Keys Boat Tours

Hands-On Boating Lesson

  • boating safety captain Brian Branigan
  • boating safety father and son on the water keys getaway
  • boating safety in the keys

This is the only hands-on boating safety lesson in the Keys. You learn how to: a) dock a boat in different situations, b) drop and retrieve an anchor, c) understand weather, wind, and tides and d) drive a boat. Just one tip from this four hour session could pay for the entire lesson.

100% Hands-On Boating Safety Lesson

You are thinking about buying a motor boat, or you bought one, but you don’t have the experience to comfortably head out on the water by yourself. Or, you might want to rent a boat without having to hire a captain.

With Keys Boat Tours, based out of Sunshine Key RV Resort/ Ohio Key (MM39), you learn how to: a) dock a boat in different situations, b) drop and retrieve an anchor, c) understand weather, wind, and tides, and  d) drive a boat with confidence.  You also have the option to learn how to properly trailer a boat (1 hour). You put the boat in and take it out. We start by taking a look at a chart (and a gps). We review some physical aspects to the boating safety course and some other practical advice. We review local navigation, so that you truly understand markers and don’t run aground. This is a “must take” course for: a) anyone who is not 100% confident in operating a boat, b) anyone who is buying/purchased a boat, and c) anyone who wants to boat safely and properly. Hands-on training is required for all. Classroom lessons are great, but this is the test.

This first of its kind, official hands-on boating course is; 4 hours, up to 2 individuals for $500. The Lesson comes with our compendium book, BOAT FISH LIVE written by Capt. Brian Branigan. It includes the motor boat lesson, a sailing overview, and fishing guide to the Keys.

The lesson takes place Sunshine Key RV Resort/ Ohio Key (MM39). But, we also offer to come to you and use your boat ($100 per hour travel time, e.g., Key Largo +$200). We introduce you to your boat (and boating playground), and can even put tracks on “your” GPS. This 4 hour “private” lesson will get you started like nothing else.

We also offer: sailing 101, fishing 101, and local / backcountry navigation 101 lessons. You will gain lots of confidence from what you learn too – guaranteed. Makes a great gift!


1 Person $450 Price for 1 person for 4 hours
2 People $500 Price for 2 people for 4 hours
Extra Time +$75 Per hour
Book +$19.95 BOAT FISH LIVE

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Basics and Tips
In this 4 hour course you will learn the basics about GPS; reading a chart and setting routes. We review some workbook materials but 100% of the time, or 4 hours is hands-on. You drive, navigate, anchor, and dock. The boat you train on is a 2016 23' Bulls Bay center console with a Yamaha 200 four stroke outboard, complete with a Garmin touch screen GPS. Satisfaction s guaranteed. We have not had a dissatisfied customer yet.


  • BOAT FISH LIVE written by Capt. Brian Branigan
  • GPS overview
  • Charts overview
  • Sunscreen
  • Water

Not Included

  • Snacks

Things you might want to bring along

Sunglasses, towel, hat, sunscreen, water bottle, neck bib, long sleeve shirt, wind breaker, bandana, snacks.


  • A signed release waiver, and cash or credit card payment, is required prior to boarding.
  • If prone to seasickness, we recommend that you take Dramamine (or other) the night before.
  • We want you to drink plenty of water, have something to eat, and use sunscreen liberally.
  • We have a 48-hour cancellation policy, and the Captain reserves the right to cancel any trip due to weather and/or any other circumstances


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  • Captain Brian is the hands down number 1 boat instructor in the Keys. I recently took my 14 year old daughter to a there hour hands on boating safety course with Captain Brian in Bahia Honda Key. He was absolutely fabulous and my daughter learned, in depth, how to navigate a boat in all manner of conditions including high winds, shifting tides, through narrow channel, docking the boat in various wind conditions, and chart reading. My daughter was captivated and it was very empowering for her to master these skills. Captain Brian has perfected a teaching skill which engages the kids so they really retain the information and have a great time learning.

    TOM & ALLY
  • The water was crystal clear, the sea life magnificent, the pelicans close, the Captain gracious, and the sunset backdrop breathtaking!  I cannot recommend this experience any higher!  Bon voyage!

  • I recommend the motor boat / paddleboard combo tour thoroughly. It was our first time on paddle boards and Captain Brian made it so easy.

    sup paddleboard rental keys getaway SARAH FROM TEXAS
  • Thanks so much for customizing our boat trip to serve both our needs!

    kayak florida keys JANINA & CHRIS
  • The protected cove, the rays, the sunset – a perfect outing with Capt Brian. Highly recommended.