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fishing pier at sunset

Guide to the Best Fishing Spots in Galveston

If you like your main course with a little squeeze of lemon while on vacation, we’ve got good news for you. Galveston fishing spots are some of the best in Texas. 

Why Anglers Are Hooked on Galveston

On the north side of the island, anglers can cast a line in Galveston Bay. Freshwater flows into this estuary from rivers, bayous and streams and then swirls together with the gulf’s salty coastal waters. All this mixing creates a nutrient-rich environment just right for young fish to pack on the pounds. In fact, this veritable ocean nursery is home to over 150 fish species, from popular redfish, specks and flounder to sand trout and gulf whiting.

Not to be outdone, the Gulf of Mexico offers its own treasure trove of seafood for fishermen on the south side of the island. The southeast breeze pulls fish towards the shore, while jetties, piers, submerged structures and 32 miles of beaches make it easy to reel in fish. Locals and guests regularly haul in cobia, wahoo, tuna, mahi mahi, red snapper, kingfish, marlin and shark, and are often seen cheering each other on when they land the “big one.” 

With the beach on one side and the bay on the other, you might be wondering how you will ever decide where to drop a line while on vacation. Don’t worry. Our BeachBox team has you covered with a roundup of our top fishing spots in Galveston. Whether you’re an experienced angler or a first timer with a rod, we promise they’ll leave you with plenty of fish tales. 

Top fishing spots in Galveston, TX

1. Galveston Fishing Pier

If you overhear locals talking about the Galveston Fishing Pier, they’re referencing the legendary pier over at 9001 Seawall Blvd (also known as 91st St. Pier). The pier was first built in 1971 and quickly earned its place in angler folklore with wild stories of sportsmen reeling in sharks. These days, thanks to a rebuild from the local angling community, it’s just as popular ever. The pier offers gear rentals and guided pier fishing tours, making it a fan favorite for fishers of all skill levels. Passes are valid from the time of purchase until 5 a.m. the following morning. Make sure you check the pier’s webcam to see the weather and tides before getting started!

BeachBox insider tip: The morning bite is usually productive, so come early to snag a good spot and then reward yourself with a bite at Jimmy’s on the Pier.

Jimmy's on the pier

2. 61st Street Fishing Pier

Naming the best fishing pier in Galveston is an arguable topic, especially when the competition is the 61st Street Fishing Pier (why not try both, and then decide?). Conveniently located on Seawall Boulevard, this family-friendly fishing spot is open 24/7 from March through December and has everything on hand to keep you and the fish hooked – rods for rent rigged with bait, cold drinks, snacks and plenty of views on its upper observation deck. Tickets are half off after 2 a.m., making this highly rewarding Galveston night fishing spot worth the trip (keep in mind, new passes must be purchased at 6 a.m.). The 61st Street Fishing Pier is busiest on the weekend, so consider a weekday for fishing if you can!

Fishing Pier in the Sea

3. Galveston Island State Park

With the bay on one side and the beach on the other, Galveston Island State Park truly is an angler’s dream. On the bay-side, cast your rod from the bank, wade-fish or use the park’s canoe and kayak launches. On the beach-side, keep your feet on solid ground or wade right into the surf. If the sandy shores are calling your name, make sure you check the state park’s website before heading out. Current renovations are affecting beach-side access. 

No fishing license? No problem. You do not need a fishing license to fish in state parks, making Galveston Island State Park the perfect spot for the occasional angler

4. Seawolf Park

If flounder is what you’re after, then head straight to Seawolf Park. Located on Galveston’s Pelican Island, anglers have the advantage as fish routinely pass through the Galveston ship channel. For a mere $9 ($6 if residents), find your favorite spot on the paved bulkhead, jetties or in the water and simply wait for a tug on your rod. While flounder and redfish are regularly caught all year long, you can really fill your cooler if you head to the park in the fall when the flounder leave inland areas and head to the ocean. 

BeachBox insider tip: Bring the family and break for a picnic! Kids can run out their energy on the playground and enjoy views of sunken naval ships and submarines.

Fishing on the beach

5. San Luis Pass

Fishing this strait of water on the southwest end of Galveston Island is a must for experienced anglers. With fresh inflows from the Gulf of Mexico, pros report catches of shark, speckled trout, redfish, flounder and trophy class game fish. Keep in mind, the strait is known for its unforgiving tides and sometimes severe currents, so pay careful attention to the environment as you fish. In some areas, it is also now illegal to enter the water for any reason. But, drift fishing and fishing from the shore still hold plenty of promise!

Fishing with family on the beach

6. Off the back of your BeachBox rental

When it comes to fishing, there are few things better than waking up in your vacation home, taking in the coastal views and casting a line off the back deck. No crowds or jostling for fishing spots. Just you, your friends and family, and the fish you’ll be grilling for your al fresco dinner. 

If you’re ready to catch our favorite way of fishing, book one of our BeachBox bay or canal vacation rental home properties. Here’s a look at our top picks:

  • Sunset Bay – This beautiful bayfront home has a private boat dock that’s perfect for fishing or crabbing, and boasts 360-degree views of the sunrise and sunset.
  • Crab Shack on the Canal – With an expansive deck above the canal, a private boat slip and personality to boot, you can fish, crab or grill at your leisure.
  • Seas the Day – Nestled in the coveted Sea Isle community of Galveston, this beachy, redone home offers a boat lift and canal views. 
  • Gone Coastal – Perfect for water aficionados and offshore anglers, this canal home offers a private boat slip and plenty of room for large groups. 
  • Canal Quarters – Equipped with a private boat slip, this Sea Isle Community home is a fisherman’s paradise.
  • Jamaica Cove – Dine inside or out, this completely remodeled canal home was made for entertaining and providing your fishing group with a space to relax and spend quality time together.
  • Bluewater Bungalow – Overlooking the peaceful canal, this bungalow provides water access and intimate al fresco dining areas to enjoy your catch. 

Before You Drop a Line

Before you for fall hook, line and sinker for fishing in Galveston, make sure you first understand the region’s fishing guidelines:

  • With the exception of Galveston Island State Park, you need a Texas Fishing License to fish in Galveston, Texas. Thankfully, buying a license is easy. Visit the Academy, Walmart or simply buy a pass with your smartphone.
  • If you’re fishing along a populated area like the Seawall, you can’t fish from the shore (fish only – no hooking people, please!). Learn more about where you can and can’t cast a line here
  • The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department regulates the “who, what, where and when” of fishing. Check out their website to make sure you don’t reel in too many fish or need to throw back in a certain species. 
  • Want to go offshore fishing in Galveston? By all means. The deep-sea catches and open waters make it worthwhile to bring in your own boat or rent one for the day. Check out the West End Marina or Waterman Marina & Bait Camp for more details. 

Book Your Fishing Trip

In need of a place to stay for your Galveston Island or Surfside fishing vacation? Book a BeachBox vacation rental home, fill it with friends, grill your catch and repeat.

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