Goliath Grouper Charters

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Everything to Know About Booking a goliath grouper fishing charter

What are the best goliath grouper fishing charters?

Our Damn Good Guides currently offer 103 goliath grouper trips, and the most popular trips are Clearwater Mixed Bag Trip guided by Gage, Half Day Trip - 44' Custom guided by Harold, and Key West Offshore Action guided by John.

Our guides are rated a 5 out of 5 based on 7327 verified reviews on Captain Experiences.

All guides on Captain Experiences are licensed, insured, and vetted by our team. You can access their reviews, click through trip photos, read bios to get to know them, and preview trip details like species, techniques, group sizes, boat specs and more.

What types of goliath grouper fishing charters are common?

Deep Sea fishing is the most popular for goliath grouper as well as nearshore fishing, inshore fishing, and flats fishing.

The most common fishing techniques are bottom fishing, heavy tackle fishing, and light tackle fishing but trolling and jigging are popular as well.

How much do goliath grouper fishing charters cost?

for goliath grouper prices can range anywhere from $330 to $3,000 and up, but the average price for a half day trip for goliath grouper is $862. The average price for a full day trip for goliath grouper is $1,652.

What month is best for goliath grouper fishing?

The most popular season for goliath grouper fishing is spring, and most anglers book their trips 39 days in advance.

Do I need a fishing license for goliath grouper and what are the bag limits for goliath grouper?

See here for more information on goliath grouper fishing licenses, goliath grouper bag limits, and fishing season regulations for goliath grouper. When in doubt, your fishing guide will always know the right goliath grouper rules and regulations.

What is a Goliath Grouper?

The Atlantic Goliath Grouper (Epinephelus itajara) is the largest member of the grouper family. They have a stocky build (to put it lightly) with small eyes and a large head. They are yellowish-brown to grey in coloring, with spots that help to camouflage them against coral and muddy bottoms.

They are tough, solitary fish who can live in both brackish water and low oxygen levels. Also known to be fearless, they will defend their territory with aggressive body language, and by using their swimming bladder to make a rumbling sound.

How big do Goliath Grouper get?

Goliath groupers aren’t called “goliath” for no reason. These big boys and girls can grow up to over eight feet in length and over 600 pounds, which can be reached in up to their 50 years of life. However, the average catch will be between 75 and 150 pounds.

What's the biggest Goliath Grouper ever caught?

The world record according to the IGFA is a 680 pound goliath grouper that was caught off Fernandia Beach, Florida. It was caught on May 20th, 1961 by Lynn Joyner off of conventional tackle, using Spanish mackerel as bait.

Where is the best place to catch Goliath Grouper?

Goliath Groupers can be found throughout the western and eastern Atlantic. They are distributed from Florida to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, as well as from Senegal to Congo, as far as the Canary Islands. They can also be found in the Eastern Pacific from the Gulf of California to Peru.

Young grouper live in canals, brackish estuaries, and mangrove swamps. As they become older, they move to shallow, tropical waters and can be found around coral, rocks, mud bottoms, and man-made structures, up to 150 feet deep.

When should I catch Goliath Grouper?

The great thing about goliath groupers is that they can be caught year-round. However, the peak season is from May to October during and right after their spawning season. The early morning and late afternoon is the time of day for the best bite.

How do you catch Goliath Grouper?

As mentioned, goliath groupers are known for their aggressiveness, strength, and ability to muscle their way through reefs and rocks to break lines. This means that strong gear is absolutely necessary, including line with a minimum 300 pound test, and 16-20/0 sized circle hooks crimped solidly to the leader, and a 50-80 wide reel.

Goliath groupers eat sea turtles and crustaceans, but some great bait to use include burrfish, catfish, toadfish, octopus, ladyfish, and jack crevalle. In whichever you use, natural bait works best, as lures tend not to tempt them. Also, with any of these, be sure to anchor close to the reef so that the fish will be lured out to take the bait, possibly bouncing it off the bottom, however far enough that you have a chance to pull them away before they break the line on any structure.

Are Goliath Grouper good to eat?

Goliath groupers were once known to be a very highly regarded quality seafood, making them an ideal target for fishermen. But they quickly became overfished which led to strict bans on keeping them in areas they’re found including the United States, the Caribbean, and Brazil, in order for them to be able to regrow their populations. Due to long lifespans and slow growth rates, it is expected to be a long road to recovery, and these fish should always be handled carefully and released to live another day.

Recent Reviews of Captain Experiences

  • ★★★★★
    We all had a great time during the fishing trip. We caught quite a few fish that we got to keep. The deck hand was on top of his game and took good care of us as we were catching fish. The Captain had a cooler of water, a bathroom on board and cleaned all of our fish for us. My daughter and I got a little sea sick but we all had a great time regardless.

    Patti K. with Greg M. of St. Petersburg, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Outstanding booking and support from Captain Experiences! Excellent hosting and support for our research project by Juan, John and Lee at Up Above Adventures!! Thank you. Aviation Systems Engineering Company, Inc.

    Bob R. with Lee C. of Galveston, Texas

  • ★★★★★
    Awesome trip! Lots of fish and good conversation! We’ll be back. We had a blast!

    Brittni H. with Jason C. of Key Largo, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Nature didn't give us a calm day ,so we couldn't bottom fish, the Capt. Did take care us and we max out on Spanish mackerel. Had a blast, will do it again

    Wayne H. with Harold S. of Destin, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Harold was very kind and helpful! Everything we hoped for in a fishing trip, met and exceeded our expectations! Our deck hands, though young, acted as if they had done this for decades! Very professional, kind, and knowledgeable beyond their years. If you're a beginner or expert fisherman, this is the boat for you! Plenty of fish, and choices on what restaurants will cook your catch, recommended by the crew. I only wish we had a second day with this crew! Harold knew the seas and location of species we wanted! Highly recommend this boat and Crew, first choice when we come back!!

    James P. with Harold S. of Destin, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    We had a great fishing trip in Clearwater Florida. Our captains (Brett and Luke) were very nice and knowledgeable. I would definitely recommend Brett and Luke. They put us on some King Mackerel that fought like crazy. It was a lot of fun. Ask for Captain Brad.

    Rick W. with Brad D. of Clearwater, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Leo is the best guide for a real sport fishing day. He knows the spots and what the fish want. I recommand Leo 200%.

    J-F L. with Leo L. of Miami Beach, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    We 3 guys really enjoyed our fishing with Captain Alberto. He was very helpful and knowledgable. Picked us up on time, was very pleasant. Would definitely recommend this trip!

    Theresa A. with Alberto G. of Cancún, Quintana Roo

  • ★★★★★
    Garrett is AWESOME!!!! He communicates very clearly and concise. He is considerate of his customer's desired catch and works hard to maintain maximum time with lines in the water.

    Guy A. with Garrett F. of Key West, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Excellent job by Capt Garrett More fish than we could handle Even in choppy seas we had great day

    David M. with Garrett F. of Key West, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    This wasn't our first fishing trip in Key West but it was one of the best, Zack was a great captain, we had an awesome time. While other boats in the vicinity had limited luck Zack had us on fish all day. I can highly recommend Captain Experiences you will not regret it, five stars all the way, thanks again from the Charleston, SC. foursome.

    Darris S. with John J. of Key West, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Captain John was awesome! He was super upfront about water conditions and left all the decisions to us. Had a quick backup plan for us since there were 7-9 foot seas offshore. Caught some fish waiting out the weather and then put us on the fish we were after! 10/10 would recommend

    Chase G. with John G. of Key West, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Brandon was awesome! He took my son and I in the most memorable fishing trip we’ve had to date. We caught 3 lemon sharks, and a bunch of barracudas. We Loved the whole experience.

    John P. with Brandon S. of Summerland Key, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    We had an outstanding trip with Capt. James! Very knowledgeable, patient and an all around good guy! If you want to catch fish, he’s the guy! Definitely looking forward to our next trip!

    Mark M. with James C. of Jupiter, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    A great trip! We had a great time with Captain Brad! Appreciated the one-on-one assistance with our son and their focus to make sure we were able to pull in a couple of good size fish. We have already shared his name with people we met while in Florida and will definitely try to book another trip the next time we are in the area!

    Jane D. with Brad D. of Clearwater, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    We had an awesome time on this charter. Super fun time with a crew that definitely knows their way around a boat . Would highly recommend for anyone looking for a fun day catching some fish

    William W. with Mike M. of Fort Lauderdale, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Had a great trip yesterday 3/27/23 with Gage and His assistant. Got plenty of fish, including a nice run of Grouper on the last stop. The Boat ride out, and back in was very comfortable, and the fishing gear was top notch...we will definetely be back again !

    Forrest D. with Gage B. of Clearwater, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    Had a wonderful time with Captain. Caught tons of fish, plenty to take home as well. Great company too

    Bryan L. with Stanley B. of Naples, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    The best fishing trip ever! Caught a 6’ 160 lb shark and approx 80 fish.

    Kyrie H. with John C. of Panama City, Florida

  • ★★★★★
    It was great. Got me on some big barracuda which is exactly what I wanted. Mate was also great.

    Dan F. with Gage B. of Clearwater, Florida

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