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trout

Destin Area Fishing

   Destin is known for its outstanding fishing. After all, we are the worlds luckiest fishing village. You'll come for the beach, but you'll be back for the fishing!

Pier Beach and Jetty Fishing
Inshore Trolling
Deep Sea Bottom Fishing
Offshore Trolling
Fishing License Information
Destin Fishing Rodeo
Species to catch in Destin

Pier Beach and Jetty Fishing

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Fishing in Destin does not require the use of a boat. Many species of sport fish are caught in the Emerald Coast waters off of the beach pier and jetty. This type of fishing in the Gulf is best between April, when the first Pompano arrive, through October.

Fishing from these fixed locations with live bait, frozen bait, and artificial baits will produce Pompano, Redfish (Drum), Whiting, Channel Bass, Sheepshead, Blue Runner, Bluefish, Sail Cat, Spanish Mackerel, King Mackerel, Cobia, Bonito, Jack Crevalle.

Fishing in the Choctawhatchee Bay and its bayous is good year-round. You can expect to catch Speckled Sea Trout, Redfish (Drum), Sheepshead, White Trout, Channel Bass, Red fish, Sail Cat, Bluefish, and Flounder; also, Blue Crabs can be found along the shore of the bay.

Inshore Trolling

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   The inshore trolling season runs from March through November and begins with the run of the Cobia (Ling) in the Spring. In the Destin area the most successful and popular method of catching Cobia is by sight casting. This method involves sighting the Cobia first, either in singles or schools. Once the Cobia is spotted the captain will position the boat so that either the angler or the mate can throw a bait to the fish, and let me tell you, a 100lb. Cobia on 20lb spinning tackle is not an experience that you will soon forget. This is perhaps one of the most exciting types of fishing that an angler can engage in.

   Inshore trolling also leads to great catches of King Mackerel, Spanish Mackerel, Bonito, Cobia ad Schoolie Dolphin to name a few. Inshore trolling trips are available from local charter boats all day and half day trips.

Deep Sea Bottom Fishing

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   Most of Destins fishing fleet specializes in deep sea bottom fishing. The bottom fishing in Destin is good year round. Boats are available for charter half day, all day, and over night. Bottom fishing yields catches of Grouper, Amber jack, Scamp, Trigger fish, Snapper and Cobia.

   Destin also has a fleet of party boats which can accommodate 25 to 105 persons. These boats are available for all day and half day trips. They are available on a tickets basis or the boat can be chartered for large groups.

Offshore Trolling

   Offshore trolling takes place past the 50 fathom curve (300 feet), about 27 miles southwest of Destin. This trolling area has proven very productive for White Marlin, Blue Marlin, Sailfish, Dolphin and Wahoo. Although billfish have been caught from April to December, August through October are the most productive months.

   Fishing offshore is like being in another world. The water changes from a turquoise color to a bright deep blue. Destin is known as the billfish capital of the Gulf because of the highly productive trolling areas southwest of Destin.

   Then the serenity is ended when a 400lb. blue comes out of nowhere and nails the Ballyhoo rig on the flat line. Put yourself in the chair...could your heart handle the excitement and the adrenaline rush of a battle that may well last for hours.

Florida Fishing License Information

   Florida residents, nonresidents and recreational divers must have a saltwater fishing license unless covered by one of the following exemptions:
  • Any individual under the age of 16
  • Any individual fishing from a vessel issued a Vessel Saltwater Fishing License, such as our charter boats.
  • Any person 65 years of age or older who holds a valid Florida Drivers License or valid Florida Voter Registration Card.
  • Any Florida resident who is a member of the Armed Forces while home on leave for less than 30 days, with valid orders in his or her possession.
  • Any individual who has been accepted by the Florida Department of Health and Services for developmental services.
  • A Florida resident who has been declared totally and permanently disabled shall be entitled to receive, without charge from the county tax collector, a permanent saltwater fishing license.

Florida Fishing License Fees

NonResidentsResidents
LicenseCostLicenseCost
3-day $17 1-year $17
7-day $30 5-year $79
1-year $47 Shoreline Only 1-year by Phone $3.33
    Shoreline Only 1-year by Web $2.31