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Islamorada Vacation?

Old 11-04-2010, 04:55 AM
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Default Islamorada Vacation?

Looking for any tips, suggestions,recommendations for a short 4 day fishing trip for the family. I have not been involved in any of the plans but my wife and son did the research for my birthday. The plan as of now is to fly into Fort Lauderdale ( I Think ) and drive to the keys ( Islamorada). They picked out a little Hotel where fishing is the primary activity. I believe we are hoping to leave in the beginning of December. I know there are a lot of people on here from Florida so was looking for any first hand experience or suggestions. Nothing has been booked yet. Thanks
Old 11-04-2010, 05:26 AM
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Do not mention if you have a boat or not...if not then a back country or offshore charter is recommended, which can be booked at Bud & Marys marina where you can also rent a boat if you want. A snorkeling or dive trip is recommended as well. Some very good restaurants, and the stone crabs are in season and you will not get them any fresher then in the keys. Not a lot of night life but that is not what most people go to the keys for with the exception of Key Weird.

http://www.budnmarys.com/
Old 11-04-2010, 05:54 AM
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Default Keys vacation

Think about my house for the family. 2 BEDROOMS 2 1/2 BATH SCREENED PORCH OCEANSIDE I am looking for a monthly renter for March, April, Sept ,Oct , Dec. 2011 SUMMERLAND kEY MM25 Thanks

http://www.thehulltruth.com/fishing-...ouse-rent.html

Last edited by rtmadm00; 01-15-2011 at 01:04 PM. Reason: nov rented ADDED SITE INFO
Old 11-04-2010, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by oceanluvr30 View Post
Do not mention if you have a boat or not...if not then a back country or offshore charter is recommended, which can be booked at Bud & Marys marina where you can also rent a boat if you want. A snorkeling or dive trip is recommended as well. Some very good restaurants, and the stone crabs are in season and you will not get them any fresher then in the keys. Not a lot of night life but that is not what most people go to the keys for with the exception of Key Weird.

http://www.budnmarys.com/
Wont have a boat, wife was looking at "Drop Anchor Resort" for our stay. As far as nightlife a decent restaurant and cocktail is all we need.
Old 11-04-2010, 07:05 PM
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Lazy days for Dinner
Sundowners at Morada Bay
Feeding the Tarpon at Robbie's
Fried chicken from the Whistle Stop
Back country charter
Offshore Charter
Theatre of the sea, for Dolphin and other marine life
Rent a boat for the day
Outdoor world, but do not eat there.
Old 11-04-2010, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by ychtcptn View Post
Lazy days for Dinner
Sundowners at Morada Bay
Feeding the Tarpon at Robbie's
Fried chicken from the Whistle Stop
Back country charter
Offshore Charter
Theatre of the sea, for Dolphin and other marine life
Rent a boat for the day
Outdoor world, but do not eat there.
Good advice. Also, Breakfast or Sunday brunch at Green Turtle is a must eat. http://www.greenturtlekeys.com

Avoid Islamorada fish company/world wide sportsman.
Old 11-04-2010, 07:40 PM
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My recommendation- Kon Tiki for staying. Right on the water, great pool, nice screened patio, reasonable price:
http://www.kontiki-resort.com/

Fishing guide that I think is the best is Chris Baron of Stray Cat Charters:
http://www.straycatscharters.com/

Chris works his butt off to put you on fish. We have used 4 other guides and I will never pick anyone else than Chris. We were disappointed in all of them except Chris. Feel free to tell him Russ from Ohio recommended him. Maybe he will give you a discount.

For dinner; The Islamorada Fish Company, World Wide Sportsman, Lazy Days for Hog Fish is hard to beat. There are several good placed to eat, you won't have a problem. We asked some locals at carry outs and grocery stores where they would recommend we eat and that is how we found Lazy Days Hog Fish.

Russ
Old 11-04-2010, 08:42 PM
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bud and marys
Old 11-05-2010, 04:47 AM
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http://www.loreleifloridakeys.com/
Old 11-05-2010, 10:20 AM
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My daughter and I ate ate lunch at the World Wide Sportsman and I thought it was reasonable for lunch at under $30. Of course I wasn't drinking alchohol. It was very nice to sit on the proch and watch the boats run by. We also got to feed the tarpon at Robbie's and it was fun. Just ask my daughter how "gun shy" I am feeding a fish as long as me. :-)
Old 11-05-2010, 01:44 PM
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Another vote for Chris Baron

Dinner-

Lazy Days-good mid priced, nice ocean front views, long waits
Morada Bay-a little more upscale, beautiful beach front
Pierre's ($$$$) 'nuff said
Green Turtle-mid priced, remodeled, lots of locals
Ziggy's -old Islamorada eatery good but a bit pricey

Sorry but Islamorada Fish Co doesn't make the list
Old 11-05-2010, 05:31 PM
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Lat5- You have fished with Chris also huh. He does a great job but we have had to tell him to calm down on more than one occasion. He really gets into his fishing that's for sure.

To the OP, if you can find blue crabs at a bait store, get them. They are hard to find and the guides won't waste a lot of time trying to find them. They will cast net for pilchards and/or mullet but I believe the tarpon get wary of them, especially if they have been caught before. Two years ago we had fished for about 4 hours and only had one mullet chase but there was a boat about 500 yards away and they had hooked up probably 6-7 times. They were fishing with crabs. Next time we go I am going to pick up some of the Berkley Gulp crabs and see how they work.

Islamorada Fish Co. has gotten less good every year we have gone down to the Keys. Their portions have gotten smaller as well. I would change my opinion and say they are borderline. It is hard to beat for relaxing with a cocktail or a cold beer for the scenery though.

Russ
Old 11-05-2010, 05:45 PM
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Russ-Actually, never fished with Chris, but have known him since he was about 20. Worked with me for several years in a diving operation way back. Great guy with a good reputation. I think he just bought a new Everglades 243 bay boat.


The problem with Islamorada Fish Co is they've "sold out", gone commercial with the mega expansion. Miss the days when they were a small and intimate restaurant. As for World Wide their sister operation, same with the exception of their Zane Grey Lounge at night.
Old 11-05-2010, 05:54 PM
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We keep trying Islamorada Fish Co. at Outdoor world and are always disappointed for food, good place for sundowners though.
I hope this gives you enough info, I think we have covered all the bases. I am heading down for thanksgiving week and can not wait. We have stayed at Breezy Palms for the last 4 years and love it.
Old 11-05-2010, 09:01 PM
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That surprises me that he bought that big of a boat. I know his son guides for offshore trips, is Chris and his son doing trips together or something?

I will contact Chris because if he has that big of a boat now he should be able to take 3 or 4 of us on one boat. We usually have to get 2 boats because he only likes to fish 2 guys out of his flats boat. He should be able to take 4 of us on that Everglades boat. Thanks for the info!

Russ
Old 11-06-2010, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by RussH View Post
Lat5- You have fished with Chris also huh. He does a great job but we have had to tell him to calm down on more than one occasion. He really gets into his fishing that's for sure.

To the OP, if you can find blue crabs at a bait store, get them. They are hard to find and the guides won't waste a lot of time trying to find them. They will cast net for pilchards and/or mullet but I believe the tarpon get wary of them, especially if they have been caught before. Two years ago we had fished for about 4 hours and only had one mullet chase but there was a boat about 500 yards away and they had hooked up probably 6-7 times. They were fishing with crabs. Next time we go I am going to pick up some of the Berkley Gulp crabs and see how they work.

Islamorada Fish Co. has gotten less good every year we have gone down to the Keys. Their portions have gotten smaller as well. I would change my opinion and say they are borderline. It is hard to beat for relaxing with a cocktail or a cold beer for the scenery though.

Russ

Crabs are expensive and most guides are too cheap to buy them.
Old 11-06-2010, 01:52 PM
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Freeport- The guide told us upfront that if he found crabs that we were responsible for paying for them. I would expect that anything the guide is able to net would be included in the charter cost, but anything that would have to be purchased would be the responsibility of the fisherman.

Now, if you really want to get me started on a sore subject....it would be the incredible amount of fishing time wasted in the whole bait catching thing. There is nothing that irrates me more than if the bait is hard to get and we lose the first 2 hours of morning fishing which is usually the best time. The other thing about getting bait is the guides seem to have a bait phobia or something. I would rather take 10 mullet and go fishing -vs- spending an hour to get 100.

To the OP, if you find a guide that will get the bait the day before, BOOK HIM. Whoever you get as a guide tell them right up front that you are paying to fish, not spend 2+ hours getting bait. If the guide throws the net 2-3 times and gets 10 baits, GO FISHING! Don't spend another hour or more to get 100 baits.

Russ
Old 11-06-2010, 02:52 PM
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Mile Marker 88 is an excellent, old style Keys restaurant. The beach bar at Morado Bay is also great place to hang. It's right next to the Outdoor Sportsman
Old 11-08-2010, 07:46 AM
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Sorry for the late response, was out of town for a few days. We will take note of all your suggestions and try and get the most out of this trip. Any more suggestions/ tips are welcome. Thanks
Old 11-08-2010, 07:59 AM
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For Breakfast or lunch try midway cafe, good fresh food. If you make it to marathon try keys fisheries for lunch and Franks Grille for dinner, you will not find a better meal in the world than the Yellowtail Francois at franks.

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