01-17-2011, 10:02 AM
Putting together a trip for two couples, sometime in the Spring, for backcountry/tarpon and maybe offshore or Dry Tortugas. Need to be within easy drive to Key West for medical reasons.
Any recommendations for good lodging, guides and restaurant/bars will be appreciated.
I've searched the web and looked at a bunch, but personal experience is always a good starting point.
Can't recommend lodging...it depends so much on your needs, duration of stay, budget, etc..
Charters - the Delph family have earned a good reputation for offshore / Tortugas charters (we went out with them once, but had to cut the trip short as my wife got seasick). We went out with Dreamcatcher a few times for inshore / tarpon and can't complain about the professional level of service.
There are many bars in KW...I'm not much of a bar guy so I'm not going to try to rate them. Some famous ones are Capt. Tony's, Sloppy Joe's, Hog's Breath.
Restaurants in KW: At the high end, Michaels and Cafe Marquesa are both top notch (CM has exceptional service - they will re-fold your napkin if you use the restroom, refill your glass at just the right time, etc.); Louie's Backyard is also very good and has an unmatched oceanside setting, but their wait staff can be snooty; Blue Heaven is quite good for breakfast (moderate pricing/good value) and also for dinner (more high end) and has a quirky outdoor setting with chickens running around. My favorite restaurant on the island (mid range pricing) is El Meson de Pepe's, which serves very good Cuban food and mojitos, with a great setting and live music in the evening (get there before sunset is over, as it's right on Mallory Square and gets very busy after sunset). Sarabeth's is nice for lunch and/or dinner, and it's quiet and off the main drag (very good tomato soup, and fried chicken one day a week). A Thai Life (at Garrison Bight marina) has good Thai food, considering its small size and out-of-the-way location on a floating boat in the marina. I don't care for the busy setting of Bagatelle but their white cholocate creme brulee is unforgettable and worth a visit. Mangia Mangia is pretty good for pasta. Square One is good for breakfast (and maybe more). There are many other restaurants, and some of them good, but those are our favorites so far. A visit to BO's Fish Wagon for lunch should also be considered mandatory, at least once (bland/average sandwich food, but unique setting / atmosphere).
01-18-2011, 12:35 PM
Thanks jayp. I've printed you recommendations and will take them with us.
Thanks for the post as we are also starting to plan our fishing trip to the Keys around the same time. We will be towing our boat down but any recommandations are sure appreciated.
01-26-2011, 11:00 AM
Where in the Keys will you be staying?
01-26-2011, 12:34 PM
Where in the Keys will you be staying and for how long? I (myself and three retired fishing buddies) have been renting a house in the spring at Marathon. This year we are going from middle of April thru mid May. Occupancy has been low at a lot of rentals in the Keys and there are many good deals available.