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Best Florida Surf Fishing

author
Danielle Fletcher
• Wednesday, 04 November, 2020
• 12 min read

Some will also offer the opportunity to slide a canoe, kayak or stand-up paddle board into the water, but all include plenty of space to fish from shore, or wade into coastal shallows. The prominent paved jetty pier on the north side, complete with safety rails offers a safe, spacious platform for reaching the surf zone or the deeper water of the inlet.

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(Source: floridarambler.com)

Contents

Incoming tides always bring a push of activity, but when the fall mullet run piles an enormous biomass in and around the inlet, anglers have a field day with bull redfish, giants nook, tarpon and the occasional cuber snapper. Mangrove snapper, jacks, sleepyhead and black drum add to the mix; while the shallower end, along with the smaller south jetty may yield pompano, whiting and craters.

Species mix includes trout, weakfish, redfish, black drum, flounder and sleepyhead with the occasional striped bass. Several pull off spots provide casting access to the St. Johns River, or you can take one of the interior roads through the campground to fish the Fort George Inlet on the north side.

The mix here includes flounder, redfish, black drum, pompano, whiting, bluefish, Spanish mackerel and sharks. Deploying live baits off the deep end often yields king mackerel, tarpon, sharks and barracuda.

Neoprene or insulated waders keep you comfy in the winter, but during the warm season, simply walk in with lightweight clothing and enclosed shoes. Tarpon often run this area anglers soaking live baits or sight casting big swim baits might put one in the air.

From the metered parking area to the pier is a bit of a hike, but it’s a straight shot down the walking promenade running along the cut. Both provide spacious access to a wide range of Keys favorites like snapper (mangrove, lane, mutton and yellowtail), tarpon, grouper, yellow jack, shook and porgies.

surf fishing florida lauderdale fort beach
(Source: www.youtube.com)

The gem of Pinellas County, this 1,136-acre park comprises Madeleine, St. Jean, St. Christopher, Bone Fortune and Mullet keys and complements an impressive angling menu with campgrounds, picnic shelters, bathroom/shower facilities, concessions, bait shop, dog park and historical significance. Expect a good mix of shook, trout, redfish and flounder, along with mackerel, cobra, pompano, sharks and mangrove snapper at the piers.

Boardwalks over the protected dunes offer access to the redfish, flounder and trout waters on the marsh side, but surf fishing is the big attraction. From whiting, pompano, bluefish and mackerel; to sharks, cobra and bull reds, this is one of Western Florida ’s premier shore fisheries.

The main causeway bridge and the smaller one right before the island offer sleepyhead, black drum, shook and snapper opportunities. The piers light attract bait fish, so expect everything from shook, to trout and the occasional bluefish to stake out these feeding spots.

With beach shallows, the coastal Gulf and deep channel waters within easy reach, anglers find a steady mix of the inshore regulars, along with passing tarpon, king fish and sharks. Summer is prime time for big shook staging for their spawn; while fall sees voluminous bait fish schools exiting the inner bays, with several predators in pursuit.

Empty lots and bridge pull-offs may be convenient and cost-efficient, but a cursory scan for questionable types who clearly not fishing might offer a safety/vehicle security clue. Tip: Local businesses rarely budge on the “restrooms are for customers only” thing (many have signs posted), so don’t expect any mercy, no matter how much you grimace and squeeze your knees together.

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(Source: www.floridarambler.com)

Commercially produced aluminum pier/bridge carts with wide wheels will easily transport your rods, tackle bag, cooler and live bait well over pavement, rocks or sand; but for casual duties, a garden utility cart (some models fold) will suffice. Waiting until you feel that cool downdraft can leave you and your gear exposed and out of options; so know where the nearest shelter lies and have a bug-out plan just in case.

This 13-mile stretch of sandy white beach on Florida ’s Atlantic coast harbors major breaks. Walk your board down to the beach, or load up the car and drive right onto the shore.

For surfers seeking the area’s largest, most challenging swells, plan a visit for fall or spring. Located one block south of the Flagger Beach Pier, Z-Wave Surf Shop has been in business for more than 27 years renting and selling boards and top-notch apparel.

Just north of Daytona Beach, this quiet Atlantic getaway has a bit of resort-style glitz (it was once home to John D. Rockefeller) mixed in with its cozy, small-town feel. Known for its orange sand, thanks to an abundance cocoon shells, and history of car racing on the beach, Ormond is also home to plenty of surf -worthy waves.

The Main Street Pier break is one of the best places in town to catch a ride. With a slogan like “Clothes for the Soul,” the original family owned and operated Maui Nix Surf Shop (@mauinix) will only further feed your need to indulge in the waterspout.

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(Source: floridarambler.com)

Surface Surf School offers lessons, camps, tours, and surfboard rentals. Home to six-time world champion Kelly Slater and the world’s most famous surf shop's flagship store, Cocoa Beach is a legendary spot for smaller crowds with great waves for beginners and long boarders.

Covering more than two acres, Ron Jon Surf Shop's flagship store (@ronjonsurfshop) is stocked with more beach gear than any other single location. Cocoa Beach Surf Company is also another excellent stop for loading up on waterspout gear.

With three miles of beautiful beach, Sebastian Inlet is a prime spot for surfers. Monster Hole, a break created by a man-made sandbar, can hold a solid 10 feet of surf.

This low-key, quiet corner of Florida's east coast has been frequented by surfers for decades. Visit its long, broad beaches (specifically Jupiter Inlet) during lower tide for a quality surfing experience.

In addition to their Boynton Beach accessories, they also offer surf lessons and rentals. With the best beach-breaks from July to November, the zone near the jetty at First Street is one of the best surfing spots in Miami.

fishing florida destin surf action
(Source: www.youtube.com)

Home to international surfing champions Cory and Shea Lopez, Indian Rocks Beach fronts three miles of shoreline along Florida's Gulf Coast. With plenty of public beach accesses, Indian Rocks is the best spot to catch a fun, beach-break surf.

The Island Shop also serves the Indian Rocks community and visitors with surf reports, rentals, and top-brand accessories and apparel. What started in a 400-square-foot cinder block building, Inner light Surf and Skate (@innerlightsurfskate) has evolved into a board sports lover’s mecca with four locations across the Florida panhandle.

Jeremy Johnston, pro surfer and New Smyrna Beach, Florida, resident, helped us with our list and provided us with many of the pictures in our gallery. Reading Time: 14minutesFrom the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Coast and all the way down to the Keys, Florida boasts some of the world’s finest and most diverse fisheries.

With such a large state surrounded by two major bodies of water, it’s impossible to include all of Florida ’s hottest fishing destinations in one article. Jacksonville sits right on the mouth of the St. Johns River, facing the Atlantic Ocean.

Some areas you should definitely check out are Mill Cove, Nassau Sound, and Amelia Island State Park. No matter where you go, you can expect a day full of action, targeting Cobra, Redfish, Black Drum, and King Mackerel.

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(Source: traveltips.usatoday.com)

Located directly on the Intracoastal Waterway, this historic town offers a wide range of angling opportunities right on its doorstep. Combine targeting them with going for Trout and Flounder, and you’ll earn yourself a Northeast Florida Slam.

Travel outside the inlet, and you’ll find lots of Snapper, Grouper, Amber jack, Cobra, King Mackerel, and sharks. Whether you’re a competitive angler or you’re just getting started, this area’s got plenty of charters that will show you an amazing day on the water.

For a relaxing day in the city, explore the streets, visit shops and coffee houses, and don’t forget to enjoy a scenic stroll on the River walk. For a taste of local history and amazing views, head to the Fort Caroline National Memorial.

Head south to Mosquito Lagoon and get ready to hook into a variety of species, including Shook, Red and Black Drum, and Sleepyhead. If you’re looking for a longer trip, book a deep sea charter that will take you trolling for Yahoo and many other pelagic species.

Daytona Beach also has some of the best Large mouth Bass fishing in the state, which you can explore if you decide to travel inland. Daytona Beach is a popular tourist destination with many activities you can combine with your fishing trip.

surf fishing bait rig pompano using tonight selecting
(Source: greatdaysoutdoors.com)

And of course, Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum, where you can climb up its many stairs for amazing views. With its vast network of flats, sandbars, and seagrass meadows, this is a prime spot for sight casting and fly-fishing.

You can either wade in the shallows or pole your way across mangrove tunnels in search of Redfish, Shook, Sea trout, and Tarpon. There are tons of great spots, such as Stephen’s Point, Big Sarasota Pass, and Siesta Key, that are only a short boat ride away.

Start off with the beaches, take a dip, get yourself a nice tan, and finish your trip with a scenic hike in the nearby state park. Another amazing Florida fishing spot, Naples, is located in the heart of Florida ’s Paradise Coast.

You can pick a guide to take you backcountry fishing where you’ll weave through mangroves and cast over flats to catch everything from Spotted Sea trout to Blacktop Shark. There are lots of excellent inland canals that can make a half day trip extra rewarding here.

If you’re up for a challenge, fly-fishing can produce lots of great action against the likes of Tarpon, Shook, Permit, and many other inshore species. If you have a few extra hours to spare, you can head offshore and tick some big game fish off of your bucket list.

surf fishing rods florida reels fish
(Source: www.floridasportsman.com)

With so many excellent fishing locations concentrated in this part of Florida, it’s no wonder they call it the Paradise Coast! Start your trip off with a dip on Naples Beach, take a walk through the Botanical Garden, or go on a hike in Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park.

Shook, Trout, and Redfish flood the waterways between here and Cape Coral, giving inshore anglers the thrill of a lifetime. Other top species here include Goliath Grouper, Tarpon, various Sharks, Mangrove Snapper, Cobra, and the list goes on.

The reason why so many people come to Fort Myers and Cape Coral is its access to an endless amount of fishing opportunities. Some spots you’ll definitely want to check out are San Carlos Bay, Malacca Pass, and Pine Island Sound.

You can head down the famous Sailfish Alley and reel in big pelagic fish with the city’s skyline in the background. If you’re looking to stay closer to shore, the Biscayne Bay is only a short boat ride away and teeming with lots of fish.

This area holds large numbers of Red and Black Drum, Shook, Jack Crevasse, Spotted Sea trout, Sleepyhead, and many more. You can also explore the Florida Middle Grounds for some offshore action and reel in Amber jack, Black fin Tuna, Red Snapper, and Gag Grouper.

surf florida fishing fly into
(Source: ayearonthefly.blogspot.com)

With so many options on hand, we have a feeling you’ll be coming back to Tampa Bay several times to check out everything this region has in store. Nestled on the waters of Tampa Bay, the city boasts a unique combination of history, Floridian culture, and modern attractions.

Combine your trip with a dolphin cruise, and a visit to some interesting museums, and you got yourself a perfect Tampa itinerary. Its long stretches of white sandy beach make fishing off the surf a rewarding experience.

For a relaxing afternoon, take a stroll on the Destiny Harbor Boardwalk and enjoy the amazing sunset. If you’ve ever imagined a fishing paradise, chances are you’re probably thinking of something close to, if not exactly like the Florida Keys.

The Florida Keys is a 100-mile stretch of thin islands, surrounded by crystal blue waters and lots of fish. Bone fish take the center stage in the spring but you can also catch lots of (Snook), Tarpon, and Permit throughout various times of the year.

With spots like the Marathon Humps attracting a slew of hungry fish, you’ll experience rod-bending action with very little waiting time between catches. You’ll often find yourself having to take out the heavy tackle as you battle against some of Florida ’s hardest-fighting fish, such as Marlin, Sailfish, and Tuna.

surf fishing florida croakers catch
(Source: www.youtube.com)

In other cases, you’ll need to get a freshwater or saltwater fishing license to explore Florida fishing spots. Offline, you can get them at any registered retailer including Walmart and bait and tackle shops, but check out our detailed guide for more information.

With so many charter options to choose from, you can tailor your trip to your preferences and enjoy one of the greatest fishing states in the world. Rods, reels, and tackle are usually included in the price and you’ll likely have a cooler on board so you can bring your favorite snacks and drinks for the ride.

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Sources
1 coastalanglermag.com - https://coastalanglermag.com/fishing-state-florida-june/
2 www.tripstodiscover.com - https://www.tripstodiscover.com/fishing-vacations-in-florida/
3 fishingbooker.com - https://fishingbooker.com/blog/florida-fishing-spots/
4 offshorehustler.com - https://offshorehustler.com/fish-calendar.php