Capt. Matt Bellinger
Capt. Matt Bellinger moved to the Florida Keys in 1990 and found a home in Islamorada. Working as a PADI Master SCUBA Diver Trainer for a PADI 5 Star Instructor Center, Capt. Matt taught diving and coordinated the daily diving operations of a full service dive charter center. After two years he bought the dive center and continued in the day to day business of teaching diving, maintaining two dive boats and the intricate care of SCUBA gear. Always in the hands on position of teaching and captaining daily dive charters, Capt. Matt brought professionalism and hospitality to work every day. Always a fisherman Capt. Matt would jump on a backcountry skiff and head into the nearby waters of the Everglades National Park. As time went on he began to offer fishing and sightseeing adventures into the backcountry. In 1998 Capt. Matt was offered more money than he thought the charter operation was worth and sold it to his staff members! Who wouldn’t? Finding himself now unemployed and sitting on his 18 foot backcountry skiff Capt. Matt began running fishing charters full time and Bamboo Charters was born. Capt. Matt Bellinger is a U.S.C.G. licensed captain, PADI Master SCUBA Diver Trainer emeritus and will soon finish classes to attain his Master Naturalist certificate from the University of Florida. Capt. Matt’s passion for the Florida Key’s marine environment is deep seated in his soul. This can be seen on any charter that he runs on any given day. Capt. Matt will tell you “There is so much more to a fishing charter than just catching fish, there is so much that makes the trip memorable. It begins with introducing to and educating my anglers about this very special and fragile ecosystem and ends with catching memories that are disguised as fish! The Florida Keys is home to the greatest fishing Captains and Guides in the world, I feel it’s my approach to the whole environment and relating this to my guests that make me stand out amongst my peers.” Come to the Florida Keys as a visitor and you will leave as a friend!