9 best Florida Keys family resorts

Last updated on May 13, 2024

Victoria and her kid having breakfast in Dry Rocks restaurant at Bakers Cay Resort.

The Florida Keys sure know how to do a family resort! The islands are packed with bells-and-whistles hotels, all making the most of their location in one of the USA’s most gorgeous beach destinations. We were blown away by the hotels we stayed at – all giving the ultimate conditions for pure relaxation and dreamy, beach vacation vibes. 

This is our round-up of the best Florida Keys family resorts. We stayed at three of them (Bakers Cay, Oceans Edge and Isla Bella) and the rest are the ones that made our shortlist and come highly recommended.

Please be warned, this is not a cheap place to visit, especially in the high season. Some of the prices at the more luxury resorts can be fairly eye-watering over Easter, but you can find good deals at quieter times, and if you book ahead you can catch some bargains. 

I’ve suggested some budget-friendly options in each section too.

Also see our full Florida Keys road trip itinerary, and guide to the best things to do in the Florida Keys with kids.

The best Florida Keys family resorts

Best Key Largo family resorts

Key Largo is the first spot you hit when visiting the Florida Keys from the mainland, and a popular place to vacation. One of the biggest draws to the area is the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park where you can explore the USA’s only barrier reef.

Baker’s Cay

Baker’s Cay was the first place we visited in the Florida Keys, and oh my, what an introduction! Set over 13-acres, the 200-room resort has gorgeous, tropical grounds including its own private beaches, perfect for lounging, swimming and play.

The Coconut Beach was great for kids with shallow waters and plenty of shaded areas. And you can also use the hotel’s paddle boards and kayaks – or pay extra for sunset cruises and the like.

A tiki hut on the beach, plus a larger beachside restaurant, Dry Rocks, mean you can easily spend a whole day just hanging at the beach. We particularly loved Dry Rocks and its swinging chairs where we started the day with a coffee and pancakes. And don’t miss the daily sunset toast with bubbly provided as part of the hotel’s amenities.

While I’d always choose the beach, there’s also a swimming pool, including an adults-only area. The kids loved splashing around in the waterfall feature in the pool. And right next to that is a large lawn for games and events like an evening cinema.

For us, the only thing that didn’t hit the jackpot at Baker’s Cay were the rooms, which didn’t quite match the elevated style of the rest of the hotel. They are by no means bad, but they felt a little boring in comparison to the rest of the hotel. That said, we had an oceanfront room and the views of the beach were gorgeous. If you can, definitely pay the extra for the ocean view as the garden view rooms face the car park. 

Check availability and book now.

Bay Harbor Lodge / Coconut Bay Resort 

Bay Harbor Lodge and Coconut Bay Resort are sister properties with 21 rooms between them, offering a quieter alternative to the bigger resorts. They also have more budget-friendly prices. The apartments offer the ability to self-cater, which would also help to save some cash.

Owned by an ex school teacher who dreamed of owning a hotel, Coconut Bay Resort is one of those places where all the details have been lovingly crafted and you can feel the care behind them. 

It’s set within some beautifully tended tropical gardens and is right on the bay for epic sunset views. 

Check availability and book now.

Budget-friendly family hotels in Key Largo

Bay Harbor Lodge and Coconut Bay Resort are two of the most highly rated and budget-friendly places to stay in Key Largo. And other options that look good include Drift Hotel, Sunset Cove Beach Resort, and the Bayside Inn

Best Key West family resorts

Key West is the most popular destination in the Florida Keys, well known for its nightlife and offbeat culture where social renegades have made their home. It’s also fileld with tourist attractions, from historic homes (both Truman and hemmingway had houses here) to museums exploring the Key’s history.

Oceans Edge Hotel & Marina

We stayed at Oceans Edge Hotel & Marina where all 175 rooms face the water, providing attractive views of the hotel’s marina. 

The whole place has a classic boardwalk style, with white clapboard buildings and wooden porches and balconies. You know I’m a sucker for that style, so it had me at first sight!

There are six pools, all the same simple rectangular style, spaced out along the boardwalk, so your room is never far from one – and it’s nice having views of the marina as you swim. 

The coastal aesthetic rooms feel luxurious with plenty of space and a calming blue and white palette. They range in size, some with private living rooms that can be used as an extra sleeping space, so ideal for families.

It’s about a 15-minute drive from Key West, which has the benefit of being away from the town’s noise, but the inconvenience of having to get there and back. There is a free shuttle if you don’t want to use the car.

We also enjoyed breakfast at the hotel’s restaurant, which looks out onto the marina. They have fire pits at night, perfect for roasting s’mores.

Check availability and book now.

Southernmost Beach Resort

The Southernmost Beach Resort is a super convenient place to stay in Key West, right at the end of Duval Street in the historic old town, and within walking distance to most of the town’s best attractions. 

In spite of being so central, it’s a big place and even has two private beaches. Other highlights include four bars, three heated pools, a private tanning pier and a spa. 

And the Southernmost Beach Café is a popular destination in its own right.

Check availability and book now.

Winslow’s Bungalows

Winslow’s Bungalow’s used to a be a Kimpton property and it still has the sophisticated yet characterful style that the brand is known for. 

It stands out among the Key West hotels for being central but also peaceful, located in the slightly quieter part of town and housed across some of its historic buildings.  

Highlights include three pools, a poolside bar and complimentary breakfast. It’s walkable to all the main Key West attractions.

Check availability and book now.

Budget-friendly options in Key West

Oceans Edge has surprisingly good prices, partly because it’s not in the central part of town. If you want to be in the middle of it all, Blue Marlin Motel is one of the most popular budget options. And I also like the look of The Palms Hotel and Courtney’s Place Historic Cottages

Best family resorts in Marathon

Marathon is the midway point between Key Largo and Key West. While it has less going on than Key West especially, it’s a great option for a peaceful beach or boating vacation. The Turtle Hospital and Dolphin Research Center are popular family attractions.

Isla Bella Beach Resort 

Isla Bella Beach Resort is a huge beachfront resort that takes full advantage of its location with oceanside pools and restaurants, private beaches to relax on, and hammocks to enjoy the views. It’s the epitome of an island resort paradise, and we all loved staying there for our final night on the Keys. 

Otis and Arlo especially loved the oversized games on the beach, which were handily close to a beach bar where we could enjoy a sundowner and casual meal. And they were also running a kids’ crafts session there.

There are other fancier options for food, including Mahina, a Polynesian restaurant, and a sushi bar on the beach. We enjoyed breakfast at Mahina with ocean views from the terrace.

The hotel also has a marina where you can do water sports, fishing trips, cruises, kayaking and more. And there’s also a spa, which I sadly didn’t have time to take advantage of.

The hotel is a sister property of Oceans Edge and brings the same ocean-chic aesthetic to its rooms. All have ocean views and are spread out along the mile-long expanse of the resort’s waterfront. 

Isla Bella is just off the Overseas Highway and about a 5-minute drive from the Turtle Sanctuary, which makes for a fun family excursion.

Check availability and book now.

The following are places we didn’t stay at, but which were on our shortlist and are well reviewed.

Grassy Flats Resort & Beach Club 

Grassy Flats Resort & Beach Club is a popular option in Marathon that I saw many great reviews for when doing my Florida Keys research. It’s an eco-friendly resort with lots of sustainability initiatives. And it’s a good option for families as all the rooms are suites, including 2-4 bedroom options. 

Check availability and book now.

Tranquility Bay Beach House Resort

Tranquility Bay is a luxury option with beautiful 2-3 bedroom beach houses, complete with full kitchens and picturesque porches looking out to the water. They also have guestrooms for a slightly less extravagant option. 

Check availability and book now.

Budget-friendly options in Marathon

Captain Pip’s Marina and Hideaway is a popular budget-friendly family resort in Islamorada with cute, colourful bungalows on the marina. And the Courtyard by Marriot is also well-reviewed.

Best family resorts in Islamadora

Islamadora is the next town on from Key Largo before you reach Marathon. It’s the sport fishing capital of the world, so many of the activities are focused around that, including the popular Robbie’s Marina. 

We didn’t stay in Islamorada, but here are some top reviewed family resorts.

La Siesta Resort and Villas

As you can imagine, I love the brightly coloured beachfront cottages at La Siesta Resort and Spa. It’s giving pure tropical beach vibes and the whole place is focused on relaxation. Highlights include a private beach, pool, poolside bar, bicycles, kayaks, paddleboards, yoga classes, and resort events. 

It’s part of a 3-hotel resort group in Islamadora, including Amara Cay and Three Waters, and you can use their facilities and restaurants too. 

Check availability and book now.

Budget-friendly options in Islamorada

Pines & Palms is a lovely, low-key resort set on a palm-fringed beach, and with 1-3 bed cottages and villas. Islander Resort is a fairly luxurious option, but offers good deals and has a great pool for families.

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Creative family travel guides

We don’t think you have to sacrifice creativity and style when travelling with kids. Browse our guides for creative family travel around the world. We also have a whole section on cool places to stay with kids in destinations worldwide.

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