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Fishing on Cape Cod and the Islands

Fishing from a jetty
Photo courtesy of Vacation Rental Property ID 21047 in Chatham

Whether you are an experienced angler, somebody who picks up a rod and reel on occasion, or someone who has never put a worm on a hook, Cape Cod and the Islands have an abundance of places for you to cast your first line or your ten thousandth.

catch a fish in the surf
Catching a fish in the surf

Saltwater fishing is very popular on the Cape and Islands. One can wade into the flats to flyfish, fish from the shore (surfcast), or head out to sea by boat for some deep sea fishing. Striped Bass, Fluke, Bluefish, Flounder, Mackerel, Blue Fin and Yellow Fin, Haddock, and of course, Cod are just a few saltwater fish you may find on the end of your line when fishing the Cape and Islands. Top spots for saltwater fishing include Monomoy Point (Chatham), the flats of Provincetown, Herring Cove (Provincetown), Great Point (Nantucket), Dionis Beach (Nantucket), Barnstable Harbor, Chappy Beach (Martha’s Vineyard), Vineyard Haven Jetty (Martha’s Vineyard), Chapin Beach (Dennis), the Cape Cod Canal (Bourne) and Point of Rocks Beach (Brewster).

Often overlooked on Cape Cod and the Islands are the freshwater fishing opportunities. With over 360 fresh water ponds, there is no shortage of places to cast a line. Most of the ponds in the area have public access, and one can fish easily from the shore, from a public dock, or from a boat, as many ponds have a public access boat launch. The well-stocked ponds of Cape Cod (stocked in the spring and fall) have trout, salmon, bass, perch, sunfish, and, depending on the time of year, a variety of other fish. Hummock Pond and Sesachacha Pond are popular fishing holes on Nantucket, while Uncle Seth’s Pond and Duarte’s Pond are well known fishing holes on Martha’s Vineyard. On the Cape check out John’s Pond and Wakeby Lake (Mashpee), Schoolhouse Pond and Goose Pond (Chatham), Mill Pond (Brewster), Pleasant Lake (Harwich), Dennis Pond and Blackwater Pond (Provincetown). If looking for a variety of ponds in close proximity to one another, consider heading to Nickerson State Park in Brewster.

charter a fishing boat
Charter a Fishing Boat

With so much to choose from when it comes to fishing, it can be a bit overwhelming. Experienced or inexperienced, visiting anglers may find hiring a local guide helpful to navigate the myriad of fishing spots. If you are looking for a deep sea experience, there are a host of boat charters that can accommodate you, as well as tackle shops that can help you choose the best gear, lures, and bait for fishing in the area. View more Cape Cod Fishing Charters

Whether you come to fish in saltwater, freshwater or both, one thing is for certain - you will be heading home with plenty of great memories and a fishing tale or two.

Please note fresh and saltwater fishing licenses are required in Massachusetts. For more information go to Ma Fishing and Hunting Licence

About Becky Fischer

About Becky Fischer: I have worked for since 2003. Currently my position entails providing photography, video, and consultation services to vacation rental homeowners, and I have photographed over 700 homes on the Cape and Islands. My husband and three children moved to Brewster in 2006. I grew up outside of Boston, spent summer vacations on Nantucket, and was married in Orleans. My favorite activities on the Cape are walking on the CCRT, deep breaths at the beach, visiting great coffee shops, and working with my community to support the schools and local events.