Catch a Sunset at Fort Zachary Taylor

Ft Zachary Taylor Parking Area

Key West, Florida has a great downtown and wild outdoor side. Karaoke, island drinks, late night Cuban food, picturesque sunsets, world class fishing, epic snorkeling, bugging and climbing coconut palms on secluded beaches will help you discover your inner islander.

Although small, there is still one untouched secret location in Key West where you can escape all the herd following tourists.Not much in life is more picture perfect and memorable than a sunset. This beach offers an incredible sunset. This secluded wild side of Key West will cost you an incredibly small 7 dollars. Even the locals don't know about this hidden gem.

Directions to your secluded beach start on famous HWY 1. Whether driving or flying, Hwy 1 is the main vein of the island. Take Hwy 1 south towards downtown and turn right onto the famous Duval St. Make your way past Ernest Hemingway's house, and within a block of the legendary mile 0 MILE MARKER. Turn left on Southard St and try not to get distracted by Jimmy Buffet's eccentric Green Parrot Bar. Continue through The Truman Annex neighborhood, named for the countries 33rd president, Harry S Truman, who vacationed to the island on many occasions. Once you pass though the Truman Annex, the road bends left as you pass the Coast Guard Cutter, Ingham, which is now a museum. Ft. Zachary Taylor is the destination you are looking for. The nations southernmost fort during the civil war is now a modern attraction with Iguanas the size of dogs. This destination has everything for a large family with small children, to a couple looking for a romantic retreat. You can fish right from the beach for hog fish, snapper and trophy tarpon. Climb a coconut palm for fresh coconut juice like a native islander. Snorkel the clear blue water covered with sea life, then relax in the warm sun. Add some butter to your fresh catch on the grill, mix some rum to your freshly harvested coconuts and your island vacation cant be any more wildly free! Now its time to take advantage of your own private beach and one of the best sunsets you will ever experience. After stepping back in time exploring the fort, take a short hike around the moat surrounding the fort, continue as the trail disappears into the brush. The trail looks like it ends but continue on the small foot trail though the brush. Hidden behind some small trees and brush nestled against the US Navy property fence, is a small 50 yard section of untouched beach. The water is perfect for fishing and snorkeling, but watching the sunset will leave a lasting memory you will never forget. Lay down a towel, stick a straw in the cooled coconut and let all your worries in the world slip away with the sun.

Don't pay 50 dollars for one stone crab or lobster meal, when a snorkel, mask and pair of gloves will give you a free meal for the whole family. Nothing can be more rewarding and satisfying then surviving off the land. Once you have let your wild side loose, and have seen the worlds best sunset, its finally time to head down to Duval St for live music at Irish Kevin's. Although you really cant go wrong at any bar, I believe Irish Kevin's has the best atmosphere in town. Irish Kevin himself will not only play classic hits from the 80's and 90's, but he will give you a hard time and mock you while doing it. Its a mix of comedy and entertainment all wrapped into one. And if you're Irish you drink for free!

Pack List

  • Water
  • Rum
  • Knife or Hatchet for coconut
  • Sunscreen
  • Towel
  • Snorkel
  • Mask
  • Fins
  • Dive Gloves
  • Dive Booties
  • Swim Suit
  • Spear Gun
  • Fishing Pole
  • BBQ Coals
  • Lobster Bag
  • Butter and Spices for fish
Show More
Activities Stand Up Paddle, Chillin, Fishing, Photography, Kayaking, Swimming, Diving
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Adult Beverages
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Handicap Accessible
Picnic Area


Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Great place to elope! :)

Beautiful place and downtown is super fun and full of energy! Snorkeling definitely shows off some good marine life at Fort Zach as well! There's a very secluded little beach all the way to the right at Fort Zach - that's where we got married and took our photos. I don't think too many people know about it! Worth a look!

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Nearby Adventures

More Nearby Adventures

Camp and Explore Dry Tortugas National Park

448 Saves

Beach Day at Bahia Honda SP

139 Saves

Snorkel at Sombrero Reef

112 Saves