Key West Flats Fishing Charters

Key West Flats Fishing Charters

Best Flats Fishing Charters in Key West

Top Flats Fishing Charters in Key West

Flats Fishing in Key West

You might hear Key West flats fishing being referred to as ‘saltwater hunting'. In practice, it’s not too far off. Patience, stealth, and fast reflexes are the name of the game here. And what a game it is, with some of the world’s most prestigious inshore sport fish calling the local waters home all year round.

What to expect

The flats are very shallow expanses in the ocean where the water is less than three feet deep. A protective haven for shallow water species, they offer grassy bottoms full of shrimp, crabs, and baitfish. Key West is surrounded by these areas, almost all of which are protected in National Marine Sanctuary Zones. It’s no surprise, then, that both the quality and quantity of fish are enough to attract anglers from far and wide.

Most of the time, you will be fishing aboard a specially-designed flats boat. These are propelled across the ‘skinny’ waters with a push pole, covering the water silently in pursuit of your wary targets. Usually, these boats can take two anglers, who will stand at the bow of the boat and sight fish, searching for their target and casting their bait or lure towards it.

Then—bam—the fish is hooked. Action explodes as the fish swims as fast as it can away from the boat. Yes, it sounds difficult. But Key West flats fishing charters are experts at showing newbies the ropes. Even beginners can experience the thrill of flats fishing in the Lower Keys.

Top Species

Flats fishing in Key West is all about the Florida Grand Slam—catching Bonefish, Tarpon, and Permit, all in the same day. These challenging fish are enough to make even the most experienced angler rue the fish that got away. And they're addictive. We'd even go so far as to promise you that once you have felt the leap of a Silver King or the pull of a Bonefish, you won’t look back. Key West flats fishing guides practice catch and release on all these species to preserve the fishery, so don't expect to come home with dinner on most of these trips.

But it’s not all about the Big Three. The local flats and backcountry waters are also home to several species of Shark (Bull, Blacktip, Lemon, and Nurse to name a few), as well as the toothy Barracuda. These fish might be underrated as sport fish, but battling them in a couple of feet of water is an adrenaline rush you won't forget.

If the fishing wasn't enough, take a look at the other wildlife. Dolphins, manatees, sea turtles, stingrays, and starfish also share these waters. So whether you’re a pro looking for the ultimate shallow water experience or a beginner hoping to enjoy the peace and quiet of the open waterways, Key West flats fishing has something for you.

Key West
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 4.48
Based on 22,232 reviews by FishingBooker anglers

Reviews of Fishing in Flats Fishing in Key West

4 hour trip with capt tony and Jordan
Charles E. fished with Fish Inc. on May 13, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Bring your sunscreen, muscles. These fish fight hard.
Fishing with Captain Morgan
Kim R. fished with Reel Easy Charters on May 7, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Literally one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced! Do iiiiiiit.
Half day with Justin
Patrick M. fished with Good Times Key West – 19' on May 4, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Be open minded about what you catch. Don’t limit yourself to a particular species of fish.
Sibling fishing trip
Roberto M. fished with Salty Goat Fishing Charters on April 8, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Key west has the best fishing weather I love it ?
Spring break trip
Kyle H. fished with Good Times Key West on April 5, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Just give it a try. Lovely way to see a different part of Key West.
Great time!
Frank W. fished with Boa Vida Charters on March 15, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Prepare to have fun and enjoy the beauty of the sea.
Half Day Fishing on the Flats with Sean O'Keefe
Scott C. fished with Key West Backwater Fishing on February 5, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Watch the weather. We had just gotten through a cold front, and, not unexpectedly, it took a little hunting to get on the fish. An experienced Captain is a must. Sean O'Keefe at Key West Backwater Fishing knows where to find the fish and how to catch them.
Full day with Hugh
Edward H. fished with Reel Easy Charters on February 4, 2021
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Listen to the captain, he knows how to fish.

Top Targeted Flats Fishing Species in Key West