Types Of Fishing In The Florida Keys

Whether you are a fisherman looking to check "land a tarpon” off your bucket list, a group of friends looking to come home with dinner, or a family looking for some fun in the sun, Marathon is known for its incredible fishing opportunities and we are happy to assist our guests with planning a day on the water or hiring a captain or fishing guide.

The Keys are home to a spectacular variety of fish. Flats fishing, reef fishing, wreck fishing, spearfishing, ocean fly fishing, dock fishing, and deep sea fishing are all options to visitors and fishermen, from the experienced to the inexperienced.


in the Florida Keys is a gorgeous setting in which to fight and hopefully land a tarpon. Permit and bonefish are also in the flats just waiting for your line. Flats boats are designed to be lightweight in order to travel with passengers over the shallow water (3”-6”) and get you right where you need to be to find the fish. Because these boats need to minimize weight, the operators prefer to take only two passengers but some charters will take an additional person for a fee.


takes you out to coral patches that are scattered about the Florida keys. These coral heads are packed with tropical fish but they also have yellowtail, hogfish, various snapper species, and grouper. These locations can be just off the island in 20 feel of water or up to 100 feet of water. Charters can take up to 6 people depending on the charter’s rule.


in the Keys takes place offshore in deep water where sunken ships have wrecked and created artificial reefs. This is the best environment to find mutton snapper. Also on these wrecks are amber jacks, cobia, and cubera snappers. These are in deep water between 100’ and 400’. When fishing a wreck there are two options: drifting or anchoring. Current and wind conditions will determine which is best for your adventure. If you choose to take a charter there is room for 6 people on the boat depending on the charter’s rules.


is an ancient fishing technique that has been modified with today’s technology. Today spear guns are predominantly used but Hawaiian pull spears are also very popular. When spearfishing in the Florida Keys you can shoot hogfish, mutton snapper, cobia, and various groupers. Top spearfishing spots range from 6’ of water to 80’+ depending on the diver’s lung capacity. This expensive sport has become increasingly popular over recent years and there are more and more charter captains willing to take on this responsibility and provide equipment. It is exciting!


a/k/a off shore fishing, in the Florida Keys is unique because it doesn’t take 30 miles to reach the edge and catch those big fish. The reef is just 7 miles off the coast of the Florida keys and if you are looking for Mahi Mahi (Dolphin) you can catch them in as little as 100’ of water all the way up to the ocean wall at 1800’. Also commonly caught in offshore fishing in the Florida Keys is wahoo, tuna, sailfish, amberjack, and marlin.


is terrific right off of any of the docks at our Happyinthekeys vacation rental homes: Grouper House, Super Grouper House, Snapper House, Pirate House and Fish Camp. When you are staying at one of our homes, you can fish at any given moment, 24/7 if that is what makes you happy!

Please be aware that visitors must obtain a fishing license to fish in Florida. In Marathon Florida, you can purchase your license at the KMart located in the center of the island, or at any of the bait and tackle shops in town.

Florida Keys Fish Species By Season

Elderly man sitting in boat facing the ocean deep sea fishing in the Florida Keys

Best Fishing By Month In The Florida Keys

The Florida Keys are known for warm saltwater fishing and Marathon is famous for its fishing opportunities. We have put together a guide to best fishing by month In The Florida Keys

More things To Do In Marathon & The Keys

Dog-Friendly Restaurants in Marathon Florida

We try not to go anywhere without our dogs Layla & Chopper – and that’s one reason we decided to make our vacation homes pet friendly. Luckily there are a few choices for a delicious meal without leaving your furry friend behind.

shopping in florida keys

Shopping in Marathon, Florida

These are a few of our favorite shops and boutiques in Marathon, Florida where you can find clothing, gifts, island jewelry, art and much more.

drift island collective store front

Drift Island Collective

Drift Island Collective is filled with gorgeous environmentally conscious and handcrafted clothes – linen and cotton, mostly and lovely accessories and gift items that seem like the perfect fit for our islands here in the Florida Keys.

7 Days of Fun & Relaxation!

Plan The Ultimate Keys Vacation With Our Itinerary