Florida Keys as a Fishing Holiday Escape

Holidays are not the same for everyone. While friends and family togetherness is the focus for most, many look forward to escaping from the family. What better way to escape than a fishing vacation in the Florida Keys.

I have fished for hire at least half of every Thanksgiving and Christmas day every year since I started guiding in the Keys. It amazed me that anyone other than locals would even be in Keys during the holidays. Not only are vacationers here for Christmas, more seem to show every year.

An Escape from Stress

People have different reasons to come to the Keys for Christmas or Thanksgiving. The holiday season for some isn’t what it is cracked up to be with bad memories of past holidays. The Keys offer an escape from depressing memories. Others with smaller spread out families, want to make the most of their vacation time by having a Keysie Christmas. It all seems to work out well for everyone. Working on your suntan Christmas morning while catching a few fish for dinner does have a certain appeal after all.

One Big Family

In Marathon, the whole island turns into one big family during the holidays. Locals and the tourists often join together to celebrate with feasts and football. The biggest concern after Christmas dinner is finding a hammock or comfy chair to nap off the baked hogfish and turkey.

No One Is a Foreigner

Most of the older resorts in the Keys have their hyper-extended family festivities. I don’t know of any better way to describe it; many regular vacationers are just a part of the family. The Overseas Lounge has its traditional Thanksgiving and Christmas day tradition of hosting dinner for locals, tourists, and the unfortunates. Whenever I have the time, I try to drop off a baked macaroni and cheese casserole and have some holiday spirits with Roy and Bev the owners.

Captain Pips Marina and Hideaway

Captain Pips Marina and Hideaway is more just for employees and guests, but anyone that shows up is more than welcome have a bite. Since Johnny’s eyes are bigger than his stomach, there is always plenty of food. More often than not, someone will break out a guitar, and some entertaining will commence. Whether it is the Turkey Giblet Band on turkey day or the Coral Carolers at Christmas, some impromptu band seems to form.


Between the Overseas, Captain Pips and our neighborhood dinner, I am pretty well stuffed every holiday. There are plenty more hyper-extended family gatherings all through the Florida Keys.

The holidays are for friends and family. In the Keys, that includes just about everyone. If you are looking for a change of holiday pace, check out Marathon, the Heart of the Florida Keys. Just don’t forget to take your equipment with you, such as your crankbait rod, baitcasting reel, digital fish scale, and even your spinning rod under 100 dollars.

Happy holidays!

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