There are plenty of public freshwater lakes open year-round and stocked with fish frequently, giving you a better chance of hauling in your record catch. The California Department of Fish and Game (DFG; maintains an interactive map on its website where you can search for fishing spots by specific types of fish. It is best to bring your own equipment, and everyone older than 16 needs to get a fishing licence from the DFG. Most licences require an annual fee for renewal, but you can also purchase a one-day or two-day licence if you are planning a short trip. Licences can be purchased from many sporting goods stores throughout Los Angeles.

Saltwater fisherman can try their luck on the many public piers by the ocean, such as the Santa Monica Pier. It is important to pay attention to the size requirements for certain species of fish, as you can be fined for keeping undersized fish.

For those anglers seeking an ocean adventure, your best bet is to head to Marina Del Rey or the Long Beach area. Several charter boats offering half-day or full-day trips in the Pacific are based in these harbours and operate throughout the year. These large boats usually have all the fishing equipment you need to land ‘the big one.’ Marina Del Rey Sport Fishing (800 822 3625, and 22nd Street Landing in San Pedro (310 832 8304,, for instance, offer daily trips for gamefish like halibut, barracuda and yellowtail, in addition to whalewatching tours from January to March. If you prefer fishing with a smaller party, private charters are available too. Companies such as Chubasco Sportfishing in Long Beach (818 345 3154; also offer smaller fishing excursions for up to six people.

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