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Top Florida Keys Reef Fishing Destinations

Top Reef Fishing Charters in Florida Keys

Reef Fishing in Florida Keys

Aboard a Florida Keys reef fishing charter, you’ll get to explore the crown jewels of these islands which span across more than 100 miles. Discover the productive coral reefs and their dazzling inhabitants, and get your fish on! 

What to Expect

From Key Largo to Key West, the Keys are surrounded by reefs. Within seconds from the coastline, you can target a range of beautiful and delicious fish, wasting no time on the water. Even a 4-hour charter will get you filling the boat, while avid anglers can spend 6 or 8 hours on the water, too. 
Most captains in Florida exploring the shallows in Florida use a center console. These sturdy boats also provide for 360-degree views, allowing you to sight cast and keep your eye on your target fish as you battle it out. You’ll bottom fish most of the time but some charters will take you trolling too. 
Beginners can stay close to shore and target smaller sized Snappers and Groupers. All along the Keys, you can land Hogfish and Yellowtail, Mangrove, Mutton, and Lane Snapper that will also make for a delicious dish. 
Experienced anglers will love battling it out with some of the ocean’s bigger creatures. On the deeper reefs, you’ll encounter huge Gag, Red, and Black Groupers, Mackerel, Barracuda, Cobia, and Amberjack. These beasts will test your strength to the limit, so get ready for an exhilarating trip. 

Where to Go

No matter where you go in the Keys, you’ll be fishing some of the world’s best fishing grounds. Islamorada is home to the most professional fishing boats in the world, so you know you’re in for a treat. All along the Upper Keys, you’ll explore patch reefs and sunken wrecks to fill the boat.
A trip to the Middle Keys will see you fish the reefs immediately close to shore or the wrecks a bit further out. Out of Marathon, beginners can land their first catch in Duck Key, while the deep artificial reefs will attract any angler worth their salt. 
The further south you go, the greater the reef fishing opportunities get. With coral heads close to shore, there’s something for beginners, while longer trips will take you offshore to the island reefs of the Tortugas. You’ll find a much wider range of fish out of Key West than anywhere else, providing fun for novices and experts alike. 

How to Prepare

Before stepping aboard your Florida Keys reef fishing charter, you should pay attention to which trip suits you best. Some captains may list specific reef fishing trips, while others ask you to let them know where you’d like to go. Get in touch with your captain for the avoidance of any doubt.
Your captain will provide all the tackle and may even provide live bait. Bring your own drinks and snacks aboard to make the most of what promises to be a thrilling day out! 

Florida Keys

Based on 13,560 reviews by FishingBooker anglers

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What People Are Saying About Reef Fishing in Florida Keys

"4 hour trip with Gill & Sysco"

Kevin Lamb fished with Capt Conch Charters- Reef Runner II on June 6, 2018

Had a good time catching Mahi Mahi on the Reef Runner 2!

"Great Fun on Cool Water I"

Lloyd W. McGrady fished with Fish Key West - The Coolwater on April 10, 2016

We had a great trip in marginal weather. Great equipment, Capt Cory did an excellent job fishing and dodging storms...and we caught great fish! Released a nice Caribbean Reef shark. See pix of some others.

Top Targeted Reef Fishing Species in Florida Keys

Snapper (Yellowtail)

Snapper (Mangrove)

Snapper (Mutton)


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