Welcome to Gay Key West!

Our lush tropical island has fascinating architecture, friendly people, a rich history, and plenty of activities to keep you engaged – or just come relax!

Filled with a funky charm, Key West is a sophisticated place with amazing restaurants, diverse entertainment, eclectic art, professional theatre, and live music that includes salsa, show tunes, disco, country, opera, and classical. Our gay and lesbian guest houses are legendary, and our mainstream hotels and inns are always All Welcome.

Drag shows, weddings, water excursions, late night parties, beaches, clothing optional resorts, and the only gay & lesbian historic trolley tour make our island the preeminent LGBT vacation choice.

But the best part about our town is our open and accepting attitude. “One Human Family” is our city motto, and our closets are only used for our costumes!

Whether you are looking for a romantic retreat or decadent fun, you can find it here in Gay Key West where we throw a party 365 days a year!

Is Key West Still “Gay”?

Please, girlfriend. We’re still here. We’re still queer. Now come visit us! Seriously.

Just like Provincetown, Palm Springs, Ft. Lauderdale and West Hollywood we’ve all heard the same question: “Where did the gays go?”

Back when gay life existed in a parallel universe separate from jobs, birth families and a harshly intolerant mainstream the LGBT community opted to vacation in out-of-the-way destinations. And Key West was one of the few truly accepting, come-as-you-are places where LGBT visitors could express their creativity, their freedom, their love. Key West has ignored stereotypes and refused to see boundaries for centuries.

Today that acceptance is still celebrated and happily offered here on our quirky, fun, authentic little island. “One Human Family” is our official city and county motto, and we proudly acknowledge that as a community we are “Close to Perfect and Far from Normal!”

Integration. Acceptance. Inclusion.

We’ve been practicing these in Key West for a very long time.

Are there still gay guest houses, gay bars, gay water excursions, gay events in Key West?

Yes, yes, yes and yes.

Key West was the very first city in North America that elected an openly gay Mayor! Our former Superintendent of Schools is openly gay. Our City Commission and our County Commission have openly gay members. Our fire department has openly lesbian and gay staff. And hey, my next door neighbor is a drag queen.

We have internationally known award-winning gay guest houses, adult-themed gay bars, nightly drag shows, the only gay trolley tour in North America and some of the gay only water excursions in Florida. And the cruising is definitely “hot!”

But we don’t get hung up on labels or categories or designations.

When asked if Key West is still “gay?” our response is always “Sure! Our whole island is gay!” And we mean it.

LGBTQ+ Key West History

Long associated with the testosterone-fueled macho marketing of Hemingway, Key West in fact has benefited far more from a very different variety of creative energy. Hemingway lived and worked on the island barely 11 years. He was followed by a lavender wave of enterprise, ingenuity and industry that has lasted for decades and continues to this day.