The Best Places to Fish on the Big Island of Hawaii

Updated on January 14, 2017

Fishing Spots on the Big Island

The Big Island of Hawaii is surrounded by dense reef that is full of tropical fish—most of which are indigenous to this part of the world. This article will help you find the best places to catch some of these rare species on the Big Island and prepare you for the type of experience you will have at the many fishing spots available in Hawaii.

Source

Hawaiian Fishing Rules, Regulations and FAQs

Do you need a permit or license to fish in Hawaii?

No, you do not need any type of permit or fishing license to fish in Hawaii. All you need is a pole, hooks, line, and bait.

Are there restricted fishing areas in Hawaii?

You can fish anywhere that is legal to stand. Respect the locals and avoid areas that are “Kapu” (sacred) or have “No Trespassing” signs.

I caught this triggerfish at Keahou Harbor one afternoon.
I caught this triggerfish at Keahou Harbor one afternoon. | Source

Where to Fish in Hawaii if you Don't Have a Boat

The west side of the island has reef close to shore that attracts snorkelers and tourists from all over the world. Most of the coast is perfect for fishing, but only some beaches have perfect fishing conditions.

Keahou Harbor

The Keahou harbor is a great place to fish if you are looking for a family-friendly, mellow beach. The bay has two sides—one where you can sit on the pier and catch larger fish, and another where you can sit on a rock wall and catch smaller fish with the kids.

The bay is full of eels, angelfish, manini, yellow tang, and much more. The bay is usually calm, but has the best fishing conditions when the boats are out. When the boats are close to shore, the fish tend to swim away from the loud motors.

Anaeho’omalu Bay (A-Bay)

A-Bay is an excellent beach for fishing and is found near Waikoloa. The beach is very long and has the best fish on the left side of the shore where there is less sand and fewer people.

The bay is usually a great place to see turtles, but also offers some amazing fishing, including barracuda, mahi mahi, and triggerfish. Be sure to look at the conditions before packing up to fish; A-Bay has windy weather sometimes that makes it hard to cast out.

This is a lion fish, which is a very common catch in Hawaii.  If you catch one, throw them back, because they are poisonous.
This is a lion fish, which is a very common catch in Hawaii. If you catch one, throw them back, because they are poisonous. | Source

Spencer Beach Park

At Spencer Beach, the fish are plentiful. If you take your tackle box to the edge of the pavilion, you will be able to see a bunch of fish before you even put your bait on the line.

This beach is a perfect place to take children who need to go home saying that they caught a fish. Within seconds, you will get a bite on your line. Just be sure to snag at the line when you feel the fish bite down as they are used to eating off of a hook.

I caught this pufferfish by accident at A-Bay.  Be sure to study which fish are poisonous before eating them!
I caught this pufferfish by accident at A-Bay. Be sure to study which fish are poisonous before eating them! | Source

Catching Big Fish Off the Big Island Shore

Old Airport

Every time that I have gone fishing at Kona's old airport ("O.A.'s" as it is referred to by the locals), I went home with fish. Sometimes the water can be very rough due to strong, off-shore winds, so be sure to fish in your sandals (or, "slippers" as we call them in Hawaii). There are sharp rocks that you must stand on to get your line over the drop-off, where a rich coral reef exists.

One warning would be to watch out for wana (vah-nah), or sea urchin, which live on the rocks and will cause a very uncomfortable injury if stepped on.

show route and directions
A markerAnaehoomalu Bay -
Anaehoomalu Bay, Puako, HI 96738, USA
get directions

B markerOld Airport, Kona -
Old Kona Airport State Recreation Area, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
get directions

C markerKeahou Bay -
Keauhou Bay, Kahaluu-Keauhou, HI 96740, USA
get directions

D markerSpencer Beach Park -
Samuel M. Spencer Beach Park, Kawaihae, HI 96743, USA
get directions

Questions & Answers

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      • profile image

        Bobby Ament 

        6 weeks ago

        Thank you for the fishing information. I live the Big Island

      • brittanytodd profile imageAUTHOR

        Brittany Kennedy 

        6 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

        kelleyward, thank you so much for your comment. You will have to come back to the islands soon!

      • profile image

        kelleyward 

        6 years ago

        Okay now I'm jealous! I've been to Hawaii a couple times and can't wait to go back. I'd love to visit the big island and use these fishing tips you have here. Voted up and shared! Kelley

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