Destin is a favorite for vacationers because of its white sandy beaches and beautiful waters. For us, it’s the fishing that brings us back again and again. And whenever possible, we’ll get the whole family on a charter fishing adventure. Whether we’re fishing the bay or the gulf, it’s always a fun time!
We’ll easily admit that Destin is one of our favorite places to vacation with the whole family. That’s because while we’re fishing, our non-angling family members have plenty to do to keep busy. And when we do get them on a local charter, there’s enough variety in species and technique to keep them interested.
Destin Fishing Trips
No two trips are the same when it comes to Destin fishing charters. Sometimes we’ll opt for a kayak fishing adventure in the calm waters of Choctawhatchee Bay, or we’ll head out for some trolling in the Gulf of Mexico. It depends on how many are in our crew and what kind of adventure we’re seeking.
The time of year we’re visiting the area also has a lot to do with what we’re catching. Sometimes we’ll plan our stay during red snapper season: typically from June to August in federal waters, with dates varying each year. Red snapper is such a fun fish to catch; definitely good eating too. The regulations help sustain the population and we recommend planning your Destin vacation during snapper season. Just book early… the red snapper charters fill up fast!
If you’re visiting during the cooler months, book an inshore trip for redfish, trout, or flounder. All three of these species show up in good numbers during this time of year. An October trip fishing the East Pass is sure to reward you with more than a few on the line!
In fact, the East Pass is a great spot throughout the year. This is where the Gulf meets the Bay, right next to Destin Harbor marina. Some anglers will fish from the shore or jetties and find great results. Those fishing from a vessel can move throughout the pass to find where the bite is. Depending on the time of year, you can catch inshore favorites such as redfish and trout, or even the bigger species that move through the pass: king mackerel, sharks, and more. With your guide, you’ll be able to target a variety of species in just one outing.
Keeping with the theme of variety: head out to the Gulf of Mexico and you’ll find bottom feeders such as grouper and snapper, as well as pelagics such as mahi and mackerel. Your preferred technique (bottom fishing or trolling) will determine your adventure. Or talk with your captain about what’s in season and what you’re looking to catch and you can work backwards from there (pick the species first, then determine your technique). Destin charter captains are willing to work with their guests to customize the perfect outing.
Destin Fishing Charters
One of our favorite Destin Charters is with Captain Zack on the Malia Ann. This 26ft center console can carry up to six anglers and navigates both the inshore and offshore waters comfortably. We typically book the five hour offshore trip and, depending on the time of year, target either snapper or mackerel. Captain Zack and crew are very knowledgeable and always get us on the fish!
If you’re looking for a bigger boat with amenities, check out Championship Offshore with Captain Matt. This 42ft sport fisherman is fully decked out with a salon, kitchen, and toilet. Captain Matt has also outfitted the vessel with outriggers and downriggers; and the first mate is hard at work to lend a helping hand. Fish nearshore or offshore for a variety of species; our last trip with Captain Matt we caught a 37 pound king mackerel. If you want to feel like a champion angler, fish with Champion!
Families who may be new to fishing, or looking to stay within a budget, should fish with the Pelican Adventures crew. They have a few different boats, including the party boat (or headboat) the Vera Marie, a 70ft boat that can accommodate 60 passengers. Your family can purchase a trip for as little as $ 100/person (depending on season) and will share the experience with other families. Most trips are six hours long and you’ll catch triggerfish, snapper, and more.
Book a Destin Charter
A day of Destin fishing will certainly be a memorable one. Heck, any time out on the water spent with your family is a good day in our books. Even if you don’t want to do any fishing, you can visit Destin’s very popular Crab Island. Tightlines with Captain Elaine can get you there; it’s her specialty.
No matter what kind of fishing you’re looking for, FishAnywhere.com partners with the best charters in Destin. Search and book the trip that fits best for your family.
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