Where is the best sunset in Islamorada? I had this question when I visited and wanted to spend the evening marveling at Mother Earth’s colours 🙂
I found all the best spots and I will share them below!
Islamorada, a picturesque, sunny village located in Monroe County, is directly between popular holiday spots Miami and Key West.
It is situated across five islands in the Florida Keys – Tea Table Key, Lower Matecumbe Key, Upper Matecumbe Key, Windley Key, and Plantation Key.
It’s known for celeb residents, their yacht marina, beaches, and preserves, making it a perfect holiday spot, especially for a solo traveler or group of women. Not least on its long list of appealing characteristics, Islamorada benefits from Florida’s gorgeous weather, clear blue skies, and magical sunsets.
If you fancy taking a trip to Islamorada, and want to bask in the best sunset, there are a few factors you should bear in mind:
- where you’ll watch it from, and
- what time of year you’re going to visit.
Don’t worry, though – we’ve got you covered, and this article will explain everything you need to know about catching the best sunset rays.
Related Posts on Islamorada:
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- What To Do In Islamorada In 2022
- 8 Best Places to go Snorkeling in Islamorada 2022
- 7 Best Hotels In Islamorada For 2022
When Is the Best Time of Year for Sunsets in Islamorada?
Generally, watching the sunset in the USA is best in late fall and winter, as air circulation is more sluggish (and hence the photochemical reactions that result in smog and haze occur more frequently).
As Florida remains temperate year-round and is very mild in the winter, you can sit out on the beach and eat outside on restaurant terraces, whilst watching the sunset.
When is sunset? Check this table to see when the sun is due to set (approximately)every month.
|Month||Approximate time of sunset|
|January||5:50 pm – 6:15 pm|
|February||6:15 pm – 6:30 pm|
|March||6:30 pm – 7:30 pm|
|April||7:30 pm – 8:00 pm|
|May||8:00 pm – 8:30 pm|
|June||8:00 pm – 8:30 pm|
|July||8:00 pm – 8:30pm|
|August||7:30 pm – 8:00 pm|
|September||7:15 pm – 7:45 pm|
|October||7:00 pm – 7:15 pm|
|November||5:45 pm – 6:30 pm|
|December||5:30 – 5:45 pm|
It is worth bearing in mind that the ‘golden hour’, where the light is ideal for viewing and photographing sunsets, typically tends to start about an hour before the sun actually sets.
Rather than just relying on our table, it’s a good idea to check the local newspaper or an online forecast site, just to double-check the expected weather and exact time of sunset. Turn up a little in advance, so that you get to see the whole sunset.
Where Can you See the Best Sunsets?
- (MM 73.5 Oceanside)
A very natural location that is often described as a ‘small stretch of paradise’, come here if you fancy listening to local wildlife and dipping your feet in the shallow tropical waters whilst the day slips away.
We recommend setting up on the beach in the late afternoon, a couple of hours before sunset is due (check online for the time of sunset on the day you’re visiting – it varies massively thought the year).
Take a picnic (to eat in one of their covered picnic benches), maybe a paddleboard, and just relax and watch the world go by. If you are traveling with your furry four-legged friends – this beach is great, as dogs are permitted, so long as they’re leashed and well-behaved.
Morada Bay Beach Café
- (81600 Overseas Hwy Mile Marker 81.6, Bayside, FL 33036 – 3700)
If you fancy a few drinks and a meal when watching the sun set into the sea, the Morada Bay Beach Café is the place for you.
Situated right on the waterfront of Library Beach Park. Here, you can sit out on the terrace, listen to the sound of waves crashing nearby, and just let time (and your drink) slip away.
Plantation Hammock Preserve
- (MM 87 Bayside and Oceanside)
This passive park is equipped with benches and a multitude of nature trails. Sit out on the benches with a takeout coffee or smoothie from a nearby café.
Our recommendation – do one of their nature trails, and then watch the sun set across Cotton Key Basin and Cowpens Anchorage (account for how fast or slow you will do the trail – you don’t want to miss the sunset).
Again – this area is dog friendly, so you can take your beloved pet to watch the sunrise with you too. Just make sure they are on a leash.
- (81924 Overseas Hwy Mile Marker 82, Islamorada, FL 33036 – 3605
Touted by TripAdvisor reviewers as the absolute best place to watch the sunset in Islamorada, this Caribbean seafood restaurant is in the best location for viewing sunsets (as well as treating yourself to key lime pie, yellow fin tuna steaks, and tropical coconut shrimp).
The restaurant seating itself is located on a pier, out on the water.
Book yourself in for dinner over the sunset period here, and bask in the golden hour light, as well as the sounds of the ocean.
A wonderful place to luxuriate. We suggest you try the three cheese artichoke dip, homemade soups, and the snow crab platter.
What If you’re more of an Early Bird than a Night Owl?
If you’re more inclined to early mornings than staying up late – seeing the sunset during Islamorada’s long summer hours can seem a bit like an impossible feat.
Thankfully, Islamorada sees some of the most beautiful sunrises in the Florida Keys. Below is our list of the best places to watch the sunrise in Islamorada:
- Mangrove Mike’s Café = this excellent breakfast spot is the second most popular food place in Islamorada. Opening early, you can order anything from eggs over easy to tuna steaks. Sit outside for the best sunrise viewing.
- Long Key State Park = head here is you fancy taking on the longest nature trail in the Keys, the Golden Orb nature trail. Arrive early to watch the sunrise whilst you eat breakfast, and then you can make a whole day of it.
You can go hiking, or try kayaking and fishing if you’re feeling a little more adventurous.
Well, there you have it, where to find the best sunset in Islamorada! Hopefully that helped, but if you want more info, we found you a video below.