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National Key Deer Refuge

Features Animals
28950 Watson Blvd, Big Pine Key, FL 33043-6087
+1 305-872-2239
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Fourteen square mile natural habitat of white tailed Key deer.
  • Excellent52%
  • Very good33%
  • Average12%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“blue hole” (111 reviews)
“visitor center” (61 reviews)
“big pine” (38 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
28950 Watson Blvd, Big Pine Key, FL 33043-6087
+1 305-872-2239
Write a ReviewReviews (555)
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1 - 10 of 520 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

We stopped at the visitor center before heading out (must do, very helpful!) We expected that we probably wouldn’t see any deer in the heat of the day (it was 12:30) but we were hopeful. We walked along a few of the trails and went...More

Thank Marnie99
Reviewed 5 days ago

We decided to stop to see if we could see any deer on our way down to Key West. Location-wise it is not far from the main road and a good way to stretch your legs and possibly interact with wildlife. The deer roam wild...More

Thank Salina C
Reviewed 1 week ago

Important preservation area rebounding from storm. Speed zones well marked and we saw example of it working. A small deer was just behind one of the parked but unattended police cars and started to step near road faster traffic might have hit him. Deer are...More

Thank MikeJennyQ
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We went to blue hole and took a walk we saw a gator an iguana and had an amazing encounter with a key deer it was so sweet

Thank Melissa P
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Drove around no name key to look at the lingering damage from Irma and so 8 key deer in several locations. Smaller bucks and doe. Glad to see them out and about.

Thank MaryandBobontheroad
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

This preserve has been protecting these lil guys as far as I can remember... 40 years plus back. GO slow through big pine. The protective fences are down from hurricane Irma.. you don’t want to hit one these lil guys! They are endangered and wander...More

Thank dmhorner
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

We stopped by while cycling in the area. Due to the serious damage from hurricane Irma, the area is not yet open to visitors (at least not that we found). Biologists reported that up to 84% of the herd survived after Irma, and we did...More

Thank MaryKop
Reviewed 2 January 2018 via mobile

Cool, breezy and overcast day on Marathon, so we drove down to Big Pine Key for our first visit to the refuge. What an unexpected treat! We saw 11 Key Deer over the span of one hour of driving through the refuge area. It was...More

Thank L2GOP
Reviewed 31 December 2017

We saw several deer, either alone or in pairs, by the roadside as we drove through this area (not on the main highway). The deer seemed very calm and stood still or continued grazing as people stopped to photograph them. This was a good day...More

Thank Rosemary W
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 28 December 2017 via mobile

We had never been to the keys before and seeing the key deer was high on my list. I am very grateful we saw one! We stopped by the visitor center but arrived before the 10am opening so headed straight to Blue Hole and then...More

Thank A TripAdvisor Member
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Questions & Answers
4 March 2017|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Jerry S | Reviewed this property |
I laughed when I read your question because I thought the same as you. I was expecting a fenced in area where the deer were present. The whole Key, along with No Name Key are the preserve. As others have said, stop at the... More
4 March 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from fishersgirl | Reviewed this property |
Turn off of the Overseas Highway onto Key Deer Blvd. On the right you will see a shopping plaza with a Winn Dixie. The Key Deer information center is across the parking lot from the grocery store. The best times for seeing... More
Susan D
17 December 2016|
AnswerShow all 12 answers
Response from fishersgirl | Reviewed this property |
Absolutely 100%! Drive to the very end of Key Deer Blvd, it ends in a turn around - there are generally deer there. Then go down Kyle Blvd and drive slowly through the neighborhood - I have never not found there there. The... More