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Fishing on Kauai

Kaua‘i offers some of the best sport fishing in the state. The reason is due to plunging ocean depths just off the coast that surround the island, giving enthusiasts an ideal opportunity to snag some of the most touted Pacific big game fish.

Deep sea fishing on Kauai can land a variety of species including the famed Hawaiian ‘ahi which actually consists of two different tuna species, yellowfin and bigeye. Other notable species found in Pacific waters that will earn you bragging rights include mahimahi, wahoo (ono), Pacific blue marlin and hebi (shortbill spearfish). Even though all of these fish are abundant year-round, there are seasons where certain species are more prevalent. Tuna, for example, is more likely to be caught during summer while marlin thrives in fall. Winter traditionally has the least number of fish while summer provides ample bounty.

The best way to fish on Kaua‘i is by accompanying professionals from one of the local tour companies like Captain Don’s Kaua‘i Sport Fishing or Ohana Fishing Charters. They invite visitors to hop on board one of their boats for four-, six- or eight-hour charters and allow you to experience what it’s like to hook your own Pacific Ocean fish. The perks of setting out on one of these adventures is having experienced guides assisting and providing you with proper equipment. Read more

Please note, however, that at the end of the trip, you usually just get to keep smaller catch. As far as the larger fish are concerned, make sure to snap a photo because you’ll likely only take home a fillet. The captain and crew make a living selling locally caught fish to markets around the island and they use what is captured during these outings in order to do so.

Most of the tours depart from Nawiliwili Habor in Līhu‘e or Port Allen Harbor in ʻEle‘ele. The bonus about the location of these journeys is that you’ll get some exceptional views of the island including the possibility of seeing the inaccessible Nā Pali Coast. And if you’re especially lucky, depending on the time of year, you might see pods of Hawaiian humpback whales with their babies.

The best part about fishing on Kauai, however, is enjoying the fruits of your labor by getting to savor the exquisite taste of your own freshly caught Hawaiian seafood.

kauai sport fishing

Kauai sport fishing. Photo: Stephanie Rogers.

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