The fight is fast and furious and fish fly over the rail on to the pavement. One man in overalls stops, stuffs five fish into a cooler and guzzles the last of his coffee.
Many of Florida ’s fishing piers have shallow artificial reefs within casting reach. These man-made structures support diverse communities of marine organisms, so it is not unusual for anglers to land “game” fish such as tarpon, cobra and king mackerel.
At the bait house, you will see photos of local anglers proudly displaying their prized catches. If a fellow angler hooks a big one, don’t be shy about asking what they used as bait.
If it swims in the Gulf of Mexico, sooner or later it will pass beneath your dangling line. The action here is consistent year round, but it’s red-hot during the summer months.
Naples Pier: Drop a line into the Gulf of Mexico from Naples Pier, and try your luck for a variety of species including Spanish mackerel, redfish, sea trout and more. Juno Beach Park Pier: Blue water with great visibility means the fish won’t have any trouble finding your bait.
Sebastian Inlet State Park Pier: Blessed with the added amenities of a state park, this Melbourne Beach fishing pier is located at the mouth of a waterway that intermingles with the Indian River Lagoon, one of Florida ’s most famous fishing areas. The race cars have moved inland but the fishing is still as good as it was 50 years ago.
Fort Clinch State Park Pier: If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle, head to Fernanda Beach. Use tie straps to fasten 11 two-inch PVC rod holders ($3) to the basket.
Soft tackle bag with plastic trays for storing everything from hooks to pliers ($40). Pier landing net ($30) with a 32-inch diameter and 100 feet of rope for hauling a catch over the rails.
Looking to do some epic saltwater fishing in beautiful sunny Florida, but don’t want to bother with the cost and headaches of a seafaring vessel or charter fishing trips in Florida ? With roughly 35 ocean and gulf fishing piers along some of the best beaches in Florida to choose from, anglers from around the world can go on a pier pilgrimage to find their favorite spots, all without the need to set sail.
Pro Pier Fishing Pointer | Live Bait | Historically live bait works best when pier fishing, some popular types include blood worms, shrimp, squid, anchovies and sardines. 4 | Dania Beach Fishing Pier | Located smack dab between Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, Florida, in the City of Dania Beach, the Dania Beach Fishing Pier is another fantastic pier on the Atlantic coast, open year-round for anglers of all skill levels.
The full-service Pier House features a friendly guest services team, snack bar, gift store as well as a variety of fishing tackle, including rental poles and bait. As far as fishing goes, the pier offers anglers access to lovely Craters, Shook, Flounder, Redfish, Bluefish, Crevasse jack, Cobra, Permit, Mack's, Pompano, Sharks, and King fish.
Pro Pier Fishing Pointer | Live Bait is Gross! | If live bait is just too gross for you to use, there are a lot of great lure options out there that do a fairly good job, I recommend at the very least using casting and jigging spoons to get started, they are inexpensive and can get the job done.
As for fishing, the Edward B. Knight Pier, is equally beautiful, offering anglers the opportunity to haul in Tarpon, Jacks, Snapper, Shook, and even Redfish. Word to the wise though, the pier does not offer fresh water for cleaning your catch, so make sure to bring plenty or just enjoy a wonderful day of catch and release in picturesque Key West.
Make sure you bring enough water in your cooler to help keep you properly hydrated on your pier fishing adventure. At nearly a quarter mile long into the Atlantic, the Jacksonville Beach Pier and the sea have quite the love hate relationship, but it’s because of these lovers’ spat that pier anglers can fish highly active, deep waters.
At roughly 22 feet deep at the end of the pier, anglers have access to a great variety of fish; you can wrestle with Pompano, Black Drum, Bluefish, Redfish, Flounder, Trout, Striped Bass, Sleepyhead, and due to the deep water, Kings, Barracuda, Tarpon, and Mali. Known for King and Spanish Mackerel, Pompano, Snapper, Permit, Blue Runners, Bluefish, Barracuda, and Craters, the pier is lighted at night, so anglers can reel in some doozies during those coveted post sunset hours.
Located between the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay in Fort De Soto State Park, offers anglers the opportunity to bring in both deeper water fish at the Gulf Pier, and fish that enjoy calm, shallower waters at the Bay Pier. Depending on the season you’ll be reeling in King and Spanish mackerel, Lady fish, Pompano, Permit, Tarpon, Trout, Redfish, Shook, Cobra, Shark, and really whatever else the sea wants to throw your way; at Fort De Soto, if it can be lured, it’s up to you if it can be caught.
At roughly 1000 feet long, anglers will have the chance to haul in the usual Floridian Gulf of Mexico suspects, ranging from Grouper, Redfish, to Shook, Snapper, heck in 2016 a fisherman brought into shore and released an 18-foot 700 pound Small-tooth Saw fish, and it all started from the Naples Pier, how cool is that?! Pro Pier Fishing Pointer | Ask what’s working | Most anglers are personable, so feel free to spark up a conversation and ask what types of things they have had success using that day to reel in the fish.
Another great resource are the bait and tackle shops, they are usually in the know as to what is biting and what type of rig is reeling the fish in. No matter if you're looking to plan the fishing trip of a lifetime in beautiful Florida or you're a local that has never tried your hand at pier fishing, there is no shortage of great piers to reel in some real beauties here in the Sunshine State.
And if you're thinking of exploring more of the Sunshine State, check out our day trip ideas from Orlando, fun things to do in Florida, and other fantastic tips featured in our Travel Blog ! Explore our Florida resorts today or talk with a vacation planner at 888-852-2959 or 407-355-2690.