Spearfishing is special. The up-close experience allows participants to get an incredible feeling of the vibe that inhabits the sea.
Though many fish will implement camouflage methods such as color-changing to hide from spearfishers, this adds to the challenge and makes the activity arguably more enjoyable. After all, we want the satisfaction of accomplishing something difficult.
Today, we will be discussing the best spearfishing locations on Earth. From fish that weigh over 240 pounds, to aggressive fish considered a big prize for fishers, the ocean is truly a spectacle.
Check out our top 10 Best Spearfishing Destinations in the World, along with some notable honorable mentions.
The 10 Best Spearfishing Destinations in the World
Check out our list of the best spearfishing destinations in the world.
1. Florida Keys
Florida contains many wonders of nature, and the waters surrounding the keys are no exception. The constant warm weather means that one can go spearfishing at any time during the year.
Fish found in the Florida Keys ideal for spearfishing include hogfish, lionfish, lobster, and the Mahi Mahi.
Finally, the entire 120-mile long area of the keys contains places for spearfishing, making it an ideal location for spearfishing regardless of the exact location.
2. San Diego, California
With the vast Pacific Ocean located West of California, it comes as no surprise that marine activities are a sight in California. Spearfishing is especially common in San Diego due to its Mediterranean climate.
The varying water temperatures mean that different species of fish are present in the water throughout the year. Species that one can expect to find in these waters include the yellowtail, Mahi, bass, and halibut.
Though the type of fish that can be captured mainly depends on both the season and the water temperature, one can efficiently engage in general spearfishing in all seasons but the coldest winters in San Diego.
3. Bali, Indonesia
Though Bali is often associated with its impeccable scenery, its marine wildlife allows for the quintessential place for spearfishing.
Fishes such as the Spanish mackerel and snappers are commonplace throughout the area, but there is much more game that these beautiful waters have to offer.
Featuring many spots for spearfishing located throughout the Bali islands, what makes this destination stand out for spearfishing is the variety of species found in the different Bali locations.
Amed, located on the Southeastern coast, features fish such as rainbow runners and amberjacks, while Lombok features multiple tuna species.
Sanur alone, which includes a coral reef off the coast, is home to smaller species like barracuda and bigger species such as short nose unicorn fish and giant trevally fish.
Bali’s clear waters allow for a scenic view of the ocean, and it provides a unique experience of what the ocean has to offer.
4. Azores, Portugal
The Azores archipelago has always been a hotspot for spearfishing by both locals and eager tourists. Composed of nine volcanic islands, spearfishing in this area is almost an art.
With the most productive time of the year being from June to September, various fish species are present in this area. In fact, the Azores have a season where various species of large tuna are present in the waters.
The world record size for a Bigeye tuna was broken in the Azores in 2014, measuring an astonishing 242.7 pounds.
Aside from tuna species such as the massive bluefins and yellowfins, there are also various marlin species. Other common species of fish include barracuda, great amberjack, wahoo, and bonito.
Another thing that makes the Azores so appealing for spearfishing is how the fish species found here are of bigger sizes and greater strengths, making this place ideal for big game fishing.
With beautiful beaches, scenic volcanos, and beautiful oceans, Hawaii can be a place where spearfishing is nonexistent and still be appealing for tourism.
Fortunately, Hawaii was one of the first places known to be engaged in spearfishing, and the wildlife in Hawaii is nothing short of fish for hunters to go after.
There are plenty of fish in this area that are easy to catch, including the Kole Tang, Manini, Goatfish, and milkfish. They are commonplace throughout the waters surrounding Hawaii.
For those who are into big-game fishing, Hawaii contains larger fish species such as black marlin, striped marlin, skipjack, big-eye tuna, wahoo, and shortnose spearfish broadbill swordfish, and mako shark.
In fact, Hawaii is the only place where blue and black marlins weighing more than 1,000 pounds have been captured.
Finally, coral reefs in Hawaii mean that there are many smaller, widely distributed species of fish located throughout the area, making this destination ideal for spearfishing beginners.
6. Krabi, Thailand
Famous for their clear waters, Krabi is at the heart of Thailand’s ventures into spearfishing and other aquatic activities.
It provides an uninterrupted amount of time for spearfishing with warm temperatures all year and the hot season. In contrast, it provides an uninterrupted amount of time for spearfishing, while its limestone cliffs add to the scenic view. Furthermore, this is a place best for capturing exotic fish.
Marine life in this area includes the king mackerel, various trevally species, milkfish, mangrove jacks, golden snappers, and queenfish. Because of the variety of wildlife found here, Krabi is ideal for both beginners and experts in spearfishing.
Many who visit Krabi for their aquatic activities often go camping there, as it’s sandy landscape, wonderful view of the stars, and available resources allow for a close-up experience with the wonders of Krabi.
7. Cape Verde
The volcanic islands that make up Cape Verde provide breathtaking views of the ocean and the landscape, but it is more than just the visual pleasure that makes Cape Verde a must-see place.
Cape Verde has an abundance of Wahoo fish present throughout the year, while there are also significant amounts of tuna, dorados, amberjacks, and Cubera snappers. Marlin and Sailfish are occasionally present in the water as well.
Further species include octopus and lobsters, while the notable number of shipwrecks in the area allows those not too familiar with spearfishing to practice. The climate of Cape Verde makes spearfishing an activity available year-round.
8. Cozumel, Mexico
This Mexican island located between the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean is the location of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, the second-largest coral reef in the world. Therefore, one can expect an abundance of marine wildlife here.
The fish that one can hunt for include the Mahi Mahi, rainbow runner, wahoo, Spanish mackerel, and Cubera snapper. While bigger and more valuable fish such as tuna and marlin are not present here, the aforementioned fish still pose a challenge to catch.
Other species found in Cozumel include triggerfish and lionfish, adding vibrant groups of fish to catch when exploring such an expansive coral reef.
9. Costa Rica
While the previously mentioned places on this list have been specific parts of countries, the entire nation of Costa Rica provides an area to go spearfishing.
The calm waters and warmer climate allow for spearfishing to occur all year long, with pelagic fish such as marlin, sailfish, and tuna being present during the peak season of spearfishing. The cubera snapper is considered a big prize when spearfishing here.
Aside from the sea’s wonders, there are also many freshwater fish easy to catch off the Northern Caribbean coast. A unique presence in Costa Rica is the pretty roosterfish, which is a mighty fish found mainly in tropical waters.
Finally, Costa Rica is well known for being the home of various exotic birds on the shore, adding a nice addition to the already magnificent background scenery.
The land down under can certainly apply to what Australia has to offer in its waters. With favorable temperatures year-round and fewer environmental issues due to government initiatives, spearfishing is at its safest and most active in Australia.
Though most sharks are off-limits as Australian law forbids hunting certain species deemed to be at risk, fish are abundant that one can seek in Australia due to the many regions on the island.
Common species include prized fish such as the barramundi, broadbill swordfish, yellowtail kingfish, king george whiting, and murray cod. Because of the consistent climate throughout the region, big-game fish is found in most areas of Australia.
Aside from such large and fierce fish, there are other exotic species present in Australian waters, such as trevally and mackerel species, marbled rockfish, snappers, abalone, and Australian salmon.
Because of the rising tourism in Australia and the government’s efforts to protect wildlife, finding an opportunity to go spearfishing in Australia is easy and safe.
Destinations Worthy of Honorable Mention
- Ascension Island, United Kingdom
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Ready to Spearfish?
Spearfishing is something special. The proximity of human and fish is as close as it gets, and the chance of either hitting or missing the target adds to the fun and intensity. It is no secret that the ocean offers much fish underwater, and spearfishing tests us.
Therefore, in performing the art of spearfishing, it is for the prospective hunter to remember where they are going. They should always know what forces of nature they will be up against and how to ensure their safety and surroundings.
As a result of all that the ocean has to offer, we hope that our listed destinations inform readers about the many species out there that they can seek through spearfishing while also highlighting the unique features of different tourist destinations worldwide.
In conclusion, the ocean is an extensive world that we still have so much to learn about, but with what we have learned, spearfishing is one of the most fun and intimate activities to do in the water, and there are many places to do it.