New Orleans, LA Fishing: The Big Easy of Louisiana

New Orleans is the Big Easy of Louisiana. Here are some tips on NOLA fishing plus some exciting things that you can do while you're in the city.

New Orleans, LA Fishing: The Big Easy of Louisiana
New Orleans, LA Fishing: The Big Easy of Louisiana
Team Guidesly

January 24, 2022, 7 min read

Updated on August 19, 2022

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Around the world, you can only compare a few places with the beauty of New Orleans. Many multilingual residents in this hub city reside near the Atlantic Ocean. French, African, and American cultures are strong here and are displayed frequently throughout the city. 

French Colonists founded New Orleans in 1718 and were part of the French Louisiana territory until the United States bought it in 1803. This event is also known as the Louisiana Purchase. After that, the city quickly grew to become the third-largest city in the United States. Based on the recent census, it is now considered the most populous city in the state as there are 383,997 residents in the city. 

New Orleans ports are crucial to the economic development of the United States. It allows faster transportation and shipment of goods from the Gulf Coast region towards other parts of the world. Generating almost 100 million dollars a year, nearly all the ports in New Orleans have four lines of business: cargo, rail, cruise, and real estate. The titular Port of New Orleans itself is untaxed from its revenues. 

Tourists can indulge in the picturesque nightlife full of vibrant music, parties, and unique New Orleans cuisine throughout the city. Moreover, it is known as the "Hollywood South" since most of its parts have been the site of many films and pop culture projects. The French Quarter is at the heart of the town, a district filled with French and Spanish Creole architecture and heritage. However, while many tourists visit New Orleans for the Mardi Gras and seaside casinos, fishing is also a big thing in this city. Seafood is a significant trademark of New Orleans, and the waters surrounding the city make a perfect habitat for delicious seafood. Big game, bottom feeders, and exotic Louisiana fish are famous for visiting anglers.

New Orleans Fishing 

view of lake during mid day

Fishing opportunities in New Orleans are open for everyone who wants to explore this lively and historic city. One of the most popular fishing avenues in New Orleans is the Charter fishing services, where many experienced locals help tourists identify good fishing spots. The price varies per hour, but the knowledge, guidance, and the guarantee of a big catch are worth every penny spent here. 

Diverse freshwater and saltwater fish swim in the fast currents of the many lakes and streams of the city. Although the water has brackish quality, the government is adamant about conserving water quality and helping marine life to thrive. Anglers and other recreationists are free to use the lakes and streams of New Orleans as long as they strictly follow the rules and regulations. Water flowing from the Mississippi River provides migratory fish passage towards the city. 

Lake Pontchartrain is at the top of the list whenever a publication mentions freshwater fishing in New Orleans. It has 630 square miles of freshwater and has the longest straight bridge hanging above water globally. Alligators, snapping turtles, and a wide variety of freshwater fish. Fishing is allowed year-round, and you can catch crappie, garfish, and red drum. 

If the Lake is not your type, you can always fish in the Mississippi River. It runs through the town and has numerous fishing opportunities. There are catfish and bass swimming near the banks between the river and the levees situated around it. 

Some of the record-breaking catfish, those weighing 90 to 110 pounds, are from the Mississippi River. Fast currents of the Mississippi River pose a challenge to beginner anglers. Being accompanied by locals or getting help from charter services are best if you are testing out the waters of the Mississippi River from New Orleans. 

Many charters spread throughout the city help visiting anglers to experience New Orleans fishing and try out exciting fishing techniques. Most of these techniques effectively reel in a big catch, and some are just for the thrill. Thanks to the fast waters of the Mississippi River, drift fishing has become one of the popular fishing techniques offered for tourists to explore. This fishing method involves positioning the boat towards the fishing hole and drifting independently. The wind and the natural currents often carry your boat to where fish generally reside. Doing this technique will save you the trouble of looking for fishing holes or scouting areas where schools of fish are visible. 

If you are looking for an alternative way of fishing, you could try bowfishing, where instead of your regular rod and hook, you will use a customized bow and arrow to catch fish. A special line is attached to the arrows, and once your shot hits the fish, you can pull the line along with the fish. This technique is best done during the day or early in the afternoon so that you can see your target. Still, you can do this method late in the evening, but you should bring a bright light to guide your shots.  


Top 10 Fish Species in New Orleans, LA 

The top 10 fish species in New Orleans, LA are redfish, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, sea trout, carpchannel catfish, white catfish, yellow perch, Atlantic cod, and crappie

Seasonal Fishing 

Fishing is allowed all year round in New Orleans, LA. Mainly, the bass is one of the most frequently caught fish by anglers in the city. The peak season of this fish generally happens in summer or from mid-June until late September. Increased fish activity and warmer temperatures push fish to group up frequently, making them easier to be caught by anglers. 

During winter or mid-December until late February, fish generally ignore cold waters searching for food. Using live bait with pungent odors always does the trick. You might be the next to reel in a trophy-size catfish from the waters of the Mississippi River if you fish in New Orleans during this season. Luckily, the water does not freeze over in New Orleans during the winter, which means fishing can continue normally. However, fast currents and strong winds may be present, so anglers must always be cautious.

Consultations with local anglers and the city government will help your New Orleans fishing trip succeed. Weather reports, hurricane forecasts, and fish sightings are valuable, especially for visiting anglers. Be sure to plan, stock up, and gear up for the season if you want to fish in New Orleans.  

Live the Life in the “Big-Easy” New Orleans, LA

New Orleans boasts one of the most beautiful city landscapes in the United States. Travelers and residents are constantly amazed by the beauties offered by this melting pot of the south. Here are some activities to experience life in New Orleans and explore its rich history. 

1. Stroll Down French Quarter

Famous for its vibrant nightlife, the French Quarter, known as Vieux Carre, is the oldest neighborhood in the city. Tourists will see it filled with colorful buildings built with cast-iron balconies. Most historic buildings were constructed during the 18th century, and some were made after the 1803 Louisiana Purchase. 

The French Quarter is a National Historic landmark because of numerous breathtaking landmarks. As time passed, jazz clubs, cajun bars, and street performers entertained every passerby. 

2. Experience Mardi Gras World

Starting in 1947 as a manufacturing site for floats used during the annual Mardi Gras Carnival, the Mardi Gras World has expanded to a 300,000 square foot warehouse. Visitors can even witness the many traditions of New Orleans regarding Mardi Gras parades, balls, and the process of designing afloat. 

A tour around the massive studio, meet-and-greet with artists and entertainers, and float architects await you in the Mardi Gras World. This experience provides visitors with the chance to try out authentic Mardi Gras costumes and enormous board floats. 

3. See the St. Louis Cathedral

Many tourists flock to St. Louis Cathedral, the oldest cathedral in continuous use in the United States. This cathedral was originally built in 1718; thanks to expansion and rebuilding projects, it is still standing today. Two Popes have visited it and have survived natural disasters such as hurricanes.

Fish in New Orleans and beyond.