The Florida Keys are filled with delicious, fresh seafood and plenty of “mom and pop” restaurants. Marathon is located in the Middle Keys and is a great stop for those traveling down to Key West or on a Florida road trip. Marathon is much quieter than Key Largo and Islamorada in the Upper Keys and makes a perfect home base to visit other parts of the Keys as well. It is also a great spot for a family beach vacation. Our family has a second home in Marathon, and we visit often to enjoy the water, fish, and eat some of the best freshly caught fish. If you are looking for some of the best places to eat in Marathon FL, I will share some of my favorite spots and menu items. Here is my list of some of the best restaurants in Marathon FL.
My Favorite Places to Eat in Marathon FL
Keys Fisheries is hands down my vote for the best restaurant in Marathon! Aesthetically, this place is nothing to write home about; however, the food tells a different story. The vibe is typical Keys casual with seating right by the water, in a covered patio setting.
Their fish, shrimp, conch, lobster, and stone crabs are as fresh as fresh gets (in fact, they are a Whole Foods seafood supplier). They advertise often in the Lower Keys with giant billboards showcasing their famous lobster
When you arrive at Keys Fisheries, you will order at a counter and they will ask you for a favorite movie or character as the pickup name. You will then take a seat at one of the many
I recently discovered this little gem, and I’m thankful I checked out Yelp one afternoon. It makes a great stop for lunch when driving on a road trip to Key West or just staying in Marathon. The menu has all the basic seafood items and our group was very pleased with what we ordered. They have a fresh catch of the day and you can pretty much have it however you like with a side of french fries, coleslaw, potato salad or cold bean salad. I loved their fries! The conch sandwich was great, as was the gator tail, shrimp tacos, ad well as the fresh fried grouper and grilled snapper.
The indoor area is small (with maybe 5 or so tables), and the outdoor tiki area has ample seating and has fans blowing cool air. The one gripe I had with this place was just fixed. They used to only be open for lunch and now have expanded to open for dinner Thursday-Saturday. This means that I have more of an opportunity to visit. They also have a fish market where you can buy some of their fresh fish. This means that you could technically order it fresh and cook it for dinner or request take out. To me, it is one of the best restaurants in Marathon FL and one that I recommend to all visitors.
Lazy Days Marathon
The restaurant is one of the best places to eat in Marathon FL due to its oceanfront dining and views. The menu has an ample selection of seafood,
Burdines Waterfront Marina
Burdines is a very casual place that is off the beaten path and located in Boot Key Harbor. It is one of my favorite places to eat in Marathon FL because of its proximity to our house. We stop here often because it is right next to where we gas up the boat and get our shrimp for fishing. While we do often grab items on the go while our boat is docked, Burdines has a beautiful open-air rooftop area with a tiki hut. We have gone to eat here during the winter months, as eating outdoors in the summer is brutally hot.
Their fried fish is delicious and their tuna poke and sesame tuna salad are quite tasty. There is also a very unique dessert item that is surprisingly great – fried key lime pie. The inside was fluffy and not as tart as the usual key lime pies (which is why I liked it so much). They also only have beer/wine, which is fine, but sometimes I prefer a nice mixed drink looking out over the water.
Sparky’s is a great place to eat in Marathon FL. It has a down-home vibe with an outdoor waterfront tiki area. Their menu ranges from pizza, wings, burgers, fish, and more. My husband enjoys eating here because the menu is not as seafood dominant as other Keys restaurants. I, on the other hand, love when a place is mostly seafood.
The pizza is actually great here! The fish tacos and calamari are also very good. They have some great drink specials and the wait staff is very attentive. I have neever had a bad meal here and as I write this, I am reminded I need to return.
The best ice cream in Marathon is here at Sweet Savannah’s! This place not only has adorable
Irie Island Eats
This small restaurant recently opened and both times we have eaten their food, we have all loved it. While it is not on the water, they do have a covered outdoor area with fans. Although in the summer, I would advise for takeout because it is very hot! The cuisine is a blend of Jamaican, Caribbean, and island flavors that mesh very well. We have ordered bowls, wraps, tacos, and salads and everything has been delicious. This is a hidden gem!
Florida Keys Road Trip
If you are planning a road trip down to the Florida Keys and happen to be driving by through Marathon, I hope you use these restaurant recommendations and enjoy your fresh seafood! Check out some other activities to do in the Florida Keys:
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3 thoughts on “Best Restaurants in Marathon FL: A Local’s Guide”
This is such a great blog! There are soooo many seafood restaurants in the Keys, so this will be super helpful in travel planning.
Oh how I would love to be sitting at one of these restaurants enjoying the views today! Great post, I will save this for later for when we can all get back to traveling.
We had a fantastic time on our trip to the Keys, and some eye-opening experiences around being introduced to conch fritters for the first time. How was I even living?? Marathon in particular was fantastic. Great post!