Florida’s Cocoa Beach offers gray sand beaches and a premier offshore fishing experience. The region is the referred to as the “Surfing Capital of the East Coast.” However, beyond the shoreline, beneath the waves, Amberjack, Grouper, Mangrove Snapper, Trigger, Bass and Kingfish hide among the Coquina Reef. Cocoa Beach provides an unparalleled offshore fishing experience.
Cocoa Beach is home to Central Florida’s largest offshore fishing tournament, the Saltwater Classic. The Saltwater Classic is in its 17th year. During May, anglers congregate atop the reef to reel in the biggest Grouper, the biggest fish garnishes $2500. Waters may be congested during the tournament, but socializing with other anglers and cash prizes are worth the gridlock. Cocoa Beach remains a popular destination aside from May.
Anglers reel-in hefty fish atop Cocoa Beach’s deep waters, and Mangrove Snapper leap from the region’s reefs. According to Floridashorefishing.com, Mangrove Snapper inhabit the shoreline until maturity. When mature, these fish migrate to the reef. Mature Mangrove Snapper weigh up to 20 pounds. These fish possess keen eyesight and are caught most easily with a low visibility lead. Professional anglers suggest deploying a braided line and 20-pound leader while reeling-in these august fish, they’re known to give hard runs. Mangrove Snapper are a sought-after catch due to their coppery hue and rich taste.
Red Snapper, the Mangrove Snapper’s cousin, are abundant along the reef. These fish are the fisherman’s pride. Most agree that the Red Snapper is the most savory of aquatic dishes. According to Floridatoday.com, Red Snapper are layered in schools, in 90-foot deep water. However, these fish are often allusive. The Snapper appear on sonar, but anglers find it troublesome to deliver the bait at such great depths. Luckily, unlike reeling-in Red Snapper from the Gulf of Mexico, a Gulf Reef Angler license isn’t required.
Restoration of the region’s coral reef is underway. According to Floridatoday.com, articulated concrete mats with embedded Coquina were placed offshore, to replace lost reef. Most of the region’s schooling fish call the reef home, and anglers reel-in prize-winning fish along the reef.
Cocoa Beach offers fishing and much more. Don’t forget to stroll along the pier. The cities’ pier is home to many unique shops and dining. Additionally, you may catch a glimpse of one of the region’s infamous shark. The region’s offshore fishing allows the angler to reel-in Snapper, without a Gulf Coast Reef fishing license – hassle avoided.