Over 60 San Diego sportfishing charters fish for Bluefin Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Bigeye Tuna, Sailfish, and Mahi Mahi (Doradao) just to name a few.
San Diego is one of the most popular sportfishing areas in California. You'll find Bluefin Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Bigeye Tuna, Sailfish, and Mahi Mahi (Doradao) just to name a few.
Most fishing charters leave from different marinas located in Mission Bay (about 8.1 miles northwest of downtown San Diego), Oceanside Harbor (about 40 miles north of downtown San Diego) and San Diego Bay (about 7.2 miles south of downtown San Diego). Some of the more popular fishing locations these charters travel to are:
Kelp beds are areas of rich reefs and algae just off the California coast that attract smaller sea life as well as larger fish who prey on them, making the kelp beds great places for fishing. Some popular kelp bed locations off the San Diego coast include Point Loma Kelp and La Jolla Kelp.
Located about 14 miles south off the coast of San Diego, the Coronado Islands are a popular fishing spot for more experienced fishermen.
Owned by the US Navy, San Clemente Island is about 64 miles off the California coast and is often considered a hot spot for deep sea fishing. Although game fish is available year round, the spring and summer months are the best times to fish in this area especially for White Sea Bass and Yellowtail.
Deep sea fishing off the mountainous Baja, California coast is a prime location for those fishermen targeting Tuna, Yellowtail, Bluefin Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Calico Bass, White Sea Bass and Grouper as well as other rock fish.
Depending on how long you fish (half-day excursions, three-quarters day excursions, full-day excursions, overnight trips, etc.) will most likely determine which island coast you will be able to access and fish off of. Any of these locations will provide eager fishermen with beautiful, natural scenery and numerous game fish opportunities.
How far offshore you wish to travel will also affect what type of game you are more likely to catch: Calico Bass, Sand Bass, Sea Bass, Barracuda, Mackerel and Mahi Mahi (Dorado) can all be caught about 10 miles offshore. Other types of game fish such as Albacore Tuna, Bluefin Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Bigeye Tuna, Skipjack, and Yellowtail can be found 60 to 80 miles offshore.
When you want to fish may rely heavily on what type of fish you're looking to catch. As mentioned before, San Diego's warm climate and often tropical-like waters are home to a large variety of fish, but certain types are more populous at certain times of the year than others. For instance, if you are looking to catch Mahi Mahi (Dorado), Sailfish, or Marlin then it is best to fish for them in the late spring to late fall months down south off the Baja coast.
For tuna like the Yellowfin Tuna, Bluefin Tuna or Bigeye Tuna, it is better to plan your fishing charter between the warm summer months of June and August. For other game fish such as the Sand Bass, Calico Bass and Halibut, they can all be caught year-round in the waters near San Diego. It is important to note, however, that although San Diego's weather is often warm, its waters do cool down during the winter months. This cooling drives certain fish further south. So, if you do plan on making a deep sea fishing excursion during the winter, prepare for a longer trip that takes you down south near Mexico, possibly even as far as Cabo San Lucas.
Finally, you must decide on a charter service to take you out. Tickets for these fishing excursions can range greatly from around $45 to $450 depending on the length of your trip. Many charters also offer tackle rentals, fishing permits and licenses, fish cleaning and filleting, and more to enhance your deep sea fishing experience.