Fishing the Island

Experience the allure of Anna Maria Island, where sun-kissed beaches stretch for seven miles, adorned with picturesque jetties, inviting fishing piers, and tranquil canals. Anglers are greeted with a bounty of marine life, including Redfish, Snapper, Mackerel, Black Drum, Snook, Trout, and Amberjack, promising thrilling adventures on the water.

City of Anna Maria: For those eager to cast their lines, three island piers beckon with convenient bait shops onsite, ready to equip anglers with the finest tackle. Begin your pier fishing escapade at the renowned Rod & Reel Pier, nestled on the northeast side of Anna Maria. Here, the iconic two-story restaurant, The Rod and Reel, invites patrons to savor delectable seafood delights while enjoying panoramic views of the Gulf. Please note, a nominal $2.00 fee applies for fishing at this esteemed location. Just a leisurely stroll southward awaits Anna Maria Island's City Pier on South Bay Boulevard, offering another angler's haven amid breathtaking coastal scenery. Please be aware that while these piers boast unmatched fishing opportunities, they may not be suitable for children, lacking protective gates or fences.

Bradenton Beach: Venture further to Bradenton Beach, where the Historic Bridge Street Pier awaits, steeped in charm and coastal hospitality. Indulge in culinary delights at the quaint Anna Maria Oyster Bar, treating your taste buds to sumptuous meals amidst serene water vistas. The pier boasts essential amenities, including a bathhouse with restrooms, a well-stocked bait and tackle shop, and the Harbormaster's Office, ensuring a seamless fishing experience. As dusk falls, a lighted floating dock illuminates the waters, inviting anglers to extend their fishing adventures into the enchanting night.

Embark on a memorable fishing expedition at Anna Maria Island's iconic piers, where the beauty of nature intertwines with the thrill of the catch, promising unforgettable moments by the sea.

Fishing Rules, Regulations and License for Anna Maria Island

Before embarking on your fishing adventure in the pristine waters surrounding Anna Maria Island, it's imperative to secure a fishing license and adhere to all fishing regulations. Ensuring compliance with these regulations not only preserves the delicate marine ecosystem but also promotes sustainable fishing practices for future generations to enjoy.

Additionally, for specific catches such as spiny lobsters, majestic tarpon, or elusive snook, separate permits are mandated to ensure responsible harvesting and conservation efforts. By obtaining the necessary permits and adhering to regulations, anglers contribute to the preservation of marine life and uphold the integrity of Anna Maria Island's rich aquatic habitats.

So, as you prepare for your angling excursion, remember to acquire the required licenses and permits, and embrace the responsibility of being stewards of the sea. By doing so, you'll not only enjoy a memorable fishing experience but also play a vital role in safeguarding the natural beauty of Anna Maria Island's coastal treasures.

Anna Maria Island SALTWATER Fishing Licenses

Exploring the coastal waters surrounding Anna Maria Island promises an unforgettable fishing expedition, but before casting your line into the azure depths, ensure you're equipped with the requisite licenses and permits. In the sun-kissed state of Florida, including the waters off Anna Maria Island, a saltwater fishing license is a non-negotiable requirement for anglers seeking to reel in marine species.

Whether you're angling for finfish, shellfish, or shells, securing a valid saltwater fishing license is essential to abide by state regulations and conservation efforts. Additionally, for specific catches like the prized Snook, delectable crawfish, or elusive spiny lobsters, separate permit stamps are mandated, underscoring the importance of responsible harvesting and sustainable fishing practices.

Furthermore, should your angling endeavors lead you to the majestic tarpon, a single tarpon stamp is indispensable for lawful possession. 

For swift and convenient license acquisition, visit or dial 1(888) Fish-Florida to obtain the necessary permits and stamps before embarking on your fishing escapade. By adhering to these regulations and obtaining the proper licenses, anglers play a pivotal role in conserving Florida's rich marine biodiversity and safeguarding the natural splendor of Anna Maria Island's coastal paradise.

Anna Maria Island FRESHWATER Fishing Licenses

For non-Florida residents aged 16 or older, seeking the thrill of freshwater fishing in the sun-dappled waters of the Sunshine State, a Florida State Freshwater Fishing License is a prerequisite. Whether you're casting your line into freshwater lakes, rivers, or brackish waterways teeming with freshwater fish species, securing this essential license ensures compliance with state regulations and contributes to the conservation of Florida's aquatic treasures.

Thankfully, acquiring your Fishing License is a seamless endeavor, with various convenient options available. Explore local bait and tackle shops, peruse the sporting goods departments of discount retailers, or visit select marinas and hardware stores to obtain your license. For added convenience, swing by the tax collector office located at 3340 East Bay Drive in Holmes Beach, nestled next to Walgreen's, where friendly staff await to assist you in acquiring your Fishing License.

Additionally, licenses are readily available for purchase at esteemed retail establishments such as Wal-Mart or Kmart stores throughout Manatee County, ensuring accessibility for anglers eager to embark on their freshwater fishing odyssey.

By obtaining your Florida State Freshwater Fishing License through these accessible channels, you not only gain the opportunity to immerse yourself in Florida's pristine freshwater ecosystems but also uphold the principles of responsible angling and environmental stewardship. Cast your line with confidence, knowing that your contribution supports the preservation of Florida's natural wonders for generations to come.

Who is Exempt from Purchasing a Fishing License in Florida?

    Navigating the intricate realm of fishing licenses in Florida can be a breeze with awareness of the various exemptions tailored to specific demographics and scenarios:

    • Children under 16: Young anglers under the age of 16 are exempt from the fishing license requirement, fostering a welcoming environment for budding fishing enthusiasts to cast their lines and cultivate a love for the sport.

    • Florida residents aged 65 and older: Seasoned residents aged 65 and older enjoy the privilege of fishing without a license, allowing them to indulge in leisurely fishing outings amidst Florida's stunning coastal vistas.

    • Florida residents fishing in saltwater from land or structures: Whether casting from the sandy shores or a fixed structure along the coastline, Florida residents engaging in saltwater fishing activities from land or designated structures are exempt from the fishing license mandate.

    • Persons fishing with licensed boat operators: Anglers embarking on fishing expeditions with licensed boat operators who charge fees for their services are relieved from the fishing license requirement, simplifying the logistics of guided fishing excursions.

    • Florida residents serving in the military: Residents of Florida serving in the United States Armed Forces stationed out of state and returning home on leave are granted fishing license exemptions, honoring their service and providing opportunities for recreational relaxation.

    • State of Florida department of veterans and community affairs or worker compensation notice of action: Individuals in possession of a notice of action from the State of Florida Department of Veterans and Community Affairs or Worker Compensation enjoy fishing license exemptions, recognizing their contributions and sacrifices.

    • Handicapped and disabled residents: Handicapped residents and those certified as totally and permanently disabled benefit from fishing license exemptions, ensuring equitable access to recreational fishing opportunities.

    • Non-Florida residents fishing from licensed piers: Non-resident anglers fishing from piers that have paid license fees are exempt from the fishing license requirement, promoting access to Florida's renowned fishing destinations for visitors from afar.

    • Florida residents wading in shallow waters: Florida residents wading in saltwater depths of less than 4 feet are exempt from the fishing license requirement, allowing for carefree fishing experiences in the shallows.

    Remember, while certain exemptions apply, it's always prudent to verify your eligibility and ensure compliance with relevant regulations. As a general guideline, if a fee is required for fishing, exemptions may apply, but it's wise to confirm to avoid any potential misunderstandings. With these exemptions in mind, anglers can embark on their fishing ventures with peace of mind, reveling in the natural beauty and abundant fishing opportunities Florida has to offer.


Embark on an angling adventure tailored to your preferences, whether you prefer the serene waters of the bay or the exhilarating depths of the Gulf:

  • Bay or Backwater Fishing: Delve into the tranquil waters of the bay or explore the intricate network of backwater channels, where mangroves, flats, docks, and bridges teem with marine life waiting to be discovered. Bay guides, often equipped with smaller boats, offer personalized excursions ideal for intimate groups of 3-5 passengers, ensuring a memorable fishing experience amidst the coastal splendor.

  • Gulf or Deep Sea Fishing: For those seeking a thrilling offshore expedition, venture into the boundless expanse of the Gulf, where deep-sea treasures await. Setting sail on larger vessels with capable crews, deep-sea anglers can expect encounters with formidable game fish such as grouper, snapper, and other prized species. Deep sea fishing tours, ranging from $650 to $1000, offer flexible accommodation for groups of 4-12 passengers, with cost per passenger decreasing as the party size increases, making it an ideal option for group outings or family adventures.

To ensure availability and secure your preferred fishing experience, it's highly recommended to book in advance, particularly during peak holiday periods like Christmas week, where demand surges and bookings may fill up months in advance. Additionally, anglers embarking on fishing expeditions with licensed boat operators can enjoy the convenience of exemption from fishing license requirements, simplifying the planning process and allowing for hassle-free fishing excursions.

Whether you're angling for a leisurely bay cruise or an adrenaline-pumping deep-sea quest, advance booking guarantees you'll secure your spot and set sail on an unforgettable fishing voyage tailored to your desires. Cast your worries aside and immerse yourself in the unparalleled beauty and excitement of Anna Maria Island's coastal wonders.

Anna Maria Charters
Captain David White
(941) 592-3235

Captain Justin Moore

RippinLips Fishing Charters

Captain Josh Prunier