St. Petersburg, Florida, often referred to as “St. Pete,” is renowned for its beautiful beaches, vibrant arts scene, and warm, sunny climate. However, one of its most cherished treasures is its exceptional inshore fishing. The waters around St. Petersburg are teeming with a variety of fish species, making it a paradise for anglers. This guide will explore everything you need to know about inshore fishing in St. Petersburg, from the best spots to the species you can catch, and why Copeland Outdoors is your go-to charter for an unforgettable fishing adventure.


Why Inshore Fishing in St. Petersburg?

Inshore fishing in St. Petersburg offers a unique and rewarding experience. Unlike offshore fishing, which involves heading out to the deep sea, inshore fishing takes place in the shallow waters near the coast. This includes bays, estuaries, and flats where a rich ecosystem supports a diverse array of fish species.

St. Petersburg’s inshore waters are particularly abundant due to their connection to Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. These waters provide the perfect habitat for a variety of sportfish, making them a hotspot for fishing enthusiasts. The calm, shallow waters also make inshore fishing accessible to everyone, from beginners to seasoned pros.

Best Spots for Inshore Fishing in St. Petersburg

Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay is one of the most popular inshore fishing spots in St. Petersburg. Its extensive network of flats, mangroves, and oyster bars provides excellent fishing opportunities. Species such as redfish, snook, and trout are commonly found here.

Fort De Soto Park

Fort De Soto Park is another prime location for inshore fishing in St. Petersburg. The park’s waters are known for their clarity and abundance of fish. Anglers can expect to catch redfish, flounder, and sheepshead among others.

Boca Ciega Bay

Boca Ciega Bay, with its seagrass beds and mangrove-lined shores, offers some of the best inshore fishing in St. Petersburg. The bay is a great spot for catching snook, trout, and pompano.

Weedon Island Preserve

Weedon Island Preserve is a hidden gem for inshore fishing. Its protected waters are perfect for kayak fishing, and the area is rich in redfish, snook, and mangrove snapper.


Target Species for Inshore Fishing in St. Petersburg


Redfish are one of the most sought-after species for inshore fishing in St. Petersburg. They are known for their strength and fight, making them a favorite among anglers. Redfish can be found year-round, but they are especially abundant in the fall.


Snooks are another popular target for inshore anglers. These fish are prized for their aggressive strikes and acrobatic fights. The best time to catch snook is during the warmer months when they move into the shallows to spawn.

Spotted Seatrout

Spotted seatrout are abundant in the seagrass beds and flats of St. Petersburg. They are relatively easy to catch and are known for their delicious taste. Trout fishing is excellent throughout the year, but the cooler months tend to produce the largest fish.


Flounder are often found in sandy or muddy bottoms near structures like docks and piers. These flatfish are masters of camouflage and can provide a challenging and rewarding fishing experience.


Sheepshead are commonly found around structures such as bridges, piers, and rock jetties. They are known for their strong teeth and bait-stealing abilities. Sheepshead fishing is best during the cooler months.

Techniques for Inshore Fishing in St. Petersburg

Light Tackle Fishing

Light tackle fishing is a popular method for inshore fishing. This technique involves using lighter rods and reels, which provide a more exciting fight and greater sensitivity. It’s perfect for targeting species like trout, redfish, and snook.

Fly Fishing

Fly fishing is another effective technique for inshore fishing. The shallow waters of St. Petersburg are ideal for sight fishing, where anglers can spot and cast to fish. Fly fishing for redfish and snook can be particularly rewarding.

Kayak Fishing

Kayak fishing allows anglers to access shallow and hard-to-reach areas where fish often congregate. It’s a peaceful and environmentally friendly way to fish, offering a unique perspective on the beautiful waters of St. Petersburg.

Live Bait and Artificial Lures

Both live bait and artificial lures are effective for inshore fishing. Live shrimp, pinfish, and mullet are commonly used to attract fish. Artificial lures, such as soft plastics, topwater plugs, and jigs, can also be very effective and are often more convenient.

Why Choose Copeland Outdoors for Inshore Fishing in St. Petersburg?

Copeland Outdoors is the premier choice for inshore fishing in St. Petersburg. Our experienced guides have an intimate knowledge of the local waters and the best fishing spots. We provide all the necessary gear and tackle, ensuring you have everything you need for a successful and enjoyable fishing trip.

At Copeland Outdoors, we cater to anglers of all skill levels. Whether you’re a seasoned pro looking to target specific species or a beginner eager to learn the basics, our guides will tailor the experience to your needs. We are committed to providing a fun, educational, and memorable fishing adventure.

Book Your Inshore Fishing Trip Today

Ready to experience the thrill of inshore fishing in St. Petersburg? Book your trip with Copeland Outdoors today and discover why St. Petersburg is a top destination for anglers. Our expert guides, top-notch equipment, and passion for fishing will ensure you have an unforgettable adventure on the water. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to fish in one of Florida’s most beautiful and productive inshore fisheries. Contact Copeland Outdoors now and let’s make your fishing dreams a reality!