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Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

Old 01-12-2005, 07:39 PM
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Default Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

MY wife and I and 12 yr.old son are heading to the Keys next month for a weeks vacation. We're traveling by RV and looking for suggestions on things to do. Anyone have recommendations for RV parks, Boat rentals, fishing spots etc.?
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Old 01-12-2005, 08:13 PM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

I'm also from MA and went to the Keys three years ago. You've got to stop at the World Wide Sportsman in Islamorada. It's a Bass Pro Shop and very cool. It has a giant fish tank stocked with game fish like tarpon. It also has a replica of what I was told was Ernest Hemmingway's boat in the middle. Right next to it was one of the best places we ate at when we were down there. Very simple sea food served in baskets; top quality for a fair price. We went around sunset and they had a steel drum player performing. Great atmosphere and sunset! They have tables out on their pier and you can see and feed the tarpons swimming underneath. It's very easy to get ripped off when going out to eat because alot of these places prey on tourists like us, so be careful. If I had found that place next to World Wide Sportsman on the first night we were there instead of the last night, I probably would have gone there every night. We also went out on a party boat near there for a 1/2 day of fishing. It sucked! About 90% of the passangers were puking. No one caught anything good. For what it cost for me, wife and two kids, I would have been better off chartering. If I go down again, I definately would charter. If you want any more info, PM me. Have fun.
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Old 01-12-2005, 08:31 PM
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Stop by Cudjoe Key and get Bill Welder to take you fishing. My wife, 14 yo son and I did on our last trip down. We had a really good time, Bill's a good guy and you'll catch fish. He'll make sure the wife and kid out fish you.
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Old 01-13-2005, 10:14 AM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

Feed the tarpon at Robby's, drive the 7-mile bridge, ride the conch train in Key West.
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Old 01-13-2005, 11:43 AM
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Stop at Bahia Honda State Park. They also have a campground there.
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Old 01-13-2005, 01:55 PM
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Good post - am gonna try to get down soon also. Where would one find the sand bar type material in that area?

Just kidding - don't want to steal your post - sorry...
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Old 01-13-2005, 02:50 PM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

8943post - 1/12/2005 7:39 PM

MY wife and I and 12 yr.old son are heading to the Keys next month for a weeks vacation. We're traveling by RV and looking for suggestions on things to do. Anyone have recommendations for RV parks, Boat rentals, fishing spots etc.?
If you get to Key West, Mel fisher's museum is worth a visit, all the gold and silver from the Attocha galeon, unbelievable!
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Old 01-15-2005, 07:46 PM
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8943Post,

I am also from Ma. I am also a Charter boat Capt and I will also advise you to get a hold of Capt Bill Welder. My wife and I chartered him two years ago and we had a blast. He will work very hard to keep you on fish. We ended up longer than I thought we would and loved every minute of it. Capt Welder is very patient, so I would not worry to much about the kids or the wife having a good time. You may find he puts more time in with them and leaves you to do your thing. I met up with Capt Welder via the former Parker Forum on the Parker website. He had or still has a rigged out 21 Parker, which let us fish both offshore and inshore.

Very affordable and enjoyable a must do.

Capt Keith Lincoln
Monomoy Island Ferry
Chatham Ma.
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Old 01-16-2005, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

We are also wanting to head to Islamorada this summer and take my boat.

You may want to check out the Florida Sportsman web site and they have a section under Florida Keys and it is very helpfull.

I think you can do a search for Florida SPortsman or outdoorsbestforums.com, I think either one will get you there. Most of those guys visit here as well.
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Old 01-16-2005, 11:12 AM
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Thanks to all for the replys!
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Old 01-16-2005, 03:41 PM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

You should get reservations before you get down here. Forget the three state parks for camping, they'll all be booked this time of year. You could try America Outdoors on Key Largo, or any of the other private camp grounds throughout the keys for a site.
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Old 01-16-2005, 05:00 PM
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I'll chime in with a positive plug for Bill Welder. Went reef fishing with him & caught 14 or 15 different species. He was one of the best guides I'd ever been out with. Check out his website - captainbill.net
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Old 01-16-2005, 06:02 PM
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Take scuba classes now and get a basic cert. Your 12 year old is just old enough to be certified. Then you can take a charter in pennekamp park in key largo. There is a marine sanctuary there has alot of shallow(25 ft) diving there. Anyone who vacations in the keys is not getting what they pay for unless you dive there. my .02
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Old 01-20-2005, 02:20 PM
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WE travel to the Keys every year with a motorhome, boat and dogs. There are some real nice campgrounds to be found in Key largo, Marathon, Big Pine and Islamarada. We usually stay at Knights Keys which is in Marathon, right at the foot of the seven mile bridge. It is a pretty good place with easy access to fishing, dining and sightseeing. Make sure that you get a reservation wherever you decide to stay. The keys are crowded this time of year. We generally stay away from Key West, alternative lifestyle aversion. You got to go to the Big Pine flea market on weekends. Anything and everything can be had. Good Luck
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Old 02-02-2005, 08:34 PM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

Hello, I live in S.W. Fl and if you are camping, There is a camp ground at the end of Marathon Key, about 300' from the start of the 7 mile bridge. I have stayed there a few times and it's a nice place. As for fishing, What do you want to catch? You need to decide if you want to go back water or deep sea. If you go deep sea, I suggest one of the best charters in the Keys. The Captins name is Rocky and you can find his boat at a place called Coconuts in Key Largo. This is the ONLY guide I will ever use if I charter for deep sea. He has won just about every tournament around the globe. I am not making this up he is truely a world class fisher. He will ask you what you want to catch and he's not afraid to chase it. You will spend some $$ but he was the only guide out of three we used that told us what we would catch and how many we could expect. The other guides told us the same thing, however they did not produce! Your choice but that's the feedback. I'll be seeing him at the end of March!
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Old 02-02-2005, 09:46 PM
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Default RE: Florida Keys vacation suggestion?

I have been going to the Keys for over 20 years. I do not camp so I cant help you there. I will list Fl Keys have toos. You probably wont be able to do all this in one week but after one visit you will be back Buckle your seatbelt you are headed to a tropical wonderland I will list them in order from Key Largo to Key West
1. Key Largo Pennecamp State Park and go on a snorkel boat (You can go snorkeling with a minimium of instruction and equipment) There are both dive shops and boats at the state park that do this
2. Whale Harbor restaurant (Very nice Buffet) Islamorada
3. The Sand Bar right off of Whale Harbor (on the weekends there might be over a hundred boats there and buetiful sights)
4. Offshore Angler Bass Pro Shop (Islamorada)
5. Tower of Pizza islamorada (great ziti)
6. Theatre of the Sea (where you can swim with dolphins)
7. Fishing around 7 mile bridge can be awesome at times (Marathon)
8. No name Key, near Big Pine. A lot of key deer to see (very tame) dont feed.
9. Looe Key has some great diving.
10. Finally, plan on spending at least one day if not two days in Key West. There are sooo many thing to see in Key west it will be hard to list a few.
a. Duval Street (all the bars and shopping, got to go into Sloppy Joes and hog's breath)
b. The wharf (great restuarants-Turtle Krawls, Conch republic, or eat raw bar)
c. Mallory square at sunset
d. Southernmost marker
e. If you go to the southern end of Duval street (opposite of end from hog's breath) it is always fun to people watch as you are liable to anything and I mean anything.

This list is just some of my favorites as others have listed there are many activities and places to go

Do your homework and go to as many websites as you can before the trip.
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