Fishing in Port St. Joe: A Complete Guide

Studying Time: 9 minutes

Whilst you might count on to get misplaced on Florida’s “Forgotten Coast,” a Port St. Joe fishing journey will permit you to uncover a complete lot extra. This charming little city is off the crushed monitor, however that simply implies that the locals are extra excited to see you. The motto of the city is “small city, huge coronary heart,” and there’s no higher method to take a look at out whether or not it’s true than by going fishing. 

From the golden seashores, throughout the quiet bay to the St. Joseph Peninsula, and past to the Gulf, there’s no scarcity of motion. In truth, you possibly can even head inland and get your fish on in freshwater! This city revolves round fishing, which makes it an angler’s paradise. Learn on and uncover how one can benefit from it.

What fish can I catch in Port St. Joe?

With such a variety of fishing grounds on supply, you received’t be shocked to listen to that there are many fish to catch. The entire Panhandle is famend for its world-class fishing alternatives, and Port St. Joe typifies it. Whereas we might not cowl all of them, this shortlist ought to offer you an thought of what to anticipate.


Okay, so that they’re technically not fish, however there was no method we might discuss concerning the seafood alternatives right here with out mentioning the legendary Port St. Joe scalloping scene. Scalloping is an establishment in these elements, with the St. Joseph Bay seabed full of those scrumptious crustaceans. 

There’s enjoyable for the entire household when the season hits, and it strikes in July and August, that means which you could benefit from your summer time trip. You’ll be able to go it alone or exit with an expert information. Guides often double up as fishing captains, too, dedicating simply the summer time months to scalloping journeys, so you possibly can even mix your journey with a spot of fishing. 

No matter you fancy, you’re certain to fill your mesh internet with one thing tasty to take again to shore on a visit as brief as two hours!


Throughout the Gulf of Mexico, one inshore fish guidelines the roost – the Redfish. This tough-fighting, tasty creature reaches unbelievable sizes all alongside the Florida Panhandle, and the Forgotten Coast isn’t any exception. St Joseph’s Bay is stuffed with these prized creatures and, what’s even higher, they’re all the time biting.

Come year-round and get your fill of Redfish, with fall bringing Bull Purple season with it. These fish should be launched, however there are many smaller creatures so that you can take residence, together with many extra inshore fish. Speckled Trout are additionally out there throughout all seasons, with Flounder in winter, and Tarpon on the tip of your line in summer time.


If Redfish are essentially the most talked-about fish inshore within the Gulf, then Purple Snapper is the nearshore equal. Yearly, a whole lot of hundreds of anglers flock to Florida simply to tackle these dazzling creatures. Their brief season makes them an elusive catch for all anglers, so e-book your journey in summer time early to keep away from disappointment. 

However that’s not all you’ll find when fishing for Snappers in Port St. Joe. The reefs only a stone’s throw from shore are stuffed with scrumptious Snappers that may be caught year-round. Go after Vermilion, White, Black, and Lane Snappers and head residence with loads of fish to fill the freezer. 


Whereas typically missed in favor of some greater fish within the Gulf, Kingfish get the royal standing they deserve in Port St. Joe. The nearshore reefs are swarming with these beasts from spring by means of fall, and typically even enterprise into the bay. Head additional out and also you’ll discover monsters that develop to unbelievable sizes, providing you with loads of motion and much more meat. 

Don’t overlook the Kingfish’s smaller cousin, the Spanish Mackerel. These fast creatures come to the bay and the mouth of the Gulf County Canal and supply some trolling motion to go together with your casting motion within the St. Joseph Bay. 

Mahi Mahi

With the entire of the Gulf of Mexico simply past the St. Joseph Peninsula, it was no imply feat to choose only one offshore beast to make this record. Nevertheless, the sheer probability of catching a Mahi Mahi made it the prime candidate. When you head out, then likelihood is you’ll catch a Mahi. 

Some smaller creatures come near shore to feed on the reefs, however there are many more durable creatures within the deep. Chances are you’ll want some time to get there, nevertheless it’s positively price it. Goal Wahoo and Tuna, as nicely, however Mahi Mahi is certain to supply you loads of enjoyable and nice rewards. 

And Extra! 

We’ve talked about among the different common catches above, however you’d want a complete e-book to cowl all of the species you possibly can land out of Port St. Joe. Everytime you come, relaxation assured that there’s one thing biting, with the possibility of touchdown some meat even larger.

Goal Black Drum, Jack Crevalle, Bluefish, Tripletail, and Sheepshead inshore. In the meantime, there’s an excellent probability of touchdown a Cobia, Grouper, or Barracuda on the reefs. Together with the scrumptious Mahi Mahi and Tuna offshore, you possibly can battle it out with Marlin or Sailfish, which might show to be a dream come true for all anglers. 

Methods to Go Fishing in Port St. Joe. 

So you recognize what you wish to get your arms on, now you simply want to seek out one of the simplest ways to go about it. As you’d count on from such a fishing paradise, there are many methods to moist your line in Port St. Joe, and listed here are our picks.

Port St. Joe Surf Fishing

The lengthy, white sand-dune seashores entice loads of vacationers year-round, with out even excited about fishing. Effectively, that’s their loss, as a result of that is pretty much as good a spot as any on the Forgotten Coast to forged your line. From downtown to Cape San Blas, all the way in which across the St. Joseph Peninsula, there are miles of seashores so that you can arrange camp for the day on. 

Hit the bay waters and forged for Redfish, Trout, Flounder, and different sought-after species. In the meantime, heading Gulf-side might see you land a Cobia or Mackerel. There’s additionally the prospect of surf fishing alongside the Gulf County Canal, which is slim sufficient which you could just about attain the opposite facet with one forged!

Port St. Joe Pier Fishing

Whereas Port St. Joe might not supply among the longest fishing piers within the Gulf of Mexico, the small picket constructions that stick out into the water right here have a sure attraction to them. They’re in step with the understated really feel of the city, and nonetheless present some unbelievable angling alternatives.

Hit one of many few piers across the Cape San Blas lighthouse or simply out of downtown, and get your fill of fishing. They supply construction which the fish like to feed round, attracting loads of the inshore favorites, with the added bonus of a choose vantage level to forged your line. Don’t overlook, you’ll have a shocking view of the city and the seashores as nicely.

Port St. Joe Kayak Fishing

The calm shallow waters of the St. Joseph Bay are ripe for exploring by kayak, and kids can typically be discovered studying the ropes of kayaking on these waters, together with loads extra watersports lovers. However fishing from a kayak? That’s the newest development in inshore fishing within the Panhandle, and Port St. Joe – as a pioneering fishing city – was by no means going to get left behind.

Convey your personal kayak, lease one, or observe an expert information and you may study fishing in a model new method. You’re certain to get the pulses racing simply by paddling or pedaling your method out, earlier than maneuvering your physique to land that all-important fish. The extra adventurous amongst you possibly can even go Gulf-side!

Port St. Joe Constitution Fishing

Ask any fishing fanatic and so they’ll inform you that one of the simplest ways to go fishing is on a constitution. For sure, it’s the one method so that you can attain the deep waters offshore and the reefs nearshore, however it might probably additionally present the very best expertise inshore, too. 

Knowledgeable information will take you from candy spot to candy spot, in the hunt for what’s biting, and so they’ll present you all the very best methods to land the fish. Not solely that, however they’ll additionally give you all of the gear you want. When you’re a newbie the captain, and typically first mate, gives you a serving to hand. In the meantime, professionals will attain the spots they in any other case wouldn’t be capable to. 

Port St. Joe Freshwater Fishing

If freshwater fishing is extra your factor, then there are higher choices in Port St. Joe than just about wherever else on the Panhandle. Head up the Gulf County Canal and also you’ll see the Redfish inhabitants fade away earlier than the Bass arrive. You’ll then attain Lake Wimico, which is overflowing with the nation’s most-loved freshwater fish. You’ll be able to solely entry this physique of water by boat, so get able to lose your self within the wilderness en-route.

Greater than that, you’re only a stone’s throw away from another prime lakes. In only a 30-minute drive you’ll attain the Lifeless Lakes, that are residence to Channel and Blue Catfish, together with some freshwater Bream to maintain you excited for the complete day.

Port St. Joe Fishing Spots

Talking of fishing spots, there’s no scarcity of locations to get your fish on in Port St. Joe. Nevertheless, selecting the place to go generally is a bit tough. There’s numerous meals for thought earlier than you head out to try to catch your dinner, so right here’s our choose of the very best locations to cat your line:

  • Jetty Park: Right here you’ll discover the very best piers and even some pure constructions that take you out into the bay, making it a main surf and pier fishing vacation spot
  • St. Joseph Peninsula: This sparsely-populated strip of land supplies bay-side and Gulf-side motion alongside its miles of uninhabited seaside, providing you with a real Forgotten Coast expertise. 
  • Mexico Seaside Synthetic Reefs Affiliation Reefs: This group planted hundreds of synthetic reefs only a stone’s throw from shore, providing you with the very best of reef fishing in only a brief journey.
  • The Gulf of Mexico: We could also be dishonest a bit of with this one, however offshore fishing within the Gulf is to not be missed. Head to the deep waters and battle it out with some prized creatures.
  • Lifeless Lakes: When you’re on the lookout for a wider vary of freshwater motion, then the brief drive to those lakes is nicely well worth the effort. Land monster-sized and engaging fish all through your journey!

When to Come Fishing in Port St. Joe

One of many sights of fishing on the Florida Panhandle is that it goes on year-round. Inshore fish are biting on a regular basis, with nearshore fish and offshore monsters filling up the water when the season hits. There’s no scarcity of enjoyable available, though the truth that it’s a small city implies that you’ll wish to e-book early to come back in the summertime months, because the condos replenish quick.

We advocate coming in September when the crowds have died down a bit of however the fishing remains to be as sizzling as ever. The climate can be excellent, with the sweltering summer time warmth simply on its method out. Nevertheless, you could wish to time your go to with another thrilling occasions that happen in Port St. Joe, corresponding to:

  • Florida’s Scallop, Music, and Arts Pageant: This pageant proves that Port St. Joe is the house of scalloping in Florida, and you may benefit from it in August/September yearly. 
  • Bayou Bash Inshore Event: Port St. Joe’s signature match attracts loads of anglers and spectators each October to gentle up the city because the fishing season is on its method out.
  • Forgotten Music Pageant: Simply if you thought issues have been winding down, this thrilling occasion attracts some new and basic musicians to city, providing a little bit of r ‘n’ r to anglers after a day at sea. 


We’ve already talked about the closed seasons for some species, however these are all the time altering and might even change throughout the similar 12 months. Discover out the bag and dimension limits for all of your favourite fish and crustaceans on the FWC, and be sure to’re fishing throughout the legislation.

Aside from that, you’ll wish to test whether or not it is advisable get a license. Fishing from a saltwater constitution will imply that your license is roofed, and most fishing piers can be accessed with out getting a allow. Nevertheless, head out by yourself and also you’ll must get a Florida saltwater fishing license. Irrespective of the place you go inland, you’ll have to get a freshwater license too. Discover out all it is advisable know, right here. 

And You’re Good to Go!

Now you recognize the whole lot you want about fishing in Port St. Joe, you’re prepared to find the Forgotten Coast. Prepare to flee from all life’s troubles and give attention to fishing. Come to this little slice of paradise and make lifelong recollections – and even mates – that can make you wish to come again time and time once more.

Have you ever ever been fishing in Port St. Joe? How was it? Assume we’ve missed one thing out? Tell us within the feedback under!