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Old 13-02-2013, 09:32   #1
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Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

My gal and I are planning a charter either in the Florida Keys or Bahamas a few months from now. It's just a little pre season getaway with an emphasis on snorkeling and relaxing. Have cruised through the Keys before and am thinking to it might be best to base the charter out of Marathon if we do the Florida Keys.

The plan is to head out to Sombrero Key during the day to: snorkel, lunch, nap, snorkel then head back to Marathon for the night. I seem to recall from previous trips Sombrero had some pretty good snorkeling. Which is a priority for my gal. We don't feel the need to cruise all over the Keys during this charter. Just want some good snorkeling and relaxing for a week. Does this sound like a good plan? Open for other suggestions too in the area too.
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Old 13-02-2013, 10:55   #2
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Looe Key is good, so is Pennekamp, so is Ft Jefferson/Dry Tortugas. You can base on land and hop day charters to all.
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Old 13-02-2013, 17:00   #3
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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Looe Key is good, so is Pennekamp, so is Ft Jefferson/Dry Tortugas. You can base on land and hop day charters to all.
Thanks for the reply. But, the point is to get away from land and stay on a boat. Probably a chartered Catamaran. I was thinking having the boat based out of Marathon would allow for trips out to the snorkeling site (Sombrero) for the day and heading back toward Marathon for the night. My feeling Key West is too crowded and the reefs not as good as at Sombrero. Don't know if there are other snorkeling sites along the Keys that would be similar to a Marathon/Sombrero base. I'm looking for ideas.
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Old 13-02-2013, 21:56   #4
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

Have you thought about Key Largo? The best snorkeling and diving in the Keys. imho
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Old 14-02-2013, 06:17   #5
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I've not heard that anyone is chartering the Keys, but maybe 2Hulls might know. They're a brokerage in Ft L, but might have a line on something
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Old 14-02-2013, 06:32   #6
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

The best snorkeling site in the FL keys, is Key Largo's Pennekamp. Sombrero is an average site, but it also has a beach, picnic tables, changing facilities and is close to many stores for provisioning. Looe Key is a "fair" SCUBA dive site. Having said that, none of these sites compare to the Bahamas'. The outer islands are worth your trip and the extra cost; deserted beaches, great reefs to explore and most times no one is around but yourself. In either plan, make sure you have a shallow keel boat; 5 ft of draft or less. Turquoise/blue water means very shallow water! Have fun! Mauritz
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Old 14-02-2013, 06:55   #7
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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Have you thought about Key Largo? The best snorkeling and diving in the Keys. imho
That's also a thought. Perhaps start off in Marathon for few days then cruise up towards Key Largo. Anyone know off hand how long the trip (approx.) is from Sombrero Light to Pennekamp?
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Old 14-02-2013, 07:05   #8
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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The best snorkeling site in the FL keys, is Key Largo's Pennekamp. Sombrero is an average site, but it also has a beach, picnic tables, changing facilities and is close to many stores for provisioning. Looe Key is a "fair" SCUBA dive site. Having said that, none of these sites compare to the Bahamas'. The outer islands are worth your trip and the extra cost; deserted beaches, great reefs to explore and most times no one is around but yourself. In either plan, make sure you have a shallow keel boat; 5 ft of draft or less. Turquoise/blue water means very shallow water! Have fun! Mauritz
Thanks! Yeah, it will be a cat since it's my girlfriends vacation. I go along to get along.
Plan is to use the boat as a movable base and not really step on land once we are on board. Another purpose of the trip is to check out some areas along the gulf by car before or after the charter for possible retirement locations so we are leaning toward Florida on this trip.
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Old 14-02-2013, 08:42   #9
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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That's also a thought. Perhaps start off in Marathon for few days then cruise up towards Key Largo. Anyone know off hand how long the trip (approx.) is from Sombrero Light to Pennekamp?
approx. 50 miles
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Old 14-02-2013, 13:06   #10
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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approx. 50 miles
Haw1961:

Thanks! That would be a long day's sail. So maybe my Plan A and just base out of Marathon for a couple of days may be the way to go.
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Old 14-02-2013, 13:49   #11
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

I couldn't find anybody offering bareboat charters in Key Largo,but if you get the chance check it out.It's more scenic than Marathon, not as crowded as Key West,not as expensive as Islamorada.There is plenty to do and everybody is very laid back. Whatever you decide,I hope everything works out for the best,as I know it will.
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Old 14-02-2013, 14:04   #12
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

Here is a link to bareboat charters. They have 1 cat out of Key Largo and several out of Key West.

Bareboat Yacht Charters Florida, Key West, Bahamas. Sailing Vessels and Power Boat Charters.
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Old 14-02-2013, 14:33   #13
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

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I couldn't find anybody offering bareboat charters in Key Largo,but if you get the chance check it out.It's more scenic than Marathon, not as crowded as Key West,not as expensive as Islamorada.There is plenty to do and everybody is very laid back. Whatever you decide,I hope everything works out for the best,as I know it will.
Don't need a bareboat as my gal will only let us do crewed charters on "her" vacations. Something about me getting into my Capt. mode. This is fine with me as I have no problem relaxing on deck with a boat drink while someone else is worrying/working on some maintenance issue including engines, heads etc.... Plus not having local knowledge of the waters makes it a little more stressful for me as she is more passenger than crew. On a strange boat I much rather be kicking back with a beer than learning/fixing the boats systems during our vacation anyway.
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Old 14-02-2013, 14:37   #14
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

The link above also does crewed charters.

Specifically, the Leopard 47 "No Expectations" has a bareboat and crewed option out of Key Largo.

Bareboat Yacht Charters Florida, Key West, Bahamas. Sailing Vessels and Power Boat Charters. Charter this Lagoon
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Old 14-02-2013, 14:39   #15
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Re: Snorkeling charter in the Keys Marathon?

BTW, no affiliation. I just have all these links saved for future bareboat charter vacations.

My family and I will be in Marathon the last week in March. No sailboat this time, condo and a motor boat.
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