What's the best time to visit Dry Tortugas?
The best time to visit Dry Tortugas National Park is between December and May when you’ll find cooler, comfortable weather and hardly any rain, perfect for sightseeing. Keep in mind, though, it’s also when the park is busiest, so expect more people and possibly higher prices. If you’re into snorkeling or diving, aim for May through September, when the water’s just right.
One of the most interesting national parks in the United States sits just 68 miles off the coast of Key West, Florida. Dry Tortugas National Park is a protected area in the Gulf of Mexico.
It has a historic military fort and has some of the clearest water in the Gulf. It’s filled to the brim with wildlife, marine life, and historical significance.
It’s a popular destination for those who love being outdoors or want to cross another national park off their must-see list. If Dry Tortugas is on your travel bucket list, you need to plan your trip.
Since it sits right at the Florida Current and Gulf Stream meeting point, weather plays a huge role in when you should or shouldn’t visit the park.
But don’t worry — our travel experts have done the hard work for you and will show you the best, least busy, cheapest, and worst times to visit below. Let us be your guide!
The Best Time to Visit Dry Tortugas
The best time to visit Dry Tortugas National Park will depend on your preferences, but most people agree that December to May offers the best weather for exploring the area.
South Florida gets extremely hot and humid in the summer months, so visiting in the winter through spring will provide you with some of the most comfortable weather.
Florida’s weather during these months is much cooler than average but still very comfortable for most people.
To give you an idea of how comfortable the weather is, here are the average high and low temperatures from December through May:
- December: High of 76 F and a low of 67 F
- January: High of 74 F and a low of 65 F
- February: High of 76 F and a low of 65 F
- March: High of 78 F and a low of 67 F
- April: High of 83 F and a low of 71 F
- May: High of 86 F and a low of 74 F
The humidity during these months is also much lower, so you’ll have a much more enjoyable experience. December through May tends to be one of the driest times of the year in Dry Tortugas, so rain and harsh weather shouldn’t affect your time here.
The one thing to note about this time is that it’s peak tourist season for Dry Tortugas, so you’ll likely have more crowds and potentially higher prices.
Snorkeling and diving are prevalent during this time too, but the absolute best time to visit for water activities is May through September since that’s when the water is the warmest.
Cheapest Time to Visit Dry Tortugas
Like most vacation spots, the cheapest time to visit Dry Tortugas National Park is during the off-season, which runs from June through November.
Since fewer people visit the park during these months, you can find accommodations in Key West for cheaper tours and other more affordable rates for the trip. Depending on where you’re traveling from, it might be even more expensive during this time for you.
For example, if you experience cold weather during these months, prices for flights out of your country may increase. It’s best to do your research on flight prices, accommodation prices, and more before making your decision.
Least Busy Time to Visit Dry Tortugas
The least busy time to visit Dry Tortugas is between June and November. These months tend to be the least busy but most affordable times to visit.
Temperatures rise dramatically during this time in Florida, which can be unbearable for some people, which is why many people visit in the high season.
Most people don’t want to deal with the excessive heat and high humidity levels during this time, but if you are okay with it, then more power to you. Another reason you’ll see fewer crowds during this time is that it’s hurricane season (mainly in September, but sometimes in November).
Tropical systems strike this region from June through November. While they’re predictable, if you don’t want to risk a hurricane or tropical storm ruining your plans, you might want to skip June through November when planning your trip.
Worst Time to Visit Dry Tortugas
The worst time to visit Dry Tortugas is from October and November. While this time brings comfortable temperatures, peak hurricane season tends to last through November, so it’s still not a great time to visit.
Here’s a look at the average highs and lows in Dry Tortugas from June through November:
- June: High of 90 F and a low of 77 F
- July: High of 91 F and a low of 78 F
- August: High of 92 F and a low of 79 F
- September: High of 90 F and a low of 77 F
- October: High of 85 F and a low of 75 F
- November: High of 79 F and a low of 70 F
The last thing you want to do is be stuck in Florida with a hurricane coming or have your trip completely canceled due to one, so if that’s a worry for you, it’s best to skip these months. Even without hurricanes, June through November is the rainy season in Dry Tortugas and Florida.
However, June through November can be a decent time to visit, thanks to being the cheapest. Plus, this is the time to visit if you prefer hot weather. This season is also the best time to visit if you want to see sea turtles nesting.
So, When Should You Visit Dry Tortugas National Park?
Dry Tortugas National Park should be on every nature lover’s bucket list. This unique National Park off the coast of Florida makes for a great trip, whether traveling with friends, family, or solo. The best time to plan a visit is from December to May.
The average high and low temperatures are far more comfortable than the summer months, and you’ll have some of the best, clear skies weather during this time. So what are you waiting for — book your trip to see the park’s beauty for yourself today!