There are many different approaches to leisure on Sanibel Island. Some adopt the postcard-perfect attitude – lying on the beach, soaking up the warm Florida sun for days at a time. Others emerge for early-morning strolls – doing the Sanibel stoop to grab a few choice shells – then scoot back to the room to plan a day of touring the island and surrounding attractions. Somewhere between these two poles stands the fishing enthusiast. Fishing looks like work to everyone but the fisherman, who is truly getting away from it all while enjoying the nature that surrounds them. As fishing enthusiasts know, sometimes the best days on the water are not made by catching the biggest fish, but by being able to immerse oneself is the beautiful, pristine surroundings that fishing takes you to.

Whether you are  an avid, experienced angler or a beginner looking to explore Southwest Florida’s diverse fishing locations, the waters that define Sanibel and Captiva Islands offer some of the best fishing in the World! Casting from Island Inn’s own shoreline, guests reel in Speckled Trout, Snook, Redfish and even giant Tarpon weighing over 100 lbs! There are other land-based fishing opportunities close to the Inn, such as the famously fishy Blinds Pass, as well as the picturesque Lighthouse Pier.

Often overlooked by the casual casting crowd is the “other” body of water that makes Sanibel an island – the bays. If you want to catch a great variety of fish year-round, the brackish waters of San Carlos Bay, Tarpon Bay and Pine Island Sound are hard to beat. Accessible to small and large boats, and even kayaks, the calm bay areas are home to healthy populations of Snook, Tarpon, Sea Trout and Redfish, along with Snapper and Grouper.

If you are really looking to explore Sanibel and Captiva’s waters, a fishing charter is a great idea. Charter options ranging from poling shallow flats for tailing Redfish and Snook to fishing offshore reefs for Grouper and Snapper are available from novice to expert. Spending a day on the water with one of Sanibel and Captiva’s fishing guides will be an educational and exciting experience, regardless of your catch, as dolphin, eagle, and manatee sightings are commonplace for our guests who charter fishing excursions from Sanibel and Captiva. You can find a list of local Sanibel island fishing charter companies we recommend on our website here.

Island Inn staff will be glad to help you plan a fishing adventure that is just your speed. We know Sanibel Island’s bait and tackle shops, the captains, and even where they are biting!- Just ask the friendly folks at our front desk for one of our many customized itineraries where we’ve done the work for you and listed out an entire day of activities dedicated to fishing on Sanibel Island.

Regardless if you fish on our beaches, bays or inlets, you will need a fishing license, unless you are fishing with a licensed charter captain, under 16 years of age or a Florida resident over the age of 65. Licenses can be purchased easily online through

Sanibel and Captiva’s waters are known as some of the best fishing areas in the World, so be careful… Once the Sanibel fishing bug bites you, you might truly become a Sanibel Island cast-away!