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Bajabuzz 02-13-2019 10:36 AM

Florida keys rentals, boat or condo
Hi all, I am looking at taking my adult daughter to the Keys for a vacation. Tossing around the idea of a bareboat charter or a condo and skiff rental.
I have never been to the keys but have bareboat chartered in Abaco.
Looking for recommendations, ideas, referrals etc.
I know fall is hurricane season but this is the best timing for her to take time off of work. We are thinking mid October.
We like to fish and explore so prefer to stay away from really high traffic areas.

Thanks in advance for any help or ideas.


FootballFan 02-13-2019 04:25 PM

Not nearly as many bare boat charters in that area as there was a few years ago.

You might find something in Miami.

Marshmallow 02-13-2019 04:50 PM

Chartering Info

caltexflanc 02-13-2019 05:33 PM

As someone who had spent a fair amount of time in the Keys solely by being big-boat based, for your purposes I would definitely go the condo/skiff route. The funnest parts to explore are the shallow areas, and you get much more fishing options as well. We saw the big boat as simply being the mothership for the skiff, in our case a 13' Whaler.
Another option is to hire a guide for a day to get the lay of the area for both fishing and exploring.
There is a wealth of local knowledge information especially on fishing in the Florida forum of The Hull Truth.

Have a great time!

PS: I see you are from Atascadero. Where do you keep that boat? Morro Bay I take it?

Bajabuzz 02-13-2019 07:46 PM

Thank you all for your replies.
The condo skiff idea seems best.
George the boat in my avatar is kept in Anacortes.
We just closed on purchase last month and Simbalaut will stay in PNW for summer cruising. We plan to go to Alaska in 2021 or 22.

Seevee 02-13-2019 08:00 PM

Over the years, we've kept a boat and car down there at one of the airports for years. On the occasion that our boat was being used and/or we needed another, we had many vendors in the lower middle keys, from Marathon to Stock Island that provided some. Hard to get a good one, as they go in and out of business. And some are outright crooks, so watch your backside.

If you need a boat for much longer than a month or so, you could buy one, use it and sell it and come out aheads. All the BS rules and costs for renting make it very expensive and restrictive. And this was years ago, so perhaps changed.

If you're just cruising just around the shallows, diving, exploring, fishing.... you could get a cheap $10K skiff that will do the job. Use it for a few months and if you sold it for a $2K loss, you'd come out ahead.


Bajabuzz 02-13-2019 08:18 PM

We will only be there for a week so renting is the only option.

Keysdisease 02-14-2019 05:15 AM

There are several Houseboat rental companies in the Keys, I see their boats all the time. A Houseboat is actually well suited for the Keys, being a chain of islands there is always a lee and the bayside of the chain is perfect Houseboat Country. Some also offer skiffs.

I have no first hand experience with any of them, but a look at on-line reviews should point you in a fairly safe direction.


Bajabuzz 02-17-2019 11:09 PM

Thanks for the heads up on house boats. I found a few options that look like fun.
One even has a private island and a skiff included.

Robertmark 02-20-2019 07:28 PM

Forida keys vacation
We stayed at "keylime sailing club" a few years ago, maybe a little too " eclectic" for some, but we had a Great time! Near key largo. Check out their website.

Bajabuzz 02-20-2019 08:03 PM

Thanks for the referral for Key Lime Sailing Club. It looks interesting.

We also found this

More money but looks cool and has a skiff to use.

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