Islamorada in The Florida Keys: A Fun Family Summer Destination Guide

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Two beach chairs under a chiki umbrella on a beach in Islamorada

Summer is almost here which means it’s time to start planning your next family vacation. One of the amazing perks and benefits of living in Miami is that just within a 2-hour drive from the city you can easily get to beautiful coastal destinations like Naples and Islamorada. Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway or quick day trip with the family then I highly recommend making plans to visit Islamorada this summer! Here is a little guide for your next trip to this popular Florida Keys destination:

WHERE TO STAY

Atlantic Bay Resort

If you and your family are planning on spending the night in the Keys or maybe even the entire weekend then I highly recommend staying at the Atlantic Bay Resort. This relaxing waterfront resort is conveniently located in Tavernier Key which is only ten minutes away from Islamorada. Not only is the resort family-friendly but it also offers many FREE amenities as well!

A view of the beach at Atlantic Bay Resort

Some of the amazing resort amenities include a pool, kayaks, bikes, paddle boards, a private beach, tiki hut, gas BBQ grill, and even a fun beach game for the kids to play! There are different types of rooms at the resort ranging from efficiencies to suites to tropical cottages depending on your budget. What’s great about the rooms is that they are comfortable, spacious, and some of them even come with a full kitchen area!

A peaceful water view

 A photo of the Atlantic Bay Resort in Islamorada

A clean a spacious room

A full kitchen and dining area

A dock leading out to a boat on the water

 Rachel and her family relaxing under the tiki hut

The best part about the resort is the breathtaking sunset and ocean views which you can see while sitting on their beach lounge chairs or on their dock! I highly recommend doing this with your family during your stay because it is truly one of the best things to do in the Keys!

Rachel and her family enjoying the sunset

Rachel and her family enjoying their time in the Keys

A view of the sunset over the bay

THINGS TO DO

Take a walk on the docks at World Wide Sportsman Bayside Marina 

If you’re visiting Islamorada and want to sit back and relax for a bit, then World Wide Sportsman Bayside Marina is a great place to check out. They have a delicious outdoor restaurant, Islamorada Fish Company, and a Bass Pro Shops store along with plenty of docks to watch fish swimming by, birds, and other wildlife. Something that is always fun to do here and that kids really seem to enjoy is feeding the tarpons and other local fish! It is also one of the best spots to take family photos and catch the sunset so make sure to have your camera ready! 

A view of the marina

Visit Theater of the Sea

For those of you who have younger children that love sea animals then make sure to visit Theater of the Sea. This family-owned and operated attraction offers a bottomless boat ride, lagoon-side beach, dolphin, sea lion, and parrot shows along with reptile and fish tours! You will be sure to find alligators, crocodiles, tropical fish, sharks, sea turtles, and stingrays during your visit. It’s a fun way to spend some quality time with the family and entertain the little ones. Also, if your kids are at least age 5 or older they can even swim and interact with animals such as dolphins or sea lions!  

The entrance to Theater of the Sea

Explore the History of Diving Museum

This museum is a great place to visit if you have older kids who enjoy learning, history, and ocean-related artifacts. You can find everything from diving equipment, gear, memorabilia, prints, photographs, books, and more including exhibits like the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. The History of Diving Museum is known to have one of the world’s largest collections of everything related to diving. They also have a small aquarium, interactive exhibits for the kids, and even offer a fun mobile scavenger hunt for kids to complete during their tour!

The entrance to the History of Diving Museum

Check out local shops like Rain Barrel Village

If you’ve ever driven to Islamorada before then you most likely have seen a large 30-40 foot lobster sculpture on the right-hand side of the road. This eye-catching sculpture is a great spot to take photos with your kids and you can find it in a place called Rain Barrel Village. They have art galleries featuring local art along with boutiques and shops where you can find handmade crafts, jewelry, clothing, and souvenirs to take home with you. It’s a cute little spot to go with the family and you can even grab a small bite or drink while you’re there!

The 30-40 foot lobster sculpture off of US-1 in the Keys

The Rain Barrel Village

Picnic tables and umbrellas at Cafe Lobster Shack

PLACES TO EAT

Midway Café and Coffee Bar

One place that I always recommend checking out for breakfast or lunch is Midway Café and Coffee Bar. This small, colorful, and funky local gem serves some of the best breakfast and coffee in the Keys and is a family-friendly, casual, and cozy spot to dine. If you decide to stop by with the family make sure to try their delicious homemade buttermilk pancakes and key lime pie while you’re there! Your kids will love it and thank you for it later! 

Midway Cafe

A stack of delicious buttermilk pancakes

Square Grouper

You and your family will definitely want to check out a local and popular waterfront restaurant called Square Grouper for dinner and/or lunch. They serve some of the most delicious, freshest, and locally-sourced seafood in the Keys along with plenty of other dishes ranging from pasta to salads to sandwiches and more. Your family has the option of doing indoor or outdoor dining and the great thing about dining outdoors is that you have a relaxing and laid-back view of the marina. 

The Square Grouper Restaurant in Islamorada

A view of the marina behind Square Grouper

A pasta and shrimp dish

Blond Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory

Last but not least, nothing says the Florida Keys more than key lime pie and this is one place you don’t want to miss! Make sure to stop by Blond Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory before heading home and grab a slice or a whole pie for the family. They were actually voted the best in Florida and have been featured on the Food Network and other TV shows! If you decide to dine at the factory they have a cute outdoor garden patio area where your family can enjoy a little slice of heaven!

A key lime pie at Blonde Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory in Islamorada

Rachel and her daughter on a dock, with a bay view behind them

Any plans of visiting Islamorada with the family during the summer? Which spots would you like to check out? Let me know in the comments below! 

For more tips and ideas on where to find family fun in the Florida Keys, be sure to check out this post from another Miami mom!

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