Fishing in San Clemente

Select Local Merchants

First String Sportfishing sails the open seas off of Southern California, taking passengers on both fishing voyages and educational marine tours. Its largest boat, First String, can hold up to 149 people for its whale-watching tours. On board the 93-foot boat, you’ll find two 9-ton fish holds, two radars, a large-screen television, and a dolphin-to-English dictionary. First String Sportfishing’s other boats depart for both Californian and Mexican waters on fishing excursions. These trips typically yield shallow-water rockfish such as Sculpin and Whitefish and larger varieties including yellowtail and barracuda.

2313 Plaza A La Playa
San Clemente,

Dana Wharf Whale Watching's expert crews and skippers glide their watercrafts on the open seas so visitors can soak up sunshine while searching for rare and endangered whales as they migrate south to avoid tax season. Expert captains steer crafts through frothy spumes and narrate each trip, educating passengers on the abundant life beneath the glassy waters. Voyagers can either venture into the boat's full-service galley for a hot meal or bring their own food and nonalcoholic drinks to stave off hunger and resist eating the ocean's jagged, hamburger-shaped coral.

34675 Golden Lantern
Dana Point,

Reservations/Appointments: Required

Established: 2014

Staff Size: 3 people

Average Duration of Services: 1?2 hours

Handicap Accessible: Yes

Brands Used: Lani Fishing

Recommended Age Group: All Ages

Pro Tip: Enjoy being outdoors and have an interest in fishing different techniques.

Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Fly fishing the simple way with Tenkara.

Q&A with Chris Carter, Owner

When and how did you first develop a passion for your work?

I started fishing as a little kid using a bamboo cane pole. I saw an older fellow using the first spinning rod that I had ever seen and said to myself, "Someday I am going to have one of those." I have enjoyed fishing in salt water and fresh water my whole life. I decided to start this business trying different methods of fishing. The Tenkara method was so simple to do, so I knew others of any age would enjoy it, and people that have a physical disability would also have fun with it. There is no reel involved.

As the old adage says, "Stuff happens." What training do you and your staff have to stay ahead of the unexpected?

As we go through life, I have found that sometimes going back to simpler methods of doing something you enjoy is actually a lot more fun and brings out the kid in you. It is important to share with others when you find something so enjoyable, especially in these times we live in.

Have you ever been a patron of your own business? If so, what was the most enjoyable part?

Seeing the happiness of others.

Is there anything else you want to add that we didn't cover?

Tenkara fly fishing consists of a rod, line, and a fly?a very simple method of fly fishing that almost anyone can enjoy doing, even with those with some physical disabilities.

26805 Calle Real
Dana Point,

While seated in a boat on Laguna Niguel Lake, visitors feast their eyes on the surrounding rolling hills and lush forestry while taking advantage of 44 acres of fishing spots. The staff constantly stocks the waters with new fish, sending thousands of pounds of rainbow trout, catfish, and other species to swim amid the watery depths. With the fishing arena prepared, they then rappel down on fishing lines to awaiting customers to supply permits, poles, and bait, which they use to entice bluegill and other aquatic passersby.

Though all share the same lake, visitors can embark on fishing adventures in multiple ways. They can wrestle with carp from the lakeside, steer a rented boat, or bob across the water in float tubes, a single-person watercraft reminiscent of the floating easy chairs used by retired penguins.

28241 La Paz Road
Laguna Niguel,

Mad Maui BBQ Fusion patrols the streets of Oceanside in its mobile food truck, rolling over hunger by slinging a slew of barbecue creations. The Mad Maui burger combines a sweet-chili-marinated beef patty with tropical fruit salsa, grilled onions, sesame seeds, blue cheese, and red cabbage, perfect for backyard games of edible Frisbee ($8). Diners can snack on two salsa-coated pulled-pork tacos ($5) or munch on Volcano nachos ($7), made with chipotle cheese and kalua pork. The cooks also dispense orders of sweet-potato fries or pineapple poppers to bolster meals and match behemoth appetites ($2.50 each).

1719 Oceanside Blvd

Davey's Locker Sportfishing guides guests onto the water aboard the mighty Freelance, an state-of-the-art open-water and open-deck touring and fishing boat. During full-day and evening fishing trips, anglers of all experience levels ply the more than 40 miles of coastline off Catalina Island, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, hitting up fishing hot-spots that change with the seasons. During tours, a full-service kitchen, indoor restaurant with booths, and an indoor lounge keep passengers comfortable. Crew members are onboard to provide any needed assistance, and other amenities, such as computers and live bait wells, help with the fishing process.

400 Main St.
Newport Beach,