Many of those who visit the Keys seek out Florida Keys fishing charters. With several hundred islands stretching more than 125 miles, choosing a fishing charter can be a daunting task. We’ve narrowed down the list to 10 of the best fishing charters you can get in the Keys.
What Is the Best Time of Year to Fish in the Florida Keys?
Fishing season is all year long here. And there are hundreds of species of fish to catch at any given moment. However, there may be limits on what you can catch at what time to prevent overfishing. Check out the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for guidance.
With the fish abundant all year long, you can choose any season for your trip. Summers in the Florida Keys can be hot, humid, and rainy. In the winter, you’ll come across milder weather but also an influx of tourists.
Anyone over 16 will need a Florida fishing license to fish here regardless of the time of year. The great thing about Florida Keys fishing charters is that most include this license and the fee in their rate when you book a charter.
What Kind of Fish Can I Catch in the Florida Keys?
Located between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, Key West is also known as the Sport Fishing Capital of the World. With the Gulf Stream flowing from the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico bringing nutrients into the water, it’s no wonder it’s a fisherman’s haven.
Because of this, hundreds of fish species are available here at almost any time of the year. The flats, or shallow waters, are loaded with tarpon, permit, and bonefish. At reefs and wrecks, you can find snappers, groupers, sailfish, tuna, and more. Deep-sea or offshore fishing could bring in sailfish, mahi-mahi, tuna, and marlin.
Pro Tip: If you plan to keep your catch, you’re going to need a cooler that can withstand the Florida heat. Check out our recommendations: Best Coolers for Camping and Saving Ice.
10 Best Florida Keys Fishing Charters
These Florida Keys fishing charters are the best in the business because of their superior customer service, experienced and professional captains, and reliable fishing equipment and boats. The captains and crews will navigate the waters for you to find first-class fishing for any age and skill level. Plus, you’ll get all the equipment you need for an unforgettable adventure on the water.
1. Key Largo Fishing Adventures
Whether you’re an expert or a novice angler, Key Largo Fishing Adventures will get you the knowledge and equipment you need to reach your fishing haven. Choose deep-sea fishing, and you could catch tuna, marlin, sailfish, and more. If you’re looking more for reef and wreck fishing, you might just catch some grouper, snapper, or even a shark.
What’s more, the crew will clean and filet your fish for you, and local restaurants will cook it up so you can enjoy your catch.
Prices start at $700 for a four-hour trip for shark and tarpon fishing and range up to $1,700 for a swordfish combo trip for 10 hours of fishing fun. Prices depend upon boat choice, fish type, and hours away.
2. Dream Catcher Charters Key West
Dream Catcher Charters in Key West works with professional guides and high-quality equipment and boats. They offer everything from flats to offshore to backcountry fishing, where you’ll catch whatever happens to be in season. With opportunities to catch marlin, mahi-mahi, shark, grouper, sailfish, and much more, you should leave with a prize.
Prices start around $500 for a four-hour trip and can range up to $2,000 for an extended specialty trip. Rates vary based on fishing type, size of boat, number of people, and hours at sea. With various rates, boats, and fishing trips available, you can find the perfect fishing trip for your needs.
3. Key Largo Sportfishing
Key Largo Sportfishing is a family-owned and operated Florida Keys fishing charter. They offer offshore, deep sea, reef, wreck, and shark fishing excursions. They even have fishing tournaments to test your skill. And once you catch your fish, whether it be shark, grouper, snapper, mahi-mahi, or something entirely different, they’ll clean and fillet it.
You can choose from a half-day, three-quarter day, or a full-day trip with flexible timing, including night fishing. Prices start at $900 for a half-day (four hours), $1,100 for a three-quarter day (six hours), and $1,300 for a full-day trip (eight hours). Custom trips and pricing are also available.
4. Florida Keys Reel Adventures
Captain Kevin Johnsen of Florida Keys Reel Adventures says his goal is to get you fishing and help you have fun doing it. This licensed USGC Master Captain and avid diver is a 30-plus year resident of Marathon and the middle Keys.
Join him for some fun catching grouper, snapper, shark, and so much more. For four hours of reef fishing, a family fishing trip, or tarpon, shark, or night fishing, prices start at $650. Offshore fishing starts at six hours for $1,000. If you’re looking for a different adventure, lobstering starts at $650.
5. Salty Goat Fishing Charters
The Salty Goat is a party fishing boat. This is the place to meet new people, have a bit of fun, and catch some fish. Pricing starts at $75 for adults. The boat leaves at 9 a.m. and returns at 2 p.m., allowing plenty of time to experience more of the Florida Keys. For a private fishing charter, pricing starts at $350 an hour with a five-hour minimum.
With more than 50 years of combined experience, the crew can help with whatever you need while fishing. Mackerel, grouper, and snapper are only a few of the fish you could catch while out on the waters here.
And when you finish fishing, they’ll keep working. The Salty Goat crew will clean, filet, and bag your fish at the end of the trip. Take it home or take it to one of the local restaurants, where they’ll cook it for you to enjoy right there.
Pro Tip: While exploring the Sunshine State, make sure to do these 9 Best Things to Do in Tampa, Florida.
6. Siesta Key Fishing Charters
Located in Siesta Key and Sarasota, Siesta Key Fishing Charters work with Coast Guard-licensed captains. They know where the fish are sure to bite. Inshore fishing may result in redfish, trout, snapper, and more. Offshore and deep-sea fishing could net you snapper, tuna, and even kingfish. Plus, they’ll clean and bag the fish for you to take home.
Prices start at $475 for a four-hour inshore fishing trip and go up to $795 for eight hours. Nearshore fishing for mackerel, kingfish, and more starts at $550 for four hours and goes to $1,050 for eight hours. Offshore and deep-sea trips for snapper, tuna, kingfish, and more range from $650 to $1,250.
7. Bud N’ Mary’s
Located close to the Florida Everglades and with lodging options on-site, this Florida Keys fishing charter is all about location, location, location. You can choose from a suite, hotel rooms, houseboats, and even an ocean-front house. Plus, Bud N’ Mary’s has the largest and oldest fishing fleet in the Keys.
You’ll find several half- and full-day trips options, including offshore, reef fishing, and customized trips. Pricing starts at $500 for a half-day trip and goes up to $1,700 for some full-day trips.
If fishing charters aren’t for you, you might like the party fishing boat. For $70 per person, you’ll get everything you need for fishing, plus they’ll clean and fillet your fish at the end of the day.
8. Captain Hook’s Fishing Charters
Located in Marathon, Captain Hook’s sits on some of the best water the Keys has to offer. From reef fishing to flats to offshore, you’ll have your choice of boats to get you the fishing trip you’ve been looking forward to all year. Diving and snorkeling instructions and tours are also available.
You’ll have plenty to choose from when it comes to catching tarpon, permit, bonefish, sailfish, and more. Prices start around $600 and range up to $1,000 depending on duration and choice of fishing regions. Whatever you choose, you’ll head out on the waters with experienced captains who know where the fish are.
9. Angling Adventures
Fishing novice or veteran, this Marathon fishing charter will provide you with everything you need for a successful day on the water. With an array of fishing options, you could come across grouper, snapper, tarpon, bonefish, and so much more.
The team at Angling Adventures wants you to catch some fish and enjoy them for dinner. However, they also believe in catch and release to avoid overfishing. Any fish listed as protected is always released.
Choose from three different boats that can handle one to six people and four-, six-, and eight-hour trips. Prices range from $600 for a half-day up to $1,800 for a full day.
10. Catch ‘Em All Fishing Charters
With a “no fish, no pay” promise, you’re almost guaranteed to catch a fish before your trip with Catch ‘Em All Fishing Charters is over. Sailfish, tuna, mahi-mahi, tarpon, and much more are available in the waters here. Choose from reef and wreck fishing, offshore fishing, and tarpon fishing. Captain Jeff Shelar has more than 20 years of fishing experience in the Keys.
Prices include up to four people (you can add two more for an additional cost), bait, equipment, fishing license, and cleaning of your fish. Prices start at $645 for four hours of tarpon fishing and range up to $1,600 for a full day.
Time Well Spent When Fishing with Key West Fishing Charters
No matter the time of year, the season, the boat, or the captain, if you’re fishing in the Florida Keys, you’ll enjoy your time. Dinner tonight is all taken care of when you choose one of these Florida Keys fishing charters.
And be sure to book a stay at one of the 10 Most Beautiful Florida Keys RV Parks for some well-earned rest after a long day of fishing!
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