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Get Hooked Fishing Florida’s Historic Coast

What’s summertime without casting a line? Find St. Augustine and Ponte Vedra’s best fishing spots!

Don’t let the big one get away on this trip. Here are some local suggestions for warm weather fishing in St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra and the beaches.

Surf & Beach Fishing

Summer sunrises are spectacular here and there’s no better way to greet a new day than by casting a line from a quiet beach, like Vilano Beach, while the sun peeks from the sea. Surf fishing is a popular summer pastime for both visitors and residents – not only because of the relaxation it brings, but also for the excitement of hooking a big one just beyond the surf.

The key to success here is to cast your line and bait past the waves rolling toward the beach, into the “trough” in between. In summer, that’s where you might hook speckled sea trout, kingfish, pompano or jack crevalle. Of course, to do that you’ll need the right equipment, bait and license. Lucky for you, local bait and tackle shops can provide everything you need.

Inshore & Offshore Fishing

In summer, inshore fishing in the many creeks and back bays is popular, particularly for anglers pursuing redfish. Ranging in size from 3-10 pounds, local redfish are the lure that attracts many anglers to Florida’s Historic Coast. Flounder, black drum and speckled sea trout are also frequently caught inshore.

From June through September, the seaward mouths of Matanzas and St. Augustine inlets offer the opportunity for one of fishing’s most exciting experiences – battling with a big tarpon! Ranging in size from 10 to more than 150 pounds, their armor-like scales flash in the sunlight when these hard-fighting fish leap high out of the water. Each July, offshore and inshore anglers register to compete for large, cash prizes in the Ancient City Gamefish Challenge. This St. Augustine event features parties, entertainment and two days of offshore fishing for kingfish and inshore fishing for redfish.

image, man holding fish

Charter Fishing Trips

Cruising just off St. Augustine’s beaches, anglers pursue schools of jacks – some weighing as much as 25 pounds – as well as kingfish, sea trout, snapper and the occasional cobia. To get the very best fishing experience, visitors should consider one of the local charters such as Inshore Adventures or Coastal Fish Charters. They provide an experienced guide and everything needed for a successful fishing expedition.

Several local charter companies, including Sea Love and Drum Man charters, take anglers as far as 30 miles out into the blue Atlantic. Black sea bass, gag grouper, vermillion snapper, cobia, dolphin (mahi), blackfin tuna and wahoo are likely to be encountered. All-inclusive full and half-day charters are available.

Pier Fishing & More

Local piers offer exceptional fishing. The St. Johns County Ocean Pier is a great spot to fish for flounder, sea trout, sheepshead and black drum. At this pier, a Florida fishing license is a part of the $6 per day fishing admission. Although a license is required, anglers can also try their luck at Lighthouse Park, the Matanzas Inlet Bridge on A1A or travel toward Vilano Beach for the Vilano Beach Pier or May Street Bridge.

For more information on pier, kayak and deep-sea fishing, check out this article!

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