Key West has an undeniable “party town” label, but when Fantasy Fest, the annual Mardi Gras-like Halloween mash-up, hits the streets at the end of October, the colorful island truly lives up to its legendary reputation. The Oct. 18-27 festivities are packed with events so wild that Bacchus, the god of wine and merry-making, could have been the party planner. For newbies , a little preparation goes a long way.
Bring your no-worries island attitude and check your inhibitions at mile marker zero. Expect eye-popping sights: swingers, drag queens, nudists, bikers and everyone in between, carousing on the approximately one-mile-long Duval Street. This is not your average party. During Fantasy Fest, the population of the 7.4- square-mile host island swells from 25,000 to more than 75,000 revelers.