Visitors and residents alike come to California’s coastal towns for rest, relaxation, and to recharge their batteries, as well as enjoy the ocean, beaches, and all the fun activities the west coast has to offer in the year-round warm climate. While many visitors will dress in bathing suits and gather beach gear for a day full of water adventures like kayaking, swimming, snorkeling, or some time on shore building sandcastles, strolling the beach, or just enjoying the weather together, some have come in search of a California fish story. Pack your bags – and your fishing gear – and head to Newport Beach for a fishing trip of a lifetime. Make sure you secure the right California fishing license and brush up on catch limits and other rules before heading out and using our fishing guide for Newport Beach.
Types of Fish
Different fish favor the waters of Newport Beach at different times of the year, so make sure that you check your local fishing report for the most up-to-date information on what’s biting and where before planning your day. When fishing the waters of Newport Beach in the fall, be prepared to hook tuna, yellowtail, bonito, dorado, lingcod, calico bass, California halibut, and more. The type of fish you hook will also depend on where around Newport Beach you drop your line. Anglers casting a line in winter can add sand bass, rock cod, sculpin, and sea bass, while anglers visiting in the warmer months can expect to add sheepshead and even squid to the list of catches!
There are a lot of locations to consider when mapping out your perfect fishing trip. Cast off for a fishing expedition of a lifetime in Newport Bay. The inshore waters are the perfect place to head if you’re looking to hook halibut for your next meal. In the marshy, sandy, and rocky environment of the water, there is one that these fish love to frequent. You might also come across calico and sand bass, out for a visit before swimming back to their home water.
It’s a major feature of southern California fishing you’ll surely want to add to your itinerary. You and your best fishing buddies will want to make your way to the kelp beds around Newport Bach at some point during your trip if you’re looking to hook a variety of inshore and offshore species. The horseshoe kelp of the area are kelp paddies that are home to several species of inshore fish, as well as the occasional offshore visitor.
While it’s a good 28 miles from Newport Beach, it won’t take long to get to the waters around the island and drop anchor to make fishing memories. It’s a spot where you and your fishing buddies can expect to hook tuna, mahi mahi, striped marlin, white sea bass, and fish story-worthy calico bass.
Piers and Beaches
You want to get the most out of your boat, so you’ll likely do most of your fishing from onboard. But to fully utilize the fishing guide for Newport Beach to have a fishing adventure, you’ll want to leave the boat docked and load up your rental car with all your gear. Make sure to add spots like the “Wedge” – a rocky jetty on the easternmost end of the Balboa Peninsula, Corona Del Mar Beach, or the Newport Beach Pier, which stretches 1,000 feet out into the water! The Wedge hosts whitefish, halibut, mackerel, and calico bass. Cast your line at the beach and add large white sea bass and sheepshead. Pack up for the pier and anticipate bonito, barracuda, and sometimes yellowtail.
The manmade Southern California island spears up from the waters of Newport Beach and is loaded with fun when you need a break from fishing. Enjoy upscale shops and restaurants, and even an amusement park. It’s located right by Balboa Pier, which is a great place to spend some time, and anglers will want to pack their gear for the area’s prime fishing. Make sure to add it to your itinerary, as it will make for a great day of fishing and fun!
Leave the rod and reel on your vessel at Carefree Boat Club and let someone else take the helm for a while. You can charter tours for a number of activities, including snorkeling, SCUBA diving, whale or dolphin watching when the season is right, or a sunset cruise, in addition to guided fishing tours. Whatever type of tour you choose, make sure to bring your camera to capture the breathtaking pictures of the water, shoreline, and majestic sea creatures you’re bound to encounter.
Corona Del Mar State Beach
While also being a great place to fish, it’s fun for everyone – even those who don’t want to spend all their time with a fishing pole in their hands. The park is open 6 a.m. – 10 p.m. daily and offers a number of non-fishing activities. Swim, take a walk on the half-mile-long sandy beach, surf, snorkel, and more. If your pup made the trip with you, dogs are allowed from the park opening to 4:30 p.m. daily. After 4:30, they are not allowed on the beach or any beachfront sidewalk. For your convenience, beach wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-serve basis and can be checked out from the lifeguard headquarters located at the base of the pier.
Dock & Dine
When your stomach rumbles while you’re out on the water, or you want to catch a meal before docking the boat for the night back at Carefree Boat Club, take advantage of the many area restaurants of the area that participate in the unique “dock & dine” experience. Participating restaurants offer first-come, first-serve dock space for you and your crew to pull up to the dock and enjoy great food and drinks either in their establishment or right on board your own vessel! It’s a fun way to enjoy a meal, while also keeping your valuables safe and your Newport Beach fishing excursion worry-free. Those who don’t want to miss any time out on the water can even order food to go and have a delicious fresh meal aboard as you head out to sea again. There are a myriad of restaurants to choose from for breakfast, lunch, dinner, happy hour, or a soothing nightcap after an exciting day on the water. Choose from delicious seafood from Newport Landing Restaurant, American fare from the Harborside Restaurant, or your favorite Mexican dish from Sol Mexican Cocina, among many others.
Fun Zone Arcade & Game Room
Indulge the kid and gamer in you, or any of the younger anglers on the trip after you’ve set the rod and reel aside. Choose from both modern and “old-school” games. Try your hand at Skee-Ball, Deal or No Deal, and many others to pass the time. The arcade has been around since 1936 and requires no admission fee, so you can wander in and out as you explore the surrounding area and take a break from the high seas.
King’s Eye Escape Room
Spend 60 minutes of your Newport Beach fishing respite with one of the country’s fastest-growing on-shore activities. Work together with your fellow anglers to solve the clues and break out of the room in 60 minutes or less to win. Rooms are ranked by difficulty and the number of people needed to solve the puzzles. Your group must be smaller than ten participants and only one group is allowed to wait in the lobby, so plan on arriving shortly after your appointment time.
Set aside some time to hit the beach that bears the name of the town. Newport Beach and its pier are the perfect places to hang out and get some sun and time in the water when you want to leave the boat docked. There’s seating along the pier so you can sit and watch the marine life play in the water, walk to the end and back for some exercise, or if you just can’t resist, you can bring your gear along to hopefully catch your next meal or fish story.
Newport Beach Vineyards and Winery
For over 20 years the vineyard has been growing, harvesting, and maturing its own award-winning wines right on the property in Upper Newport Bay. Over 1,200 vines help create delicious offerings, and you’ll have to visit to find out which red, white, rose, or selection from their Estate Collection pairs best with your next meal.
A perfect way to bring land and sea together is to go see where the pirates live! Pirate House is actually a private residence in the Newport Beach area. What makes it a fun attraction is the many pirate statues and pirate-themed pieces throughout the property. Spot pirates hanging out on the home’s balconies, guarding the perimeter, and even keeping a watch out near the water. There are pirate flags waving from the boats, a boat with a cannon, and one pirate lifts his telescope to keep watch on the goings-on beyond the home. Don’t be afraid to get out and take pictures with the pirates and other zany characters on the property. There’s even a group of pirates hanging out at the end of the dock playing cards for treasure.
Sea Life Watching
Set sail in search of sea life! There are several charter companies that take you out into the Pacific in search of a glimpse of sea life including dolphins, whales, and others. Book a private tour for you and your group or share the experience and make new friends.
After a day on the high seas – which may have included rough waters – you deserve to rest, relax, and have a chance to fully unwind. There are several spas and salons in Newport Beach and the surrounding area waiting for you to relax. Choose your spa and treatments like manicures, pedicures, facials, wraps, scrubs, or a combination of your perfect experiences. Leave with a new look that includes a new hairstyle or professionally applied makeup. Even the guys can relax with treatments designed especially for them like a men’s manicure, facial, and other services created to meet their needs.
Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and Ecological Reserve
The area is made up of the bluffs surrounding the bay and is home to a number of sensitive species, including the California Gnatcatcher, San Diego Cactus Wren, and Burrowing Owl. The grassland and coastal sage scrub of the area are renowned as one of the finest bird-watching sights in all of North America, with over 35,000 migrating birds. You can also while away the time biking, horseback riding, jogging, or admiring the area from the scenic overlook. The area is open daily from 7 a.m. – sunset for your enjoyment, and the Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center is open Tuesday-Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. No admission fees.
As with any coastal town, the sand and water activities are endless in Newport Beach. Trade in your fishing gear for snorkel or SCUBA gear, wakeboarding, stand-up paddle boarding, surfing, or any other water activity you can think of, or just splash around in the waves. Whatever you choose, fishing and boating are not your only options for a memorable time in Newport Beach.
Fishing Fun in Newport Beach
Once you seek out the best locations to cast a line around Newport Beach, you’ll want to make sure you can get to your chosen spot, settle in, and have everything you need. That includes a fishing boat that can handle the waters of Newport Beach and the surrounding area, your whole crew, and all of your gear. Have your bases covered – along with some others you might not have thought of – with a membership to the Carefree Boat Club. Our Newport Beach location has the boat you need when you need it. Avoid the hit-and-miss availability of small rental companies, as well as the hassles like storage, maintenance, trailering, covering, cleaning, or extra fees like insurance and mooring that come with owning and transporting your own boat. Reserve a boat at Newport Beach or any of our other locations and it will be ready for your use each time you show up at our marina during your reservation period.
Contact us today to book your next great fall Newport Beach fishing getaway!