February 20, 2023

Where to Go Fishing From San Pedro Bay to Santa Monica Bay


When you think about Los Angeles, what springs to mind? Rodeo Drive? Beaches? Baseball? Movie stars? What about fishing? If you haven’t been fishing in Los Angeles, you’re missing out. It’s no secret that LA is beautifully sunny, but not everyone knows that it’s a world-class fishing spot, with an amazing variety of both saltwater and freshwater fish. Along the coast, you’ll be able to catch Calico Bass, Halibut, White Seabass, and Yellowtail as they feast in the kelp beds. Inland, you’ll find lakes teeming with freshwater fish. And if you want the adventure of modern big game fishing, you’ll find it in the open waters around Catalina Island. Let’s take a look at some of the greatest fishing spots in Southern California, from San Pedro Bay to Santa Monica Bay.

  • Huntington Flats is perfect for inshore fishing. It’s got a muddy, sandy bottom, and when you fish there you’ll pull in Calico and Sand Bass, Halibut, and Barracuda.
  • If you’re looking for a lake, check out Echo Park Lake. The fishing here is amazing, and it’s right in the middle of central LA. If you didn’t expect to find great fishing in an urban section of the second largest metropolitan area in the United States, you’re in for a happy surprise. Every year Echo Lake is stoked with 20,000 Trout and Gerrard Rainbow. Come for the Trout, Catfish, Largemouth Bass, and Bluegill, and you might find yourself lingering to take in the astonishing views of the skyline. It’s a city lake, though, so, as you might expect, catch and release is the preferred way to fish.
  • For sportfishing in Metro LA, don’t miss Horseshoe Kelp. Near the edge of an offshore shelf, this prime fishing spot has depths as shallow as 330 feet, it spans 10 miles, starting just south of San Pedro and dropping off at the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors. Fishing this fertile spot, you’ll haul in Calico Bass, Halibut, White Seabass, and Yellowtail, as they come to feed on the delicious kelp.
  • Santa Monica Bay is perfect for deep sea fishing. With many fishing structures and reefs in the water, it’s home to over 30 different types of game fish. Depending on the time of year you head into the bay, your catch could include Calico Bass, Rockfish, Barracuda, Halibut, or Yellowtail.
  • Catalina Island is famous for many things. Sparkling waters provide opportunities for water sports and swimming, but perhaps the best thing about the waters around Catalina is the fishing. If you’re ready to fish for Tuna and Mahi Mahi, head into the open waters. For Calico Bass, Sheepshead, and Yellowtail, stick nearer the shore.
  • If you don’t have a boat, try the fishing piers at Cabrillo Beach, Redondo Beach or Santa Monica. Those are not the only places for pier fishing in Metro LA, but are iconic spots. From this 2,000 foot long pier in Santa Monica you can catch Mackerel, Sharks, White Seabass, and Perch, as long as you don’t mind sharing your space with a crowd of tourists. The Cabrillo fishing pier is a great place to visit and get in a good scenic walk at the same time. There, you’ll see people teaching their children how to fish and every now and then the kids catch a fish before their parents do, its amazing. The atmosphere is very relaxing. If you are into fishing for Bonito, one of the best bonito spots is Redondo Beach Pier all year long because of the warm water outlet from the nearby power plant. The usual catch found at this pier consists of halibut, pacific mackerel, sardines and of course bonito.

Sure, you can fish from the pier, but getting out on a boat is an amazing experience in Los Angeles. If you don’t own your own boat, you can charter a fishing boat or head to one of the many sites offering boat rentals in the area. Whether you own or rent, California Yacht Marina can provide you with a place to store your boat, for a day, for a season, or for a year. We have boat slips for rent and for sale, and when you rent or buy a boat slip, you’re guaranteed a secure place to dock your boat at our marina. Not only that, but you get access to five-star amenities to make your experience impeccable. We offer boat (yacht or sailboat) storage, too, so talk to us if you need a place to store your boat in the off season.

One thing you should know before you plan your Los Angeles fishing trip is that a fishing license is essential. Anyone over the age of 16 who wants to fish from shore or from a boat must purchase a fishing license or face stiff penalties. Fishing off of a public pier, however, doesn’t require a license. Of course, rules are subject to change and Southern California takes their regulations quite seriously, so please consult California’s Department of Fish and Game to make sure you know the rules before you head out to fish.

In business for over 35 years, California Yacht Marina has a well-earned reputation for excellence in the Southern California fishing and boating community. Our state-of-the-art facilities provide more than just a safe Marina space to dock your boat. We’re a family-owned business with three conveniently located marinas to meet your needs, whether you want a family friendly place to dock your boat, you’re looking for an amazing waterfront event venue, or you need a basecamp for your film crew. Schedule a tour with us so you can see our spectacular facilities for yourself, call us at 424-201-0467 or contact us through our website for more information.