Best Deep Sea Fishing Charters in Tampa Bay

Top Deep Sea Fishing Charters in Tampa Bay

Deep Sea Fishing in Tampa Bay

For a massive catch and some serious bragging rights, give Tampa Bay deep sea fishing a try. This experience will take you 60-100 miles into the Gulf of Mexico, where you can fish the deep blue waters for Sailfish, Wahoo, Mahi Mahi, Blackfin Tuna, and a variety of large bottom fish.

The Deep Sea Charter Experience

Most Tampa Bay deep sea fishing charters leave from Clearwater and St. Petersburg. It can take close to two hours to reach true deep water, which is why most trips last somewhere between 8-12 hours to make sure you get enough fishing time. For the biggest fish, look for a charter that will take you 60+ miles from shore.

Bottom fishing

The Gulf of Mexico is home to a multitude of bottom fish. Swimming near the wrecks and reefs are Porgy, Grunts, Seabass, Triggerfish, Snapper, and Grouper. Summer is the peak season for many of these species, except for Amberjack, Scamp Grouper, and Gag Grouper, which are most abundant in winter.

Deep sea bottom fishing usually calls for heavy tackle and dead bait such as mullets, sardines, and pinfish. Fishing with live bait is more effective when targeting your catch in heavily fished areas.

Some Snapper and Grouper species are highly regulated in both state and federal waters, so be sure to ask your captain about what’s open to harvest ahead of time. You can also stay up to date on local regulations online.


While heading offshore and back you are likely to troll for various pelagic species including Wahoo, Sailfish, Mahi Mahi, Tuna, Cobia, Barracuda, and King Mackerel. Most of these fish reach their peak in summer months, though you can count on seeing larger numbers of King Mackerel in spring and fall.

Fishing between March and November gives you the chance to catch any of the above, with Tuna, Cobia, and King Mackerel swimming as close as 25-40 miles from shore.

Alternative Charter Options

If you’re looking for an introductory experience, there are plenty of Tampa Bay deep sea fishing charters which keep you closer to shore. Though you can’t target all the major players while fishing within the 10-30 mile range, this is a great opportunity to bring home something delicious without burning through all your stamina.

These trips last 4-8 hours and you will usually reach the fishing grounds within an hour. Seabass, Grunts, Hogfish, Snapper, and Grouper are all common catches. In spring and fall you might also troll for King Mackerel and Barracuda.

Deep Sea Charter Prices

Tampa Bay deep sea fishing charters come in many different forms and price ranges. In general, you can expect to pay $1,000 or more for an extended day trip (10-12 hours) that will take you around 70 miles offshore. A trip of this kind allows you to book the entire boat to yourself and you can expect to target the biggest fish in the Gulf, from Snapper to Sailfish.

Fishing closer to shore opens up more possibilities, including full day trips, half day trips, and party boat fishing charters. These trips might take you as far as 30 miles from shore, fishing for smaller bottom fish as well as King Mackerel and Barracuda when the season allows.

Private charters range from $650-800 for a full day trip. You can book a half day trip for $450-650. On the other hand, party boat fishing allows you to reserve a spot on board for as little as $200 per person for a full day trip. Half day party boat trips are $50-100 per person.

Tampa Bay

Based on 17,370 reviews by FishingBooker anglers

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What People Are Saying About Deep Sea Fishing in Tampa Bay

"Full day with captain Hank "

Todd Maul fished with Deep Color Fishing on March 13, 2020

Had a great time with captain Hank ! He had us on fish within 5 min of our trip and the bite never quit. A wide range of different species, some to eat and then some trophy fish . I had brought my 2 sons with and they loved every moment! I would HIGHLY recommend Deep Color to anyone ! Thanks again Hank for the great experience!! Can’t wait till the next one .

"July fishing trip"

Frank Padilla fished with Deep Color Fishing on July 25, 2019

Was a great time on the water! Muchos pescados.. Safe, fun and serious, captain Hank knows his business!! Highly recommend a fishing trip with Deep Color!!

"6 hr trip"

Jason Arseneau fished with Deep Color Fishing on February 18, 2019

Fishing with Captain Hank was fantastic. He was so helpful and got us on fish quickly. We caught our limit of red snapper. Also caught sheepshead and silver trout. He cleaned them for us after we got back. I would highly recommend Captain Hank and Deep Color Fishing.

"3/4 day Trip"

Mike Arrick fished with Deep Color Fishing on October 18, 2018

Bite was tough, but Hank worked had to find what we got. My 11yrd & I had a blast. Thanks Deep color fishing for the experience!

"Different generations fishing extravaganza!!"

Rodney Murray fished with Deep Color Fishing on November 18, 2017

Hank, thanks so much for an awesome day and we could not have selected a better guide or person to go fishing with. All the best to Deep Color fishing. We will be back!!

"Captain Hank is Fantastic! !!"

Dan Rogers fished with Deep Color Fishing on July 26, 2016

With out a doubt a GREAT fishing trip with Deep Color Fishing and the BEST Captain!! My Son and I couldn't have picked a better trip! We caught our limit and released others! Captain Hank works hard, very friendly, extremely helpful and highly knowledgeable on Deep Sea fishing. Color me HAPPY with Deep Color Fishing

Top Targeted Deep Sea Fishing Species in Tampa Bay

Snapper (Red)

Snapper (Red)



Dolphin (Mahi Mahi)

Dolphin (Mahi Mahi)

Tuna (Blackfin)

Tuna (Blackfin)