Disney Fantasy and the Disney Wish cruise ships currently depart from the Port Canaveral terminal. The Disney Treasure will sail from Port Canaveral starting in late 2024. And the Disney Magic returns to Port Canaveral in mid 2025.

Port Canaveral is one of the busiest cruise ports in the world, and it’s also the home port of Disney Cruise Line. Disney Cruise Line ships departing from Port Canaveral will sail to destinations throughout the Caribbean and Bahamas during 2024, 2025, and 2026.

Port Canaveral, located on Florida’s Space Coast, is about an hour’s drive from Orlando. The Port Canaveral terminal is located just minutes from the beach, and it’s also relatively close to Orlando International Airport (MCO).  If you’re flying into MCO, ground transportation options can take you directly to the port. And because it’s so close to Orlando, it’s a popular port for people who’ve decided to extend their Disney World vacation by cruising with Disney for the first time .

Several parking options are available near the terminal if you’re driving to Port Canaveral.

No matter how you’re getting to Port Canaveral, it’s easy to start your cruise vacation from this convenient location.

Disney Cruise Line – Port Canaveral Terminal Address

The address for Disney Cruise Line at Port Canaveral is:

9155 Charles M. Rowland Dr. Port Canaveral, FL 32920

Parking is available adjacent to the DCL terminal in a garage operated by the Port Canaveral Port Authority. The garage opens at 10:15 AM, and cash is not accepted for payment.

Approximately how long does it take to drive to Port Canaveral?

  • A 43-minute drive from Orlando International Airport (MCO)
  • A 46-minute drive from Melbourne Orlando International Airport (MLB)
  • A 61-minute drive from Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB)
  • A 60-minute drive from Walt Disney World Resort

Note that high-profile rocket launches at nearby Cape Canaveral can have major impacts on traffic in the region; plan accordingly should a launch be scheduled on the first or last day of your cruise.

Transfers between Orlando International Airport and Port Canaveral

Disney Cruise Line offers bus transportation from Orlando International Airport to Disney’s Cruise Port. This option provides a simple way to go between the cruise port from the airport.

A one-way ticket costs $45 per person, and a round trip is $90. Children under the age of three are free.

The cost of a family of four’s round-trip transportation on a Disney Cruise Line bus to the port is $360. This charge includes baggage handling service. You will get custom luggage tags for all your checked bags before departing, along with specific instructions on how to use them based on your travel plans.

Follow those instructions, and the rest will be taken care of by Disney. On the first night of your cruise, they will appear at your stateroom door as if by magic. The luggage transfer service provided by the Disney Cruise bus is a key benefit of airport-to-port transportation to Port Canaveral.

Call (800) 951-3532 to arrange ground transfers in advance, or better yet, have The Vacationeer do it for you!

It is also possible to arrange private transportation from Orlando Airport to Port Canaveral. You can take an Uber, Lyft, taxi, limo, or private van service. If you prefer, you can also rent a car at the airport.

Which should you take? We think the Disney Cruise Line transfer option or Uber would be your best bet . Renting a car is not necessary. The Vacationeer can assist you with transportation ground. Contact them for a free, no-obligation quote and find out what they can do to reduce the cost of a Disney cruise .

Port Canaveral, Florida Disney Cruise Ships and Itineraries

Here’s a quick glance at the different types of cruises sailing from this Home Port of Disney Cruise Line. For further details, including sail dates, ships, and prices , check out our in-depth article on Disney Cruises sailing out of Port Canaveral .

2024 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From Port Canaveral, Florida

  • Bahamian Cruises (3, 4, 5, or 6 nights)
  • Caribbean Cruises (6, 7, or 10 nights)
  • Lighthouse Point Inaugural Cruise (7 nights)
  • Disney Treasure Maiden Voyage Cruise (7 nights)

2025 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From Port Canaveral, Florida

  • Bahamian Cruises (3, 4, or 5 nights)
  • Caribbean Cruises (7 or 10 nights)
  • Transatlantic Cruise (13 nights)

2026 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From Port Canaveral, Florida

  • Caribbean Cruises (7 nights)
  • More to be announced in the future

Do you have questions about upcoming Disney Cruises from Florida, or are you ready to book your Disney cruise ? Contact the DCL experts at The Vacationeer for your free, no-obligation quote and find out how much you can save with their generous onboard credit program.  There’s no charge to use their planning services!

Departures from Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale), Florida

DCL Port Everglades Terminal Fort Lauderdale

Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, FL | Image Courtesy Broward County's Port Everglades

Which Disney cruise ships sail out of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale?

In 2024, 2025, and 2026, select Disney Dream itineraries will depart from Port Everglades. The Disney Magic joins the Fort Lauderdale fleet for portions of 2025.

Despite the name, Port Everglades is not located in the Florida Everglades.  It is on the southeastern coast of the Florida peninsula, in the Fort Lauderdale / Hollywood / Dania Beach areas of Broward County.

It has long been home to multiple cruise and cargo lines, but Disney Cruise Line had not used it as a Home Port prior to 2023. Now that Disney has taken up residence, they have a dedicated terminal building.

Port Everglades is less than 15 minutes away from the Fort Lauderdale Airport.

Disney Cruise Line – Port Everglades Fort Lauderdale Terminal Address

The address for Disney Cruise Line at Port Everglades is:

1800 SE 20th Street Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316

Upon arriving at the port, follow the signs to Disney Cruise Line at Terminal 4, where you can drop off luggage. From there, you’ll be directed to the parking garage to park your car.

Parking at the port is available through parking garages and surface lots. Advance reservations/payments are not accepted.

Approximately how long does it take to drive to Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale?

  • A 12-minute drive from Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport (FLL)
  • A 35-minute drive from Miami International Airport (MIA)
  • A 53-minute drive from Palm Beach International Airport (PBI)
  • A 3 hour and 11-minute drive from Walt Disney World Resort
  • A 3 hour and 6-minute drive from Orlando International Airport (MCO)

Transfers between area airports and Port Everglades

Transfers to and from the airport may be available on embarkation/debarkation days for a fee of $25-40 depending on airport and travel date.

Private transportation such as Uber, Lyft, taxi, and car rental are also available.

Transfers between Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport and Port Everglades

Transfers to and from the airport are expected to be available on embarkation/debarkation days for a fee.

Port Everglades, Florida Disney Cruise Ships and Itineraries

Fort Lauderdale is a year-round home for at least a couple of Disney cruise ships. Here’s a brief look at what’s currently on offer. For more complete information, check out our Disney cruises from Fort Lauderdale article.

2024 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From Fort Lauderdale / Port Everglades Florida

  • Caribbean Cruises (5 nights)
  • Transatlantic cruise (13 nights)

2025 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From Fort Lauderdale / Port Everglades Florida

2026 disney cruise itineraries departing from fort lauderdale / port everglades florida.

  • More cruises to be announced

For more information on booking a Disney Cruise from Fort Lauderdale, contact The Vacationeer .  There’s no charge to use their planning services, and you’ll even get a credit to use toward onboard purchases!

Departures from Miami, Florida

Aerial image of Port Miami Terminal

Port Miami, FL | Image courtesy MiamiDade.gov

What Disney Cruise Ships sail out of the Port of Miami Terminal?

At the moment, no Disney cruise ships are scheduled to sail out of Miami.

The port had been home to regularly-scheduled Disney cruises for about 12 years, but the most recent scheduled departure was on October 3, 2023. Shortly afterward, Disney opened a dedicated year-round terminal at Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale), some 30 miles away. Because of this, it is unlikely that Miami will be used as a major departure port for Disney in the foreseeable future.

The Port of Miami, commonly called PortMiami, is a major seaport situated at the mouth of the Miami River. It is the world’s largest passenger port and one of the largest cargo ports in North America.

As the busiest cruise/passenger port in the world, PortMiami also enjoys the title “cruise capital of the world.” The port is home to several major cruise lines.

PortMiami is just 15 minutes away from Miami Airport.

Disney Cruise Line – Miami Port Terminal Address

The address for the Miami Port Terminal is:

Port Miami 1015 North America Way Miami, FL 33132

When you arrive at the port, follow the signs to the appropriate terminal. You’ll then be asked to park your car in a nearby lot (about half a mile away). A shuttle runs from the terminal to the ship.

Parking is available onsite through Port Miami.

Approximately how long does it take to drive to the Port of Miami?

  • A 15-minute drive from Miami International Airport (MIA)
  • A 50-minute drive from Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport (FLL)
  • A 3 hour and 19-minute drive from Walt Disney World Resort
  • A 3 hour and 22-minute drive from Orlando International Airport (MCO)

Transfers between Miami International Airport and Port of Miami

Transfers to and from the airport are typically available (only on embarkation and departure days) for a fee. If you wish to purchase ground transfers in advance, you can call (800) 951-3532, as a limited number may be available upon arrival. Better yet, contact The Vacationeer and let them handle it!

Pick up your luggage at Baggage Claim when you arrive at Miami International Airport. You will be directed to your designated transportation by a Disney Cruise Line representative outside Baggage Claim. Depending on arrival time and the number of passengers, the vehicle may be a taxi, minibus, or motor coach.

You can also arrange private transportation between Miami Airport and the Port of Miami. Your options include taking an Uber, Lyft, taxi, limo, or private van service. You can also rent a car at the airport if you choose (but it’s not recommended).

Port Miami, Florida Disney Cruise Ships and Itineraries

Here’s a brief look at the Disney cruises which are currently scheduled out of Miami. For specifics on pricing, dates, and destinations, visit our Disney Cruises sailing from Miami  article.

2024 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From M iami, Florida 

  • None currently scheduled

2025 Disney Cruise Itineraries Departing From M iami, Florida 

2026 disney cruise itineraries departing from m iami, florida .

Ready to Book your Florida Disney Cruise?

If you’re looking to set sail on any of the Disney Cruises departing from Florida, contact the Disney Cruise experts at The Vacationeer . They can also provide you with helpful tips and tricks, free no-obligation price quotes, and FREE onboard credit for your Disney cruise ! Best of all, their services are entirely free!

Which Florida Port is Best for Disney Cruises?

The best Florida Port for a Disney Cruise will depend on where you are coming from and where you wish to go.

Many Disney Cruise passengers plan to spend a few days at Walt Disney World before or after their time on a Disney cruise ship. For them, Port Canaveral is the best option.

Those who are flying into Florida just for the Disney cruise, don’t have to be quite so choosy. That said, Port Everglades and Port Miami are closer to major airports than Port Canaveral.

What are the best Disney Cruises from Florida?

The most important consideration is to find a Disney cruise ship and an itinerary that fits your needs. Once you accomplish this, you’ll have your best Disney Cruise ship .

The best Disney Cruises from Florida will simply depend on where – and for how long – you and your family wish to travel. You’ll also have to factor in the dates you can travel and select from the available options. So whether it’s taking a short 3-day cruise to Nassau and Castaway Cay (which is a great way to save on your cruise ) or splurging on a 10-day Southern Caribbean voyage, the best Disney cruise departing from Florida will depend on your own goals and circumstances.

If you’re looking for a Disney cruise departing from Florida, contact The Vacationeer for more information. They’re the experts on Florida Disney Cruises!  They’ll provide you with helpful tips and tricks, a free no-obligation price quote , and a FREE onboard credit to use your cruise.

And if you’re a Sunshine State resident, they can walk you through all the great Florida Resident Discounts for Disney Cruises .

Contact them today and save money on your next Disney cruise!

Thanks for reading our Disney Cruises from Florida article. Be sure to check out our articles on other Disney Cruise departure ports, including Galveston .

Enjoy your trip!

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Disney's Old Key West Resort

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A Home Base with Extra Space

Stay in a Disney Deluxe Villa with just-like-home amenities like a kitchen, washer, dryer and separate bedrooms. Read More

Stay in a Disney Deluxe Villa with just-like-home amenities like a kitchen, washer, dryer and separate bedrooms. These outstanding accommodations go beyond the traditional hotel room. Designed with comfort in mind, Disney Deluxe Villas are ideal for families and larger parties.

Choose from 1-Bedroom Villas, 2-Bedroom Villas and 3-Bedroom Grand Villas with the following features:

  • A full kitchen , so you can prepare meals and snacks from the comfort of your villa
  • Spacious living and dining areas where your family can share quality time together
  • Separate bedrooms that offer space, privacy and tranquility – so it’s easy to rest, relax and recharge your spirit after each exhilarating vacation day
  • A washer and dryer , so you can pack lightly and avoid airline baggage fees

A little more than you need? Consider booking a Deluxe Studio, which includes a kitchenette and 2 queen beds—a great option for smaller travel parties and shorter stays.

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Enjoy a simplified arrival at your Disney Resort hotel! Use the app to begin the check-in process , view your room number and even unlock your door .

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  • Make vacation plans during your stay—and review existing plans
  • Enter the theme parks (with a valid park reservation and valid admission) using Disney MagicMobile service
  • Order food and beverages with mobile order service
  • Check park schedules
  • Get directions
  • Explore transportation options
  • View your Disney PhotoPass photos

And that’s only the beginning!

Learn more about the My Disney Experience app .

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Once you’ve settled in, let Disney Genie service summon the attractions, entertainment and dining experiences you love the most. Plus, as a Disney Resort hotel guest get early access to purchase individual Lightning Lane entry for up to two different attractions each day.

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Sailing the Florida Keys: 2 week Florida Keys Sailing itinerary

By: Author Reilly Mulligan

Posted on Published: August 5, 2023  - Last updated: October 9, 2023

Categories Florida Keys

Home » Florida Keys » Sailing the Florida Keys: 2 week Florida Keys Sailing itinerary

Sailing the Florida Keys: 2 week Florida Keys Sailing itinerary

Looking for a guide to sailing the Florida Keys ? You have come to the right place! Here’s a full circumnavigation Route of the Florida Keys from an avid Florida sailor. 

The Keys are a magical place and the only place in the continental US where you will find water that is a classic crystal clear turquoise shade. You could spend months exploring the hundreds of reefs and keys. If you don’t have months to spend exploring, I have got you covered.

I’ve compiled a cohesive itinerary for your Florida Keys circumnavigation that can be done within a week, but you’ll want to have more time. I promise. I would recommend that you set aside at least two weeks for this trip, so you can stop and explore the places that stand out to you the most.

This sailing journey through the Keys begins in the Miami/ Key Biscayne area. If you don’t have your own sailboat, you can rent one from sailo.com . For this journey, a sailboat with a shoal keel or a catamaran would be the best fit, as the Florida Keys are surrounded by relatively shallow waters.

The sailboat / yacht rentals out of the Miami/ Key Biscayne area are currently ranging from $450-$2000+ a day. I would recommend doing as much provisioning as possible while in this area, as you will have a wider variety of options and a better deal on gas and diesel.

After you get your boat stocked up and ready for your trip, you can anchor or moor off of Dinner Key for the night before starting your journey.

Florida Keys Sailing Guide: A 2 week itinerary

1. sailing from dinner key to rodriguez key.

49 Nautical Miles // 8 hours of sailing

If you decide to spend the first night of your journey at Dinner Key, the city has moorings available for $29.16 a night for vessels under 40 feet.

If you opt to spend the money for the mooring ball, you will also have access to pump-out facilities, laundry, exceptionally clean bathrooms and showers, and a dinghy dock (although it is quite a distance from the mooring field). There is also a shuttle service that runs to the mooring field from 8 am-5 pm; however, it doesn’t run if there are high winds and can result in having you stuck on shore without a ride back to your home.

This spot off Dinner Key offers very little protection and is open to all directions except the east.

Once you have weighed anchor and are ready to start heading to your next destination, head southwest towards the Biscayne flats, south of Key Biscayne.

If you want to stop for the night or need to duck away from an oncoming storm, you can anchor in No Name Harbor or along the edges of the Cape Florida Channel. After passing through the Biscayne flats, keep heading east towards the Atlantic Ocean. Once you’ve bypassed all of the channel markers, turn south and start heading through the waters of the Biscayne National Park.

Keep heading south down Hawk Channel, you will soon come to an area known as Mosquito Bank. Once you are sailing through the Mosquito Bank, you will see Rodriguez Key to your southwest. There are crab pots virtually everywhere, even within the channel. Be sure to be on the lookout, if you plan on getting in after dark it is crucial that you have a reliable bright spotlight.

I recommend anchoring on the northwest side of the island, in order to get the most protection possible. You might have a little bit of trouble trying to get your anchor to set, as the bottom consists of seagrass, rock, and coral.

Keep in mind that it is illegal to anchor on coral, so be sure to find a patch of sand or seagrass to drop the hook in. For southbound travelers, this is their first taste of the crystal clear water that the Keys are known for.

On days with better visibility, you can sometimes see your anchor in 7-10 feet of water. After getting your anchor set, be sure to go to shore and do some exploring on this beautiful, untouched mangrove island.

Dinner-Key-to-Rodriguez-Key-sailing-the-florida-keys

2. Sailing from Rodriguez Key to Little Crawl Key

37.9 Nautical Miles // 6 hours of sailing

Be cautious of crab pots along this route as they are littered everywhere. You should have no issues as you’re heading south down Hawk Channel, it is a relatively well-marked channel.

Once the channel starts bearing more west, you will find yourself coming up to the south side of Tavernier Key. You can also stop here and anchor for the night on both the north and south sides of the island and it has a decent sandy bottom that provides good holding. Little Crawl Key is home to Curry Hammock State Park.

Curry Hammock State Park is the largest piece of untouched land between Key Largo and Big Pine Key. If you visit during the fall you may be lucky enough to witness the huge migration of peregrine hawks that stop on the island on their pilgrimage south. Little Crawl Key is just south of Crawl Key.

They’ve been given their names due to the large number of turtle nesting that occurs on the island, with tons of tiny hatchlings crawling to the sea every year.

There are mangrove paddling trails that you can traverse on a kayak, dinghy, or paddleboard to get an up-close and personal view of the mangroves and all of the life inside of them. There are also hiking and biking trails on land if you would like to spend some time with solid ground under your feet. 

Rodriguez-Key-to-Little-Crawl-Key

3. Cruising from Little Crawl Key to Newfound Harbor Key

28.8 Nautical Miles // 4.5 Hours of Sailing

Before heading west out of Hawk Channel, be sure to stop at Looe Key Reef to do some amazing snorkeling and diving. There are tons of mooring balls surrounding the island on a first come first serve basis, be sure not to drop the hook on any reef or coral, as it is illegal.

If the mooring balls are all taken and you must anchor, be sure to find a nice patch of sand to drop the hook in.  You will find some of the best snorkeling and diving in the Florida Keys at the reef off Looe Key. While swimming around the reef you may come across some goliath groupers, spotted eagle rays, barracudas, or even a black-tip reef shark.

If you have extremely placid weather, you may be able to spend the whole night at Looe Key Reef. However, if you have any type of wind or swell, I would recommend heading a bit further inland for the night. Leaving the reef, head west-northwest towards Big Pine Key.

There is a slightly shallow area just north of Munison Key where you should keep an eye on your depth finder. You will find a ½ square mile of reef just off the coast of Palm Island that hosts an amazing diversity of coral, including fan coral, brain coral, boulder coral, and star coral.

Diving, while there is a northwest wind blowing, will provide you with the best conditions for good visibility.

Little-Crawl-Key-to-Newfound-Harbor-Key-sailing-the-florida-keys

4. Cruising from Looe Key to Key West

25.3 Nautical Miles // 4 Hours of Sailing

As you are approaching Key West ; your senses may start to overwhelm you. It is one of the best places to go sailing in the Florida Keys.

You will be able to hear the music and people laughing from the downtown area, smell the burgers cooking on the grill, smell the deckhands cleaning fish on the docks while joking with their crewmates, and hear an almost constant buzzing of motors and jetskis all around the island.

You can anchor in the northwest inlet of Fleming Key, and dinghy into downtown from there. You will still have a little bit of traffic buzzing around you, which is virtually impossible to avoid in such close proximity to Key West. You can also anchor on the Northeast side of Wisteria Island, which is a good option as well.

However, a few people have reported that there is a sizable amount of derelict boats off of Wisteria Island that tend to drag if there is any weather at all. It is also a considerable distance from the dinghy docks on Key West. If you decide to leave your tender at the dinghy dock, it costs $8 a day. I would still recommend locking up your belongings to make sure that everything is where you left it when you return.

Once you get onshore in Key West, the activities available are essentially endless. There is something to do for the whole family. If you are a literary lover, you can stop at the Hemingway Home and Museum and meet the six-toed cats that live on the grounds.

You can also get a tour and see where Hemingway spent his nights writing his multiple masterpieces. The pool on the premises was constructed in 1938, and is gargantuan in size, especially for this era. It was the only pool within 500 miles of Key West when it was constructed. Entrance to the Hemingway Home costs $18/day for adults, $7 for children between 6-12 years old, or free for children 5 and under. Entrance into the home also gives you access to a 20-30 minute guided tour.

If you would like to get a little more in-depth view of the life of Ernest Hemingway, you can grab dinner and a drink at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, one of Hemingway’s favorite hang-outs.

Looe-Key-to-Key-West

If you would like to see a more colorful side of Key West, you can visit Nancy Forrester’s Secret Garden. Nancy Forrester’s Secret Garden is a parrot sanctuary that homes multiple endangered species of macaws and parrots.

Entrance to the sanctuary costs $10 for adults and $5 for children between the ages of 5 and 11 years old.

A visit to Key West is not complete until you’ve got a photo taken in front of the Southernmost Point in the Continental US, a classic must-see stop that is free to visit. From this point, it is only 90 miles to Cuba.

Duval Street runs right through the middle of Key West, oriented to run north and south. There are tons of little shops and cafes to stop and poke in and grab refreshments when necessary. If you find yourself on the north side of Duval Street, you will come across Mallory Square.

Mallory Square is known for its magnificent view of the sunset, and the countless buskers and street performers earning their living everywhere that you look. If you have a hankering for something sweet, be sure to stop at Kermit’s Key West Key Lime Shoppe for a frozen dark chocolate-covered piece of Key Lime Pie .

If you want to be blown away by the impressive size of the marine wildlife that Key West has to offer, take a trip over to Stock Island and visit Robbie’s of Key West Marina. There is a $2.50 entrance fee to go out on the dock and $4 more for a bucket full of fish to feed the tarpon. You will be able to see your hand and wrist get completely swallowed by a tarpon before it takes its treats and releases your appendages.

things to do in key west

5. Key West to Dry Tortugas

64 Nautical Miles // 10 Hours of Sailing

Dry Tortugas National Park is a 100-square-mile park. It is a bird watcher’s paradise. It is one of the only places in the continental US where you can find endangered sooty terns nesting.

It is also home to one of the only known nesting colonies of frigate birds. There have been over 300 species of birds identified within its grounds. Fort Jefferson, an octagonal fort, proudly dominates Garden Key. The construction for it began in 1845. It was meant to be a military installment for US ships to patrol the Gulf of Mexico Construction was never completed and the fort was never armed, but it still sits on Garden Key, the second largest key in all of the Dry Tortugas.

Garden Key is also home to the visitors center, parks headquarters, and campgrounds. Entrance to the park costs $15 a person, excluding people under the age of 16, and is paid through a self-service fee area on the main dock at Garden Key.

here are no trash receptacles on the island so you need to “pack in and pack out” everything that you bring. Be sure to respect your neighbors and mother nature, and remember that littering is illegal. There are also no lifeguards on duty so swimming is at your own risk. It is encouraged to always use the buddy system while swimming or snorkeling

Keep in mind that it is illegal to molest, stand or sit on coral, as it does a considerable amount of damage to the ecosystem.

Anchoring on the southeast side of Fort Jefferson typically allows you the best protection. Once you get the hook set, you will find yourself in a remote tropical paradise. The Dry Tortugas National Park is only accessible by seaplane, ferry, or private boat.

The Dry Tortugas has some of the best fishing that you will ever have the pleasure of experiencing. People with their own boats are required to get a boating permit for each vessel in order to be allowed to fish. These permits are free and can be picked up at the Garden Key Dock House.

You will need to get a boating permit for any type of vessel including kayaks, paddle boards, or dinghies. You will also need your Florida saltwater fishing license . Lobstering and spearfishing are both prohibited within the park. “J” hooks are not permitted to be used within the park, but “circle” hooks are acceptable.

If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to catch some of the amazing gamefish that call the Dry Tortugas their home such as amberjacks, bluefin tunas, blackfin tunas, wahoos, kingfish, black grouper, red grouper, swordfish, sailfish, and permits. The species of fish that you pull up will be dependent on the time of year that you go.

There are also at least five turtle species present in the park including Loggerheads, Green Turtles, Kemp’s Ridley, Hawksbill, and Leatherbacks. President Franklin D. Roosevelt designated the fort a national monument. Now, you cannot remove any seashells, sand, rocks, coral, or glass from the national park.

things-to-do-in-Dry-Tortugas.

If you don’t feel up to making the entire 64-mile trip, you can stop about halfway in between Key West and the Dry Tortugas at the Marquesas Keys, turning the voyage into a slightly more manageable two-day trip.

The Marquesas Keys, not to be confused with the Marquesas Islands found in French Polynesia, are located about twenty miles west of Key West. It is sometimes referred to as “Button Island” due to its round shape. It was known to have been used for military target practice as recently as the 1980s.

The Marquesas are four miles in diameter, and the lagoon located in the center is known as Mooney Harbor. After leaving Marquesas Keys, it is a 36-mile distance to the Dry Tortugas.

Dry-Tortugas

The next section of this sailing route through the Keys is through the Inner Passage, on the northwest side of the Keys in the Florida Bay, rather than the Atlantic Ocean side.

his region in the Florida Keys is rather shallow, and I wouldn’t recommend attempting the journey without a functioning transducer on board. Also, if your boat draws more than five feet, you may want to reconsider and complete the trip through Hawk Channel, on the Atlantic Ocean side.

Key-West-to-Dry-Tortugas-sailing-trip

6. Dry Tortugas to Snipe Point

64.2 Nautical Miles // 10 Hours of Sailing

After visiting Key West and the Dry Tortugas, you may want to get away from the tourists a bit and hang out where the locals like to hang out. I would recommend going to Snipe Point on a weekday because the sandbar can become one giant party on the weekend.

Snipe Point is within the Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge, which was established in 1938 as a refuge for migratory birds, great white herons, and other tropical wildlife.

This area is commonly referred to as “the backcountry” by locals. Tons of turtles use this beach as a nesting area, so be sure to keep a lookout for nesting spots, and keep your lights to a minimum at night. Great White Heron National Wildlife Reserve consists of 1,000’s acres of untouched shallow, crystal clear waters and mangrove islands.

There are no pets permitted on shore. Be sure to keep your eye out for crab pots as they are littered everywhere around the island and channel.

Dry-Tortugas-to-Snipe-Point

7. Snipe Point to Fat Deer Key

41 Nautical Miles  // 6.5 Hours of Sailing

Fat Deer Key is located just north of Marathon and south of Long Point Key. It is another of our favorite places for Sailing in the Florida Keys.  On the Atlantic side of the island, you will find Coco Plum Beach, with its pristine white powdery sand. This is a great place to hang out if you wish to spend the day cooling down a little bit.

Curry Hammock State Park is located on Fat Deer Key, and within this park you will find the Curry Hammock State Park Nature Trail. Once entering the park, travel west for one mile to find the mouth of the hiking trail. You can find parking on either side of the road.

The hammock that shadows over you gives you a little bit of relief from the hot Florida sun. This state park is home to the largest thicket of Florida thatch palms in the continental US.

Fat Deer Key is just north of Marathon. Marathon is a well established city, and you will find everything you need to reprovision and top off your gas and/or diesel tanks.

Once on shore, there are a multitude of marina and dive shops that you can check out. Some of them include: Captain Hooks Marina and Dive Center and Driftwood Marina and Storage. If you are hungry for some delicious, fresh seafood be sure to stop in at SS Wreck and Galley Grill or the Island Fish Company. You can also check out Florida Keys Aquarium Encounters while exploring Marathon.

Snipe Point to Fat Deer Key

8. Fat Deer Key to Butternut Key

45.5 Nautical Miles // 7 Hours of Sailing the Keys

Butternut Key is located in Florida Bay, the body of water between the Florida Keys and the southern tip of Florida, east of the Gulf of Mexico.

Butternut Key is off the southwest coast of Key Largo. Technically, it is considered to be a part of the Everglades National Park . The maximum stay that is permitted is 14 days. There is a poll and troll zone within 300 feet of the islands, meaning that motors are not permitted.

It is easiest to approach the island from the southwest, off of the Intracoastal Waterway. You will have a 6-7 foot depth at low tide. Just like every other anchorage on the west side of the Keys, be sure to keep an eye on your depth sounder. The bottom is fine sand and soft mud and provides excellent holding. The anchorage is the most comfortable if it is blowing out of the North or East.

You’ll have a fantastic view of the sunset, as this spot is completely open to the West. This untouched, serene, remote tropical paradise inspires everyone who has the pleasure of laying eyes on it, including legendary artist Clyde Butcher. He traveled to Butternut Key in 1997 to preserve her beauty in a photograph forever.

Fat Deer Key to Butternut Key

9. Butternut Key to Dinner Key

49 Nautical Miles // 7 Hours and 45 Minutes of Sailing

When you depart from Butternut Key, head southeast toward the Atlantic Ocean, and then start heading up north once you reach Key Largo. Heading west you are first going to sail north through Baker’s Cut and enter into Buttonwood Sound.

Keep heading northeast through Buttonwood Sound, until you reach Grouper Creek. Again, keep your eyes on your depth sounder to make sure you don’t run aground. Also, keep a diligent eye out for crab pots that cover the waterways through here. After passing through Grouper Creek, you will spit out to the east into Tarpon Basin. As you continue heading north up the Intracoastal Waterway, you will soon enter Dusenbury Creek.

For this portion of the sailing route, it is crucial that you have a functioning engine onboard, as these voyages are nearly impossible without one. After exiting Dusenbury Creek, you will find yourself in a large bay, known as Blackwater Sound.

Continue heading northeast until you come to the mouth of Jewfish Creek. Jewfish Creek will bring you to Barnes Sound, then Card Sound, and then finally Biscayne Bay, inside of the Biscayne National Park. You will be able to anchor back at Dinner Key or find a slip in a marina to treat yourself after your jam-packed voyage.

Butternut Key to Dinner Key

Final Thoughts Before you set sail on your Yacht

If you plan to use our guide to Sailing the Florida Keys, we would love to hear from you so leave us a comment below.

Want more great Florida sailing routes? be sure to check out the Best Places to go Sailing in Florida !

Author: Reilly Mulligan is a sailing enthusiast from Florida who has spent her life sailing and exploring the Sunshine State.

Reilly Mulligan

Reilly is a sailing enthusiast from Florida who has spent her life sailing and exploring the Sunshine State. A native Floridian born who raised in St. Petersburg, Florida, Reilly has spent her whole life going on interesting, off-the-beaten-path trips around the state of Florida and has a plethora of information and experiences to share! While she is not sailing her boat around the Sunshine State she is sharing her experience traveling around the State with the readers of Florida Vacationers!

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Guide to Sailing to the Key West Cruise Port

Posted on Published: 02/14/2023

I’ve sailed on many cruise ships in the Caribbean, and one of my favorite ports of call ever is Key West in the Florida Keys. As a US port, it’s a nice stop where you can turn on your cellular service, use US dollars, and even stop at an American pharmacy if you need any refills. But, it’s also a beautiful, walkable town with so many activities that are great for families and cruise ship passengers.

While some frequent cruisers skip getting off the ship at ports in favor of spending more time on the ship, I highly recommend leaving the ship in Key West. At a minimum, it’s great to walk around, shop, and have a delicious meal before going back to the ship. It’s an easy port to explore.

There are three different docks in Key West where your cruise ship may dock. These include Mallory Square Dock, Outer Mole Pier (owned by the U.S. Navy), and Pier B (which is privately owned and is in front of the Westin Resort). Our recent Virgin Voyages cruise (as well as my last Disney Cruise Line Key West sailing) docked at Mallory Square, which seems to be most commonly used by cruise ships.

This post contains affiliate links and a purchase/click through one of these links may result in a commission paid to us at no additional cost to you.

Scarlet Lady ship docked at Key West

It’s important to note that there has been some talk of local ordinances and changes to cruise ship rules in Key West. During the cruise shutdown, Key West voters to limit cruise tourism in the area.

The proposed ordinance would limit the number of ships based on the number of passengers. While smaller vessels could still be allowed, larger ships would not be permitted. While the Key West residents did approve this, it hasn’t been implemented.

In looking at the cruise calendar for all of the cruises in Key West, it’s clear that not all of the cruise lines have returned to the port of Key West. For instance, we didn’t see any upcoming Disney Cruise Lines or Royal Caribbean ships on the schedule. So keep an eye on these proposed changes if you’d like to visit this popular port of call.

the front of the Conch Tour Train

Excursions or Going Solo

If your cruise ship is going to stop at Key West for a day, you’ll want to consider whether or not you’d like to book an official cruise ship excursion. Unlike some other ports, this is really a place where you can easily comfortably head off on your own. But there are lots of excursion options to consider if you’d prefer to do something scheduled.

These are likely to vary based on availability and can differ by the cruise line. On my last sailing to Key West, offerings included a bike tour, wildlife safari, a trolley tour, parasailing, a catamaran tour, a snorkel trip, a walking tour, a pub crawl, and a rum tasting tour. You may also be able to visit Fort Zachary Taylor State Park or Dry Tortugas National Park.

In general, excursions should be toured in advance, because they may sell out. Booking a cruise-sponsored excursion is typically the safest option – you’ll be refunded if the ship can’t stop there for some reason, and you’ll be sure to be back on the ship in time at the end of the evening.

You can also opt to walk off the ship and do your own thing for the day. It’s fairly easy to get around, and getting back to the ship at the end of the day probably won’t be too difficult. There are several options for getting around. You can walk around, or even rent a golf cart to drive yourself around the town.

On our first visit to Key West, we opted to purchase tickets to the Conch Tour Train. This adorable train makes three stops around Key West, while also offering narration and information about the town. It stops at the seaport, the Southernmost Point, and the Hemingway House.

It was nice to get a ride to those destinations, while also learning about the history of Key West. The Conch Tour Train offers a nice balance between all of those. Tickets can be purchased online in advance, but you can also buy them once you arrive at the port.

There are also walking tour options , which can be a great way to see the town and learn more about the history.

Hemingway Home and Museum

We chose to visit the Hemingway Home and Museum on our first visit to Key West. After visiting the Southernmost Point, we walked down to the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum. While kids may not know much about Ernest Hemingway, they will certainly love the 40-50 six-toed cats that make the house/museum their home.

It’s important to know that the Hemingway Home is cash only, so make sure you have some with you. Guided tours are offered at no additional cost on a set schedule. We had just missed one and decided to skip it. You can easily walk through the house yourself, reading the exhibits. No reservations are required for your visit.

Southernmost point marker

Southernmost Point of the United States

The most popular photo opportunity in Key West, the Southernmost Point marker is definitely a must-see and one of the best things to do in Key West . Go early, because a line forms as tourists want to take their photo by the marker. It’s a gorgeous area on the waterfront as well. We found that everyone in line was friendly and willing to take photos of the group in front of them, so you can all be in the picture.

Mel Fisher Maritime Museum

The Mel Fisher Maritime Museum is a nonprofit maritime museum located in Key West. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. It’s open 7-days a week, and exhibits include both permanent and rotating traveling exhibits.

Entrance to Key West Aquarium with fountain in front

Key West Aquarium

If you are visiting with young children, you may consider visiting the Key West Aquarium . It’s a short walk from the Mallory Square pier, and it’s located among shops and restaurants.

Tickets for the aquarium can be purchased online. Combination tickets, including tickets to tours in Key West like the Conch Tour Train and the Old Town Trolley Tour, are also offered.

Exhibits at the aquarium focus on the local marine life, including sea turtles and sharks. A Sea Turtle Conservation Tour, a jellyfish exhibit, a shark exhibit, and a touch tank are among the popular attractions. Check out their schedule online before you go to see the times of the Shark Feeding and Conservation Tour.

Shopping and Eating in Key West

While there are some fun points of interest and excursions in Key West Florida, during this past visit, I enjoyed just walking around the town. We had a few places in mind to visit, and armed with Google maps, just walked around on our own.

As soon as you walk off your ship, you’ll be faced with souvenir shops and cafes. If you are looking to have a slice of that famous Key Lime pie, there are ample opportunities throughout the town (including at the port). You’ll also see some kiosks where you can book some last-minute excursions if you’ve made a last-minute decision to do one.

We started our journey at the nearby CVS, to pick up a few forgotten items. Then, we walked to Books & Books at the Studios, the bookstore co-owned by famed young-adult author Judy Blume. This is a great place to pick up the latest beach read, especially if you need a book to read on your cruise. They have lots of wonderful books, including staff suggestions if you aren’t sure what to purchase.

Attached to the bookstore is the Studios, a beautiful space with several visiting art galleries. It’s definitely worth visiting after picking up some books.

We then headed to Duval Street, the most popular and busy street on Key West. This is where you’ll find most of the shops, bars, and restaurants – many offering live music.

Most of the restaurants are casual and don’t require reservations, so you can even choose a restaurant just by walking by. Two of the most popular ones for tourists include Sloppy Joe’s and Irish Kevin’s. During our most recent visit, we ate at Lucy’s Retired Surfers Bar & Restaurant , which also has other locations. We really enjoyed the atmosphere as well as our meals and drinks.

Before going back to the ship, we stopped at Mallory Square, an area with some great souvenir shops and kiosks. We made sure to visit the Cuban Coffee Queen, a coffee shop in the indoor building adjacent to the square. It’s a great place to pick up a cup of coffee or a snack before heading back to your ship.

You can really have your choice of experience at the Port of Key West – from adventure excursions to the casual walking around that we did. Just keep in mind that if you do want to participate in an excursion, it’s always best to book those in advance.

Hemingway house yard, Southernmost point marker, front of Conch Tour Train

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  • Destination Guides
  • Florida Keys

Your 7-Day Cruising Itinerary for a Perfect Trip on the Florida Keys

By Chris Boyle

Florida keys

Whether you need relaxation or adventure, we have chosen the perfect seven-day itinerary that has it all

The southernmost point of the United States with a blissfully tropical climate and kaleidoscopic sunsets, Florida is known as the ‘Sunshine State’ for good reason. Legendary beaches, magnificent coral reefs and lush jungle make it the perfect destination for your luxury yacht charter, and many celebrities and US presidents—current and former— vacation here year after year.

In the very south of the state, the worldrenowned Florida Keys form a necklace of tropical islands that curve across the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico towards Cuba. Starting in the glamorous metropolis of Miami Beach, the capital of beach chic, you can soak up the glitz, indulge in the finest luxury spas and dine in some of the world’s top restaurants before making your way through the Keys to Key West, the only Caribbean island in the US.

Famed for their sunsets and signature key lime pies, each of the islands on the way offers an eco-paradise of emeraldgreen lagoons, subtropical everglades, mangrove-lined shores and seas teeming with life. Florida boasts the only living coral barrier reef in North America, attracting elite clientele from all over the world for its spectacular diving and fishing. During your charter you will have the chance to dive through shipwrecks and coral formations, swim with dolphins and fish for tarpon and sharks for your dinner. Whether you seek relaxation or adventure, Florida offers superb cruising territory and by the time you reach Key West you will see why Ernest Hemingway found it so hard to leave.

➤ Arrive in Miami Beach

Day 1: Miami Beach to Elliott Key

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Private jet terminals on the florida keys.

The Shore Club

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Day 2: Elliott Key to Key Largo

Day 3: Key Largo to Islamorada

Day 4: Islamorada to Duck Key

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Day 5: Duck Key to Newfound Harbor

Day 6: Newfound Harbor to Key West

Day 7: Key West and disembark

Day of Arrival

Miami beach

ARRIVE IN MIAMI BEACH

Fly to Miami International Airport and transfer to Miami Beach Marina where your yacht awaits.

The first stop in your itinerary plunges you straight into the heart of Florida’s most glamorous social scene.

One of the USA’s hottest holiday destinations, Miami Beach is famous for its sexy clientele and electrifying nightlife which attracts countless celebrities all year round. A city laced with a sensual Latin vibe, it abounds with a dazzling array of gourmet restaurants, luxurious shopping quarters and achingly chic bars. South Beach—or ‘SoBe’ as it is known to locals—is the epicenter of the island where the bronzed and beautiful lounge on the golden sands, sip iced coffee in the cafés of Lincoln Road, or cycle along sidewalks lined with palm trees. However, there is more to Miami Beach than just glitz and cocktails—a number of museums and fabulous Art Deco architecture prove this is also a city rich in culture. The perfect starting point, Miami Beach caters to the elite traveler’s every need.

WHERE TO BE PAMPERED

Canyon Reach Spa

CANYON RANCH HOTEL & SPA MIAMI BEACH

Treatment and facilities: Not only is the Canyon Ranch Hotel & Spa situated on 750 feet of unspoiled white beach, but it is also within easy reach of the South Beach scene.

There are plenty of opportunities to relax, with a 70,000-squarefoot wellness spa, 150 luxurious suites and four dining venues. On hand are physicians and other health professionals to provide medical advice for those looking to address any health concerns.

Signature treatments: Muscle Melt for Road Warriors, a traditional Thai massage using lemongrass oil and warm herbal pouches pressed into muscles.

Charlotte Prescott, Spa and Fitness Director

+1 305 514 7000

[email protected]

6801 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, 33141

www.canyonranch.com/miamibeach/

ELEMIS SPA AT THE LOWES MIAMI BEACH HOTEL

Elemis Spa

Treatments and facilities: Housed within the fabulous Art Deco St. Moritz building, a Miami Beach landmark, the Elemis Spa offers a chic retreat from the bustle of the city.

The London-based brand offers world-class facials with a scientific focus such as their signature Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial. There are also a number of body treatments that nod to the city’s exotic clime, including the Lime and Ginger Salt Glow or the Frangipani Nourishing Wrap. Covering a vast 18,550 square feet with sixteen treatment rooms, a Calming Lounge, fitness center, hair and nail salon and relaxation rooms complete with hydroptherapy, sauna and steamroom—there is plenty on offer to make sure you are ready to hit South Beach feeling buffed and beautiful.

Signature treatments: Exotic Frangipani Nourishing Wrap, Exotic Lime and Ginger Salt Glow, Aroma Stone Therapy, Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial, Pro-Collagen Quartz Lift Facial, Skin IQ for Men Facial.

Ernest Sanchez, Spa Director

+1 305 695 3400

[email protected]

Lowes Miami Beach Hotel, 1601 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139

www.elemis.com/usa

SPA V AT HOTEL VICTOR

Spa V at hotel victor

Treatments and facilities: Just steps from the bustling South Beach scene, Spa V is an underground sanctuary that is fit for a modern-day sultan.

Scattered pillows, daybeds and subdued lighting complement a co-ed steam bath, cool-down room and South Beach’s first traditional Turkish hammam. With European influences aplenty, and an ambiance that is stylish and sultry, visitors will find the Spa V a calming refuge of tranquillity. Fans of Spa V include former Miami Heat basketball player Shaquille O’Neal.

Signature treatments: The Victor includes an invigorating body scrub using essential oils, a de-stressing Stone Me massage with hot stones and oil and a Visage pour Homme facial.

Ninoshka Williams, Spa Manager

+1 305 779 8787

[email protected]

1144 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, 33139

www.thompsonhotels.com

Where to shop

MICHAEL BASTIAN

BARNEY’S CO-OP

Sleek sister shop to the famous Barney’s in New York, this is one of Miami’s finest retail outlets.

With a range including A.L.C., Alexander Wang, Gant by Michael Bastian, L’Agence, Rag & Bone, Shipley & Halmos, and celebrity patrons such as Naomi Campbell, Penélope Cruz and Nicole Richie, Barneys is the place to go to for top fashion.

+1 305 421 2010

[email protected]

832 Collins Avenue 33139

www.barneys.com

Alexander Mcqueen, Intermix

As the name suggests, Intermix provides discerning fashionistas with a wide range of the latest European and American fashion styles, including some of the industry’s biggest names: Alexander McQueen, Chloé, Diane Von Furstenberg and Michael Kors. Celebrity shoppers include Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and Kate Hudson.

+1 305 531 5950

634 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida 33139

www.intermixonline.com

WHERE TO DINE

Hakkasan

Cuisine: Chinese

Style/Ambiance: Located in the newly renovated Fontainebleau Hotel, Hakkasan was a landmark moment for Miami when it opened in 2009.

Not only did it exemplify the standard and quality that Miami dining had reached, it created a restaurant that would continue to raise the bar even more. Hakkasan doesn’t disappoint, and is a favorite with locals and visitors alike, who flock to sample the excellent Cantonese cuisine, the award-winning wine list and the stylish, opulent ambiance.

+1 786 276 1388

[email protected]

Fontainebleau Resort, 4441 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, 33140

www.hakkasan.com/miami

Joe’s Stone Crabs

JOE’S STONE CRABS

Cuisine: Seafood

Style/Ambiance: Since its opening in 1913, Joe’s Stone Crab has remained a perennial favorite among locals in Miami.

Joe’s specialises in the delicious local stone crab, as well as other regional seafood. Expect a lively time in Joe’s— there’s no reservation policy, but don’t let the idea of a packed house put you off, as the atmosphere is always great. Celebrities such as Madonna, Billy Joel, Muhammad Ali and Presidents Bill Clinton, George W and George H W Bush have all attended this Miami Mecca, and all have left having enjoyed the finest stone crab in Miami.

Ed Witte, Maître d’

+1 305 673 0365

[email protected]

11 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, 33139

www.joesstonecrab.com

WHAT TO DO DURING THE DAY

vizcaya museum & gardens

VIZCAYA MUSEUM & GARDENS

The historic 50-acre Vizcaya Estate will provide distraction for those seeking something other than a day on the beach.

The mansion was built in a European style in 1916 by industrialist James Deering, and the grounds surrounding the mansion blend the garden styles of Tuscany and Île-de-France with the native plant life, creating a beautifully serene retreat. A popular venue for concerts and galas, the estate has also featured in the movies Any Given Sunday and Bad Boys II. A visit to Vizcaya is a perfect day trip, so ask your concierge to make arrangements for you.

Joel M. Hoffman, Director

+1 305 250 9133

[email protected]

3251 South Miami Avenue, Miami, 33129

www.miamidade.gov/vizcaya

Art deco building

SOUTH BEACH ART DECO TOURS

A great way to see the historic district of Miami is on the South Beach Art Deco Tour.

Organized by the Miami Design Preservation League, the 90-minute walking tours are flexible and tailored to your requirements. The private tour offers an introduction to the style that captured Miami during the 1920s and 30s, and encompasses the Art Deco, Mediterranean Revival, and Miami Modern (MIMO) styles found within the Miami Beach Architectural Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Richard Towers, Tour Director

+1 305 672 2014

[email protected]

Art Deco Gift Shop, The Ocean Auditorium, 1001 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, 33139

www.mdpl.org

Wolfsonian-Fiu

THE WOLFSONIAN-FIU

For those looking for a quirky yet interesting experience, The Wolfsonian–FIU Museum is just the ticket.

The brainchild of eccentric collector Mitchell Wolfson Jr, The Wolfsonian–FIU features an eclectic collection of industrial art from 1885 to 1945, and examines the effect of art and design on popular culture. With approximately 120,000 objects, The Wolfsonian–FIU has a wealth of information on display. The top VIP experience on offer is a private tour of the museum, which includes fine wine and a selection of cheeses.

Kelsey Kyle

+1 305 535 2631

[email protected]

Wolfsonian Museum, 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, 33139

www.wolfsonian.org

WHAT TO DO DURING THE NIGHT

Mansion

Regarded as one of Miami’s hottest clubs, Mansion has hosted some of the world’s most glamorous events and features guest performances from top artists.

Hip-hop star Diddy held his MTV Video Music Awards celebration party here, while Britney Spears, Prince and Velvet Revolver have all performed at Mansion. With exquisite décor, world-class DJs playing the latest music and a fashionable guest list, Mansion is one of Miami’s most affluent nightspots. With an ideal location in the heart of South Beach, this lavish club is a great place to begin or end an evening.

+1 305 695 8411

[email protected]

Mansion Nightclub, 1235 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, 33139

www.mansionmiami.com

Mokai

Recently refurbished, the Mokai features a fresh new design that has re-established the club as one of the premier destinations for Miami revellers.

At just 4,000 square feet and capacity for 220 people, this is a far more intimate club than Set or Mansion, which are also part of the Opium Group. The size of Mokai just adds to the exclusivity of the club—very much somewhere to be seen.

+1 305 673 1409

[email protected]

Mokai, 235 23rd Street, 33139, Miami Beach

www.mokaimiami.com

Nikki Beach

NIKKI BEACH

Located right on the ocean, Nikki Beach is regarded as the quintessential way to experience the SoBe nightlife.

The private cabanas and hammocks on the beach are a great place to chill out and watch the movers and shakers while sipping on a cocktail. If you’re looking to dance, head upstairs to the recently opened O-1 (formerly Club Nikki) where top DJs play for models and other glam guests in a faux-1930s bourgeois cabaret setting.

+1 305 538 1111

[email protected]

One Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, 33139

www.nikkibeach.com/miami

With one of the tightest door policies in the world, and a list of celebrity attendees that includes Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears, Cameron Diaz, Mickey Rourke, Sean Penn and Jennifer Lopez, this super trendy club is one of Miami’s finest.

Renovated every year, this club is always fresh, and with a crowd that includes local models, scene makers and DJs, it’s always a fabulous night out.

+1 305 532 0727

[email protected]

1921 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, 33139

www.myntlounge.com

key biscayne

DAY 1: Miami Beach to Elliott Key

21 nautical miles

From the glitz and party atmosphere of Miami Beach to the island paradise of Elliot Key, Day One introduces you to the natural treasures and laid-back vibe for which the Florida Keys are renowned.

Elliott Key is the largest island in the Key Biscayne National Park, a seven-mile stretch of emerald islands, turquoise waters and exquisite coral reefs. Although it lies within sight of downtown Miami, life on Elliott Key seems a world apart. Reachable only by boat, this quiet, lush island was once filled with the pineapple farms of a thriving community of pioneers, but now plays host only to a myriad of birds, rare butterflies and other exotic wildlife. Dotted with picnic tables and small campgrounds, the island offers a number of pleasant hikes, as well as some great scuba diving.

Ritz-Carlton Spa

RITZ-CARLTON SPA

Treatments and facilities: Set within the golden sands of one of the USA’s finest beaches, the full service spa at the luxury Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne resort offers an impressive range of sumptuous treatments for the elite traveler.

Taking inspiration from the natural riches of the ocean, massages include the Atlantic Stone Therapy as well as packages such as the detoxifying Ocean Indulgence. It comes complete with a salon and a stateof- the-art fitness center with an array of fitness classes.

Signature treatments: Tropical Coco-Luscious Body Treatment and Signature Massage—a traditional Swedish massage combined with your choice of aromatherapy oils.

+1 305 365 4157

[email protected]

Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, 455 Grand Bay Drive, Key Biscayne, Florida 33149

www.ritzcarlton.com

Miami Seaquarium’s

MIAMI SEAQUARIUM ’S TRAINER FOR A DAY

This unique experience is one of the city’s most exclusive ‘must-do’s’. Miami Seaquarium offers guests the chance to be a Trainer For a Day.

This incredible course allows elite travelers the chance to learn all about the dolphins from the trainers. Guests will be able to participate in various training sessions, get involved in the set up of the shows and even play with the animals. In addition, there will be an opportunity to tour the Seaquarium and see some fantastic shows.

Cristina Rodriguez, PR and Promotions Manager

+1 305 365 2525

[email protected]

4400 Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne, FL 33149

www.miamiseaquarium.com

Key Biscayne National Park

KEY BISCAYNE NATIONAL PARK

Divers and nature lovers flock to this park to catch a glimpse of its extraordinary natural treasures.

With more than 95% of the park underwater, it is ideal for exploring by boat and also means it is less crowded than other national parks. The lush, green islands are rife with herons, pelicans and rare butterflies and you can easily while away an afternoon navigating the shallow lagoons and mangrove shorelines in a canoe or kayak, keeping a lookout for the endangered American Crocodile. However, it is below the waters of this natural Eden that the park truly comes to life. Over 500 species of fish light-up this aquatic universe in a multitude of colors. Parrotfish and angelfish dart along the coral reefs or among the wrecks that pepper the seabed. Seasoned divers can follow the underwater shipwreck trail to experience all of these lost bounties, which span a century of maritime history. Look out too, for the endangered West Indian manatee or one of the many species of sea turtle that roam these underwater highways.

+1 305 230 1144

Key Biscayne, Florida

www.nps.gov/bisc

Crandon key biscayne

CRANDON GOLF KEY BISCAYNE

Golf lovers will not want to miss this stunning championship 18-hole golf course.

Overlooking Biscayne Bay, it is renowned as one of the most beautiful, and challenging, par-72 courses in the Sunshine State and boasts spectacular grounds draped in lush tropical foliage. Seven saltwater lakes, mischievous sand traps, glorious drives over mangrove thickets and even a subtropical lagoon make it clear why it had been chosen as the site for the Senior PGA Tour for the last 18 years, and elite travelers can walk in the footsteps of such golf greats as Lee Trevino, Chi Chi Rodriguez, Don Messengale, Ray Floyd and Gary Player. The seventh hole has been credited as one of the greatest holes in golf—a par-4 that sends your golfball sailing over spectacular views of the bay. A dinner or gala can also be arranged on the club grounds, should you wish to turn your game into an event.

+1 305 361 9129

[email protected]

6700 Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne, Florida 33149

www.golfcrandon.com

THE RUSTY PELICAN

Cuisine: Modern American

Style/Ambiance: After a $7 million renovation, this landmark eatery has been transformed with floor-to-ceiling windows and an ultra-luxe interior.

The private entrance is a tropical walkway across a cascading waterfall into a sultry dining room clad in polished wood and dotted with tableside aquariums. Choose from small plates such as seabass ceviche, eel and fois gras, or the signature lobster bouillabaisse. Among the beautifully presented cocktails is The Rusty Spice, a blush-pink infusion of watermelon and ginger sprinkled with petals.

+1 305 361 3818

[email protected]

3201 Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne, Florida 33149

www.therustypelican.com

cantina Beach

CANTINA BEACH

Cuisine: Mexican

Style/Ambiance: A slice of coastal Mexico against a stunning ocean backdrop, Cantina Beach promises sophisticated and authentic Mexican cuisine within the opulent Ritz-Carlton resort.

Tiki torches, plush furnishings and a thatched Palapa roof give an opulent tribal atmosphere, Mexico-native Chef Andres Parlange works his magic with dishes such as Achote braised chicken with almonds, chilis and Mexican chocolate sauce or grilled prawns flambéed in tequila with Cilantro rice. The pride of the restaurant however lies in their wide range of premium tequilas, the largest 100 percent Agave tequila selection in Miami. The resident Tequilier, Heriberto, is on hand to provide exquisite cocktails to pair with your meal as you watch the sun sink into the waves.

+1 305 365 4500

www.ritzcarlton.com/keybiscayne

Rumbar

Richly decorated in sultry reds and chocolate browns, the RumBar aims to transport you to the glamorous heyday of vintage Havana.

Darkwood tables lie next to sumptuous leather sofas and armchairs which are scattered throughout the decadent lounge. RumBar boasts a menu of 52 rums, cachaças and piscos from no less than 18 countries, so you are sure to find a tipple to suit your taste, as well as a dizzying array of cigars from the humidor. On weekends, guests are serenaded by a four-piece band in white dinner jackets, so that you can enjoy the seductive rhythms of live Latin music as you sip your drink.

[email protected] m

Key Largo

DAY 2: Elliott Key to Key Largo

23 nautical miles

Sandwiched between the subtropical wilderness of the Everglades National Park and North America’s only living coral barrier reef, Key Largo is an island blessed with natural wonders.

The largest island of the Florida Keys, it boasts a landscape of tropical hardwoods, winding creeks and spectacular underwater scenery which has drawn the attention of both Hollywood and the cream of society. Made famous by the 1948 film Key Largo starring Humphrey Bogart, it provides an exotic escape just hours from Miami airport. One of the diving capitals of the world, the reef provides a wealth of stunning coral formations which attract divers from all over the globe. Not to be missed is the wreck of the Spiegel Grove, a 510-foot former US Navy vessel which was sunk in 2002 and is becoming the backbone of a new artificial reef. The bounty of the reef also provides excellent sport-fishing, the rewards of which you can bring to almost any restaurant on the island to be prepared for your dinner.

Wood-oven pizza

THE GALLEY AT THE OCEAN REEF CLUB

Cuisine: American

Style/Ambiance: Nestled on the northernmost tip of Key Largo amid 2,500 tropical acres lies the members-only Ocean Reef Club.

Founded in the mid 1940s by Minneapolis entrepreneur Morris Baker, this exclusive community has been offering complete privacy to presidents, heads of state, industry leaders and celebrities for more than 60 years. Set within the club’s Fishing Village, The Galley continues the nautical theme with specialty fresh fish dishes served with panoramic views overlooking the club’s private marina. A lengthy list of wood-oven pizzas and pasta dishes are also on offer in this modern, family friendly establishment available only to members and their guests. Relax and dine among some of the Keys’ elite clientele and watch the yachts come and go. For membership enquiries, contact Michelle Simpson, Executive Director of Membership and Marketing on +1 305 367 5921.

Susan Boudreau, Manager

+1 305 367 5879

[email protected]

The Fishing Village, Ocean Reef Club, 35 Ocean Reef Drive Suite 200, Key Largo, Florida 33037

www.oceanreefclub.com

GUS’ GRILLE

Cuisine: Seafood Grill

Style/Ambiance: Only the finest and freshest ingredients are selected for the seafood fare on offer at Gus’ Grille.

Subtly refined touches such as polished wicker chairs and crisp white tablecloths add to the laid-back Caribbean vibe of this award-winning restaurant. Expect dishes such as lemon pepper (mahi mahi) in Caribbean curry sauce or jumbo lobster ricotta ravioli with sherry butter sauce and asparagus tomato compote. The pièce de résistance however is the sunset view over the bay which provides an ever-changing backdrop in hues of pinks, purples and blues.

+1 305 453 0000

[email protected]

Key Largo Marriott Bay Resort, 103800 Overseas Highway, Key Largo, Florida 33037

www.marriottkeylargo.com/pages/dining

Alligator, Everglades National Park

EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK

The Everglades National Park is the largest subtropical wilderness in the United States and is home to a variety of rare and endangered species, including the American crocodile and the West Indian manatee.

The Everglades are a World Heritage Site, International Biosphere Reserve, and Wetland of International Importance and there are several different ways to experience the park. There are jet and air boat tours for those looking to enjoy the everglades in style, or buggy tours and hiking trips which will take you further into the prairies, wetlands and sloughs. Kayaking and canoeing tours let you explore off the beaten track with a little fishing thrown in, or for the more adventurous, a floatplane lets you see the Everglades from the skies.

+1 305 242 7700

Everglades National Park, 40001 State Road, 9336, Homestead

www.nps.gov/ever

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

JOHN PENNEKAMP CORAL REEF STATE PARK

One of the jewels of the US state park system, the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park shouldn’t be missed.

The first underwater state park in the United States, it protects 78 square miles of coral reef, mangrove swamps and tropical hammocks and a host of colorful marine life. Snorkelers will delight in the 600 varieties of fish such as the stoplight parrot fish or the cocoa damselfish that flit through the park’s seagrass beds. Make sure to grab your scuba gear and see them for yourselves. A popular highlight is the Christ of the Deep, a two-ton underwater statue of Jesus. There are plenty of snorkeling and canoe trails through the mangroves, or if you prefer to stay on land, the visitor center’s 30,000-gallon saltwater aquarium lets you view the best of its inhabitants through floor-to-ceiling glass walls.

Elena Muratori, Park Services Specialist

+1 305 451 1202

[email protected]

MM 102.5 OS, 102601 Overseas Hwy., Key Largo, Florida, 33037

www.pennekamppark.com

Swimming with Dophins © Bob Krist

DOLPHIN PLUS

Key Largo’s surrounding coral reef, lush grounds and warm waters make it the perfect location to encounter some of the ocean’s friendliest mammals.

Dolphin Plus offers a wide range of both structured and natural swims, as well as sea lion encounters. There is also the opportunity to shadow a dolphin trainer for a day which includes swims and assisting with dolphin and sea lion training—a must for any sea life lover. Swimmers must be at least seven years old to participate.

+1 305 451 1993

[email protected]

31 Corrine Place, Key Largo, Florida, 33037

www.dolphinsplus.com

KEY LARGO MARRIOTT BAY RESORT SPA

KEY LARGO MARRIOTT BAY RESORT SPA

Treatments and facilities: Set within the grounds of the luxury Marriot Bay Resort, this spa offers a wide array of custom facials, aromatherapy massages and sea salt scrubs to choose from.

Indulge in one of the signature body wraps such as the Therapeutic Desert Heat Wrap which uses Arizona desert mud to nourish and hydrate, or the soothing Water Lilly Wrap—perfect after a day in the sun.

Signature treatments: Therapeutic Desert Heat Wrap, Detoxifying Seaweed Wrap, Water Lilly Wrap, Plantomer Facial

+1 305 453 0020

[email protected]

www.spakeylargo.com

Miami Mojitas

BREEZER’S BAR AND GRILLE

Delicious frozen concoctions aren’t the only attraction at this open-air bar, as fabulous sunsets are also one of the venue’s main draws.

Just a short walk from the signature restaurant Gus’ Grille, Breezer’s Bar and Grille makes an ideal place to continue your evening. Island music provides a fun touch to your evening in the tropics.

[email protected]

www.marriottkeylargo.com

Cayo largo

DAY 3: key largo to Islamorada

20 nautical miles

The calm, aquamarine waters surrounding the island of Islamorada are among the world’s top destinations for sport fishing, earning the title ‘sport fishing capital of the world’.

For over a hundred years it has been a mecca for seasoned anglers and the rewards of their plunders can be tasted in a number of excellent restaurants. However, it is not just the delights of the sea that attract—many a traveler has become hooked on the laid-back luxury and idyllic landscapes of this small key. Pastel-colored houses with quaint white picket fences, powdery coral beaches and quiet streets adorned with orchids, bougainvilleas and fuchsia make this a popular choice for a sophisticated tropical excursion.

Pierre's

Cuisine: French with Asian and Caribbean influences

Style/Ambiance: The gorgeous colonial façade sets the scene at this onetime plantation house— a gourmet gem with an air of a rustic laid-back chic.

Once you walk along its decked veranda and through its blue painted shutters, you find yourself in an Aladdin’s cave brimming with Indian and African artifacts, Moroccan lamps and richly carved walls. The menu is an eclectic mix of French technique, the finest local seafood and culinary influences from all over the world. Dine on Margez lamb sausage from Alsace-Lorraine, yellowtail snapper and Florida lobster as you recline on banquettes strewn with colorful pillows.

Eric Carlson, General Manager

+1 305 664 3225

81600 Overseas Highway, Mile Marker 81.6, Bayside, Islamorada, Florida 33036

www.pierres-restaurant.com

Atlantic’s edge

ATLANTIC’S EDGE

Cuisine: American Seafood

Style/Ambiance: Handsomely decorated in shades of cream and adorned with chandeliers made of delicate shells, Atlantic’s Edge is a luxurious seafood restaurant that harnesses the bounty of Islamorada’s seas.

Whether you choose to dine inside or along the outdoor patio surrounded by tiki torches, you will be sure to have glorious views of the Atlantic Ocean to accompany your meal. Taking inspiration from its exotic surroundings, the menu offers seafood dishes and American classics served with a tropical twist. Try the guava glazed mahi mahi with bamboo rice and coconut curry sauce, or the black angus cowboy steak with Yukon purée, but make sure you leave some room for one of the homemade desserts.

Michelle Harris, Director of Food & Beverages

+1 305 517 4522

[email protected]

Cheeca Lodge & Spa, Islamorada, Florida 33036

www.cheeca.com/dining-a-entertainment/atlantics-edge

Mahi Mahi , Bud n’ Mary’s

BACKCOUNTRY SPORTFISHING

The island’s unique location between the Atlantic Ocean and the shallow waters of Florida Bay and the everglades makes it ideal for backcountry or ‘bonefishing’, where trophy-worthy fish such as tarpon and bonefish are prime pickings.

There are countless fishing charters to choose from but the classic fishing marina Bud n’ Mary’s provides a nostalgic taste of fishing in days gone by. Established in 1944 and home to some 40 of the finest captains in the world, many of whom were born on the island, Bud n’ Mary’s has been the choice for presidents, movie stars and top athletes. Whether you are a world-class angler or a complete beginner, there will be a fishing charter to suite your needs. End the day with a private cookout or party in the marina’s oceanfront tiki bar where you can dine on the fish you catch.

Sara Michael, Bud n’ Mary’s Fishing Marina

+1 305 664 2461

[email protected]

79851 Overseas Highway, Mile Marker 79.8, Oceanside, Islamorada, Florida Keys

www.budnmarys.com

Cheeca lodge spa Mahi Mahi

CHEECA LODGE SPA

Treatments and facilities: Hidden deep within lush gardens dappled with palms and waterfalls, the Cheeca Lodge Spa provides a tropical sanctuary in the heart of Islamorada.

A sprawling 5,700-square-foot spa boasting seven treatment rooms, a fitness center, adult-only pool and poolside butler-serviced cabanas, there are a number of ways to indulge yourself here. A myriad of treatments are offered using ingredients from fair trade and sustainable sources.

Signature treatments: Little Sea Remineralizing Salt Bath, Golden Veil Body Wrap and the popular Signature Hot Lava Shell Massage.

Francine Mitchell, Spa Director

+1 305 517 4487

[email protected]

www.cheeca.com/spa

Beachfront Massage

ISLAND BODY & SOL SPA AT THE MOORINGS VILLAGE

Treatments and facilities: Set on the white sands of the picturesque Moorings Village, the Island Body and Sol Spa is a small, holistic spa that prides itself on using the finest organic and botanical ingredients in its treatments and rituals.

Within a charming private cottage, guests have a choice of treatment rooms and beachside cabanas in which to enjoy an aromatherapy massage. Owner Amy Schmitt trained extensively in Japan and offers a number of clay body masks and hair treatments as well as her signature Kobido facial with polished gemstones.

Signature treatments: Kobido Facial and Isla Sol Massage

Amy Schmitt, Owner

+1 305 664 3264

islandbodyandsolspa.com

123 Beach Road, Islamorada, Florida 33036

www.islandbodyandsolspa.com

Cheeca Lodge Members Bar

CHEECA LODGE MEMBERS BAR

Sweeping roof arches, rich wood paneling and furnishings in luxe shades of amber and gold give the members-only bar at the Cheeca Lodge and Spa a sophisticated ambiance.

This is where guests at the luxury resort come to sip their cocktails in complete privacy and, as a favorite hotel of choice for elite clientele, you shouldn’t be surprised to spot a celebrity or two. An adjoining lounge and club sun deck are also exclusively available to members, while access to the rest of resorts facilities and amenities, such as the spa, golf course and restaurants, are included in membership privileges.

Kim Rittenberry, Director of Club Membership

+1 305 517 4449

[email protected]

www.cheeca.com/cheeca-club

Duck key

DAY 4: Islamorada to Duck Key

Duck Key lies at the very heart of the Florida Keys offering an oasis of pristine sandy beaches and untouched wilderness.

This smattering of inlets are linked together by Venetian-style bridges and meandering canals, and with picturesque picnic spots and calm waters, this is the perfect family stop-over, or a break for those in search of peace and quiet. Fresh seafood restaurants, homey resorts and year-round sunshine have attracted a number of US presidents and star athletes to the Key over the years, each of whom revel in the excellent fishing, diving and swimming. Grab your snorkel and head to the Bahia Honda State Park, or spend the day relaxing on your yacht and take in the earthy fragrance of the nearby mangrove forests.

Calm Waters Spa

CALM WATERS SPA

Treatments and facilities: Luxury and tranquility go hand-in-hand at the Hawks Cay resort and it has received a host of accolades for its Calm Waters Spa.

The decadent 7,000-square-foot spa features eight treatment rooms, a tropical rain shower room with Vichy shower, and a candlelit whirlpool. The spa menu comprises opulent treatments which evoke the resort’s paradise surroundings such as the Pineapple Sugar Scrub enriched with tropical essential oils or the signature Key Lime Mojito body treatment. There is a ‘Man-Only’ menu with treatments specifically designed for male grooming, while ladies will enjoy the state-of-the-art manicures in the salon. A fully-serviced fitness center including top-of-the-range equipment is available as well as a dry sauna and eucalyptus steam room to provide a relaxing ending to your work out.

Signature treatments: Key Lime Mojito body treatment and Deep Ocean facial.

Ciara Catalano

+1 305 289 4810

Hawks Cay Resort, 61 Hawks Cay Boulevard, Duck Key, Florida 33050

www.hawkscay.com/spa

Snorkeling In Bahia Honda State Park

BAHIA HONDA STATE PARK

For the elite traveler craving golden sands, the 524-acre Bahia Honda State Park provides a break from the mangrove shorelines with over almost three miles of fabulous sandy coastline.

The warm waters and powder-soft Sandspur makes this one of the best beaches in Florida. The shallow waters make for excellent kayaking, swimming and snorkeling, with soft coral, queen conches and small fish dwelling just below the surface. The park is also home to one of the largest remaining silver palms. The Silver Palm Trail offers a chance to see these and more rare plantlife such as yellow satinwood and lily thorns, as well as a variety of butterflies. For guided snorkel tours contact Daryl Obenour from the Coral Reef Park Company on +1 305 872 3210.

Eric Kiefer, Park Ranger

+1 305 872 2353

36850 Overseas Highway, Big Pine Key, Florida 33043

www.floridastateparks.org

Alma

Cuisine: Nuevo Latin American

Style/Ambiance: Adding a Latin flavor to the Florida Keys fine dining scene, Alma is the number one choice for dinner in Duck Key.

The intimate dining room, decorated in tones of olive green with dark wood, provides a causally refined setting for guests to enjoy Latin-Caribbean fare. Incorporating ingredients from his Puerto Rican heritage, Chef Juan Natal offers dishes such as bronzed Florida mahi mahi with crispy plantain toston, black beans and truffle avocado purée, or grilled Angus steak with boniato mash drizzled in cilantro aioli. Guests have the option of dining outside on the veranda where they can enjoy the restaurant’s extensive collection of hand-rolled cigars under the twinkling night sky.

Bethany Reily, Restaurant Manager

+1 305 743 7000

www.hawkscay.com

Heron1

DAY 5: Duck Key to Newfound Harbor

32 nautical miles

The lower keys are the wildlife sanctuaries of the keys and the area surrounding Newfound Harbor is blanketed with wildlife refuges and parks that protect a number of rare and endangered animals and sea life.

Newfound Harbor is a long sandbar that curls across a shallow coral reef within the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and offers a haven for nature lovers. Explore the key’s many mangrove trails and shallow flats that teem with conch, rays and cuttlefish and soak up the backcountry atmosphere. For diving enthusiasts, the crystal clear waters of Looe Key Reef lie just moments away, while the National Key Deer refuge gives you the chance to encounter these rare animals in a stunning location.

Parrotfish, looe key reef

LOOE KEY REEF

Just five nautical miles offshore from nearby Big Pine Key is the beautiful Looe Key reef.

Startling clear waters make this reef an excellent site for snorkeling and scuba diving, particularly for beginners. Over 150 species of fish provide an underwater theater of color—look out for angelfish, parrotfish, barracudas, sharks and rays. See elkhorn coral, purple sea fans, and sponges, before descending 90 feet to explore historic wrecks. In June, the annual Underwater Music Festival sees its coral beds come alive with classical music and jazz as well as underwater Elvis impersonators.

key deer, national key deer refuge

NATIONAL KEY DEER REFUGE

This 9,200-acre refuge of pine forest and hardwood hammocks was established in 1957 to protect the endangered Key Deer.

The deer once roamed throughout the Lower and Middle Keys but due to excessive hunting and the growing population within the Keys, their numbers dwindled. The deer are one of the many rare and endangered species to be found in the park, and can be spotted in the early mornings or late evenings as they search for grass and bougainvillea to nibble on. The prime spots to see them are at the end of Key Deer Boulevard or on No Name Key. For a host of trails to explore seek out the Blue Hole, the largest body of freshwater in the Keys and home to a myriad of wildlife.

+1 305 872 2239

[email protected]

Mile Marker 30.5 BS, Visitor Center Headquarters, Big Pine Shopping Center, 28950 Watson Boulevard, Big Pine Key, FL, 33043

www.fws.gov/nationalkeydeer

Sky Dive Key West

SKY DIVE KEY WEST

Thrillseekers will not want to miss this opportunity to view the best of the Florida Keys.

The beautiful coral reefs, lush emerald islands and never ending sunshine make the Keys the perfect location to experience the rush of a lifetime in a tropical paradise. Falling at 130mph, a sky dive offers spectacular views and whether you are a seasoned professional or a complete beginner, Sky Dive Key West can cater to your needs.

+1 305 745 4386

[email protected]

Sugarloaf Airport, Mile Marker 17, US Highway 1, Florida 33042

www.skydivekeywest.com/contact.html

Kayaking, Big Pine Key

For a watery adventure of a different kind, the crystalline waters, flats and mangrove islands of Newfound Harbor and the surrounding Big Pine Key make for great kayaking.

Many of the small lagoons and islands are only accessible by kayak or small boat and offers an array of wildlife—look out for herons, rays, turtles and even dolphins and sharks. Big Pine Kayak Adventures offer custom tours and kayak delivery to almost any location. Its backcountry tours take you to rarely-seen locations in the remote heartlands of the grass flats and national parks. There are also kayak fishing tours on offer if you have a Florida fishing license and want to net your own tarpon, bonefish or barracuda.

+1 305 872 7474

[email protected]

Mile Marker 30 BS, Old Wooden Bridge Fishing Camp, Florida, 33043

www.keyskayaktours.com

LITTLE PALM ISLAND RESORT

THE DINING ROOM AT LITTLE PALM ISLAND RESORT

Cuisine: French and Cuban fusion

Style/Ambiance: Impeccable service and exquisite fare are the hallmarks of The Dining Room.

Nestled within the tropical hideaway of the Little Palm Island resort, this refined waterfront restaurant offers an eclectic menu of modern seasonal dishes with a tropical twist. Heart of Romaine salads with candied pecans and roasted figs serve as a prelude to coriander crusted elk with dried fruit compote, toasted asparagus and port wine sauce. Picnic baskets and private dining on the beach can be arranged, or the chef’s table can be reserved for an exclusive meal prepared for you by Chef Luis Pous. For the ultimate dining experience, guests can be flown by seaplane to their own private island where they can enjoy a gourmet dinner served by a personal butler, all accompanied by champagne and live music.

Kevin Geanides, Resort Manager

+1 305 872 2551

[email protected]

Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, 28500 Overseas Highway, Little Torch Key, Florida 33042

www.littlepalmisland.com

SpaTerre at little palm Island resort & spa

SPATERRE AT LITTLE PALM ISL AND RESORT & SPA

Treatments and facilities: Mixing Caribbean and Asian influences, this boutique spa and fitness center offers a number of indulgent rituals within the private paradise of the Little Palm Island Resort.

Specialty treatments such as the Coconut Sugar Body Polish and the Margarita Key Lime Pedicure make use of the rejuvenating herbs and minerals found only in Southern Florida while a range of exotic massages from Indonesia to Thailand are also on offer. Try the fragrant outdoor showers and Japanese ‘Ofuro’ soaking tubs infused with aromatherapy oils and sprinkled with petals. The jewel of the spa menu however is the Madrugada Water Massage where guests enjoy a customized massage surrounded the warm turquoise sea.

Signature treatments: Madrugada Water Massage and Sacred Stone Massage.

Jessica Tipler

+1 305 515 3028

[email protected]

www.littlepalmisland.com/florida-resort-spaterre

Tin-roofed conch houses, key west

DAY 6 – 7: Newfound Harbor to Key West

25 nautical miles

A haven for free-spirited artists, eccentric writers and glamorous mavericks—the vibrant island of Key West is the final leg of your charter.

Just 90 miles from Havana, this southernmost island with its clear blue skies, tin-roofed conch houses and palm-lined streets has a distinctly Caribbean air. Here elite travelers can walk in the footsteps of Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Edison and Tennessee Williams, all of whom were entranced by the key’s lush tropical landscapes and laid-back atmosphere. As well as a rich maritime history, Key West is a fishing and diving paradise, and one of the hottest holiday destinations in the US. An eclectic mix of hippies and A-listers, this island meltingpot comes complete with chic hotels, fascinating museums, luxury spas and gourmet restaurants. Finish your day watching one of the island’s spectacular sunsets.

The Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum

THE ERNEST HEM ING WAY HOME & MUSEUM

One of the stars of US literature and erstwhile inhabitant of Key West, Hemingway lived in this stately home for over ten years—mainly writing and drinking cocktails, and leaving the house to go fishing.

The Nobel prize-winner wrote a large portion of his works within these walls, and although only a few of his personal belongings remain—a battered suitcase here, a snakeskin sunhat there—this National Landmark at the center of the Old Town offers a fascinating glimpse into the daily life of the author. Guests can imitate Hemingway’s decadent lifestyle by holding their own private cocktail parties in the verdant gardens, complete with 1930’s music, magicians and period costumes.

Dave Gonzales, Events Director

+1 305 587 4282

907 Whitehead Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.hemingwayhome.com

[email protected]

Harry S. Truman Little White House

HARRY S. TRUM AN LITTLE WHITE HOUSE

One of the highlights of Key West is a tour around the delightful Little White House that was once the residence of former US president, Harry S. Truman.

This charming home served as a winter retreat for the president, and has played host to dignitaries including John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. Today the house has been carefully restored to imitate the way it looked during Truman’s residency, from the tiled fireplace to the decorative wallpaper. The private tours offer fascinating insight into the life of one the shapers of the modern world.

Bob Wolz, Foundation Director

+1 305 294 9911

[email protected]

111 Front Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.trumanlittlewhitehouse.com

The Audubon House & tropical garden

THE AUDUBON HOUSE & TROPICAL GARDEN

Built at a time when pirates prowled the surrounding seas, this elegant 19th century house was once the home of wealthy ‘master wrecker’ John Geiger.

His success in the wrecking trade is apparent in the regal rooms strewn with antique furniture and chandeliers. The real jewels of the house are the rare first edition prints and engravings from renowned artist and ornithologist John James Audubon. Audubon visited Key West in 1832 and drew 22 new birds for his magnum opus, Birds of America. His delicate watercolor lithographs and hand-tinted copper engravings adorn the walls and feature many recognisable Key West inhabitants such as the booby gannet, American flamingo and brown pelican.

Veronique Murphy

+1 305 294 2116

[email protected]

205 Whitehead Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.audubonhouse.com

Yellowtail Snappers, Deep Sea Sportfishing

DEEP SEA SPORTFISHING

Key West is blessed with some of the best fishing in the world and elite travelers should not miss the opportunity to fish the waters Hemingway once ploughed.

Yellowtail snapper, bar jacks and kingfish roam the deep reefs and wrecks, while offshore sharks and marlin provide bigger trophies. Southernmost Sportfishing is located in the Westin Resort marina, the closest marina to the best fishing grounds, and offers spearfishing among other excursions. Later you can enjoy your catch served for you in the resort’s restaurant, Latitudes, or take your trophy home on a customized fish mount.

Andrew DeSantis, Southernmost Fishing

+1 305 393 3299

[email protected]

Westin Resort and Marina, 245 Front Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.southernmostsportfishing.com

Fort Jefferson, Dry Tortugas National Park © Andy Newman

DRY TORTUGAS NATIONAL PARK

Seventy miles west of Key West lies a cluster of seven uninhabited islands that make up the Dry Tortugas National Park.

The park’s top attraction is Fort Jefferson, the largest brick building in the western hemisphere, which looms dramatically above the glassy turquoise waters. A national monument, the fort itself acts like a 16-acre reef with coral clinging to its moat walls and schools of tropical fish flicking through its seagrass meadows. If not content with snorkeling around the fort, the nearby offshore reef offers dives over majestic coral formations dappled with sea fans. The islands are also rife with birdlife. Accessible only by boat or seaplane, this remote archipelago makes a perfect day trip during your charter.

Key West, Florida 33041

www.nps.gov/drto/index

Café Marquesa

CAFÉ MARQUESA

Cuisine: Contemporary American

Style/Ambiance: Relaxed yet elegant, Café Marquesa is an intimate 50- cover restaurant.

The dining room is thoughtfully decorated with West Indian planter chairs, large mahogany framed mirrors and highly polished teak tables which give it a warm, cozy ambiance. Chef Susan Ferry and her team continue to uphold their reputation for excellent inventive fare on their daily changing menu, with dishes that use the finest cuts of meat and local seafood. Expect to dine on black Angus fillet wrapped in prosciutto or herb dusted black grouper with pear and cheese pasta purses. A fine selection of wines, custom martinis and homemade desserts provide the perfect accompaniment.

Carol Wightman, Managing Partner

+1 305 292 1244

Marquesa Hotel, 600 Fleming Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.marquesa.com/cafe-marquesa

Chevre and Beat Terrine, Louie’s Backyard

LOUIE’S BACK YARD

Cuisine: Caribbean-American

Style/Ambiance: If walking up the veranda steps of Louie’s’ Backyard feels like entering a home rather than a restaurant, it’s because it was exactly that.

Opened in 1971 by Louie Signorelli, the original restaurant seated just twelve people. Today, husband and wife duo Phil and Pat Tenney have transformed the house into a fine dining restaurant full of character. Executive chef Doug Shook demonstrates his culinary prowess with beautifully presented plates of cracked conch with hot pepper jelly and wasabi cream, or sautéed veal sweetbreads with smoked scallops in lobster sauce. The oceanfront setting of the outside deck gives guests a feast for the eyes as well as the palate—an ideal spot to watch the Florida sunset.

+1 305 294 1061

700 Waddell Avenue, Key West, Florida 33040

www.louiesbackyard.com

Style/Ambiance: Since its opening in 1983, Pisces has become a dining institution on the island, providing a taste of old Key West in the heart of the historic old town.

Crisp white tablecloths and original Andy Warhols are the only decoration in this boutique restaurant, lending an understated elegance. Making the most of the ocean, Pisces presents exotic seafood dishes such as yellowtail atocha and the award winning signature dish, lobster ‘Tango Mango’. Reservations are recommended.

+1 305 294 7100

1007 Simonton Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.pisceskeywest.com

Latitudes

Cuisine: Contemporary

Style/Ambiance: Set within the private island resort on the exclusive Sunset Key, Latitudes offers high class gourmet fare in a luxurious tropical setting.

Photos of Ernest Hemingway hang on the walls of the Hemingway dining room, and the array of fresh seafood on offer includes pan-seared snapper with citrus risotto in a ginger-lime cream sauce. The eclectic, ever-evolving menu also features meat dishes including honey and ancho chile crusted Waygu beef steak with roasted garlic potato purée. Guests also have the option of dining alfresco on the white sands of the resort’s private beach amid palms swaying in the breeze.

Terry Luzius, General Manager

+1 305 292 5300

Westin Resort Sunset Key, 245 Front Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.westinsunsetkeycottages.com/latitudes-restaurant

Crisp Goose Fat Potatoes, Strip House

STRIP HOUSE

Cuisine: Steak house

Style/Ambiance: Sultry Viennese dancing girls pose seductively out of black and white photographs on the walls of this sleek steak restaurant.

Sister to the famed Manhattan eatery, Strip House in the luxury Reach Resort adds a touch of allure to Key West’s dining scene. Moodily lit tables of dark polished wood and the striking red décor are the hallmarks of David Rockwell’s interior design, while the dining room’s floor-to-ceiling latticed windows offer ocean views. As well as prime cuts of exquisitely prepared meat, a wide range of liqueurs are available. Make sure you leave room for the signature 24-layer chocolate cake.

Jason Gates

+1 305 295 9669

[email protected]

The Reach Resort, 1435 Simonton Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.striphousekeywest.com

Jala spa

Treatments and facilities: Nestled within the oceanfront Hyatt resort, the Jala Spa provides an oasis of calm away from the bustle of nearby Duval street.

This award-winning spa takes inspiration from its natural surroundings with treatments that use locally sourced ingredients. Try the Glades re-balancing treatments or the signature ‘Green Flash’ wrap, a rich detoxifying wrap that uses native minerals to cleanse and purify the skin. A wide variety of massages and facials are also available, all of which take place in private spa suites or poolside cabanas.

Signature treatments: Cuban Coffee Body Glow, ‘Man’ Grove Scrub, Green Flash Wrap.

Joslynn Sarver, Spa and Concierge Supervisor

+1 305 809 4022

[email protected]

Hyatt Key West Resort and Spa, 103800 Overseas Highway, Key Largo, Florida 33037

keywest.hyatt.com/hyatt/hotels-keywest

Spaterre

Treatments and facilities: Enjoy a slice of East Asia in the world-class spa located on the deluxe Ocean Key Resort.

Highlights include treatments with exotic tropical oils, aromatic herbs and purifying volcanic clays from Java, Bali and Thailand. The long list of facials and massages features the tropical essence massage and the sacred stone massage which uses heated volcanic river stones. A full service salon and state-of-the-art fitness center complete the luxury package.

Signature treatments: Javenese Royal Treatment, Volcanic Earth Clay Ritual, SpaTerre Signature treatment facial, Sacred Stone Massage.

+1 305 296 7701

[email protected]

Duval Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.oceankey.com

Spa Cabanas, Sunset Key

THE SPA AT SUNSET KEY

Treatments and facilities: Located on the lush, private island resort of Sunset Key, this spa provides an exclusive and luxurious retreat.

Guests can enjoy a full range of facials, wraps, massages and body rituals in treatment suites resplendent with tropical flowers. Island-inspired treatments such as the signature Tropical Sugar Scrub and the brand new Bamboo Massage reflect the spa’s Caribbean surroundings. For a romantic treat, the Sunset Romance package includes beachside massages for two followed by a champagne dinner in your own private cabana.

Signature treatments: Blushing Rose Hydrating Facial, Tropical Sugar Scrub.

+1 305 292 5370

[email protected]

Sunset Key West, 245 Front Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.westinsunsetkeycottages.com

Diamonds International

DIAMONDS INTERNATIONAL

Jewels as dazzling as the Florida ocean await the elite traveler at this newly renovated store.

Diamonds International is one of the largest diamond retailers in the world and stocks a staggering array of loose and pre set diamonds from brands such as Forevermark, 88 Cut and O diamonds, as well as pieces from their own Crown of Light collection. Professional staff are on hand to give advice and offer same day jewelry services. For those in search of something different, there is a large trove of rare diamonds in a kaleidoscope of colors including blue, black and natural yellow. Try its sister store, Tanzanite International, in Clinton Square Mall for precious gems in shades of violet, sapphire and deep sea blue.

+1 305 293 1111

[email protected]

129 Duval Street, Key West, Florida

www.diamondsinternational.com

Blue Mojito Bar

BLUE MOJITO BAR

This candlelit open-air bar offers sweeping views of the Gulf of Mexico and a prime position from which to enjoy the Florida sunset.

Relax in a plush wicker chair or designer sofa as you sip on a signature cocktail under the swaying palms of the Hyatt Key West Resort. Prominent local musicians provide live accompaniment as darkness falls, providing a romantic ambiance.

+1 305 809 4000

Hyatt key West Resort and Spa, 601 Front Street, Key West, Florida 33040

www.keywest.hyatt.com

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Castaway Cay: A guide to Disney Cruise Line's private island

Erica Silverstein

A visit to Castaway Cay is a highlight of any Disney cruise to the Bahamas or Caribbean. The island is the exclusive beach-day playground for Disney Cruise Line guests, and cruisers can enjoy a fun, hassle-free day of sunbathing and water sports at the island.

Your day on Castaway Cay is idyllic because you have to make very few arrangements. You can walk off the ship and head right to the beach. Beach chairs, umbrellas, towels and a delicious lunch are all provided to you. Your biggest decisions will be if you want to book a shore excursion, which will leave from a convenient location just steps from the ship, and which beach you and your family want to check out first.

For cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG's cruise newsletter .

The island is themed around a shipwreck, as if you are the castaways and your mates have used the crates and driftwood that have washed ashore to build the island's structures. You'll also find many of your Disney friends ashore in their best beach attire, so the cruise ship magic continues on island.

Castaway Cay, like all things Disney, focuses on family fun, but it still reserves some on-island spots for drop-off kids activities supervised by the ship's youth staff and adults-only relaxation. Teens get their own secret hangout.

You can choose your own adventure on Castaway Cay and a visit here is never the same twice. Plan your perfect private island day in the Bahamas with our guide to Disney's Castaway Cay.

Note: Prices for activities and rentals can vary based on sail date and whether they're booked pre-cruise, on board or on shore.

Where is Castaway Cay?

Disney Cruise Line's Castaway Cay is located in the Bahamas, near Great Abaco island. It's 225 nautical miles from Port Canaveral, home port of several Disney cruise ships. Disney leases the island from the Bahamian government.

The 1,000-acre island is roughly 3 miles long by 2 miles wide, but only 55 acres are developed. You can get a great view of the undeveloped areas of the island from the observation tower on the way to Serenity Bay, the adults-only beach.

Related: Bahamas cruise guide: Best itineraries, planning tips and things to do

Which cruise ships go there?

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All Disney Cruise Line ships except Disney Wonder will visit Castaway Cay. It's a staple on Bahamas and Caribbean itineraries, which is where the majority of Disney ships travel.

Ships visiting Castaway Cay on upcoming cruises include:

  • Disney Dream
  • Disney Fantasy
  • Disney Magic
  • Disney Treasure
  • Disney Wish

How do you get to and around Castaway Cay?

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Castaway Cay was the first cruise line private island to feature a pier where ships can dock. One ship at a time can visit Castaway Cay, and passengers can walk straight off the ship and onto the island.

It's a decent walk from the ship to the first section of beach. To accommodate all cruisers, Disney runs a tram from the end of the pier to stops by Scuttle's Cove and Pelican Point, on either end of the main family beach, and from the Pelican Point area to Serenity Bay.

Note that the Serenity Bay tram is separate from the main tram between the ship and the main beaches. A kind driver saved me from going in circles because I thought the Serenity Bay tram would take me all the way back to the pier.

Paved paths throughout the island will take you anywhere you want to go. I walked all the way to Serenity Bay down the bike trail (which doubles as an air strip), and it's not a short walk. You can take a detour to loop around the paved nature trail that leads to the observation tower.

Related: A guide to cruise line private islands: What they are and what you can expect

Disney also provides beach strollers and wheelchairs for passenger use.

What are the Castaway Cay beaches?

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Castaway Cay's main strip of beach is sheltered by a rocky breakwater, making the water calm and perfect for swimmers of all ages. The beach is divided into three sections: Boat Beach, where you'll find water sports rentals, and two family beaches, including a beach area exclusive to cabana guests.

An adults-only beach, Serenity Bay, is on the adjacent side of the island, open to the sea, and separate from the family beach.

Castaway Cay's three main beaches are:

Castaway Cay family beaches

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Castaway's family beaches are divided by Pelican Point, a rocky breakwater, where the Heads Up Bar sits. Both beaches have loungers, low-to-the-ground upright beach chairs and beach umbrellas that are free to use. Many adults like to drag the upright chairs down to the water's edge and hang out there, watching their kids frolic in the waves.

Both beaches have lifeguards and racks of life jackets available for guest use.

The closest family beach to the ship is near the Scuttle's Cove kids area and tram stop. It has a swim-out floating ropes course. The farther beach is closer to the Pelican Point tram stop. Its highlight is the Pelican Plunge floating water play area, with a splash area and dump bucket, water cannons and two slides (a tube slide and an open slide).

Lines can get long for the slide, and smaller sliders need to wear life jackets. The tube slide is much faster and shorter than the open slide. Be ready to get water up your nose, as it's a drop from the end of the slide into the water.

For the best choice of lounge space, you'll want to get off the ship early and trek to the farther ends of the beach. It was hard to find available chairs when we moved mid-afternoon from one side of the family beach to the other to use the slides.

The farthest end of the beach is lined with cabanas and reserved for cabana guests.

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The first beach you come to on your way from the ship is Boat Beach. This is where you'll find all the larger water sports gear available to rent, such as water bikes and kayaks. (A separate shack rents out snorkel gear).

No one sunbathes on Boat Beach.

Serenity Bay

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The adults-only Serenity Bay is exclusive to cruisers ages 18+. The beach is on the other side of the island from the family beaches and a long trek (or tram ride) from the Pelican Point area.

The beach itself has the same lounge chairs, low upright chairs and umbrellas as the other Castaway Cay beaches. There are cabanas for rent here, too; they lurk behind the main beach and share the sand and sea with regular guests.

Because Serenity Bay is a long haul from the Pelican Point tram stop area, it has its own facilities: barbecue pavilion, bathrooms, bar, float rental and massage hut.

I visited Serenity Bay at lunchtime, and the beach was not crowded at all. Plenty of loungers were unclaimed — likely because the majority of Disney cruisers were spending time together as families. Also, the water was not as clear or calm on this beach because it does not have a breakwater to protect it from the waves, so some adults might prefer the family beach area for swimming.

Related: 5 reasons why Disney cruises aren't just for kids

What are the best Castaway Cay things to do?

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Splashing and sunbathing are not nearly the only things to do at Castaway Cay. Its small developed area has a lot going on, both on land and in the lagoon.

Designated areas on both sides of the family beaches are reserved for snorkeling. The main snorkeling lagoon is between Boat Beach and the family beach, conveniently located by Gil's Fins and Boats, which dispenses snorkel gear, as well as tubes and floats for rent. Rumor has it that you can find a shipwreck and even some hidden Mickeys, as well as interesting sea creatures.

You can also pick up snorkels, floats and tubes at Flippers and Floats (located between the two halves of the family beach) and The Windsock Hut at Serenity Bay (float rentals only). If you rent an inner tube, don't let it out of your grasp. I saw several of these floating out past the ropes marking the end of the swimming area. The crew must have to come out on boats at the end of the day to round them all up!

The floating ropes course and Pelican Plunge water slides are also fun diversions for families and gives you something to do besides swimming that doesn't involve spending money.

Scuttle's Cove is the beachside extension of the shipboard Oceaneer Club. Parents and caregivers can drop off their younger children to play in the sand under youth staff supervision in order to snag some time at Serenity Bay or in the snorkel lagoon. As with the onboard kids club, the service is complimentary.

Scuttle's Cove include the Monstro Point whale dig site (where kids can play archeologist and dig in the sand for bones), a small splash pad and an area for sand games.

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Between the Scuttle's Cove and Pelican Point tram stops, In-Da-Shade Games offers basketball, ping pong, billiards, giant checkers, foosball and table games in an open-air wooden pavilion.

Over by the Pelican Point area, a beach sports area offers tetherball, volleyball and soccer, and the Spring-A-Leak wet play area is fun for littles who want to get wet without the waves. A bike rental station rents bikes for kids and grownups; I didn't see trail-a-bikes, but they did have adult bikes with child seats on the back. One-hour bike rentals cost $15 (for ages 3+).

The full bike path, from the rental area to Serenity Bay and around the loop to the observation tower is 1.5 miles. If you prefer to run, doing the trail out to the adult beach and back again (including a second tower loop) is 3 miles or 5K.

Disney used to host an official race called the Castaway Cay 5K. Currently, it's not offered as a group activity, but you can do it on your own, on your honor, and pick up a medal back at the bike rental booth. If you're not racing, the observation tower is a nice stop for views of the island.

A few water stations are set out along the race course.

Teens have their own secret hangout called The Hideout, tucked away behind the beach sports and bike rental area.

Adults can book 50-minute solo or couples' massages at the massage cabana on the adults beach.

If you're interested in water sports, Disney offers a selection of rentals on Boat Beach.

Rentals include:

  • AquaTrike, $30 for 30 minutes
  • Chiliboats Waterbikes, $30 for 30 minutes (ages 14+)
  • Float or tube, $15 for the day
  • Paddle boat, $20 for 30 minutes for 2-seater boats or $25 for a 4-seater
  • Sea kayak, $20 for 30 minutes on a single kayak (ages 14-plus) or $25 for a double kayak
  • Snorkel equipment, $22 (ages 5 to 9) or $38 (ages 10-plus) for the day
  • Stand-up paddle board, $20 for 30 minutes (ages 14-plus)

The shore excursions desk assured me that it's easy to rent water sports gear on the island if you're not sure you want to commit in advance.

If you're an active family, consider the Castaway Cay Getaway Package. The three-in-one rental package includes snorkel equipment and a float or inner-tube for the day, plus a one-hour bicycle rental. The package is valued at $52 for little kids or $68 for anyone ages 10 and up, but costs $30 or $50, respectively, saving you $18 to $22.

The Castaway Cay Getaway Package is only available for booking online pre-cruise or aboard the ship; you cannot book it once on the island.

Related: 11 ways to save money on a Disney cruise

Can I meet Disney characters on Castaway Cay?

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A favorite Disney cruise pastime is meeting Mickey Mouse and friends, princesses, superheroes and pirates, and you have those opportunities on Castaway Cay. The island has numerous spots set up for photos, and throughout the day, various characters will make an appearance in their beachwear to pose for photos. On my cruise these included Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Captain Jack Sparrow.

Check your Navigator app to find out which character will be at which station at what time. The post office, Marge's Barges, Mt. Rustmore and the beach across from Scuttle's Cove are popular photo spots for the characters. If you want the beach spots, plan to line up and get your photos early before your family gets all wet and sandy.

Related: The ultimate guide to Disney Cruise Line

What are the excursions at Castaway Cay?

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If you're looking for a little more than just a beach day, you can book a handful of Castaway Cay excursions. The available tours are predominantly guided water-based activities taking place in or around the island's waters.

On my cruise, the following tours were available:

  • Banana boat ride, $45 for 30 minutes (ages 10-plus) or $39 (ages 8 to 9)
  • Castaway Cay Fishing Adventure, $219 for a 3-hour tour (ages 8-plus)
  • Castaway Ray's Stingray Adventure, $59 for a 1-hour tour ($48 for ages 5 to 9)
  • Castaway Snorkel By Boat Adventure, $95 for a 3-hour tour ($79 for ages 6 to 9)
  • Glass Bottom Boat Scenic Voyage, $59 for a 1-hour tour ($39 for kids under age 9)
  • Parasailing, $140 for 1 hour (ages 8-plus)
  • Walking and Kayak Nature Adventure, $73 for 3.5 hours (age 10-plus)

In addition, the Extreme Getaway Package combines a one-hour stingray adventure with snorkel equipment, bicycle and float or inner-tube rentals. The cost is $95 for kids and adults ages 10 and up or $73 for kids ages 5 to 9.

Many of the boat-based excursions (such as parasailing and fishing trips) depart from the Marge's Barges and Sea Charters dock at the end of the cruise pier. The stingray adventure meets at the Castaway Ray's Stingray Adventure hut at the end of Boat Beach farthest from the ship; the protected stingray lagoon is just offshore.

Related: Shore excursions: What you need to know

Does Castaway Cay offer cabanas to rent?

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Yes, Castaway Cay cabanas are available to rent both on the family beach and at Serenity Bay. From what I saw, the family beach cabanas could be a great way to have a more relaxing, less crowded experience on Castaway Cay. The Serenity Bay cabanas seemed less of an upgrade, given that the beach was empty and all the services are so close.

Related: Ultimate guide to cruise ship cabanas

Family Beach cabanas

Castaway Cay offers 20 cabanas on the farthest end of the family beaches, just around the corner from Serenity Bay. The cabanas line a stretch of beach that is roped off, so regular cruisers cannot go there. They are numbered 1 to 21 as there is no cabana #13.

The 325-square-foot cabanas are tucked away under the palm trees. They are outfitted with indoor seating, a ceiling fan, drinks refrigerator, safe, plush towels and cooling face cloths, magazines to read and complimentary sunscreen. Portable cribs are available on request for guests with babies.

Fresh fruit and light snacks are provided, as are unlimited soda and bottled water. Servers will come around to take alcoholic drink orders. You can press a button in your cabana to call them if you don't see anyone and want to order a drink or get your soda, water or snacks restocked.

Outside the cabana, guests have access to lounge chairs, a hammock and a freshwater shower. The cabana rental comes with access to snorkel equipment, sand toys and floats or inner tubes, plus a one-hour bike rental.

Cabanas are identical with two exceptions. Cabana #16 is wheelchair accessible; it cannot be booked online. Cabana #21 is called the Grand Family Cabana, and it's oversized at 650 square feet.

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On my cruise, cabanas cost $797.50 for an eight-hour rental for up to six people. You could add up to four more people, for a total of 10, for $56 additional per person. For groups larger than six people, children under 3 are not charged; however, they count toward the maximum number of people allowed on the rental.

The Grand Family Cabana cost $1,127.50 for up to 10 people and could accommodate up to 16, with each additional guest charged $56 per person.

Serenity Bay cabanas

The six Serenity Bay cabanas are only available to guests ages 18 and up. They're numbered 22 through 27 and are located behind the adults-only beach and its rows of lounge chairs.

The cabanas are the same size and come with nearly the same inclusions as the family beach cabanas. The difference is that snorkel equipment is not provided because there is no snorkeling lagoon at Serenity Bay.

Despite being the same size, Serenity Bay cabanas are priced for just four guests at $493.90 for the day; additional guests up to 10 total will pay $56 each over the base rate.

Related: Best Disney cruise ships for everyone — even Disney adults

Is food included on  Castaway Cay?

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Yes, multiple venues serve a complimentary barbecue lunch on Castaway Cay. The main venues are Cookie's BBQ and Cookie's Too BBQ, but a small lunch buffet is also available by the Serenity Bay tram stop so adults on that beach don't have to trek back to the Pelican Point area to eat.

All three venues serve the same food, buffet style, in open-sided pavilions with outdoor picnic tables, some shaded, for eating. Lunch is typically served from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The main event is all kinds of grilled meat: burgers and hot dogs, Cajun-spiced chicken, salmon and barbecue brisket and pork. Vegetarian chili and veggie burgers are also available (the latter on request).

Sides include cole slaw, potato salad, corn and bean salad, macaroni salad, chips, corn on the cob and corn bread. Dessert options include a variety of fruit, amazing chocolate chip cookies, chocolate and strawberry-cheesecake mini cakes and soft-serve ice cream. Pro tip: Take the cookies to the soft-serve machine to create a DIY ice cream sandwich.

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Self-serve soft drink machines dispense complimentary soda, water, sports drinks, iced tea and lemonade.

Lines can get long, so plan accordingly, especially if you have hot and hungry little ones in tow.

Related: TPG's top Disney cruise tips, tricks and secrets to enhance your vacation

Are there bars on Castaway Cay?

Even this family-friendly island has plenty of bars serving extra-fee drinks and frozen concoctions. You'll find them throughout the island. You'll have to pay a la carte for drinks purchased at Castaway Cay's bar because Disney Cruise Line does not offer an all-inclusive drink package .

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The Conched Out Bar and Sand Bar are the main beachside bars along the family beach, serving beer, cocktails and frozen drinks. The Heads Up Bar serves the same, but is located atop Pelican Point, the rocky breakwater between the two halves of the family beach. Its patio is occasionally the setting for on-island weddings.

You can also find stands selling smoothies and drinks outside the lunch pavilions. I saw many cruisers carrying drinks in souvenir coconut-shaped cups.

Right by the Pelican Point tram stop, Summertime Freeze serves up smoothies and alcoholic frozen drinks in "Frozen"-themed souvenir cups.

Out at Serenity Bay, the Castaway Air Bar, housed in what looks to be an airplane hangar, keeps adults refreshed throughout their beach day. It's got a wooden deck with comfortable seating for anyone who wants to kick back with a drink without getting sandy.

Is there shopping on Castway Cay?

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Castaway Cay has multiple shops selling everything from Castaway Cay exclusive Disney merchandise, local Bahamian crafts and souvenirs and beach items you might have forgotten (hats, sunscreen, sunglasses, sand toys, etc.).

She Sells Sea Shells and Everything Else by the Scuttle's Cove tram stop and Buy the Seashore by Pelican Point are your go-tos for Disney merch and sundries. Midway between the two are a couple of Bahamian retail outlets grouped together.

The only accepted method of payment is your Key to the World cruise ship card, even in the Bahamian-run shops.

If you're a Disney fan hoping to buy some swag not found anywhere else, you'll be happy browsing the Castaway Cay shops. Prices on beach items, however, are incredibly marked up, so if you forget to bring toys or a hat, try to pick them up at an earlier port or go without.

Can I get married on Castaway Cay?

Disney's Fairy Tale Weddings department can absolutely help couples plan a wedding on Castaway Cay during cruise itineraries that visit the island. (Weddings can also be held on board the ship.) You can choose from ceremony venues on the beach or at Wedding Pointe (the deck that juts out over the water by the Heads Up Bar).

Note that most Castaway Cay weddings take place in the morning, and the reception will be held back on board. In case of inclement weather or the ship's failure to dock at the island, your wedding might need to be rescheduled to an onboard location.

Also, Castaway Cay weddings are not legal weddings. You will need to file paperwork and get legally married in your home state. Your island ceremony will be purely symbolic.

What additional amenities will I find?

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Crew members are on hand at several stations to hand out towels as you're leaving the ship. Towel return bins are located throughout the island, but I didn't see anywhere by the beaches to swap out a wet towel for a dry one.

Bathrooms and beach showers are found throughout the island, as are plenty of garbage and recycling bins.

A First Aid station is located by Scuttle's Cove. Island information kiosks are available at both Scuttle's Cove and Pelican Point tram stop areas.

Beach wheelchairs and strollers are available to borrow.

Disney's Wi-Fi is not available off the ship at Castaway Cay, so if you wish to use your phone, you'll need to have a plan that works in the Bahamas.

Can you stay overnight on Castaway Cay?

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Some Disney employees do live on Castaway Cay to take care of the island. However, passengers do not have the opportunity to spend the night.

If you love Castaway Cay, look for "double dip" itineraries that feature two calls at Castaway Cay. Even if the visits are on consecutive days, you still must reboard the ship in the afternoon and cannot stay late on the island.

What's the typical weather like?

You can find great weather in the Bahamas year-round. Average high temperatures are in the low 80s in winter and low 90s in summer. The rainiest months are June, August and September. The Bahamas is subject to hurricane season, which runs June through November. The peak time for tropical storms and hurricanes is August through October.

That means it will likely be either pleasant or hot during your visit to Castaway Cay. Make use of those complimentary beach umbrellas and shaded trams when journeying out to Serenity Bay. Apply and reapply sunscreen (choose the reef-safe brands) if you're spending the day on the beach or biking around the island. It's easy to burn.

It's also smart to stay hydrated during your day on island. Mix up your water intake with some of the sports drinks at the soda machines to keep your electrolytes up.

Castaway Cay has a pier, so your visit likely won't be canceled due to wind that might make tendering unwise. However, if conditions are too dangerous for the captain to safely dock, your call might be canceled or rescheduled.

Related: Best time to cruise to Bahamas

Can I see a Castaway Cay map?

Sure! Here is a map of the island to help you plan your day.

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Planning a cruise? Start with these stories:

  • The 5 most desirable cabin locations on any cruise ship
  • A beginners guide to picking a cruise line
  • The 8 worst cabin locations on any cruise ship
  • The ultimate guide to what to pack for a cruise
  • A quick guide to the most popular cruise lines
  • 21 tips and tricks that will make your cruise go smoothly
  • Top ways cruisers waste money
  • The ultimate guide to choosing a cruise ship cabin

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Keys to Your Disney Cruise Vacation

by Kelly Greer May 4, 2023

A Disney Cruise is a vacation experience like nothing else! Whether it’s your first cruise or your fiftieth, there is a special kind of magic when you sail with Mickey Mouse! Let’s talk about the keys to your Disney Cruise vacation!

The Disney Cruise Line Fleet

Disney Cruise Vacation - Castaway Cay

Currently, there are five ships in the Disney Cruise Line fleet. Each ship is a little bit different and if you cruise on different ones, you are bound to have a favorite!

The Disney Wish is the most recent addition to the fleet, having set sail for the first time in 2022. This ship is currently sailing from Port Canaveral, Florida, and offers shorter itineraries to the Bahamas.

The Disney Fantasy also sails from Port Canaveral, Florida, and has longer itineraries to the Caribbean. Many of these itineraries include a stop at the private island, Disney’s Castaway Cay. The Disney Dream is the sister ship to the Fantasy. This ship sails at different ports depending on the time of year. This year, it has itineraries from Europe and Miami, Florida.

The Disney Magic also sails from different ports depending on the time of the year. These ports include Galveston, Texas, Miami, Florida, and New Orleans, Louisiana. The Disney Wonder is the Magic’s sister ship and sails from Vancouver, British Columbia to Alaska or San Diego, California to Baja Mexico.

Since each ship has slightly different offerings, your Key to the World Travel advisor is the perfect person to help you find the best fit for your next cruise!

Destinations

With five different ships in the fleet, there are some amazing itineraries with incredible destinations to choose from. Whether you prefer the warmth of the Caribbean or a great adventure in Alaska, there is an incredible destination and itinerary for you to start planning your next cruise vacation. Some examples of itineraries and destinations include:

  • Eastern & Western Caribbean
  • Baja Mexico
  • The Mediterranean with options that include Greece, Italy, or Spain
  • Northern Europe including the British Isles. Iceland, or Norway

Disney Cruise Line also has a private island in the Bahamas, Disney’s Castaway Cay. This island is included in many itineraries that sail to the Caribbean. On a stop at Castaway Cay, guests can snorkel, swim, meet Disney characters and so much more!

In addition, exciting things are coming including a new private island in the Bahamas called Lighthouse Point, a new ship, and new itineraries.

The Disney Cruise Experience

The Disney cruise vacation experience is truly like no other! There are many reasons to love Disney Cruise Line but there are also several things that set it apart from other cruise lines. It’s often referred to as the “Disney Difference” and that is completely accurate!

The Staterooms

Disney Cruise Stateroom

The staterooms onboard the Disney Cruise ships are built for families. Guests choose from three different types of staterooms including inside, oceanview, or oceanview with verandah. Many of these staterooms include the split bathroom option, which makes getting ready easier. Some staterooms also hold up to 5 guests.

Holding 5 guests doesn’t mean that there’s no space! There is plenty of storage in the staterooms, including space under the bed for your suitcases! Plus, the beds fold down at night but during the day, they are tucked away so you still have room to relax!

Rotational Dining

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Disney Cruise Line is known for its incredible dining experiences! On each ship, there are three main dining restaurants and guests participate in rotational dining throughout their voyage. When you board the ship, check the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app to see when you are eating at each restaurant. You will be scheduled at each one at least once. The best thing about rotational dining is that you get to change venues but the dining team you meet the first night moves with you each night. They get to know you and vice versa. That also means that they get to know your preferences, can make recommendations, and have even more opportunities to bring smiles and excellent service!

Onboard Experiences

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Depending on the length of your sailing, you will likely have at least one day at sea. Don’t worry though – you will not be bored! From the moment you board the ship, incredible onboard experiences are waiting for you! The Disney Cruise Line Navigator app is your guide for everything happening onboard the ship. Sort the activities by your interest and make sure you mark your favorites! Then, you can revisit your plans each day. A few things to look for include:

  • Character Experiences
  • Games & Trivia
  • Crafts for all ages
  • Fireworks at Sea
  • Themed Days include Star Wars, Marvel, or Pirate Night
  • Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique
  • Broadway-style shows

The Perfect Vacation for All Ages

Disney's Oceaneer Club

Are you thinking that a Disney cruise is the perfect vacation for families with young kids? You’re absolutely right! However, a Disney cruise is also great for families with teenagers, couples, or friends traveling together. The truth is, a Disney cruise is the perfect cruise for all ages! There is something onboard for everyone and it’s the perfect time to plan your first, or next sailing!

Kids’ Clubs

If you are traveling with kids of any age, they will love the kids’ clubs. Kids’ clubs are available for children over the age of 3 through the teenage years. The kids are separated by age and there are three different options depending on how old the child is. The clubs are as follows:

  • Disney’s Oceaneer Club & Disney’s Oceaneer Lab (ages 3 – 12)
  • Edge (ages 11 – 14)
  • Vibe (ages 14 – 17)

Each kids’ club offers a variety of activities for guests of all abilities and interests. It’s a great place for kids to go and meet new friends too, especially if parents want to go to some of the adult-only activities.

In addition to the kids’ clubs, there is a nursery for children under the age of 3. This is a paid service and reservations may be required.

Adult-Only Experiences

There are many areas on each of the Disney Cruise Line ships that are for adults only. Each ship has different lounges with entertainment, as well as an adults-only pool area. The Senses Spa is also reserved for adults only.

If you are looking for a special dining experience, there are two adult-only dining experiences on each ship. These restaurants require reservations and have a dress code to maintain an elegant vibe.

Family Time

One of the best parts of a family vacation is making memories as a family. Luckily, there are plenty of opportunities to do so! Don’t miss the Broadway-style shows, the pool deck with waterslides, or opportunities to hug your favorite Disney friends! There are also some fun activities throughout the day such as crafts or trivia designed for the whole family. There are also deck parties and Fireworks at Sea, which are only offered by Disney Cruise Line!

Do You Want to Know More?

Are you feeling curious about everything that Disney Cruise Line has to offer? We would love to tell you more! Contact us today for your quote! In addition, consider joining us on May 18, 2023, for our Anchors Away virtual cruise night! Learn all about Disney Cruise Line and if you attend and then book a cruise, you’ll be eligible for onboard credit when you sail! Register here !

KTTWQUOTE

Are you considering a trip? Having a travel advisor means someone there to have your back in any occurrence. There is no additional cost to you and you have peace of mind knowing that your vacation is in good hands.

Contact your  Key to the World Travel®  advisor for your next trip, or send us a  quote request  to get started.

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Cruises from Florida

Cruises from Florida

Embark from Florida: A Gateway to Caribbean Wonders & Beyond

Cruises from Tampa to Key West

Key West, as part of the Florida Keys archipelago,  is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. As a matter-of-fact, you can easily get there by taking one of the cruises that depart out of Tampa.

Tampa welcomes many cruise ships throughout the year at its cruise terminals, offering a wide range of itineraries to Key West. Carnival Cruise Line , Celebrity Cruises , Norwegian Cruise Line , and Royal Caribbean  are just a few of the world’s largest cruise lines.

In addition to being a convenient departure port, Tampa is also a great city that should be explored either before or after a cruise. The Channelside Entertainment Complex, located near the harbor, offers shopping, dining, and entertainment. Make your way through the Y-Bor district, where you can shop for the best hand-rolled cigars or try artisanal brews. Visit Busch Gardens, which has two exciting parks to select from for the perfect family.

If you want to relax before or after your cruise to Key West, Tampa is the place to be.

Key West, Florida Keys

Key West

On land, shopping, museums, art galleries, tours, theaters and more await you. Or you can simply relax in the sand at one of our Key West beaches, by the pool at your Key West hotel, or on Duval Street with a cocktail in hand. Visit the Museum of Art and History at the Custom House, a “must-see” when in Key West. At night, streets filled with sidewalk cafes, open-air bars, legendary pubs and world-class restaurants with island specialties come alive. Drama, musicals and comedy flourish on local stages.

Key West, Florida Some of most popular Key West tourist activities on the water include dolphin encounters, kayaking the backcountry, diving and snorkeling at Ft. Jefferson and the Dry Tortugas, or renting a boat at a Key West marina to[…]

Florida has the largest selection of cruise deals to Key West.

Tampa to Key West, Montego Bay & Grand Cayman

Carnival Paradise, Western Caribbean from Tampa, October 28, 2024

6-day cruise to Key West, Montego Bay and Grand Cayman on board Carnival Cruises Cruising from: Tampa, Florida; Departure Date: October 28, 2024; Duration: 6-day cruise; Cruise Line: Carnival Cruise Line; Cruise Ship: Carnival Paradise; Ports of Call: Tampa, Key West,[…]

Carnival Paradise, Western Caribbean from Tampa, September 2, 2024

6-day cruise to Key West, Montego Bay and Grand Cayman on board Carnival Cruises Cruising from: Tampa, Florida; Departure Date: September 2, 2024; Duration: 6-day cruise; Cruise Line: Carnival Cruise Line; Cruise Ship: Carnival Paradise; Ports of Call: Tampa, Key West,[…]

Carnival Paradise, Western Caribbean from Tampa, June 10, 2024

6-day cruise to Key West, Montego Bay and Grand Cayman on board Carnival Cruises Cruising from: Tampa, Florida; Departure Date: June 10, 2024; Duration: 6-day cruise; Cruise Line: Carnival Cruise Line; Cruise Ship: Carnival Paradise; Ports of Call: Tampa, Key West,[…]

Key West

Key West tourist attractions

Key west, florida.

As part of the Florida Keys archipelago, Key West is famed for its pastel-hued, conch-style houses, it’s a cruise-ship stop also accessible from the mainland via the Overseas Highway. It’s known more for its coral reefs,  destinations for diving and[…]

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Flavors of Florida Returns to Disney Springs for Summer 2024

Get ready for citrus and other Southern summer flavors! It’s diet season over at EPCOT with no Festival going on, but at Disney Springs you’ll find Flavors of Florida bringing specialty dishes to menus, culinary demonstrations, and pairing events! Read on for details and some mouthwatering pics provided by Disney. Tap to jump to: Pairing Events | Culinary Demonstrations | Quick Service & Kiosk Menu Features | Table Service Menu Features

Flavors of Florida runs from July 1 to August 11, 2024. You can get a complimentary event guide at the Disney Springs Welcome Center, City Works Eatery & Pour House, Corkcicle, or eet by Maneet Chauhan. And, in addition to the food highlights, there’s a scavenger hunt! Play the “Discover the Springs” seek and find to get a complimentary surprise, while supplies last.

Flavors of Florida Pairing Events

New for 2024; select Disney Springs restaurants will host pairing events. Tap the date in the listing header below to book a spot. If you’re interested you’ll want to jump on these; space is limited.

The Edison | July 6 & July 27 | 1:00 to 3:00 PM | $100

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Make your own cocktails with local ingredients; pair them with light bites including:

  • Honey Roasted Nuts
  • Key West Pink Shrimp and Corn Hushpuppies
  • A circuit board of Country Ham and House Buttermilk Biscuits

Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ | July 8 & July 11, 2024 | 9:30 AM | $140

Enjoy a 3-course brunch hosted by Chef Art Smith, with pairings inspired by the farms and purveyors of Hamilton County, Florida. Highlights of the meal include:

  • Cuban Sandwich with Church Lady Deviled Eggs and Fried Green Tomatoes paired with a Florida Crush cocktail
  • Your choice between a Hallelujah Biscuit, Fried Chicken & Donuts or Fried Egg & Avocado Toast paired with a Southern Mary cocktail
  • A family-style platter of mini donuts paired with an Espresso Martini

Paddlefish | July 9, 2024 | 6:00 PM | $130

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Enjoy a 5-course dinner with selected wine pairings:

  • Cedar Key Surf & Turf with Spanish Cava Mas Fi
  • Etouffe with Paddlefish White
  • Tilefish with Sauvignon Blanc Fire Road
  • Braised Short Ribs with Paddlefish Red Blend
  • Key Lime Brulee with Cht. De Cosse, Sauternes

Wine Bar George – A Restaurant & Bar | July 12, 2024 & August 2, 2024 | Noon to 1:3o PM | $135

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It does feel like you can’t go wrong with a Master Sommelier hosting your wine pairing. Join George Miliotes for a multi-course lunch and some expertly paired wines. Members of the culinary and sommelier teams will discuss the pairing process during your meal.

  • The Big Board (6 artisanal cheeses and 5 artisanal meats) paired with Saint Hilaire Crémant de Limoux Brut Rosé
  • Grilled Scallop Ceviche paired with a Florida Frojito
  • Citrus Cured Pork Loin paired with La Kiuva Picotendeo – Valle d’Aosta, Italy
  • White Chocolate Cake with Florida Peach Ice Cream paired with Ordóñez, N° 1 Selección Especial, Muscat – Málaga, Spain

City Works Eatery & Pour House | July 23, 2024 | 6:00 to 8:00 PM | $125

Enjoy a 4-course dining experience with meal and beer pairings:

  • Jerk Chicken Empanadas with Persimmon Hollow Brewing – Daytona Dirty Blonde
  • Fried Green Tomato Salad with Playalinda Brewing Co. – Robonaut Red Ale
  • Braised Short Ribs with Bold City Brewery – Duke’s Cold Nose Brown Ale
  • Fried Orange Cheesecake with Home State Brewing Co. – Oh My Gatos!

Jaleo by José Andrés | July 30, 2024 & August 6, 2024 | 6:00 PM | $150

Begin with a 30-minute reception including cocktails and sample bites, where you can mingle with mixologists, bar managers, and chefs to discuss the inspiration behind the event. Then sit for an 8-course meal, including:

  • Florida Tomato Tartar with Baby Romaine Lettuce
  • Mixed Green Salad with Strawberries and Granny Smith Apples
  • Josper Grilled Florida Spiny Lobster with Sautéed White Beans
  • Texturas of Florida Grapefruit and Yogurt Olive Oil Ice Cream

Pair these dishes with any of:

  • Sangria with Florida Citrus
  • Local Florida Beer
  • Agua Frescas or a mocktail

Flavors of Florida Culinary Demonstrations

Chefs from some of Disney Springs’ best restaurants prepare dishes and share tricks of the trade on Friday mornings at Waterview Park. Registration for all culinary demonstrations is through the Disney Springs Instagram page ; keep your eyes peeled for more info and to reserve a spot. Waterview Park is in the Landing area, between Jock Lindsay’s Hangar Bar and the BOATHOUSE, and across from Wine Bar George.

Morimoto Asia | July 5, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Takeshi Ikeuchi prepares Florida Key West Pink Shrimp Salad—green tea-infused Japanese soba noodles tossed with shrimp, radishes, carrots, cucumbers, lettuce, and ponzu sauce.

Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill | July 12, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Mike Tiva prepares Mushroom Gnocchi—ricotta gnocchi topped with roasted Fungi Jon mushrooms, balsamic glazed shallots, wild arugula, and shaved pecorino cheese.

eet by Maneet Chauhan | July 19, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Maneet Chauhan prepares Sloppy Joe Rock Shrimp—Florida rock shrimp seasoned with ginger, garlic, and cilantro, served with kachumber salad.

Disney Springs Culinary | July 26, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Georg Paulussen prepares Orange Pilsner Goat Cheese Dip—goat cheese whipped with Sunshine Stroll Orange Pilsner and peppadew peppers, served with salt and vinegar house chips.

Summer House on the Lake | Aug. 2, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Josh Williams prepares Key West Shrimp Tostones—Key West shrimp with tostones, chile verde, Florida citrus salsa and black beans.

The BOATHOUSE | Aug. 9, 2024 | 9:30 AM | Waterview Park

Chef Bradley Warner prepares Roasted Golden Tilefish—paired with coconut ginger rice, topped with citrus escabeche and served with a cilantro aïoli.

Flavors of Florida Quick Service Menu Features

Amorette’s patisserie (mobile order available).

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  •   Orange-Hazelnut Petite Gâteau: Layers of orange mousse, orange curd, and honey-orange gel on top of a hazelnut financier (New)
  • Orange Bird Dome Cake: Layers of Grand Marnier-soaked vanilla chiffon cake, mandarin pâté de fruit, mandarin orange cream, and white chocolate crisp pearls
  • Orange Slushie: Orange slushie topped with chantilly cream and citrus candy piece (New)
  • Orange Slushie with Vanilla Flavored Vodka: Orange slushie with a float of STOLI Vanilla flavored vodka topped with chantilly cream and citrus candy piece (New)

B.B. Wolf’s Sausage Co. (Mobile Order Available)

  • Ybor City-Style Dog: Quarter-pound, all-beef hotdog with mojo pork, pickles, Swiss cheese, and mustard (New)

Chicken Guy!

  • Sunshine Shake: Hand-spun, vanilla soft-serve ice cream blended with fresh Florida orange juice and topped with fresh whipped cream

Cilantro Urban Eatery

  • Cuban Sandwich: Pork-lechon, ham, Swiss cheese, sweet pickles, and mustard on pressed Cuban bread served with plantain chips and avocado dip (New)

Coca-Cola Store Rooftop Beverage Bar

  • Orange Cream Float: Coca-Cola, orange cream bar, and vanilla ice cream served in a souvenir cup

The Daily Poutine

  • St. Augustine Datil BBQ Poutine: Crispy pork with datil pepper sauce complemented by Sunshine Stroll beer cheese sauce and slaw made with “swamp cabbage” hearts of palm and chayote squash (New)
  • Bourbon Orange Punch: Maker’s Mark Kentucky Straight Bourbon, Minute Maid Orange Juice, red passion fruit, and edible glitter topped with a dehydrated orange (New)

D-Luxe Burger

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  • Citrus Burger: Pressed signature-blend patty, citrus-braised pork belly, grapefruit paloma aïoli, pickled and fried fennel, grapefruit jam, and lettuce (New)
  • Key Lime Pie Shake: Vanilla gelato blended with Minute Maid Lemonade and graham cracker crumbs topped with whipped cream, graham cracker crumbs, and a lime wedge (New)

Dockside Margaritas

  • Citrus Sangria: Coppo Moscato d’Asti Moncalvina, Patrón Silver Tequila, Minute Maid Orange Juice, and DOLE Pineapple Juice served with fresh citrus (New)

EARL OF SANDWICH

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  • Datil Pepper Cuban Sandwich: Roasted carnitas, ham, Swiss cheese, sweet pickles, and datil pepper aïoli (New)
  • Earl’s Creamy Orange Slush: Florida oranges and a hint of lemon served with whipped cream topping (New)

eet by Maneet Chauhan

  • Rock Shrimp Sloppy Joe: Florida rock shrimp seasoned with ginger, garlic, and cilantro served with kachumber salad (New)
  • Sunny Days: Whipped vodka and orange cream with an orange ice pop (New)

Enzo’s Hideaway

  • Southeastern Sangria: Lakeridge Cabernet, Florida orange liqueur, brandy, hibiscus, cinnamon, and fresh oranges (New)

Erin McKenna’s Bakery NYC

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  • Orange Blossom Bomb Cupcake: Vegan and gluten-free orange cake with orange blossom sauce filling and topped with vanilla frosting (New)
  • Orange Zest Scones: Vegan and gluten-free orange scones topped with orange zest sugar and a drizzle of vanilla dip (New)

Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew

  • Strawberry Shortcake Donut: Glazed donut filled with fresh strawberries and whipped cream and dusted with powdered sugar (New)
  • Italian-Style Strawberry Soda: Fresh strawberries and strawberry syrup topped with bubbly soda water and served over ice (New)

The Ganachery

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  • Citrus Bites: Dark Chocolate-enrobed candied orange peel and milk chocolate-enrobed orange marshmallow with crispy strawberries sold in a souvenir Ganachery CORKCICLE (New)
  • Mickey Milk Chocolates: Milk chocolate with crispy chocolate pearls  (New)
  • Orange Ganache Pop: Vanilla-orange ganache enrobed in 65% dark chocolate (New)

Ghirardelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop

  • Key Lime Pie Shake: Vanilla ice cream blended with Key lime juice and graham cracker and topped with whipped cream, green sprinkles, and crushed graham crackers (New)

Gideon’s Bakehouse

  • Key Lime Pie Cake Bars: Soft Key lime cake covered in cream cheese buttercream, Key lime curd, and graham cracker crumble fully dipped in premium chocolate (New)
  • Orange Mocha Nitro Cold Brew: Dessert coffee made with locally roasted beans, maple syrup, rich dark chocolate, and delicious Florida oranges

Jock Lindsey’s Hanger Bar

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  • Orange Pilsner Goat Cheese Dip: Goat cheese whipped with Sunshine Stroll Orange Pilsner and peppadew peppers served with salt and vinegar house chips (New)
  • Orange Tangerine Frozen Margarita: Patrón Silver, orange tangerine syrup, and Minute Maid Lemonade garnished with citrus (New)
  • Sunshine Stroll: Locally brewed orange pilsner exclusive to Disney Springs (New)

Outdoor Vending

  • Tequila Sunrise: Patrón Silver, Minute Maid Orange Juice, and a float of grenadine syrup garnished with an orange wedge (New)

The Polite Pig

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  • Smoked Black Drum Fish: Smoked and grilled black drum fish with orange tarragon butter served with spicy pickled fennel and arugula salad (New)
  • Sweet Potato Spice Cake: A moist cake baked with sweet potatoes and spiced with cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger topped with orange cream cheese frosting and spiced vinegar syrup (New)
  • Tropical Spice Fusion: A taste of the islands made with Siesta Key Spiced Rum, banana whiskey, pineapple juice, orange juice, lemon juice, and grenadine (New)

Salt & Straw

  • Exquisito Guanabana Stracciatella: Tropical guanabana sherbet with ribbons of floral, roasted dark chocolate Stracciatella

Sunshine Churros

  • Orange Sorbet Churro: Crispy churro rolled in orange sugar, drizzled with whipped orange buttercream frosting, and served with a side of cream cheese icing (New)

Swirls on the Water

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  • The Key Lime Pie Sundae: DOLE Whip Lime in a waffle bowl topped with whipped cream and a lime garnish (New)
  • Orange Bird Cone: DOLE Whip Orange in an orange cone topped with orange crisp pearls and an Orange Bird garnish (New)
  • Orange Bird Float: DOLE Whip Orange and Watermelon swirl with Fanta Orange in a souvenir cup (New)

Vivoli il Gelato

disney cruise florida keys

  • Key Lime Tiramisu: Layers of mascarpone cream and lady fingers soaked in a sweet key lime sauce (New)
  • Mango Spritz: The ultimate summer libation made with mango sorbetto, Sprite, and prosecco (New)

Wetzel’s Pretzels

  • Orange Dream: Sweet and creamy orange citrus granita layered with soft whip topping (New)
  • Key Lime Pie Marshmallows: A tangy treat made with Key lime juice and rolled in crushed graham crackers (New)

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  • Florida Fresh Poke Bowl: Savory chicken and fresh vegetables topped with tempura crunch and creamy, roasted sesame dressing
  • Florida Sunset: A refreshing combination of Nigori Cloudy Sake, Monin banana syrup, and Monin peach syrup finished with DOLE Pineapple Juice

Flavors of Florida Table Service Menu Features

The boathouse.

  • Roasted Golden Tilefish: Paired with coconut ginger rice, topped with citrus escabeche, and served with a cilantro aïoli

Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’

disney cruise florida keys

  • Tampa-Style Cuban Sandwich: House-smoked pork, shaved country ham, house-made pickles, yellow mustard, and Swiss cheese pressed between slices of fresh Cuban bread (New)
  • Dragon Fruit Mojito: Bacardi Light Rum, dragon fruit, prickly pear simple syrup, and fresh mint (New)

City Works Eatery & Pour House

  • Pork Belly Burnt End Tacos: Smoked pork belly burnt ends, orange blossom honey BBQ sauce, Key lime coleslaw, aji amarillo sauce, and green onions served with El Mirasol flour tortillas and choice of side (New)
  • Sunny Disposition: A porthole cocktail built for two with St. Augustine Cane Vodka, Lillet Blanc, Blended Family Florida Orange Liqueur, Giffard Fraise des Bois, Florida navel oranges, Minneola tangelos, Plant City strawberries, and Indian River grapefruit

Maria & Enzo’s

Frontera cocina.

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  • Mojo-Citrus Gunthorp Carnitas Tlayuda: 14-inch gigantic corn masa tostada topped with black bean spread, chihuahua cheese, Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Bacon, Florida orange, avocado, pickled red onion, cilantro crema, and chipotle salsa (New)
  • Sunshine State Margarita: LALO Blanco Tequila, Key lime juice, Alma Finca Orange Liqueur, demerara sugar, and Ancho Reyes Chile Liqueur served with a black ant salt rim (New)

House of Blues

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  • Shrimp Po Boy Sandwich: Local Florida Gulf shrimp, fresh lettuce, juicy tomatoes, and zesty remoulade sauce served on toasted French bread (New)
  • Crooked Can Sunshine Mango Lager: A clean, crisp lager with a hint of mango, crafted by the renowned and local Crooked Can Brewery (New)

Jaleo by José Andrés

disney cruise florida keys

  • Arroz con Verduras: Rice with a mixture of fresh vegetables from Southern Hills Farms cooked over a wood fire (New)
  • Ensalada de Tomate con Ventresca: Florida heirloom tomato salad with preserved tuna belly from Spain (New)
  • Gazpacho Estilo Algeciras: Classic chilled Spanish soup made with tomatoes, green bell peppers, and cucumber (New)
  • Agua Fresca de Fresa: A non-alcoholic cocktail bursting with summer flavor, made with fresh muddled strawberries, lime, orange, and Seedlip Grove Non-alcoholic Spirit (Non-alcoholic) (New)
  • Sangría de Naranja: A twist on the classic Sangria recipe with sweet, citrusy notes and the vibrant essence of ripe Florida oranges (New)

Morimoto Asia

disney cruise florida keys

  • Florida Key West Pink Shrimp Salad: Green tea-infused Japanese soba noodles tossed with shrimp, radish, carrot, cucumber, lettuce, and ponzu sauce (New)
  • Sparkling Shiso Orange: A refreshingly simple, house-made shrub, mixed with yuzu, sparkling green tea, and shiso (New)
  • Cedar Key Littleneck Clams: Renowned Florida clams in a flavorful sauce of ‘nduja, garlic, and wine served with grilled bread (New)
  • Islamorada Citrus Ale: A refreshing, fruit-forward and citrusy Island Ale from the Islamorada Beer Company (New)

Paradiso 37, Taste of the Americas

  • Key West Shrimp Ceviche: An explosion of spicy, Latin American flavors made with the freshest Florida-grown ingredients (New)

Planet Hollywood

  • Blue Parrot: Vodka and blue curaçao mixed with the fruity Florida flavors of lemonade and pineapple juice (New)
  • Orange Grove: SKYY Infusions Blood Orange Vodka mixed with orange juice and Sprite (New)

Rainforest Cafe

  • Florida Strawberry Cheesecake: Decadent cheesecake with mango and strawberry coulis, fresh strawberries, and whipped topping (New)
  • Yuengling Traditional Lager: A medium-bodied, American classic brewed in Tampa, Florida with hints of roasted caramel malt (New)

Splitsville Dining Room

  • Jalapeno Shrimp Poppers: Florida shrimp crispy fried and stuffed with jalapeño and cream cheese and served with chili-lime sauce (New)
  • Mango Doladira Spritz: A delightful cocktail crafted with mango liqueur, Doladira Amaro, prosecco, and mango syrup topped with soda (New)

STK Steakhouse

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  • Cubano: Pulled pork, ham, and cheese punctuated with pickles and mustard (New)
  • Key Lime Pie: A tart and creamy dessert topped with meringue, lime zest, and toasted coconut (New)

Summer House on the Lake

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  • Key West Shrimp: Key West shrimp with tostones, chile verde, Florida citrus salsa, and black beans (New)
  • Key Lime Pie Martini: A sweet take on a classic cocktail made with Tito’s Handmade Vodka and KeKe Key Lime Pie Cream Liqueur mixed with vanilla and lime (New)

Terralina Crafted Italian

  • Wondermade Key Lime Strawberry Shortcake: Italian biscuit finished with strawberry compote, frothed lime cream, and Wondermade Key Lime Pie Marshmallows (New)
  • Florida Strawberry Shortcake Skewers: Fresh strawberry and pound cake skewers, vanilla ice cream, and strawberry coulis with a honey vanilla drizzle (New)
  • Hidden Springs Ale Works Seasonal IPA: A celebration of vibrant hops and seasonal inspiration from Tampa’s Hidden Springs Ale Works (New)

Wine Bar George – A Restaurant & Bar

  • Grilled Scallop Ceviche: Scallops, grapefruit, and grilled tomatillos garnished with cilantro and watermelon foam (New)
  • Florida Frojito: A frozen mojito made with Florida watermelon, white rum, and mint (New)

Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill

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  • Wild Mushroom Gnocchi: Ricotta gnocchi topped with roasted Fungi Jon mushrooms, balsamic glazed shallots, wild arugula, and shaved pecorino cheese (New)
  • Passion of the Heights Beer: A light bodied, wheat ale from Florida Avenue Brewing Company with subtly sweet herbal and floral notes of mango and passion fruit (New)

What are you excited to do at Flavors in Florida this year? Let us know in the comments!

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Jennifer has a background in math and biology, so she ended up in Data Science where she gets to do both. She lives just north of Boston with her husband, kids, and assorted animal members of the family. Although it took three visits for the Disney bug to "take", she now really wishes she lived a lot closer to the Parks.

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Disney announces where its cruise ships will be sailing during late-2025, early-2026

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Disney Cruise Line is preparing to debut its new cruise ship, the Treasure, at Port Canaveral later this year.

But it also is planning ahead as far as 2026, with the cruise line's latest announcement of ship schedules out of Port Canaveral and other ports.

Disney's just-released ship schedules for October 2025 through May 2026 ― Disney's winter and spring cruise seasons ― shows that the cruise line will have three ships based on Port Canaveral during that time.

Disney currently bases two ships at Port Canaveral — the Fantasy and the Wish. But it will have three, starting when the Treasure starts sailing in December.

Where Disney ships are headed

What you'll discover on Disney Treasure: Here's a lineup of some restaurants, entertainment and lodging on Disney's Treasure ship

Here are the newly announced plans and itineraries for Disney ships that will be based at Port Canaveral:

  • The 2,713-passenger Disney Magic will have four- and five-night sailings from Port Canaveral to the Bahamas in October 2025, before switching home ports to San Juan, Puerto Rico, at the end of October, then to Galveston, Texas, in November 2025.
  • The 4,000-passenger Disney Fantasy will sail out of Port Canaveral on three-, four- and five-night cruises to the Bahamas starting in November 2025, replacing the Magic on the port's schedule. Before coming to Port Canaveral, the Fantasy will offer a special 13-night trans-Atlantic cruise sailing leaving Oct. 20, 2024, from Southampton, England, to Port Canaveral, with two port-of-call stops in Spain and one in Portugal.
  • The 4,000-passenger Disney Treasure will offer seven-night cruises to the Eastern and Western Caribbean from Port Canaveral.
  • The 4,000-passenger Disney Wish will offer three- and four-night cruises to the Bahama from Port Canaveral.

All the cruises out of Port Canaveral will include a port-of-call stop at one or both of Disney's private islands in the Bahamas — Castaway Cay and the new Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point, which had its first port-of-call visits this month.

"That's a lot of options out of Port Canaveral," said Scott Sanders, owner of the Celebration-based Disney Cruise Line Blog , which is not affiliated with Disney itself.

The Fantasy and the Magic will be switching places at Port Canaveral. The Fantasy currently is based at Port Canaveral, but will leave in May 2025, replaced by the Magic, before the Fantasy returns in November 2025.

The addition of a third Disney ship at Port Canaveral at the end of this year means Disney will be using two cruise terminals there, rather than one. Currently, when they are in port, Disney ships dock at Cruise Terminal 8, a terminal primarily used by Disney. But the third home-ported ship will result in Disney also using Cruise Terminal 10, which now currently is used primarily by MSC and Norwegian.

This is where Disney's two other ships will be during the fall 2025 to spring 2026 time frame:

  • The 2,713-passenger Disney Wonder will have multiple home ports, including Vancouver, British Columbia; Honolulu; Sydney and Melbourne, Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; and San Diego.
  • The 4,000-passenger Disney Dream will sail out of Fort Lauderdale's Port Everglades with three-, four- and five-night sailings to the Bahamas, as well as five-night sailings to the Western Caribbean.

Disney will offer themed holiday sailings on some of it 2025 cruises, with Halloween on the High Seas cruises in September and October, then Very Merrytime sailings in November and December.

Bookings for the general public will open Friday for the winter 2024 through spring 2025 Disney cruises. Bookings for members of various Disney Cruise Line clubs open earlier this week.

Sanders said it is unusual for Disney to announce cruise ship schedules for two seasons at once. But he believes that is related to Disney planning a special announcement with the next few months about itineraries for two other Disney ships now under construction that will joining the fleet in 2025 ― the Disney Adventure and the Disney Destiny.

The 6,000-passenger Adventure will sail out of Singapore. Disney acquire that ship — partially built and then known as the Global Dream — from another cruise company. No home port has been announced for the 4,000-passenger Destiny.

Dave Berman is business editor at  FLORIDA TODAY.  Contact Berman at  [email protected] , on X at  @bydaveberman  and on Facebook at  www.facebook.com/dave.berman.54

Details on Disney's new private island: Here are 5 things to know about the new Disney Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point

New! Disney Cruise Line Fall 2025 & Spring 2026 Itineraries

Advance Booking Open for Pearl, Platinum and Gold Castaway Club Members and Golden Oak Members

Prepare to be swept away on a family adventure at sea brimming with new discoveries. With so many destinations to explore—from the vibrant shores of The Bahamas and the Caribbean to the historic Yucatan Peninsula and the breathtaking Pacific Coast—Disney Cruise Line has the perfect cruise for you and yours. Choose to cross the Atlantic on an epic voyage or immerse yourself in the urban charm of Vancouver and the tropical beauty of Hawaii. Experience the engineering marvel of the Panama Canal, explore our new ports in New Zealand or cruise the South Pacific, either to or from Australia. And through fall 2025, don’t miss out on the holiday magic on board with a spooktacular Halloween on the High Seas or a holly jolly Very Merrytime cruise. Receiving numerous awards recognizing us as the top cruise line for families, Disney Cruise Line will take you on whichever itinerary you choose in style—with all the refined dining, legendary entertainment and award-winning attention to detail you’ve come to expect from us. And with our flexible, pay-over-time option, there’s no better time to start planning your best vacation ever. Browse our New Fall 2025 and Spring 2026 Itineraries . Reservations start June 24, 2024.

An old rowboat floats in clear waters next to a breaker with a small gazebo structure

Surrender to the swaying palm trees, blue-water bliss and endless sunshine of such dreamy locales as Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Jamaica, St. Thomas, Tortola and our very own private island Disney Castaway Cay on a 5- or 7-night Caribbean cruise from Fort Lauderdale or Port Canaveral, Florida. Or set sail from San Juan, Puerto Rico on a 7-night island-hopping adventure to destinations that might include St. Kitts, Antigua, Aruba, Curaçao, Barbados, Dominica and St. Lucia. Along the way, delight in live shows, action-packed kids clubs and themed restaurants and bars.

Cruises from Galveston, Texas

A boy and girl run along the shore on Disney Castaway Cay with a Disney Cruise Line ship in the background

The Bahamas

Soak up the laid-back pleasures of island life on a 3-, 4-, 5-night cruise departing from Port Canaveral or Fort Lauderdale, Florida, or on a 7-night sailing from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Your magical journey drops anchor in sun-kissed ports of call that may include a stop at Nassau, Disney Castaway Cay or Disney Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point. From stingray encounters, fly-fishing and parasailing to celebrating the arts and culture of The Bahamas, there’s something for everyone.

Westbound Transatlantic

Experience the maritime history of Southampton, England before taking off on an epic cross-continental voyage over the Atlantic Ocean to sunny Port Canaveral on a 13-night transatlantic voyage. Along the way, drop anchor in Vigo and La Coruña in Spain, as well as Ponta Delgada (Azores), Portugal. And with 9 luxurious days at sea, you’ll have ample time to fully enjoy all the magical offerings on board—from sparkling pools, engaging youth clubs and fireworks at sea to Broadway-style shows, world-class dining, relaxing spa treatments and more.

A Disney Cruise ship sails through the ocean close to sunset

Panama Canal

Embark the ultimate adventure during a 14-night cruise through the Panama Canal, starting in Galveston and ending in San Diego. Along the way, drop anchor in Cartagena, Cozumel, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas to explore rich culture, delicious food and enchanting cobblestone streets. Each destination promises unforgettable experiences and stories waiting to be told.

Large stones jutting out of choppy surf near a beach

Baja California and Mexican Riviera

Cast off from sunny San Diego, California on a 3- or 4-night cruise with stops to Catalina Island and Ensenada, home to beautiful beaches, delicious cuisine and a vibrant culture. Or delight in a 7-night cruise to such balmy locales as Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas and Ensenada in Mexico. While sailing the Pacific, enjoy a dazzling array of onboard entertainment, cuisine and amenities—including Character greetings, deck parties, live shows and kids clubs.

Pacific Coast

Delight in the sights and sounds of beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia before setting sail on a fun-filled 4-night cruise to sunny San Diego, California. Voyage along the rugged Pacific Coast while enjoying magical days at sea, complete with spectacular deck parties, Broadway-style shows, themed dining, Character greetings, imaginative kids clubs and more.

Palm trees and parking barricades in front of a modern looking shopping area at sunset

Embark on a sun-splashed Hawaiian adventure aboard the Disney Wonder. Cruise from Honolulu to Vancouver or Vancouver to Honolulu on a 10-night sailing with stops in Nawiliwili (Kaua’i), Kahului (Maui) and Hilo (Hawai’i’s Big Island). Marvel at waterfalls at Akaka Falls, explore the lush flora at Liliuokalani Gardens and soak up the sun and surf at Kanaha Beach Park. On board, enjoy fabulous days at sea with dazzling Broadway-style shows, immersive themed dining and fun activities for the whole family.

Rolling hills and mountains surrounding a body of water

South Pacific

Bask in the enchantment of breathtaking sunsets at sea when you set out on a 15-night South Pacific cruise from Honolulu to Sydney or a 14-night cruise from Sydney to Honolulu. Sail across the international dateline and drop anchor in dazzling destinations, including Nouméa, New Caledonia; Suva, Fiji; Pago Pago, American Samoa; and the Hawaiian Islands. While at sea, you’ll have ample time to delight in all the magical offerings on board from award-winning entertainment and exciting deck parties to imaginative dining, Character encounters and more.

New Zealand and Australia

Disney Cruise Line is bringing enchantment and cherished Disney friends Down Under for a new season of 3-, 4-, 5- and 10-night cruises sailing from Auckland, New Zealand; and 3- and 5-night sailings from Sydney, Australia; and 3-night sailings from Melbourne, Australia. Depending on your itinerary, stops on New Zealand cruises may include Wellington, Christchurch, Fiordland National Park, Tauranga and Napier, and Australia sailings, Hobart and Eden. While on board, immerse yourself in the magic of Disney storytelling with favorite Characters, imaginative dining, spectacular entertainment and themed events throughout your sailing.

A building on Mount Wellington overlooking the coast in Tasmania, Australia

Adventures by Disney Escapes

Discover the perfect getaway when you add on a pre- or post-trip to your Disney Cruise Line vacation. Create a lifetime of family memories when you travel with Disney-trained Adventure guides to beautiful Sydney, Australia or dazzling European cities like London, Rome or Barcelona on 3- or 4-day Escapes. Tour the Sydney Opera House, see London’s Crown Jewels, partake in Barcelona's flamenco artistry or explore Rome's iconic sites like the Spanish Steps, Colosseum, Sistine Chapel and more.

Browse our New Fall 2025 and Spring 2026 Itineraries . Reservations start June 24, 2024.

IMAGES

  1. Cruises, Family Cruises & Disney Vacations

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  2. Cruise Liner Disney Magic at Key West, Florida Editorial Stock Photo

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  3. Disney Cruise Miami Guide

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  4. 80+ Disney S Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images

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  5. Caribbean Cruises & Caribbean Cruise Vacations

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  6. Disney Cruise Ships that Visit Key West

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COMMENTS

  1. Cruises From Florida

    Set Sail from the Sunshine State - Cruise from Fort Lauderdale or Port Canaveral. Before embarking on a sun-splashed vacation at sea, soak up the family fun at Walt Disney World Resort, near Port Canaveral. Or shop, play and create unforgettable memories at our dazzling new home port near Fort Lauderdale.

  2. Key West Catamaran Sail and Snorkel

    All prices are subject to change without notice. Cancellations can be made up to 3 days prior to the cruise departure date, unless otherwise noted on the specific activity. After that time all reservations are final and non-refundable. Key West Catamaran Sail and Snorkel Tour is a Disney Cruise Line port adventure in Key West, Florida featuring ...

  3. Disney Castaway Cay

    3- and 4-Night Cruises to The Bahamas from Port Canaveral with a Stop at Disney Castaway Cay. Set sail from Port Canaveral, Florida for a vacation filled with sun-kissed fun—including a day to play at our private island paradise, Disney Castaway Cay! .

  4. Disney Cruises from Florida: Ships, Ports, and Itineraries

    The address for Disney Cruise Line at Port Canaveral is: 9155 Charles M. Rowland Dr. Port Canaveral, FL 32920. Parking is available adjacent to the DCL terminal in a garage operated by the Port Canaveral Port Authority. The garage opens at 10:15 AM, and cash is not accepted for payment.

  5. Disney's Old Key West Resort

    For assistance with your Walt Disney World vacation, including resort/package bookings and tickets, please call (407) 939-5277. For Walt Disney World dining, please book your reservation online. 7:00 AM to 11:00 PM Eastern Time. Guests under 18 years of age must have parent or guardian permission to call. Disney's Old Key West Resort features ...

  6. Disney Key West Cruises (2024): CHEAP Cruise Deals

    Find cheap Disney cruises to Key West on Tripadvisor. Search for great cruise deals and compare prices to help you plan your next Disney cruise vacation to Key West.

  7. Sailing the Florida Keys: 2 week Florida Keys Sailing itinerary

    8. Fat Deer Key to Butternut Key. 45.5 Nautical Miles // 7 Hours of Sailing the Keys. Butternut Key is located in Florida Bay, the body of water between the Florida Keys and the southern tip of Florida, east of the Gulf of Mexico. Butternut Key is off the southwest coast of Key Largo. Technically, it is considered to be a part of the Everglades ...

  8. Cheap Key West Cruises

    Search for great cruise deals and compare prices to help you plan your next cruise vacation to Key West. ... Disney's Coronado Springs Resort; Sandals Dunn's River; Flamingo Las Vegas; Moon Palace The Grand - Cancun ... Florida (FL) Florida Keys ; Key West; Search. Key West Cruises. View prices from: Departure date. Start a new search. Deal ...

  9. Guide to Sailing to the Key West Cruise Port

    Guide to Sailing to the Key West Cruise Port. Published: 02/14/2023. I've sailed on many cruise ships in the Caribbean, and one of my favorite ports of call ever is Key West in the Florida Keys. As a US port, it's a nice stop where you can turn on your cellular service, use US dollars, and even stop at an American pharmacy if you need any ...

  10. Disney cruise ships to set sail from Broward's Port Everglades

    Disney is coming to life in South Florida. The entertainment and travel company is expanding its cruise business to Port Everglades. The first ship will set sail on Nov. 20 from Fort Lauderdale ...

  11. Florida Residents Can Save Up to 20% on Select ...

    Florida Resident rates are available for the following sailings. 3-Night Bahamian Cruise from Port Canaveral. July 12, 2024; Discover the Value of a Disney Cruise. Enjoy a wonderful array of on-board experiences included with your cruise fare: Live entertainment, like Broadway-style shows and interactions with Disney Characters from a safe ...

  12. Cruises from Miami to Key West

    Key West, as part of the Florida Keys archipelago, ... Disney Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, Royal Caribbean, and Virgin Voyages, are based in Miami. Known as the "Cruise Capital of the World," Miami also offers a varied range of cultures and activities. South Florida's cultural and economic heart, with ...

  13. Your 7-Day Cruising Itinerary for a Perfect Trip on the Florida Keys

    A popular venue for concerts and galas, the estate has also featured in the movies Any Given Sunday and Bad Boys II. A visit to Vizcaya is a perfect day trip, so ask your concierge to make arrangements for you. Joel M. Hoffman, Director. +1 305 250 9133. [email protected].

  14. Castaway Cay: A guide to Disney Cruise Line's private island

    Disney Cruise Line's Castaway Cay is located in the Bahamas, near Great Abaco island. It's 225 nautical miles from Port Canaveral, home port of several Disney cruise ships. Disney leases the island from the Bahamian government. The 1,000-acre island is roughly 3 miles long by 2 miles wide, but only 55 acres are developed.

  15. Florida Gulf Coast & Key West Cruise

    Day 1 - St. Petersburg, FL. Start your cruise in St. Petersburg, which glimmers between the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay. The city is not only known for its warm weather, but also for having the most consecutive days of sunshine. Be welcomed on board with a reception as you begin your amazing exploration of the Florida Gulf Coast & Keys.

  16. Tropical Cruises for 3- to 4-Nights to the Bahamas

    3- or 4-Night Cruises to The Bahamas from Port Canaveral. Cast off from Port Canaveral, Florida—just an hour from Walt Disney World Resort—to historic Nassau in The Bahamas and Disney Castaway Cay, our private island paradise, featuring recreation and fun for the entire family. For even more fun, a day at sea is available on 4-night voyages ...

  17. Keys to Your Disney Cruise Vacation

    These ports include Galveston, Texas, Miami, Florida, and New Orleans, Louisiana. The Disney Wonder is the Magic's sister ship and sails from Vancouver, British Columbia to Alaska or San Diego, California to Baja Mexico. Since each ship has slightly different offerings, your Key to the World Travel advisor is the perfect person to help you ...

  18. 2024 (Key Largo) Sunset Cruise on the Florida Bay

    Sunset Cruise on the Florida Bay. By Pirates Cove Watersports. 151 reviews. Recommended by 96% of travelers. See all photos. About. from. $60.00. per adult.

  19. Cruises from Tampa to Key West

    Key West, as part of the Florida Keys archipelago, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.As a matter-of-fact, you can easily get there by taking one of the cruises that depart out of Tampa.. Tampa welcomes many cruise ships throughout the year at its cruise terminals, offering a wide range of itineraries to Key West.

  20. Cruises, Family Cruises & Disney Vacations

    Discover what sets Disney Cruise Line apart. Explore award-winning family cruises featuring world-class entertainment, modern amenities and legendary service to worldwide ports of call in The Bahamas, the Caribbean, Alaska, Europe, Mexico, Canada and more. ... Sail from Florida and Drop Anchor at Our Island Destinations. Embark on an Alaskan ...

  21. Flavors of Florida Returns to Disney Springs for Summer 2024

    Texturas of Florida Grapefruit and Yogurt Olive Oil Ice Cream; Pair these dishes with any of: Sangria with Florida Citrus; Local Florida Beer; Agua Frescas or a mocktail; Flavors of Florida Culinary Demonstrations. Chefs from some of Disney Springs' best restaurants prepare dishes and share tricks of the trade on Friday mornings at Waterview ...

  22. Keys trip with kids (under ten)

    Hey all, hoping for help planning a trip with our 2 kids (6+7) in early November. We love beaches and seashells so will spend a week ish at gulf coast beaches before heading down to the keys (after 3 nights in Orlando).. We have rented a car a few times and we are quite familiar with the drive from Orlando to the gulf coast, but we always plan to avoid tolls.

  23. Disney reveals details of cruise ship itineraries through early-2026

    Disney's just-released ship schedules for October 2025 through May 2026 ― Disney's winter and spring cruise seasons ― shows that the cruise line will have three ships based on Port Canaveral ...

  24. Cruises From Port Canaveral, FL

    Book a Disney Land and Sea vacation and experience the best of both worlds. It's easy to spend time at Walt Disney World Resort if you plan on departing from or arriving in Port Canaveral, Florida on a Disney cruise—it's approximately an hour-long drive away! You could even enjoy a stay at Disney's Riviera Resort, designed to capture ...

  25. New! Fall 2025 & Spring 2026 Cruise Itineraries

    Soak up the laid-back pleasures of island life on a 3-, 4-, 5-night cruise departing from Port Canaveral or Fort Lauderdale, Florida, or on a 7-night sailing from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Your magical journey drops anchor in sun-kissed ports of call that may include a stop at Nassau, Disney Castaway Cay or Disney Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point.