Big Hat Fishing Charters

4 - Hour Fishing Charter

$450 for up to four people.
Each additional person is $50 up to a total of six people.
Mornings or Afternoons

6 - Hour Fishing Charter

$650 for up to four people.
Each additional person is $50 up to a total of six people. Start in the morning and end in the afternoon

4 hr Nature Boat Cruise

$400 for up to six people. Get the opportunity to see dolphins and manatees along with a sand-bar stop to cool off

2 hr Night Fishing Charter

$350 for up to two people. Experience a fishing trip at night and see if you can catch that giant in the moonlight of a Florida night

Palma Sola Bay

One of the low-key areas we like to target. Palma Sola Bay is a great place to go to when the wind kicks up. With little boat traffic, and secluded areas to get out of the wind, it makes it a great place to target redfish, snook, and trout.

Tampa Bay

Everything from shallow water flats to deep channel fishing, Tampa Bay offers a large assortment of fish species. Tampa Bay is located south of St. Petersburg, northeast of Anna Maria Island, and east of the Gulf of Mexico.

Sarasota Bay

No matter the current or tide, Sarasota Bay always seems to provide the fish. Achieve the inshore slam by catching your PB snook, redfish, and gator trout. Located east of Longboat Key and north of St. Armands and Bird Key.

Inshore Fishing Charters

These are the fish we target when fishing inshore:

  • Redfish
  • Snook
  • Spotted SeaTrout
  • Sand Trout
  • Flounder
  • Black Drum
  • Sheepshead
  • Mangrove Snapper
  • Sharks*

Offshore Fishing Charters

These are the fish we can target fishing offshore, no more than 5 miles off the beaches:

  • Tarpon (during their season)
  • Tripletail
  • Permit
  • Pompano
  • Mackeral*
  • Grouper*
  • Bluefish
  • Crevalle Jack
  • Snapper*
  • Amberjack*

Your Captain

Jeff Lonzo

Jeff Lonzo

USCG Licensed Captain

I started honing my craft on Anna Maria Island Pier during the summer months when schools were out.  Use to ride my bike to the Anna Maria fishing pier and watch the old-timers all lined up casting out catching mackerel, bonito.  I worked my way into the line up; somehow back then all things were earned.  They did not want anyone casting next to them if they didn’t trust you.  It was tight quarters.

I believe they thought I was homeless – I use to trade mullet, that was caught at night and mackerel and snook in the morning for a bowl of clam chowder and a soda.  The Pier Rat, some people don’t like nicknames but I wore it as a badge.

Form fishing on the pier to walking the beach, the natural progression was to get a boat.  That didn’t happen for a long while.

Years later and a lot of studying (to me that’s offering my skills for knowledge) I got a boat and was completely lost.  On the pier, I knew when and where the bait would be along with where the fish would be.  I just had to learn a lot bigger area now. So that’s what I’ve been doing.  Always studying, and willing to learn.

The Boat

Boat Specifications

  • 24′ modified v-hull/ flat bottom
  • 7′ wide interior
  • 250 hp Yamaha motor
  • 12 fishing rod holders
  • 50 gallon live baitwell
  • 12′ tall tower

Key Features

  • Large open layout with lots of free space
  • Big shaded area to get out of the sun
  • Smooth riding to handle rough water
  • Tall sides for a dry ride & added safety

What to Bring

Proper clothing for the weather:

  • Sunny Day – protection from the sun. A BIG HAT (we like big straw hats) and a lightweight, long sleeve shirt is a great starting point. Sunny days can turn into a rainy day very quick so make sure to keep up with the weather prior to your charter day.
  • Rainy Day – Rain gear (raincoat & rain pants), shoes that can get wet, proper storage for water sensitive devices like phones, cameras, wallets, and purses. If you don’t want it wet, don’t bring it.

Other Items:

  • Sun Glasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Hats
  • Shoes/Sandals that you can stand in for 4 to 8 hours
  • Cooler with drinks and snacks, and possibly lunch

Optional – Good Idea’s

  • Cooler to transport your catch home with you
  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • Towels

 

What NOT to Bring

  • Hard/dark soled shoes
  • Glass bottles
  • Hard liquor
  • Illegal drugs
  • Firearms
  • Bananas…No bananas.
    Bad luck on a boat.

Items Provided

  • Bait
  • Gear
  • Tackle
  • Boat
  • Fishing License
  • Professional Guide

Frequently Asked Questions

Where do we meet and at what time?

You should have an email with the location and scheduled time on it. Most charters start at the Kingfish Boat Ramp on Anna Maria Island.

Can a fishing charter be cancelled?

Yes, a fishing charter can be canceled, and this is normally due to server weather threats like tropical storms, hurricanes, water spouts, or heavy lightning storms. Luckily, these things normally don’t happen during the first part of the day when most fishing charters are taking place. It will be at the captain’s discretion for a charter to be canceled.  

What about rescheduling & refunds?

As stated in the question above, it is at the captain’s discretion for a charter to be canceled. This is normally within a period of 24 hours before the departure time of your fishing charter. If this happens, we will do our best to reschedule you and if that’s not possible, you will receive a full refund.

Cancellations and reservation changes must be made at least 72 hours before your scheduled departure time. Any cancellations made within 72 hours of your scheduled departure time will be charged in full.

Will you clean and fillet the fish that is caught?

If you decide you want to keep some of the fish you catch, we will gladly clean, fillet, and bag your fish fillets for you at no additional cost. Make sure to bring a cooler (fully loaded with ice to last the full day in your hot vehicle) if you plan to keep your fish and have them filleted.

First time fishing?

The charters here at Big Hat Fishing Charters is for all ages and different experience levels. You need no prior knowledge, or experience, to be successful on your first fishing charter.

How many people can fit on the boat?

To be compliant with USCG regulations, we are allowed 6 passengers.

Contact About Scheduling

Please complete the form below and we will contact you via email or phone as soon as possible. Deposits are required for booking a time. Transactions are done through PayPal, credit card, or cash. Thank you for your interest in Big Hat Fishing Charters!

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