A woman standing in shallow water with a fly-fishing rod in her hand
Some of the best flats fishing in the world takes place in Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Matt McIntosh/NOAA

There is a long history of fishing in the Florida Keys, and some people call it the "fishing capital of the world." From flats and mangroves in the backcountry, to coral reefs and deep water in the Gulf Stream, this diverse range of habitats is home to an unprecedented variety of fish species that can keep anglers busy year-round.

Because recreational and commercial fishing are so important to the economy and culture of the Keys, anglers here are serious about fishing responsibly, and following regulations that are designed to maintain healthy habitats and fisheries for generations to come.

Anglers battle a tarpon to the surface from a small boat

Blue Star Fishing Guides

Want to recreate responsibly? The fishing guides within our network of Blue Star certified operators follow best practices and regulations.

a person in a boat handling a tarpon near the surface of the water

Fishing Regulations

Become familiar with state and federal laws before your fishing trip in Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.

A frontal view of a man holding a fish with a hook in its mouth

Fishing Best Practices

Tips on catch and release fishing, proper interactions with sea life, and general information on regulations, marine debris, and invasive species.