Galveston Bay

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Fishing in Galveston Bay

Galveston Bay fishing charters are your chance to explore one of the most fish-abundant estuaries in Texas! With the Gulf of Mexico on one side and prairies and marshland on the other, Galveston Bay is the place to be to experience Texas inshore fishing at its best.
This bountiful fishery is quite shallow, with an average depth of around 6 feet and plenty of jetties and reefs to explore. The brackish waters, paired with numerous underwater structures, are the secret to Galveston Bay’s superb fishing.

Top Catches

The ultimate prize for anglers in Galveston Bay is the Inshore Grand Slam – Redfish, Speckled Trout, and Flounder. In the bay, these fish come in all sizes and strong numbers. But the list doesn’t end there – Sheepshead, big Black Drum, Sharks, Jack Crevalle, Mangrove Snapper, and Croaker are all in the cards.

 Speckled Trout

Arguably the most sought-after species in Galveston Bay, Speckled Trout are the bread and butter of the bay fishery. Whether you’re looking to hit a number of fish on the boat or the next wall-worthy trophy, you’ve come to the right place. These predators are always hungry and will give you a fight to remember, especially if you cast your line around jetties and reefs. The best month to target lunker Trout is July. In spring, Moses Lake and Texas City Dike offer productive fishing grounds. If you want real angling excitement, go after Specks using light gear and you’re in for a memorable adventure.


Whenever you come to Galveston Bay, chances are you’ll hook a couple of Redfish, plentiful in these waters and a delight to catch. You will find schooling Reds in 6–12 feet of water, hiding around oyster reefs and oil platforms, waiting for their prey to innocently swim by. Grassy areas around shores are another favorite hangout of theirs, as well as dock pilings and other underwater structures. Redfish of Galveston Bay vary in size significantly, so you can reel in anything from 5 lb specimens to impressive 50-pounders.


“Flatties” are another A-lister that Galveston Bay fishing guides love to chase, not only for the fun of the hunt, but for their deliciousness as well. You can catch a Flounder any time of the year in the bay, but by far the best month for Flounder fishing is November. That is when these Flatfish migrate to the Gulf of Mexico and their sheer number will amaze you. Because the Flounder season is popular among anglers across the country, special fishing regulations apply in November – Flounder gigging is not allowed, and you can only keep up to two Flounder to bring home.


Fishing Tips

  • If there’s one super productive setup for fishing Galveston Bay, it’s popping corks. 

  • To land a healthy number of Speckled Trout and Redfish, use live shrimp with popping corks. It won’t be too long before you hear that reel scream.

  • Local guides take special care of the length of their leaders, which varies depending on the depth of the water they’re fishing. Shorter leaders (up to 12 inches) are used in shallow waters, but usually, the leader can be up to 25 inches long.

  • Galveston Bay offers good amounts of bull Black Drum and Sheepshead in spring, if you know where to present them with an offering they won’t be able to resist. 


Need to Know

Thousands of anglers from all over the country flock to Galveston Bay to catch something they can brag about to their fishing buddies. With over 600 square miles to explore with your rod and reels, this fishery is a treasure trove protected by clear fishing laws you need to abide by.


Whether you’re fishing solo or with one of many Galveston Bay fishing charters, every person on the boat 17 and older needs to have a valid Texas fishing license. You will also need a Red Drum Tag if you plan on keeping a Redfish.


Fishing on Galveston Bay with an experienced guide means you will have expert help in targeting specific species in the best hotspots. Trip prices vary from $500–$1,100, depending on the time spent on the water and desired species. You’ll find half day trips in the $450–$600 ballpark.

Getting There

Named after the city of Galveston, home to the first bakery in all of Texas and excellent offshore fishing, Galveston Bay is easily reachable from Texas City. Houston is only 50 miles away, so you can be on the water after a comfortable one-hour drive. With a diverse fishery and year-round fishing season, Galveston Bay is an oasis for passionate inshore anglers.
Galveston Bay
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Galveston Bay Fishing Seasons

The weather in January can be fickle, but when rain isn’t in the forecast, fishing is. You can search the bay for Sheepshead, Black Drum, Redfish, and of course, Speckled Trout.

If you’d like to have delicious fish fillets for dinner, then Galveston Bay Snapper (aka Sheepshead) are there for the taking, as are Redfish and Speckled Trout.

As the skies are becoming friendlier, fish are biting more and more. Live shrimp works well for Speckled Trout, and Black Drum in all sizes are abundant this time of the year.

The waters are getting warmer, which means that the Speckled Trout spawning season is upon us. There’s plenty of Redfish and Sheepshead to chase, as well.


Speckled Trout are all the craze this month thanks to their consistent bite. Casting your line around shores and reefs is your best chance for catching bigger fish.


It’s getting quite hot on the water in June, so fishing action can be spotty. Thankfully, Speckled Trout and Redfish are still active, and you can also reel in a Shark here and there.


July is here and so is the first-class fishing on Galveston Bay. Look for big Speckled Trout around underwater structures, and you can also hook Redfish and Sheepshead.


Speckled Trout is the star in the beginning of August, but toward the end of the month Bull Redfish are in the cards as they start spawning. Catch and release is recommended.


You can smell fall in the air and you can see it because the fish in the bay are starting to migrate toward the back of the bay. Redfish, Speckled Trout, and more are in the cards.


In October, jetties are the place to be if you want to land your share of Redfish and Speckled Trout. You could also find a Flounder at the end of your line.

The Flounder season begins in November, so if they’re your prey of choice, this is the month to visit the bay. Reds and Specks are biting left and right as well.

Just because it’s December doesn’t mean the fun on the bay has to stop, on the contrary. Fishing for Flounder is excellent, Speckled Trout and Redfish aren’t far behind either.

Galveston Bay Fishing Calendar

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Reviews of Fishing in Galveston Bay

Amazing ride
Lena K. fished with Galveston Offshore on August 11, 2020
See if you could go when it is not so windy
David V. fished with Salty Rods Charters on August 6, 2020
Check out Salty Rods! They get the job done!
Half day trip with Captain Jason
Amanda W. fished with Rod Bending Charters on July 7, 2020
Take some motion sickness meds because the water was pretty rough.
Afternoon Shark trip w/ Capt Shannon
Ej S. fished with Galveston Offshore on June 30, 2020
Find someone who can show you where to fish.
Awesome trip!
Rafael S. fished with Reel Men Fishing Charters on June 25, 2020
Don’t need anything, the crew has everything needed for a good time.
Bay fishing with Captain Tim
Melanie C. fished with Frazier’s Guide Service – Bay Boats on June 10, 2020
Keep an eye on the weather. Talk to your Captain before your trip.
Half day fishing trip
Chad P. fished with Galveston Offshore on March 7, 2020
hit or miss with weather in march but always nice to get out on the water.
4 hour-Capt Ralph
Lois D. fished with Frazier’s Guide Service – Bay Boats on November 24, 2019
Go with Captain Ralph! Wonderful experience!

Top Targeted Species in Galveston Bay