All at Sea: 10 of the Best Fishing Spots in Florida

Florida is known as the “fishing capital of the world” for a good reason. It is estimated that about 2 million people visit Florida each year to go fishing.

You can catch anything from red drum and tarpon to sailfish and grouper. 

Florida is surrounded by water, so how do you know where the fish hang out?

Keep reading this guide to discover ten of the best fishing spots in Florida that you can drop a line in and catch a monster fish.

1. Destin

Destin is home to some of the most crystal clear beaches in the world. It doesn’t get the nickname “Emerald Coast” for no reason. 

It is a popular tourist destination for many reasons, including fishing and recreational activities. Destin is widely considered one of the best fishing towns in Florida by many.

Being home to some of the best saltwater fishing offered in the United States, Destin is known as “the luckiest fishing village.” Take a stroll down Harbor Boardwalk, and you will find over 100 charter boats waiting to take you out on all different fishing excursions.

You can stay in one of the most popular fishing spots in Destin, Choctawhatchee Bay, or you can head out further to deeper water.

Common Fish You Will find

  • Redfish
  • Spanish mackerel
  • Red snapper
  • Grouper
  • Sailfish
  • Tarpon
  • And shark

Destin is a great spot to vacation, and the fishing is perfect for everyone – from amateurs to professionals.

2. Florida Keys

The Florida Keys consist of 125 miles of islands at the southern tip of Florida and is home to some of the most unique fishing in the world. 

The only difficult thing about fishing in the keys is determining what spot you are going to pick.

Key West is a favorite among fishers, being one of the best saltwater fishing spots in Florida. The calm waters and flats surrounding the island make it the perfect place to start your fishing. Many people will rent a boat and explore the channels of Cudjoe Key for a fishing experience of a lifetime.

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Snook
  • Tarpon
  • Yellowtail snapper
  • Lemon shark
  • Grouper
  • Barracuda 
  • And bonefish

Each island in the Florida keys has its own unique fishing experience that offers all different kinds of fish.

3. Lake Okeechobee 

Lake Okeechobee is the largest lake in Florida and is a freshwater fisherman dream. The lake is massive at 730 square miles, making it the second-largest natural freshwater lake in the United States.

It holds more fishing tournaments than anywhere else in Florida and has also been deemed the “black bass capital of the world.” 

There is a path conveniently located around most of the lake, making it easy for fishers to access. It is recommended to talk to locals or charter fishermen here to learn about some of the best spots to find fish.

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Largemouth bass
  • Bluegill
  • Crappie
  • And sunfish

The best way to fish on Lake Okeechobee is by boat to get into the various fishing holes present on the lake.

4. Tampa Bay

There are so many different spots to fish in Tampa Bay. Clearwater and St. Petersburg both offer not only pristine beaches but also some of the best Florida gulf coast fishing has to offer. 

No matter what time of year you visit, you are are sure to catch something. From numerous piers to charter boats, you can find somewhere to drop a line in and catch some awesome fish.

Offering 400 square miles of abundant sea life, Tampa Bay is a favorite spot for fishers all over the world.

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Red drum
  • Black drum
  • Snook
  • Tarpon
  • Jack
  • Red snapper
  • Grouper
  • And blackfin tuna

If you find yourself in the Tampa Bay area, the Sunshine Skyway bridge offers an excellent spot to go fishing for grouper and snook.

5. Stuart

Stuart is another popular spot for sport fishing and has even been named the “sailfish capital of the world.” 

Whether you like fishing off of piers and bridges or would rather fish from the inlets, Stuart offers it all. 

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Sailfish
  • Tarpon
  • Barracuda
  • Blackfin tuna
  • Dolphin
  • Bonito
  • And flounder

If you are looking to catch snook in Stuart, the St Lucie River is the only place you can find five subspecies

6. Panama City

Panama city, known for its wild summers, is a go-to spot for fishers year-round.

The shallow flats are an ideal fishing spot. With the crystal clear water, you can see what fish are around. If you would like to try deepwater fishing, Panama city offers offshore charters that are very popular among the fishing community.

Common Fish You Will find

  • Redfish
  • Tarpon
  • Cobia
  • Mackerel
  • Red snapper
  • And amberjack

The Panama City Marina is a popular spot for fishers to catch snapper, grouper, and Spanish mackerel without having to take a boat out.

7. Jacksonville 

Jacksonville offers over 1,100 miles of shoreline, making it a favorite among anglers. The plentiful fresh and saltwater options give fishers a variety of places to toss a line in. 

You will never get bored fishing in Jacksonville. From piers to bridges, you will find a variety of different fish to reel in. 

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Whiting
  • Black drum
  • Sea trout
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth bass
  • Snapper
  • Sailfish
  • And Bluefish 

There are a variety of places in Jacksonville to go fishing, but many locals swear by fishing on the St Johns River.

8. Miami

Miami is known for its wild parties and beautiful beaches, but it is also a famous fishing spot. 

Deep-sea fishers are in for a treat when visiting Miami. The stretch in between Miami Beach and fort pierce is known as “sailfish alley.” Here you can catch massive sailfish, Tuna, Mahi Mahi, and much more.

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Mahi-mahi
  • Swordfish
  • Grouper
  • Sailfish
  • Snapper
  • And Wahoo

Night fishing in Miami is extremely popular and offers a chance to catch unique fish.

9. Cocoa Beach

On Florida’s space coast sits Cocoa Beach, which offers over 500 species of fish. You can fish year-round and can expect to catch a fantastic variety of fish.

Cocoa Beach’s thousand islands offer an excellent opportunity to catch snook and trout. 

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Snook 
  • Trout
  • Grouper
  • Red Fish
  • Snapper
  • And sea trout 

Check out Sebastian Inlet for a fishing experience of a lifetime. There, you can find Redfish and Spanish mackerel.

10. Sarasota

Sarasota is considered a sanctuary for fishing due to its healthy ecosystem.

You have your choice of freshwater or saltwater fishing, both offering a genuine experience.

Common Fish You Will Find

  • Snook
  • Jack
  • Tarpon
  • Grouper
  • Snapper
  • Seatrout
  • And drum

One of the most popular spots to fish in Sarasota is the New Pass Inlet, where you can toss a line in right off the bridge.

Looking to Visit the Best Fishing Spots in Florida?

You can visit any of the places listed in this article to find some of the best fishing spots in Florida. They are all excellent places to visit and vacation as well. 

Fishing at any of these places is best experienced on a boat. For your next boat rental, contact us for a hassle-free experience. 

Saltwater Game Fishing: 9 Fish Every Offshore Angler Should Catch

Summer is finally in full swing. That means it’s time to get out and enjoy the great outdoors.

There’s really no better way to enjoy nature than booking an offshore fishing trip. After all, saltwater game fishing provides the best chance for hooking a trophy fish and making memories that will last a lifetime.

This article takes a look at 9 saltwater sport fish every offshore angler should have on their list as they gear up. Keep reading to get the inside scoop on ocean game fish that will help make your next outing on the open sea as exciting as possible.

1. Bluefin Tuna

When it comes to a saltwater fish that will provide the ultimate battle of strength and wills, it’s hard to beat the bluefin tuna. 

This is a huge fish and can be one of the most difficult to catch. The bluefin tuna is also considered among the most delicious game fish, with tasty meat that is especially prized in Japan.

If you are lucky enough to catch on these monsters, be prepared for the fight of your life.

2. Dorado

Dorado are also known as dolphin fish or mahi mahi. This is a gorgeous fish and is extremely fun to have on the line. Dorado can be found in many parts of the world and rank among the tastiest of all saltwater game fish.

They can be caught using medium tackle and sight casting, and are perfect for fish tacos after a long day on the water.

3. Giant Trevally

The giant trevally is large and fast. In fact, this is one of the most powerful game fish you are likely to encounter. Once hooked, it will give you a fight that you won’t soon forget.

Trevally is one of the most popular game fish on the planet, and for a good reason. It’s especially sought after in the Indo-Pacific region and can be caught using a wide variety of lures and baits.

4. Tarpon

If you’ve ever spent any time saltwater fishing, you’re likely already very familiar with tarpon. This game fish is large, fast, and is easily identifiable thanks to its chrome-plated appearance. 

Tarpon typically ranges in length from 4 to 8 feet and can weigh as much as 280 pounds. These are extremely bony fish; thus they aren’t good to eat. But they are a total blast to battle once hooked on the open sea.

The experience of hauling in a tarpon is hard to beat. They jump high and won’t give up until they’ve given all they have. Tarpon can be found throughout the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, as well as the Panama Canal.

Hooking a tarpon will provide the thrill of a lifetime, and will give you a story to tell friends for decades to come. 

5. Wahoo

Wahoo might not be as big as some of the other saltwater gamefish on this list, but they rank among the fastest fish in the sea.

Their bodies are narrow and torpedo-shaped, enabling them to swim at unbelievable speeds. Wahoo meat is white and delicious, and most people compare the flavor of their meat to that of mackerel.

So also the wahoo isn’t the largest game fish that you’re likely to hook, it will still provide both a thrilling battle and a tasty dinner once the sun goes down.

6. Bonefish

Bonefish is another game fish that’s small in size yet extremely fast in the water. Once hooked, a bonefish will really turn on the afterburners and provide an impressive battle of wills.

This species of saltwater fish is common to coastal Caribbean regions, including the Florida Keys.

Thousand of saltwater anglers set out in search of bonefish, making it one of the most popular game fish found anywhere in the world.

7. Sailfish

No other species of wildlife on the planet is as striking in appearance as the sailfish. Considered an apex predator, this is one of the fastest fish you could hope to encounter.

In fact, sailfish have been known to reach speeds up to 68 mph. They are also powerful jumpers, making them one of the most exciting saltwater game fish to have on the line.

These gorgeous fish as located in the Pacific and Atlantic, and should rank at the top of any angler’s bucket list of must-have trophies.

8. Yellowfin Tuna

If you’re seeking the ultimate fishing challenge, yellowfin tuna might be just what the doctor ordered.

Long considered one of the fastest and strongest saltwater fish, few fishing experiences are more exciting than reeling in one of these bad boys. Yellowfin tuna ranks among the largest tuna species yet aren’t quite as large as the bluefin. 

You’ll typically find yellowfin tuna along the eastern seaboard, the gulf coast, and in the Pacific near close to San Diego.

9. Blue Marlin

Almost every passionate angler has dreamed of someday catching a blue marline. These power saltwater fish are big, smart, fast, and powerful, making them one of the most popular saltwater game fish in the sea.

Fishing for blue marlin is a multi-million dollar industry, and it doesn’t take long to understand why. Just hook one of these monsters of the sea, and you’ll quickly find yourself hooked on the sport of deepwater fishing.

A Guide to the Trophy Fish to Look for When Saltwater Game Fishing

When the weather is warm, there’s nothing better than being out on the open water. And when you’re out where the water is deep, you’ll see quickly that saltwater game fishing is the ultimate sport.

Please feel free to contact us for a quote when you’re ready for your next boating adventure.