Our Key West Trip Part 5: Chill Day at Hawk’s Cay!

Our original booking for Mexico was for four nights because they ran a special that was book 3 nights get the 4th for free so when we planned out our Key West trip we just automatically booked it for the same exact dates as Mexico not really realizing it was for 4 nights and really 5 nights total since we had the one night on the way down. Pretty long trip!!!

I tend to get “the itch” to get home to my babies on or around night 3 when Zach and I travel kid-free and I was DEF missing Spear big time by this point in the trip!

However, we were also glad to have one FULL day to just ENJOY the resort and RELAX. I’m the worst at over planning on vacation and a perk of not having a toddler along is that we COULD relax so we needed to take full advantage of that rare opportunity.

We loaded up a bunch of snacks and headed out first thing in the morning to claim our chairs around the lagoon area. I love the location of the lagoon at Hawks Cay because it’s literally directly behind the pool. We were able to go back and forth seamlessly!

The pools are all so pretty but we enjoyed the main pool the most due to it’s location beside the lagoon. We also really loved that the resort isn’t one of those super loud kinda experiences with people getting crazy and feeling too bombarded with noise to actually be able to relax! The vibe was SO perfect!

The kids were able to go back and forth from the pool to the lagoon and Zach and I traded off sitting by the pool and sitting by the lagoon to keep eyes on them. YES they are all excellent swimmers and I felt comfortable reading but I still wanted to make sure (and Zach is the same way) that I could see them in my line of sight.

I think it’s a big reason Zach and I don’t enjoy kids at the beach very much…we BOTH tend to stress a bit about bodies of water!

Hawks Cay was SO sweet to hook us up with drink vouchers and let us use them on some virgin daiquiris. Nothing is as yummy as a resort pina colada by the pool!

Hawks Cay has a ton of activities available at the resort and that are included in the resort fee. One of the activities is paddle boarding which none of our kids have ever done. They have a little booth where you just reserve a time on the spot for 30 min increments which was super easy and quick.

Kye and the girls all wanted to give it a go and I always love when they are quick to want to try new things and experiences! I would have totally done it too but didn’t want to waste any of their time – typical mom life right? πŸ˜‰

We took our time and enjoyed the day and headed back to the house for a late lunch and then had some down time to get things packed up.

Since we travel decently often I am pretty hardcore about the kids being helpers. I do a LOT of the packing for trips since I like to make sure we have everything and tend to try to coordinate outfits and choose certain looks for certain activities etc.

But when it comes to heading home I’m allll about them pitching in! They help pack up and when we get home they are a HUGE help in the unpacking process πŸ™‚ They understand that we ALL love going on trips so we ALL have to pitch in to make them possible!

The property surrounding the villas is SO pretty and I felt like we didn’t get a ton of pictures so before our evening plans we headed out back to take some. Love their sweet sunkissed faces!

Here is a map and info about the resort that we were given at check in to give an idea of what to expect too!

Hawk’s Cay was SO generous in inviting us to end our trip with a sunset cruise! They offer several activities that are above and beyond the resort fee and the sunset cruise is one of those items. It was so nice that it departed from the resort so it was super easy to find.

The Florida Keys are known for the gorgeous sunsets and taking the sunset cruise on our last night was so perfect to be able to enjoy the beautiful views before heading back home!

The sunset cruise included drinks and the kids were SO CRUNK that we let them have Sprite. It was hilarious. The girls were also in super silly moods that mad it so fun. Tess just felt moved with the music and turned the cruise boat into a dance floor and took on the role of entertainer for everyone on board.

She was breaking it DOWN.

It was so adorable and everyone loved it and other guests were teaching her moves πŸ˜‰

Britt was also fun to watch as she is at that tween stage of life where she wants to still be little and be silly with her sister but also feels a bit awkward about it. By the end of the evening though she totally let go of those awkward vibes and was breaking it down too πŸ˜‰

There is a bathroom on board and of course the captain gives this talk about how you really don’t want to use it unless you have to and all these specific things about how to flush properly without toilet paper etc and then BOTH of the girls had to GO in it haha we traded off helping them and thankfully we didn’t miss the sunset!!!

It was so beautiful and such a great moment together.

There were other sisters standing beside us who are like the next phase of life from our girls. Their parents loved seeing our girls dance and of course we got to chatting about how quickly kids grow up and move on from dancing freely to being teenagers.

It got me a little emotional just thinking about it and how quickly we’ll be the ones with the teens who look fondly on as other little ones embrace childhood.

Kye is def on his way there as he was pretty awkward around the teenage girls and had that “how do I talk to them” kinda vibe going – we’ve def entered the stage where he notices girls in a way that he didn’t before.

Just to show how relaxed and comfortable we all were…our little dancing queens didn’t even hesitate to jump in the picture with the teenage girls that their dad was trying to take of his daughters haha. We were all cracking up about it!

The whole ride was about 90 min and while there was alcohol being served no one got wild or anything like that. It was a very family-friendly experience and the perfect way to end our trip. We appreciate Hawks Cay for hosting us!

Resort Views

A struggle for us on this trip was dinners and this night was the biggest struggle we had the entire trip. It was like 8:00. We were all hungry. But it was also SO late for us, our kids are usually in the bed by 7:30!

We drove to find food and hit super long wait after super long wait everywhere we went.

We finally settled on a place and it was so packed the service was very slow and just took forever. The food was good though and I was pumped to get some steamed clams and hush puppies! But the kids were just SO worn out. It stunk to spend that much money on a meal that we didn’t truly enjoy.

I DO think if we visit again that we will just plan to cook at the house more. Maybe let the kids eat at the house and pick up take out seafood and fun stuff for Zach and I or something. The villa has a FULL kitchen that we didn’t really utilize because we wanted to have the freedom and fun of eating out but it ended up not being all that much freedom because everywhere was so crowded and not all that much fun because it was too late by the time we were eating.

Lessoned learned!

Tessie couldn’t even make it through the meal and opted not to order anything and just sleep instead. And even KYE was falling asleep on the ride back to the villa!

We split up the drive on the way down over two days but planned on driving straight home on the last day. It’s an 8 hour drive from Valdosta to Duck Key (an extra hour if you plan to go all the way to Key West) which isn’t too terrible and def doable in one day with older kids who can handle long car rides!

The longest car ride we’ve been on with our kids was to Banner Elk, NC and we drove straight home on the way back on that trip too and they did fine…and that is a windy road kinda drive in the mountains. This drive is SUPER smooth and easy which for sure helps make it more enjoyable!

We tried to clean out the fridge and let the kids have ice cream for breakfast. I had a feeling that Kye would never be able to finish his FIVE containers of ice cream during a FOUR night trip haha. Hopefully the cleaning crew enjoyed ice cream treats b/c the freezer def had plenty left!

We were all sad to say goodbye and were SO glad that Mexico ended up being canceled. This was the first trip we’d had since 2019 that was a TRUE vacation and FELT like a vacation. It was SO NICE to feel like travel is coming BACK!!!

We loved the resort. We loved all of the activities we participated in! We loved Key West and if I had to do it all over again I’d plan the trip the exact same way…other than cooking in the villa more!

We made great time and the kids worked hard on finishing up their trip treats they’d bought. We stopped through in Orlando to introduce the kids to Tijuana Flats which Zach and I had for the first time on our Christmas getaway trip and LOVE IT! A great last fun thing before getting back home.

I really didn’t want to plan any sort of Christmas Trip for the kids this year but I’m SO GLAD that Zach pushed for it and even though our original plan didn’t work out it truly all ended up being even better than I could have hoped for! It was a TRUE vacation and we all had SO much fun and loved it SO MUCH!!!

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Emily Parker

Hey Y’all, I’m Emily! I’m a stay at home mom and consider parenting to be my passion. Disney is my happiest place and I love making memories as a family together. I’m a big believer in transparency and share all of my real-life moments as a mother of four.

My work has been featured on Love What Matters, Today Parenting and Babywise.Life. I’m also honored to be a member of the Babywise Friendly Blog Network.

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