Captain
Matt Bellinger

Member since May 2015

Islamorada, United States

Background
Capt. Matt Bellinger is a U.S.C.G. licensed captain, PADI Master SCUBA Diver Trainer emeritus and will soon finish classes to attain his Master Naturalist certificate from the University of Florida. Captain Matt loves fishing the Florida Keys, and his trips are not a typical fishing outing. He pays attention to the comfort of his guests and loves the art of fishing rather than just catching fish. He will work hard to make you trip unforgettable.
Techniques
The border of the Everglades National Park is only 5 minutes away from our dock and the prolific waters of the Flamingo area of the Park are a popular destination for flats action. Here you have a wide variety of fish on the prowl.

Hey, I'm Captain Matt Bellinger

Islamorada, United States
Background
Capt. Matt Bellinger is a U.S.C.G. licensed captain, PADI Master SCUBA Diver Trainer emeritus and will soon finish classes to attain his Master Naturalist certificate from the University of Florida. Captain Matt loves fishing the Florida Keys, and his trips are not a typical fishing outing. He pays attention to the comfort of his guests and loves the art of fishing rather than just catching fish. He will work hard to make you trip unforgettable.
Techniques
The border of the Everglades National Park is only 5 minutes away from our dock and the prolific waters of the Flamingo area of the Park are a popular destination for flats action. Here you have a wide variety of fish on the prowl.

My Charter Listings

 
Islamorada
trips from
US$ 300
   
Islamorada
trips from
US$ 300
Islamorada
trips from
US$ 300

Fishing Reports

Bamboo Charters more than just a Fishing

April 22, 2018

We take pride in what we do day in and day out here at Bamboo Charters, our location in Islamorada is in the Heart of some amazing fishing. This location gives us access to the Atlantic Ocean and Florida… Read Full Report →


Giant Snook on our new Bay boat!

January 24, 2018

We've added a brand new Bay boat to our Charter Service and the very first fish we caught on it was a Big Snook! We are proud to announce the addition of a 2018 Contender 25 Bay boat powered… Read Full Report →


The Snook are here, where are you?

November 01, 2017

Its just 8 days short of two months since Hurricane Irma hit the Florida Keys and life is back to normal here in the Upper Keys. There are patches of roadside debris waiting for final pickup but once you… Read Full Report →


October and Hurricane Irma

September 28, 2017

Irma brought change to the Florida Keys in many ways and more change will come. For me it began as I was driving out of my neighborhood Plantation Key Colony. I was looking in the rear view mirror and… Read Full Report →


July 2017 Fishing Forecast

June 16, 2017

July is here and with it comes hope for a drier month. Yes we needed June’s rains, but every day brought wind & rain and enough is enough! June also brought a phenomenal Dolphin migration, I speak with offshore… Read Full Report →


Big Fish, No Rules! Islamorada

May 29, 2017

Brett Stevens and his son Cole came looking for a fight! They wanted big fish and fast action and we found both. Using live mullet for bait and Star Rods in the 30 pound class with Avet LX6 reels… Read Full Report →


June Fishing Forecast 2017

May 27, 2017

June brings us the official start of Summer. We here in the Keys deal with Summer like conditions nearly year round but we look forward to this time of the year none the less. Calmer weather and more consistent… Read Full Report →


Spring into Summer May 2017

May 25, 2017

May has been a wild month of weather and fishing. Tarpon have been very active when the weather has been cooperative, the problem has been that the weather has had a blustery temper and the winds have been blowing… Read Full Report →


February Fishing Forecast 2017

January 24, 2017

Winter Season really begins here in February, the coolest weather usually hits this month as do the North winds. This month holds great promise of some outstanding fishing action on both sides of the Keys! The unique thing about… Read Full Report →


Fishing Forecast for February 2017

January 24, 2017

Winter Season really begins here in February, the coolest weather usually hits this month as do the North winds. This month holds great promise of some outstanding fishing action on both sides of the Keys! The unique thing about… Read Full Report →


December 2016 Fishing Forecast

November 22, 2016

Too many fish and not enough time! That will be my memory of 2016. December has come too soon! My Islamorada Boatworks 24 Morada Bay edition was delivered the first week of January and I’ve already hit 1000 hours… Read Full Report →


Cool Weather Hot Fishing

November 21, 2016

Cooler weather came into the Florida Keys and with it came the Winter fish we love. Spanish Mackerel and Seatrout love cooler water temps and now that the Bay temps are around 70f the feed is on! We fished… Read Full Report →


Sharks and Spanish Mackerel are active.

November 04, 2016

Cooler weather here in November has moved plenty of bait into Florida Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. When this annual migration begins the apex predators aren't far behind and they are hungry! Capt Keith here at Bamboo Charters… Read Full Report →


November is here and the fish are happy.

November 01, 2016

November is a time of change here in the Florida Keys, winds shift to the North Northeast and this cooler breeze starts to drop water temps into the mid-70's and pushes a good mix of baits and fish into… Read Full Report →


August 2016 Fishing Forecast

July 28, 2016

August here in the Florida Keys is a Waterman’s dream come true and it is also a Foodie’s delight as well. It is very simple, August 6th is the opening of Lobster season and along with a great haul… Read Full Report →


July Fishing Forecast

July 01, 2016

I usually start out this Fishing Forecast with a bit of commentary on the weather for the up coming month and then I delve into the possibilities for the month’s fishing opportunities. With this year’s El Niño event buggering… Read Full Report →


June 2016 Fishing Forecast.

June 01, 2016

June is here and its about time! So far this year has been a funky thing, the first few months were windy, wet and chilly. The past few months have been a mix of a little bit of everything,… Read Full Report →


June 2016 Fishing Forecast.

June 01, 2016

June is here and its about time! So far this year has been a funky thing, the first few months were windy, wet and chilly. The past few months have been a mix of a little bit of everything,… Read Full Report →


Barracuda up to 22 pounds were biting!

May 22, 2016

Variety is the spice of life and today we caught a great mix of fish. It started with a good bite of speckled Seatrout up to 3 pounds we caught these on artificial . After a short move we… Read Full Report →


May 2016 Fishing Outlook

May 01, 2016

May has in the past been a wonderful month here in the Florida Keys and this year will be no different. But I’ve gotta tell ya, as I’m writing this fishing outlook for May 2016 that I’m doing so… Read Full Report →


The April Fishing report for the Keys

March 17, 2016

April is the month where you'll just have to wait and see what will happen with the weather and coming off one of the strangest Winters that we've had in years its anybody's guess. March came roaring in with… Read Full Report →


Family Fishing in the Florida Keys

March 10, 2016

March is Spring Break season here in the Florida Keys and our location here in Islamorada is very popular with family vacationers. We had 3 year old Lars and 6 year old Ana out for a half day trip… Read Full Report →


Fast Action & Fun Fishing in the Keys!

February 26, 2016

Capt. Keith of Bamboo Charters has been racking up great catches of Spanish Mackerel in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico and topping off the day with big numbers of Sea Trout. The Gulf borders the Western… Read Full Report →


Family Fishing Fun Feb 23 2016

February 23, 2016

We have had warm weather in the mid-70s for the past week and the fish are reacting well. Fishing on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico in the Everglades national Park has been red hot. This time of… Read Full Report →


March 2016 Fishing Forecast.

February 16, 2016

"Beware the Ides of March” a Sooth Sayer once warned Caesar, but nowadays we look forward to the arrival of mid March. Generally speaking by the 15 th of this month we are well into our Tarpon season here… Read Full Report →


2016 Bartenders Sailfish Tournament

February 15, 2016

Dillon’s Pub and Grill reclaims Bartenders Perpetual Trophy ​The 35th Annual Islamorada Bartenders Sailfish Open kicked off with great food and fun at the Lorelei Restaurant and Cabana Bar. 52 anglers, who are bartenders or restaurant employees representing 16… Read Full Report →


You shoveled snow. We caught fish!

January 25, 2016

The country has been snowed on we have had a cooler than normal weather conditions here in the Florida Keys. Despite overnight temperatures in the low 50s and high temperatures barely reaching 66° we have been able to put… Read Full Report →


Cooler weather Cooler water good fishing

January 25, 2016

The country has been snowed on we have had a cooler than normal weather conditions here in the Florida Keys. Despite overnight temperatures in the low 50s and high temperatures barely reaching 66° we have been able to put… Read Full Report →


Windy Monday but the bite is on!

January 11, 2016

Capt Keith Tucker is on the action despite a blustery day here in the Florida Keys! Here is his quick report just texted to me "So I have Tracy (Clint's wife) on the boat today, and she has never… Read Full Report →


Florida Keys Fishing report for 1/03/16

January 03, 2016

We are three days into the new year and fishing here in the Florida Keys is nothing short of spectacular. This time of the year we do a good bit of family fun fishing in other words people want… Read Full Report →


January 2016 Fishing Forecast

January 01, 2016

Winter is here in the Florida Keys, well in a way its Winter, we may not see sharp drops in temperatures but we will see a good push of fish headed South for the season. Both sides of the… Read Full Report →


September Fishing Forecast

August 24, 2015

September is here, the kids are back in school and its still Summer! To top it all off, Islamorada and the rest of the Florida Keys is going through an amazing streak of great fishing. We’ve been on a… Read Full Report →


August Fishing Forecast

July 20, 2015

August brings up thoughts of drawn butter, lemon wedges, drawn butter and Florida Spiny Lobster tails. Pop the top on a Islamorada Ale and get to grillin’ & chilling’! Its seafood season here in the Florida Keys now more… Read Full Report →


Junes Fishing for the Florida Keys

May 28, 2015

June is here and we are half way through the year already and so is great summertime action! The offshore waters have settled into a nice pattern with the constant East - South East winds that keep the Gulf… Read Full Report →

Customer Reviews

4.72 out of 5 stars from 85 reviews

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5 star
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75
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2
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1 star
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Munich, by
Went fishing on Wednesday, April 18, 2018

We enjoyed our three trips with Keith. He is a pleasure to fish with. We had a bit stormy weather and the water temperature was sub-optimum - so fishing was not at its best. However we still hooked three Tarpons, landed two and caught a bunch of Triple Tail - which was a great experience too. Needless to say that the 13’ saltwater croc on our way back left some lasting memories. I will certainly give Keith a shout next year - when once more we will be going for the silver king.

Fished April 2018

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Kingsley, mi
Went fishing on Monday, April 2, 2018

We booked 2 trips with Bamboo Charters. One day we had Capt. Matt and the next day we had Capt. Anthony. These are 2 of the nicest guys you will ever meet. Very knowledgeable, genuine and patient Captains-just what teenage boys need to land big Barracuda and Spanish Mackerels They work hard to put you on the fish and make sure you’re enjoying your trip. If you are in Islamorada book with Bamboo Charters….you can’t go wrong!

Fished April 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Chris thank you for your kind words.  We enjoy our days on the water and showing families like yours just how amazing the backcountry waters can be.  Capt. Anthony and Capt Keith here at Bamboo Charters along with myself do our best on every trip to show everyone a great day.

Bolingbrook, il
Went fishing on Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Excellent experience. After engine issues on our original day, Matt did all he could to make sure we were able to get out on another day. Morning started out with several nice size sea trout and lady fish. Then the fun started. While using a trout rig we nailed a 5ft Black Tip shark. Capt Matt made sure he did everything he could to be sure we got it in on such light tackle. Finished up the day with some yellowtail snapper, grouper and a 27 inch Jack Cavelle. The fishing was definatly the highlight of our trip!. Highly recommend to everyone.

Thank you Capt Matt for the great time and memories for my son and I.

The “Dan and Dan Show” on the radio was a nice touch as well..

Dan Salamone

Fished April 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Dan & Dan thank you so much for your kind review, also thanks for working with us and rescheduling after we had outboard issues before our departure day.  As it worked out we had better weather and amazing fishing. The big Blacktip shark was a very memorable catch for their both of you especially considering it was hooked on 10 pound spinning gear set up for Sea trout fishing.  Come on back and let’s look for a Tarpon or Two.


Brandon, fl
Went fishing on Tuesday, April 10, 2018

It was kind of hard to mark this as not recommended, but in the end when we talked about whether we would come back out with Captain Anthony, the answer was no. Let me say that he’s a very nice guy, took good care of us, and I felt like he was a very safe and effective boat operator. Also the boat was in great condition with nice amenities including padded seating space, speakers for a radio, and had clearly been well taken care of. I’ve run into captains that weren’t fun to be around and boats I didn’t want to be on and those were NOT the problems in this case. For us it boiled down to this: Anthony clearly loves to fish and is a hard worker, but we didn’t feel like he loved to guide.

We drifted over some trout flats twice but had pretty weak success. Rather than trying different colors on one or two of the rigs or using the power pole to stop when we did get into a better hole of them, we just kept going as we were and never talked about it.

After the trout run, we mentioned that we’d love to go after Pompano and such to keep for dinner. He said that he didn’t have a hole or spot for pompano but that we could try a channel and throw some lines out for shark/barracuda at this one spot. We motored over there and setup in a spot where I couldn’t tell where the channel was - it seemed like we were over a more shallow area. So we chummed the water some and set the lines for the shark and then threw jigs off the front of the boat. On the plus side, we caught an 8’ nurse shark there that was a great fight for about 30+ minutes. On the negative side, we really didn’t catch anything else interesting. A couple of small snapper, a few cats, and a couple of puffers. Again, Anthony was nice, but we just sat there for the whole afternoon mostly not catching and hoping for something big to come along. Eventually we caught another smaller shark and then headed in.

So, we left feeling like it was a somewhat boring day. What would have made it better for me would have been if we were moving around trying different spots to get into a good pack of fish. Even if we didn’t catch anything (hey, it happens), it would have felt like we were proactively doing something. That just didn’t seem like it was on the agenda and so it made the trip pretty “bleh”. I think we we had known what we were doing and told Anthony we wanted to go to this or that kind of a physical location, he would have done it. But he didn’t proactively work with us to keep the energy up and make the day fun.

Michael Brinkman does not recommend Bamboo Charters Ocean Quest

Fished April 2018

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Cedar Rapids, ia
Went fishing on Sunday, April 8, 2018

Had a great half day trip with Bamboo Charters.  Captain was very knowledgeable and had us on fish all morning.  Ended up catching seven different species of fish.  Boat and fishing gear were all in excellent condition.  Would recommend this trip to friends and family.

Fished April 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Thank you very much for review. Capt Anthony is a fantastic Captain and a real asset to Bamboo Charters. I’m glad you liked our new Contender 25 Bay boat, it’s a comfortable boat that is just the ticket for fishing the waters around Islamorada. Thanks for your business and come back soon.

Parker, co
Went fishing on Thursday, April 5, 2018

Started out fishing for Spanish Mackerel, Amberjack, Ladyfish and Blue’s who became a part of the food chain after moving on to Shark fishing.  This was #5 of 6 we nailed that day.

Fished April 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Thank you for chartering with us at Bamboo Charters. Sharks make a great day even better!  We try every day to exceed our clients expectations.  A mixed catch like you had helps us achieve our goals.

Fort Lauderdale, fl
Went fishing on Thursday, April 5, 2018

Captain Anthony did an outstanding job putting us on fish. He was very helpful for our 9yo daughter who totally spanked us catching fish. We will definitely be back to fish with bamboo charters and Anthony next year.

Fished April 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Ellis we at Bamboo Charters are glad to hear that you and your family had a “outstanding” as you said day on the water.  Capt Anthony is great with kids and families and it doesn’t surprise me to hear that your 9 year old daughter ruled the day and out fished everyone on the boat.  Kids catch on quickly with a bit of coaching. 
Thank you for your business and come on back any time.

Linden, mi
Went fishing on Tuesday, April 3, 2018

We had an amazing trip with captain Anthony. He was very nice and polite. We could tell he knew what he was doing and he was doing something he enjoyed, which made it easy for us to enjoy. Overall, this was a great trip and we would definitely come back to do it again.

Fished April 2018

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Simpsonville, sc
Went fishing on Sunday, April 1, 2018

Fished April 2018

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Miami, fl
Went fishing on Thursday, March 29, 2018

Educational for our kids
Nice trip

Fished March 2018

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McLean, va
Went fishing on Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Awesome!! Captain Matt did a superb job. Blowing Winds from the East kept Us bay side for a chance of some productive fishing. Lots of Snapper ,small Grouper , Grunts and a super battle of my 14 yo with an 80 lb Nurse Shark made it a most memorable day.. Captain Matt focused on my son , talking ,teaching letting him experience the magic of fishing from a boat. Super Job. Plan on coming back.

Fished March 2018

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Miami Beach, fl
Went fishing on Friday, March 23, 2018

Captain Anthony ,
Put us right on the fish, was awesome with my son (6 yrs) and my wife(not 6 yrs)!!!

Fished March 2018

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Boca Raton, fl
Went fishing on Saturday, March 17, 2018

Came down to Islamorada for a day to fish the back country.  Capt Matt was lots of fun! Very passionate and very knowledgeable! Serveral of the girls had never fished on charter. Matt had lots of patience and shared his expertise with the group. He’s got a great since of where the fish are hiding! Another successful trip to the keys! We will be back to fish with Capt Matt again!

Fished March 2018

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Wayne, New Jersey
Went fishing on Thursday, March 1, 2018

We caught lots of mackerel, ladyfish and blue runners.  Lots of fun! Always a great trip with Bamboo Charters.

Fished March 2018

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United States
Went fishing on Saturday, March 3, 2018

Great day, great captain and host.

Fished March 2018

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Miami Beach, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, February 26, 2018

Fished February 2018

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Palm Coast, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, February 17, 2018

Fun trip even though the fishing was slow.

Fished February 2018

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United States
Went fishing on Thursday, February 8, 2018

Fished February 2018

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Key West, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, February 8, 2018

This trip was fantastic;  even with a couple of small kids along,  Keith knew exactly the right itinerary,  and our whole crew had an absolute blast.  It also didn’t hurt that we were making great catches left and right.  Book these guys!

Fished February 2018

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Port Charlotte, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, February 5, 2018

Fished February 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Thank you for the kind 5 star review!

Mount Laurel, New Jersey
Went fishing on Monday, January 15, 2018

Went out for a family fishing trip with Captain Matt Bellinger. Good weather n lots of fish. A super fun day!

Fished January 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Mike thank you for fishing with us at Bamboo Charters. Despite the wind we had a good day.

Stuart, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Amazing experience with Captain Keith!  So much knowledge of the local wildlife.

Fished January 2018

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Thanks for coming out and Capt Keith is a great asset on the boat. We look forward to seeing you both again some time in the future.


McKinney, Texas
Went fishing on Saturday, December 23, 2017

Fished December 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Thank you very much for the day on the water!

Brandon, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, December 30, 2017

Capt Kieth was fantastic, know what the family needed while with two small children and absolutely nailed it!  Caught fish and saw some of the highlights Key Largo had to offer - from seeking wildlife, horse island to Robbie’s Tarbon! Outstanding

Fished December 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Thank you for your business and your kind words. Capt Keith is a great asset and fun on the water.  We all pride ourselves on the fact that we have always been a Family Oriented operation here in the Florida Keys.

Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, December 28, 2017

Had one great trip! Will do again. Better than expected! Captain Kieth was great. Caught fish we could eat and 100 pound shark. Experience was incredible!

Fished December 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Thank you Mike!  Capt Keith is a one of a kind guy.  I’m glad to hear we exceeded your expectations while fishing with us.

Marathon, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Lovely boat, knowledgeable captain and lots of fish!

Fished December 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Gwen those Spanish Mackerel do put up a great battle on light tackle gear.  The fact that they run in schools will keep the catching going until your arms fall off or at least feel like they will.  Thank you for your visit

Hollywood, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, December 21, 2017

Best day fishing we caught lots of fish and had a lot of fun with captain Kieth highly recommend bamboo charters

Fished December 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Paul those toothy critters are a blast to catch.  Sharks and Barracuda do put on a show! I want to thank you for your recommendation, we rely heavily on repeat and word of mouth referrals.

Tavernier, Florida
Went fishing on Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Captain Keith is super personable and really easy to work with.  Neither of us are experienced fishers, and he was great at teaching…very patient.  We had success in hauling in eight different species of fish.  None of them were trophy catches, but it was a busy time reeling.  Instead of taking us out on choppy seas, he recommended us wait a day later for calmer conditions.  Gorgeous day on the water!  Taught us a lot about the local environment and its inhabitants: we sighted birds, a turtle, a shark, an eel, a sting ray, dolphins, etc.  HIGHLY recommend to anyone considering.  Thanks again for an amazing time on the water!!!

Fished December 2017

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Key Largo, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, December 2, 2017

Fished December 2017

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Washington, District of Columbia
Went fishing on Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Went on a 6 hour trip with crew member Captain Eric and we had non stop action with several types of fish and fishing. What a top class captain with tons of knowledge and works hard to keep the action going.  Do not miss out of fishing with Bamboo Charters!

Fished November 2017

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Evanston, Illinois
Went fishing on Friday, November 24, 2017

It could be a perfect day for myself and 2 kids. The Marina is nice, the boat was ok and the fishing experience fantastic. My 11 years old son was really excited when fishing a pretty big Barracuda, after catching a lot of snappers. The problem was Eric, our captain, that was very rude since we met him. He didn’t give us any instructions, even after my request, and remained quiet during the 4 hours of our trip. It seems he was unhappy to work on the Thanksgiving Friday and was rude in every interaction with me and the boys. Unfortunately, our captain was not Matt Bellinger, that gave us a warm welcome in the Marina and was doing a terrific job with another family in a boat near ours. I do recommend this trip, but with Matt.

Fished November 2017

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Oak Brook, Illinois
Went fishing on Friday, November 24, 2017

My son, Dad and I went on a shark fishing trip with Captain Keith. We had an amazing time! Keith was the perfect tour guide and an amazing teacher. Next time we are back in the keys, we will most definitely be back for more fishing!

Fished November 2017

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Key West, Florida
Went fishing on Friday, November 3, 2017

We had a superb trip. Eric took my friend and I into the back water and out on the reef where we caught dozens of fish. I had never been fishing before but with a little help from Eric, I picked up the basics within minutes and quickly landed my first fish.
The boat trip was thrilling and Eric was a great host.

Fished November 2017

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Apex, North Carolina
Went fishing on Thursday, July 13, 2017

This was our first time in the keys and it was a great trip except for this event.  I scheduled to go fishing with Bamboo due to their reviews on fishingBooker as well as a colleague so I gambled on passing up other charters available that week. The captain that was assigned to us was Keith. After a brief, direct and informative introduction, Keith explained to us that the questionable weather would be dictating the type of fishing we would do that morning. We had no qualm with him making the calls and we were confident he would make the right decisions. The wind was whipping pretty strong, so Keith wanted to make a short trip from the marina out to Cheeca rocks.  After a short ride, Keith shuts down the boat to begin fishing by putting out some chum blocks and slow motor to the anchor spot. Unfortunately equipment failure ended our trip just as quickly as it began. Unable to get the boat started, Keith called Matt Bellinger to give use a tow back to the Cheeca lodge dock that was close by. During the tie up for the tow, Matt and Keith discussed the computer in the engine that had been replaced but the engine was still giving them problems.  First of all, Keith was an absolute professional in which was an impossible and I’m sure, embarrassing situation.  He was supremely apologetic which was greatly appreciated.  I understand these things happen.  Keith asked if we were available the next morning, but unfortunately we were leaving the next morning.  Keith and Matt discussed the possibility of taking Matt’s boat later that afternoon, but I wanted to discuss with my family to see if that could be an option. 15 minutes later, in the truck going back to the marina, Matt notified Keith that going out that afternoon wasn’t an option either. The reason for the poor review, is not the fact that the engine failed or even the fact that Matt new the boat was suspect and sent it out anyway.  It’s because I would’ve appreciated Matt (the owner of the charter company) taking the time after the tow to spend a minute discussing options to make things right. I understand he had a charter leaving quickly, but some acknowledgement and recognition of our important vacation time would have gone a long way. There also seemed to be minimal effort in getting us back out that afternoon. It’s now been 12 days since our trip ended and also the email I sent Matt that night communicating my disappointment. During this period I have received several emails from fishingbroker.com requesting a review. I contacted him directly instead of putting in a public review because I know small business owners and are sure they would rather have the feedback directly than being blindsided by a public review or in a forum. “Talk to us, not about us” is my first rule in business. I followed my first rule and still haven’t heard a peep from Bamboo Charters, so this review should not come as a surprise. They may be one of the best, but July 13, 2017,  poor Keith wasn’t even given a chance.

Bret Cobb

 

Bret Cobb does not recommend Bamboo Charters 2

Fished July 2017

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United States
Went fishing on Sunday, July 30, 2017

Fished July 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Howard thank you for your business and we are happy you enjoyed your charter with us.

Hollywood, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, July 20, 2017

Great time very professional I will recommend to my friends and family.

Fished July 2017

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Hollywood, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Eric was great! He was so accommodating to what we wanted to fish for, we caught Speckled Trout, Shark , Barrracuda, Ladyfish, and wrapped it up with Mangrove Snapper, and to top the day off ( on Eric’s recommendation) we just had a wonderful meal at Lazy Days , where they cooked our filets to perfection on a sampler of preparations! Highly Recommend Bamboo! For a Keys experience

Fished July 2017

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Tavernier, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, July 17, 2017

We had a blast, Eric was great!!! We would definitely come back for another trip

Fished July 2017

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Riverview, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, July 13, 2017
Lesley Gasper does not recommend Bamboo Charters 1

Fished July 2017

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Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Went fishing on Sunday, July 9, 2017

Matt was running late and bumped up our trip as a courtesy. He was so pleasant and helpful. My husband’s birthday and our anniversary was so awesome thanks to Matt. We caught our limit (and I caught the biggest fish) in under 2 hours!

Fished July 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, July 10, 2017

John and Mo thank you for booking your Birthday Bucket List event with me at Bamboo Charters!  The snapper bite was a blast you you were both to much fun on the boat. Your “Nibbels” were outstanding too! Enjoy your fresh fish dinners.

Miami Beach, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, July 3, 2017

Our Captain Keith was very informative and helpful with all aspects of the trip. He put us on the fish in all locations that we were taken too. We all thought that he was very good at his profession and had an overall great time with him. Thank you

Fished July 2017

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Belmar, New Jersey
Went fishing on Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Had a great time with Eric,fished 4 spots and had fish at each one.
Great guy knows the back country and how to put fish in the boat!!
Will be back.

Fished June 2017

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United States
Went fishing on Thursday, June 22, 2017

Fabulous captain, fabulous fishing, fabulous weather… will definitely be coming back to his boat every time we visit! By far the best day of our trip!

Fished June 2017

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Mechanicsville, Virginia
Went fishing on Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Fished June 2017

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North Richland Hills, Texas
Went fishing on Thursday, June 8, 2017

Fished June 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Friday, June 16, 2017

Conrad thanks for the 5 stars for our boat, our crew and the overall experience. Capt Keith does a great job day in and day out.

Key Largo, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, June 6, 2017

We had book a 6 hours trip, but was in the Harpor after 5 hours. The captain did not tell us that the trip was over, before we where on shore again. In general he did not say much - we had to guess which fish we were catching. All in all a nice nature trip but a poor fishing trip.

John Stubkjaer does not recommend Bamboo Charters 2

Fished June 2017

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United States
Went fishing on Sunday, May 28, 2017

We were greeted by Keith at the marina and he was very friendly. He asked us what we were interested in catching & then we headed out.  Keith explained everything and told us what to & what not to do in order to make our day a pleasurable experience. We had fish around us all day & had many misses. We hooked up to 2 Tarpon, 1 - Jack Crevalle & 1 - Barracuda. Keith tried hard to keep us on fish all day & was very personable. The Marina personnel Ray - (Dockmaster) & Kim (Bartender) were very friendly to our wives and made them feel at home. The wives had full access to all the marina facilities. I.E. - Pool, Shower, Bathrooms & Lounge.  I highly recommend Bamboo Charters for you next fishing adventure.

Fished May 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, May 29, 2017

Capt Keith enjoys his profession and it shows!  Thank you for coming down to the Keys and we are glad the wives enjoyed the marina property at Angler House Marina.

Lake Forest, California
Went fishing on Thursday, April 20, 2017

Very cool ride, boat well equipped, skipper very knowledgeable and we caught our targeted tarpon all with in a reasonable rate. I would recommend this trip to a friend, for sure.

Thank you Bamboo Charters,

Fished April 2017

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Key West, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Weather was great. Captain Keith was great. A lot of fun just no fish. Saw several Tarpon break the surface water but no strikes. I guess that’s why they call it fishing not catching. Lol. But even with no fish it was a good day. Would definitely recommend Keith and would use him again.

Fished May 2017

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Hollywood, Florida
Went fishing on Sunday, April 30, 2017

Fished April 2017

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Saint Paul, Minnesota
Went fishing on Monday, April 10, 2017

The six hours flew by! Captain Eric really knew what he was doing and put us on the fish! Very enjoyable!!!

Fished April 2017

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Miami, Florida
Went fishing on Wednesday, April 12, 2017

I’ve been fishing down in the Keys for 20 years and Captain Matt ranks with the best Captain’s out there!

Fished April 2017

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Marathon, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, April 1, 2017

Really beatiful day on the Islamorada waters. Matt is a really nice guy and a lot of tun to talk. Also he is very polite and makes you feel very comfortable on his boat.
He is really ambitious and pays attention to what you say which fish you wanna catch and sets you up right where those fish are.
Thanks a lot and see you next time.

Fished April 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Sunday, April 2, 2017

Alex thank you for the kind words. I enjoyed our day in the water and that spectacular show the Tarpon put on jumping all over the ocean.


Brandon, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, March 28, 2017

We were about 1.5 degrees water temp away from being in tarpon city. Our guide tried like hell to get us connected but a careless boat through our lines prevented us from the big bite. Regardless he was very knowledgeable and we saw some great top water action in our short trip.

Fished March 2017

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Key Largo, Florida
Went fishing on Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Kieth was an awesome captain.  We caught fish all day.  It was a great family experience.  We will remember this day for a long time.

Fished March 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Saturday, March 18, 2017

Jeff thank you very much for your business and your kind review.  Yep and Keith has been with our company several years now and we consider him a major asset to our success. Family fishing is one of our strong points here at Bamboo Charters. Thank you for including us on your vacation here in the Florida Keys!

Covington, Georgia
Went fishing on Monday, March 6, 2017

We have been fortunate enough to have chartered many trips over the years and I have to say that this trip was the best ever! Truly the success was due to the professionalism and skill of Capt. Keith. He really knows his stuff. He has an innate sense of when and where the fish will be. He called it over and over.  He was courteous and knowledgeable! Thanks so much for a great time!

Fished March 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, March 16, 2017

Thank you so much for your kind comments and for your business. Capt Keith is a definite asset to Bamboo Charters and he prides himself on his customer service.  We all have a common belief that we are only as good as our last charter.  Keith is definitely a fish whisperer! We look forward to taking you fishing again.

Key Largo, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, March 13, 2017

Took a half day trip with Captain Kieth. Whole experience was outstanding. We caught trout and mangrove snapper. Captain Kieth was very knowledgeable and we had a great time chatting with him throughout the day, not to mention he kept us on fish the whole time. Highly recommend these guys for fishing out of Islamorada.

Fished March 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Thursday, March 16, 2017

Thank you for your review we are definitely very lucky to have Capt. Keith as one of our charter captains. I’m glad to hear that your half day charter was a very fishy event!  We look forward to taking you fishing again here in the Florida Keys with Bamboo Charters.

Key Largo, Florida
Went fishing on Friday, February 17, 2017

New how to find fish. Paid attention to detail. Would highly recommend them.

Fished February 2017

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Orlando, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, January 14, 2017

Fished January 2017

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Thank you Yahima, Capt Eric does a great job and we always enjoy showing families a great day on the water.

Marathon, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, December 12, 2016

Great day fishing in the Gulf and the Everglades with Captain Keith. Caught a lot of species I had never seen before and a surprise spinner shark. That was lots of fun!  Saw lots of turtles and had dolphins surfing in our wake, overall a great experience.

Fished December 2016

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Brandon, Florida
Went fishing on Sunday, December 11, 2016

Fantastic day. Patient and knowledgeable captain put us on fish. Loads of knowledge of where the fish would be. Very courteous. Recommended delaying due to high winds - wanted a great experience for us. I have boated for 42 years and appreciated his wise call. Highly recommended

Fished December 2016

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Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, November 12, 2016

My 5 year old sone could not have received a better introduction to boat fishing. Eric was awesome, patient and extremely knowledgeable. Would I book again…? Count on it!

Fished November 2016

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, November 14, 2016

Thank you for your review.  Capt. Eric is great with kids experiencing their first time fishing and boating, he gets plenty of practice with his young daughter and that translates well to our clients.  We all enjoy showing anglers of all levels of skill the fantastic marine environment here in the Florida Keys. We look forward to seeing you and your family again soon.
Capt. Matt Bellinger Bamboo Charters

Lithia, Florida
Went fishing on Monday, October 10, 2016

Very good service, lots of fun.

Fished October 2016

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Pompano Beach, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, September 29, 2016

My boyfriend and I signed up for an 8hr trip.  Initially we booked with Captain Matt Bellinger, heard he was fantastic.  It came to our surprise that Capt. Bellinger was on vacation, and we were booked with Capt. Eric.  Initially we were upset about the change, but it ended up being a great day fishing. We were very successful, Capt. Eric knew where the fish were and we hooked into plenty…Overall a great experience!!!

Fished September 2016

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United States
Went fishing on Wednesday, August 3, 2016

We had a wonderful time.  Eric was just great, helpful and knowledgeable.  Our catch was delicious.

Strongly recommend fishing with Eric!!!!!

Fished August 2016

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Brazil
Went fishing on Friday, July 8, 2016

The captain was Not really good. The boat was dirty and we didn’t catch a lot of fish

Edgard Pinto De Souza Bisneto does not recommend Bamboo Charters 1

Fished July 2016

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United States
Went fishing on Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Keith is awesome. Caught fish from the time line hit water. 80 lbs Tarpon on pop rig. Made fishing report on 7/12/16. Fully recommend and will return.

Fished July 2016

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United States
Went fishing on Sunday, June 26, 2016

Great captain and first class boat. We caught nice snook, jacks, trout and sharks.  Our first time fidhing in the Keys and.it.was a great experience.

Fished June 2016

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Thank you Keith, I enjoyed the day on the water and that 18 pound snook was amazing.

United States
Went fishing on Thursday, June 16, 2016

Captain Mack is just the BEST! Not only does he know where to put you on fish, he is also very knowledgeable about the wildlife and ecosystems of the area. We caught our fill of sea trout plus a few others and we even got to see two manatees! Mack and Anna are friendly and professional and our family would definitely fish with them again. It was the best day of our visit to the Keys!

- Karen Fridy
  North Carolina

Fished June 2016

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Miami, Florida
Went fishing on Sunday, May 22, 2016

We strongly recommend fishing with Captain Matt if you are headed to the keys.  He put us on fish all day as well as on the radio when calling in his daily fishing report.  His knowledge of the water and fishing technique is exceptional.  He has a great personality and we had a lot of laughs on the boat and back at the marina where we were invited to stay and have some drinks. We will defiantly be booking our charter with him when return next year.

Fished May 2016

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Grand Prairie, Texas
Went fishing on Monday, May 16, 2016

For $450 I would have expected to catch fish that were larger than 7inches…it could have been better.

Debbie Craig does not recommend Bamboo Charters 2

Fished May 2016

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Friday, June 3, 2016

Debbie we do our best on every charter to meet and exceed our clients expectations.  There are trips where we fall short of their expectations. We are sorry that our efforts fell short on your half day charter, I wish that you had addressed your disappointment with our staff and with me and we could’ve done something then if you’d felt that we had short changed you in anyway. It is my belief that we are only as good as our last charter or customer experience and in this case we can’t remedy it from afar.
Capt Matt Bellinger owner operator Bamboo Charters.

Ocean Springs, Mississippi
Went fishing on Thursday, April 14, 2016

good trip would have liked more fishing and less running

Fished April 2016

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Islamorada, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Captain Matt is great!  He is a real pro with not only great fishing knowledge but knowledge of birds and the ecology of the Keys.  But wait, there’s more. He did his radio spot on Keys fishing during our trip and gave a blow by blow recitation of our day.  And then there’s his boat - we streaked across the Florida Gulf at 36 mph with ease.  Fish with HIM!

Fished April 2016

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Winona, Minnesota
Went fishing on Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Captain was very eager to please.  Willing to fish for whatever we desired.  Went way above to ensure we were catching fish.  Unfortunately he had to cut the trip short due to high winds.  Caught enough fish to take back to local restaurant where they prepared a dinner for 3 of us. Next time we are in the Keys we will definitely fish with these guys again.

Fished March 2016

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Ashland, Wisconsin
Went fishing on Saturday, March 12, 2016

This was our first time fishing in the back country and even though the wind was up, it was a great experience.  Keith was our guide and he did a really nice job.  In the four hours we were our there we had a lot of fun catching sea trout and ladyfish and even a shark!  Would recommend!

Fished March 2016

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Fort Myers, Florida
Went fishing on Thursday, March 17, 2016

The captain made the trip awesome.  The fish were biting and the weather was perfect.

Fished March 2016

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Brunswick, Georgia
Went fishing on Saturday, March 12, 2016

Fished March 2016

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Wilmington, Delaware
Went fishing on Sunday, February 28, 2016

We had a fun trip fishing a small reef just off shore. cought at least a dozen species of fish, had plenty for a hook and cook.  perfect morning.

Fished February 2016

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Overland Park, Kansas
Went fishing on Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Great day fishing Capt. Eric was fantastic the overall experience was the best charter I have ever done.

Fished February 2016

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, February 15, 2016

Thank you very much Dave, Capt. Eric does a fantastic job and is always very enthusiastic.  Thank you for coming out with us and we look forward to doing business with you again.  You should consider coming back in late April May and June for our fantastic Tarpon season and the offshore bite for dolphin is good. Thank you again.
Capt Matt Bellinger Bamboo Charters Islamorada Florida.

Winter Springs, Florida
Went fishing on Saturday, January 30, 2016

I took my son on a half day trip for his sixteenth birthday. Captain Keith took us to two different locations. My son and I each caught about 20 fish apiece! Although most were too small to keep, we still managed to bring 5 back with us that Keith cleaned for us so we could eat them at Lazy Days restaurant. They have a “hook and cook” option on the menu. It was fun to eat the fish we caught a few hours later!

Fished January 2016

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United States
Went fishing on Saturday, October 10, 2015

Mainly caught smallish fish until aa 200lb tiger shark took the bait. 25 minutes of fighting and getting to 4 ft of boat it cut the line with its tail. Got to see it up close so a great experience.

Fished October 2015

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East Islip, New York
Went fishing on Friday, October 2, 2015

Excellent experience clean boats, expert captains.  Booked two (2) separate trips in one week and loved them both; Captain Judd Jackson and especially Captain Keith were both outstanding.  These were not lazy lets see if we catch something out there guides/Captains, rather they were very aggressive in trying to find fish for us.  Great experience will definitely book again next year!

Fished October 2015

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Raleigh, North Carolina
Went fishing on Friday, August 28, 2015

We went on a half day trip with Keith and I asked for a laid back time which would leave my non-fishing wife with a desire to return.  That’s just what we got.  Caught some fish and had a great day on the water.  Keith was knowledgeable and easy to get along with.  I would definitely do it again.

Fished August 2015

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Serbia
Went fishing on Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Great trip. Guide was fantastic. And took my Non Fisherman girl and made her into an enthusiast. In other words exactly what a guide should do. Excellent work Bamboo. I’ll be back. Thanks

Fished July 2015

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Winter Springs, Florida
Went fishing on Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Fun laid back trip.  Keith was great, beautiful area.  Whole trip world well.

Fished July 2015

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Matt Bellinger (The Captain)
Replied to this review on Monday, July 27, 2015

Thank you very much for your business and the kind review.