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A Complete Guide to Fishing in Sarasota

| Alden Arnold |

Sarasota is located South of Tampa Bay on the Gulf Coast of Florida and offers incredible fishing opportunities due to the rich estuary it sits on. In the brackish water of Sarasota Bay, you will find many gamefish feeding on the baitfish in troves. This scenic range of water provides varying habitats where anglers can find a multitude of target species.

Types of Fishing in Sarasota

Drifting the large grass flats of Sarasota Bay is a popular way to fish inshore for speckled trout. With water levels ranging from 4 to10 feet, this bay holds all sorts of inshore species, including speckled trout, ladyfish, pompano, jacks, and many more. The two inlets of the area, Big Sarasota Pass or New Pass, are great places to venture to in search of larger species. Bluefish and Spanish mackerel feed on the various baitfish brought in by the water movement and changing tides, generating a target-rich environment for these fish.

A popular fish for anglers to target are snook and Sarasota is conveniently along their migration route. These large and powerful fish hit lures and bait alike and put up a fight to remember if you’re lucky enough to get one on the line.

Venturing further out to sea you can find various species of deep water fish including grouper, snapper, triggerfish, and hogfish. Dropping lines with baited hooks into the water surrounding structures nestled deep on the ocean floor is a popular way to catch these species.


Pelagic species are located out in the deep water channels or dropoffs and can often be caught by trolling with a spread of lures or baits. These monstrous fish can get very large and will put up a real fight on the other end of a line if you’re lucky enough to hook one. Whatever you decide to target, it will be a trip to remember.

Other Things to Do

Whether you’re an outdoorsy person or more of a foodie type, Sarasota has something to offer. From restaurants with ocean views to nature and wildlife preserves, there are activities for everyone. Being on the coast of Florida of course means there is going to be at least one beach day. Lido Key Beach has beautiful blue water and stunning white sand that will help anyone relax. The Sarasota Jungle Gardens offer an experience full of exotic animals and is sure to entertain people of all ages if you’re looking for something a little different. If you are getting hungry or maybe a little parched, head to any of the amazing restaurants or bars that Sarasota has to offer. With a vast array of activities and a beautiful environment to enjoy, Sarasota is a great vacation spot for anyone.

For the true sportsman, Captain Experiences offers over 65 fishing charters equipped with all the gear you need to land the pelagic monster of a lifetime.

Photos from Captain Experiences

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