This is a list of the best fishing piers in Sarasota & Manatee County.
Looking for 700 foot saltwater piers…
… with public bathrooms, bait shops nearby and lots of parking?
You’ll love this list!
Let’s get started!
Here are the best places to go fishing on a pier that we’ll talk about:
- Sarasota Pier
- New Pass Fishing Piers
- Overlook Park
- Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier
- Skyway Pier South End
- Venice Fishing Pier
- Humphris Park
- Osprey Fishing Pier
- Bradenton Beach Pier
- Rod and Reel Pier
- Anna Maria Island City Pier
- Longboat Key Public Pier
- Riverwalk Fishing Pier
The Sarasota Pier is among the best fishing piers in Sarasota. It’s also known as Tony Saprito Fishing Pier and Hart’s Landing Fishing Pier. Everyone refers to it differently, but it’s the same pier.
The Tony Saprito Fishing Pier stretches 550 feet into the Sarasota Bay, has a bait shop and is also the nearest fishing pier in Sarasota. It’s also open 24 hours. If you’re looking for the best shore fishing without a boat, this is it.
Do you need a fishing license on the Sarasota Pier?
A saltwater fishing license is required on the Sarasota Pier. While many websites state that it’s one the free fishing piers, it is not. Using the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Fishing Pier Finder, you’ll find that they do not pay for the commercial fishing license. According to the FWC website, “Individuals saltwater fishing from a pier with a valid saltwater pier license.” – Do I need a fishing license on a pier in Florida.
Sarasota Pier fishing pole rentals
Since you can’t go fishing without a pole, Hart’s Landing offers fishing pole rentals for $10 per day. Hart’s Landing also offers live shrimp, live pinfish, fishing tackle, bait buckets, hooks, sinkers, floats, etc.
Lots of fishing spots
Between the fishing pier and the Hart’s Landing bait shop, you’ll find Eloise Werlin Park. It has a kids playground, a walking path with scenic views and lots of fishing spots. You can fish in 3 different directions and even towards the pier foundation.
To summarize, Sarasota Pier has a fishing pier, bait shop, fishing docks, public bathrooms, a kids playground and lots of parking. This is why Hart’s Landing is our list of the best things to do in downtown Sarasota.
New Pass Fishing Piers
There are 3 New Pass Fishing Piers on Sarasota Bay. They’re all located next to each other about a quarter mile past the Mote Marina Aquarium. They’re clean, safe and offer the most beautiful pier fishing in Sarasota, Florida.
Since the piers face Northwest, you’ll have a beautiful view of Longboat Key on the left side and Sarasota on the right side. This is the best place to fish and watch the sunset at the same time. If you’re looking for Sarasota county fishing piers with bait shops nearby, check them out.
New Pass Fishing Piers are open 24 hours and have lots of free parking.
Bait shops near New Pass Fishing Pier
New Pass Grill & Bait Shop is about a minute away. 0.4 miles to be exact. You’ll pass the bait shop when you’re driving to the fishing piers. There’s no chance you can miss it. They carry live bait, frozen bait and fishing tackle. They even have burgers, sandwiches, beer, wine and ice cream!
The Overlook Park has a small pier that bends around New Pass Bridge. Since it’s directly under the bridge, it has excellent shade and great cover for fish to hide in. It’s never too crowded and probably the most overlooked among Sarasota piers. It’s on Longboat Key, across from the New Pass fishing piers.
You’ll be fishing where the Gulf of Mexico connects with Sarasota Bay. The current is fairly strong, so make sure to bring bigger sinkers (weights) and use live bait. There’s a bait shop nearby if you need live shrimp. This is one of those off the beaten path fishing piers in Sarasota County.
Bait shop near Overlook Park
The closest bait shop to the Overlook Park fishing pier is New Pass Grill & Bait Shop.
Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier
If you’re fishing without a boat, the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier is the best place to fish. When the old bridge partially collapsed in 1980, it was converted into the longest fishing pier in the world. Considering the water depth under the bridge, pier foundation shade, underwater structure and proximity to land, there’s nothing really like it.
It’s open 24 hours, has a bait shop and is considered one of the best fishing piers in Tampa Bay. You can catch everything from Snook to Goliath Grouper. Many species are protected, some are catch and release and others you can take home. So make sure to check FWC saltwater fishing regulations before you get too excited.
The North end of the Skyway Fishing Pier is about 3,300 feet long. It has over 200 easily accessible parking spots and 18 artificial reefs. The reefs naturally formed when debris fell in the Gulf of Mexico after the collapse in 1980.
Is there a bait shop on the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier?
Yes. The Skyway Bait Shop carries live shrimp, live pinfish, frozen squid, fishing tackle and more.
Do you need a fishing license on Skyway Fishing Pier?
You don’t need a saltwater fishing license on the Skyway Fishing Pier. It’s included in the entrance cost.
Skyway Fishing Pier Cost (North End)
The cost of the Skyway Fishing Pier is $4 per vehicle + $4/adult and $2/child (6-12 years old). Kids 5 and under free. Your entrance and fishing license is valid for 24 hours.
Skyway Pier South End
The Skyway Pier South End is on the other side of the old Skyway Bridge. If you’re fishing without boat, this is one of the best fishing piers near Sarasota. It’s fast to drive to, easy to access and very convenient. Skyway pier fishing is unlike any other experience in Sarasota area.
The South end of the Skyway Fishing Pier is about 8,250 feet long. It has over 571 easily accessible parking spots and 65 artificial reefs. The reefs naturally formed when debris fell in the Gulf of Mexico after the collapse in 1980.
Is there a bait shop on the Skyway Pier South End?
Yes. The Skyway Pier South End also has a Skyway Bait Shop that carries live shrimp, live pinfish, fishing tackle and more.
What can you catch on Skyway Pier South End?
The most common catches are snook, mangrove snapper, grouper, Spanish mackerel, king mackerel, Cobia and sheepshead. However, many people have caught sharks, tarpon, amberjack and many more.
Skyway Pier fishing pole rentals
Since you can’t go fishing without a pole, you’ll probably need to rent one. Luckily, the Skyway Bait Shop has fishing poles for rent.
Venice Fishing Pier
Venice Fishing Pier is 720 feet long, 22 feet wide and is over 20 feet high. At the end of the pier, the water depth drops to about 16.5 feet. That’s pretty deep compared to fishing piers in Sarasota. Throughout the day, you’ll see fishermen catching everything from snook to stingrays.
If you’ve never fished piers this high, make sure to rent a fishing rod. If you’re bringing your own fishing pole, make sure it’s short and can handle bringing up the weight.
In 2019, Venice Pier underwent a $738,769 renovation. They replaced the deck, railings, lighting poles, fish cleaning areas, benches, trash cans and more. The pier foundation and debris found around the pier, makes it an ideal place to fish. They also have lots of parking.
Do you need a fishing license on the Venice Pier in Florida?
You do not need a saltwater fishing license on Venice Pier. Venice pier pays for a commercial fishing license so it’s considered one of the free fishing piers in Venice, Florida.
Is there a bait shop on Venice Pier in Florida?
Yes, there’s a bait shop on Venice Pier that sells live bait, frozen bait and offers fishing pole rental.
Is Venice Pier a safe fishing spot?
If you’re looking for safe fishing spots, the Venice fishing pier wins by a long shot. It’s always busy with families and couples who come for the water views and sunsets. It also has two pier restaurants. Considering they’re the best waterfront restaurants in Venice, Florida, it’s definitely a safe place to fish.
Humphris Park is located on the South Jetty in Venice, Florida. It’s by far one of our favorite places to fish with live bait. Imagine a concrete paved path with giant boulders on both sides that stretches into the Gulf of Mexico. Definitely one of the best fishing piers in Sarasota County.
How to fish on the South Jetty
We love fishing at the very end of the asphalt walkway. Cast your fishing pole with a live shrimp and a 1/4oz or 1/2oz sliding egg sinker. You’ll have mangrove snappers within minutes! If you’re willing to work, use Sea Striker Got-Cha plugs to catch Spanish mackerel. It’s not easy, but it’s fun.
There are also lots of shore fishing spots along the walking path next to Jetty Jacks. Jetty Jacks is a tiny Venice waterfront restaurant offering burgers, hot dogs and ice cream. There’s lots of free parking.
Bait shop near South Jetty
Pick up some live bait from a bait shop nearby. We prefer Fish Tales Bait & Tackle since it’s only about a 10 minute drive. They have everything from live bait to all sorts of fishing equipment.
Osprey Fishing Pier
Osprey Fishing Pier is one of the smallest fishing piers in Sarasota County. It faces West with a beautiful view of the sunset. It’s small, quiet, overlooked and a great safe fishing spot. The only downside is that there is practically no parking. So you have park down the street and walk a little.
Since it’s not too popular, it’s also not overfished. It’s a great place to go fishing with the kids.
Bradenton Beach Pier
Bradenton Beach Pier is a long pier with a bait shop and a famous restaurant. It extends into Sarasota Bay and is one of the only free fishing piers in the area. It’s commonly referred to the Bridge Street Pier. At the tip of the pier, you’ll find Anna Maria Oyster Bar on the Pier. Which is one of the best waterfront restaurants on Anna Maria Island.
How long is the Bradenton Beach Pier?
It’s about 550 feet long.
Do you need a fishing license on the Bradenton Beach Pier?
No, you do not need a saltwater fishing license. They pay for a commercial license which allows anyone to fish for free.
Is there a bait shop near Bradenton Beach Pier?
Yes, you’ll find Bridge Street Bait Shop right before you walk onto the pier.
Rod and Reel Pier
The Rod and Reel Pier is one of the most historic “Old Florida” fishing piers near Sarasota. It’s located on Anna Maria Island about 45-55 minutes from downtown Sarasota. There is bait fish everywhere and plenty of fish to catch. There’s also a tiny pier restaurant at the end of the pier.
How long is the Rod and Reel Pier?
The Rod and Reel Pier is about 350 foot long.
How much does it cost to fish on the Rod and Reel Pier?
The Rod and Reel Pier costs $2 per person. They also rent fishing poles for $2 an hour and sell frozen shrimp.
Anna Maria Island City Pier
The Anna Maria Island City Pier is one of the longest fishing piers near Sarasota, Florida. It’s located on Anna Maria Island, about 3 minutes from the Rod and Reel Pier.
How long is Anna Maria Island City Pier?
The Anna Maria Island City Pier is about 678 foot long.
Do you need a fishing license on AMI City Pier?
No, you do not need a fishing license on Anna Maria Island City Pier. According to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Pier Finder, AMI City Pier pays for the commercial fishing license. Therefore, it’s free to fish on the pier.
Is there a bait shop on Anna Maria Island City Pier?
Yes. There’s a bait shop that sells live bait and fishing tackle at very reasonable prices. They also serve burgers, cuban sandwiches and other food.
Longboat Key Public Pier
Longboat Key Public Pier is quiet, safe and not overfished. Compared to other fishing piers in Sarasota, this is a small pier. It’s secluded and truly a hidden gem. It’s less than a quarter mile to Longboat Pass where the Gulf of Mexico connects with Sarasota Bay.
It’s one of the best fishing spots to catch fresh fish that come in from the Gulf of Mexico. Longboat Key fishing pier is also across from Jewfish Key. So there’s a natural bottleneck for curious fish that enter from the Gulf.
If you want to switch it up, you can also try Longboat Pass Fishing Beach. Which is very well known for shore fishing among the locals. You’ll see lots of people surf fishing right from the beach.
Riverwalk Fishing Pier
The Riverwalk Fishing Pier is open 24 hours, has public restrooms and lots of free parking. It’s located along the Bradenton Riverwalk. So there’s lots of bank fishing spots if you get tired of the pier.
The current is strong, so many sure you know what you’re doing. Otherwise you won’t catch anything. Fish against the current and use heavy sinkers.
What can you catch on Riverwalk Fishing Pier?
- Mangrove Snapper
- Spotted Seatrout
- Jack Crevelle
Public Fishing Piers (Sarasota)
Looking for the best fishing spots near you? We created a shortcut to find the nearest fishing piers in Sarasota based on your current location.