Sarasota

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Fishing in Sarasota

If you’re looking for a little slice of heaven in Florida for your fishing vacation, chances are, you’ll end up in Sarasota. With the gorgeous name-sake bay right on the doorstep and beaches as far as the eye can see, spending time here is all the rest you need. Add to that a couple of trips with Sarasota fishing charters, and it just doesn’t get any better.
 
The inshore action is what put Sarasota on the map, and it’s inshore fishing you just can’t miss out while you’re here. No angler can resist the top-notch bite of Redfish, Flounder, and Spotted Seatrout available all year. If that’s not enough, come in spring for King Mackerel and in summer for the Tarpon bite that just doesn’t quit.
 
Venture out to the nearshore waters and you could catch Sheepshead, Cobia, Jacks, and Bluefish. A bit further out, you’ll find Barracuda, Black Seabass, Snapper, Grouper, Amberjack, and Sharks hanging around the numerous reefs. You’re after the trophies of offshore fishing? A deep sea fishing charter will take you 100 miles from land, where you can wrestle Blackfin Tuna, Mahi Mahi, Billfish, and Wahoo.
 
Competitive anglers can join one of the many well-known fishing tournaments and try their luck. The Sarasota Tarpon Tournament, Sarasota Slam, Suncoast Saltwater Shootout, and Yellowfin Billfish Classic are all world-class. Better bring your game face though, because the competition will be stiff!
 
As you can see, whether you come to Sarasota with your family, angling buddies, or ready for your solo fishing quest, you won’t be disappointed. This rich fishery is open year-round, and expert guides have a trip for every taste and level.

Rules & Regulations

If you’re fishing with a licensed Sarasota fishing charter, all necessary fishing licenses are included in the price. Solo fishermen need to know local regulations and have an appropriate fishing license before they start fishing.

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Sarasota Fishing Seasons

January is peak Grouper season. Red, Black, Scamp, and Gag Grouper are all around in big numbers, and there's even a chance of seeing Goliath Groupers further offshore.
Hit the reefs for Sheepshead, Tripletail, Grouper, and Cobia, or stay inshore and fish for the local Flounder, Redfish, and Trout. There's also a strong chance of running into some Amberjack and Kingfish further out.
March sees the arrival of way more reef fish, including Triggerfish, Barracuda, and Black Seabass. This is also when the Redfish and Seatrout really start biting hard, making for great fly fishing in the cool, dry weather.
Things really start heating up, with Barracuda, King Mackerel, and Bonito all in full swing. Inshore you will see big numbers of Snook, Pompano, and Bluefish join the regular crowd for some added action.
The Tarpon and Permit are coming into season, and the rain hasn't kicked in yet, so this is the perfect time for fly fishing. Don't miss the Sarasota Tarpon Tournament for the best action around.
The Suncoast Saltwater Shootout kicks off across all depths of water, heralding big Billfish offshore. This is also the beginning of the Red Snapper season, so there will be plenty for you to do on the water.
Mahi, Tuna, Wahoo, and Billfish can all be found offshore, so sign up for the Yellowfin Billfish Classic if you think you have what it takes. Plenty of fun inshore too, with Tarpon, Permit, Pompano, and Snook all hungry and ready to bite!
It's the wettest month of the year, but who cares? You have the Sarasota Slam offshore, some seriously active reefs just outside the bay, and an all-star cast of game fish in the shallows. Sign us up!
The summer winds down slowly and uneventfully... somewhere else! Here, you've got Barracuda, King Mackerel, Tuna, Bluefish, Tarpon, Amberjack, and Sharks, and that's without even getting into the deeper waters way offshore!
The Mangrove Coastal Conservation Association's Fall Fly Fishing Challenge offers great fun for a great cause and gives you something to do when you're not busy catching Trout, Redfish, Bluefish, and Ladyfish.
As the Snapper leave, the Grouper arrive, keeping up constant action on the reefs. November also dangles the opportunity for some lucky anglers to fish the famous Lake Parrish for Bass in the Fish United Way Tournament.
Spend the holiday season down in the sun, fishing for Redfish, Trout, Permit, and Flounder inshore, along with Grouper and Sheepshead out on the reefs. 70°F and sunny sure sounds good this time of year!

Sarasota Fishing Calendar

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Top Types of Fishing in Sarasota

  1. Inshore Fishing

Top Fishing Techniques in Sarasota

  1. Deep Sea Fishing

Top Targeted Species in Sarasota

Snook

Snook

Cobia

Cobia

Redfish

Redfish

King Mackerel (Kingfish)

King Mackerel (Kingfish)

Tarpon

Tarpon

Grouper (Gag)

Grouper (Gag)

Spotted Seatrout

Spotted Seatrout

Sheepshead

Sheepshead