Inshore Fishing Charters in Hilton Head

In Hilton Head, "Inshore Fishing" can describe anything from the shallow creeks of the salt marsh, to the open rivers and sounds (think "small bay") and even the first few miles out into the ocean, typically still within sight of land. If you're on a shorter inshore fishing charter of a half day (4 hours) or less, you'll typically be limited to Hilton Head's inshore waters just as a matter of practicality. There are some exceptions with particularly fast boats and locations nearest the ocean, but even still, if you want to maximize your fishing time, stick to inshore on a shorter trip, and plan on 5+ hours for an offshore journey instead.

Hilton Head enjoys fantastic inshore fishing throughout most of the year, thanks in large part to relatively warm waters with a significant tidal range (7 feet or so on average!) that flushes water in and out of the coastal estuary twice daily. Check out for more detailed information on the local tides. It's a big part of our local fishing scene, and many species activity depends entirely upon the tides. When a fishing charter captain suggests a particular start time based upon the tides, you'll be smart to take their advice!

These warm tidal waters move food for the larger fish species and predators that rely on the smaller bait fish, shrimp, crabs, and more for their sustenance. The fish you might target on an inshore fishing charter include red drum ("redfish"), spotted sea trout, bluefish, spanish mackerel, cobia, tarpon, coastal sharks, and more. Some of the main tactics for inshore fishing are live/cut bait bottom fishing, trolling, and sometimes casting to fish. In extremely shallow water, you can also use a flats boat to target redfish and others in just inches deep creeks and flats. That kind of a trip is perfect for 1 or 2 people. Check out our flats boat charters page if that's something that "floats your boat"! Otherwise, most inshore fishing charters in Hilton Head are on boats for up 6 guests, plus captain, but some captains may prefer smaller groups in certain circumstances. It's wise to not overcrowd a boat for the best fishing experience, and your captain can suggest what's best for the kind of trip you have in mind. Check out these companies that offer inshore fishing charters and find the right match for you:

Hilton Head Inshore Fishing Charter Boats:

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  • A Live One
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    A Live One

    Freeman 29 — Capt. Blair Willis

    A professional waterman since 1996, Capt. Blair guides inshore and offshore fishing trips for all species. His charter fishing boats are A Live One, a Freeman 29 catamaran, and Stingray, a Yellowfin 17 Skiff.
  • Cool Cat

    Cool Cat

    27' Cape Horn

    Capt. Chris Prince

    Join Capt. Chris aboard his 27' Cape Horn with twin Yamaha outboards and have some fun on the water! Cobia, Sharks, and Redfish are some of the primary targets at different times of the year, and Cool Cat will put you in the right spot for the best opportunity to catch 'em up!
  • Hammerhead
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    Live Oac's Hammerhead

    25' FJ&S SportFish — Capt. Travis Meissner

    Hammerhead™ is Live Oac's 25' SportFish guided by Capt. Travis Meissner, who has been leading trips with Hilton Head's Live Oac for nearly a decade. Specialties include redfish and shark fishing in Port Royal and Calibogue Sounds, and yes, Hammerheads are not uncommon when you're fishing with Captain Travis!
  • Outcast

    Outcast Sport Fishing

    26' Glacier Bay

    Capt. Chip Michalove

    The Outcast is a 26 foot Glacier Bay Catamaran powered by twin Yamaha outboards. Cats typically provide a softer ride on the water. The twin hulls cut through the waves minimizing the pounding and slapping of conventional monohulls. Capt. Chip Michalove is shark fishing specialist, and has caught and released more Great White Sharks than any other Hilton Head Island charter captain!
  • Polecat Sportfishing

    Polecat Sportfishing

    27' Pro Sports Catamaran

    Capt. Jon "Gumbo" DeLoach

    Captain "Gumbo" has fished Hilton Head since the early 80s, and brings his experience as both a charter captain and a multiple tournament winner to you on a charter aboard Polecat.
  • Reelin'

    Reelin' Charters

    33' Hydra Sport

    Capt. Marc Pincus

    Capt. Marc Pincus brings his years of charter and tournament fishing experience to guests aboard a 33' Hydra Sport with TRIPLE Yamaha F250s to get you where you need to go fast and in comfort. Marc organizes the long running annual SC Wahoo Series and the Hilton Head Harbor Wahoo Shootout tournaments, and is a long time participant in SKA Kingfish Tournaments. His tournament-honed expertise is at your service aboard charters for various species inshore and offshore in Hilton Head.
  • Runaway


    31' Custom Sportfish

    Capt. Bill Parker

    Capt. Bill Parker brings over 30 years of charter experience to you as his guests aboard the Runaway. At 31 feet long with a 12 foot beam, she's a smooth riding and comfortable sport fishing boat.
  • Stingray
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    Live Oac's Stingray

    Yellowfin 17 Skiff — Capt. John Werner

    Check out the flats and inshore waters with Capt. John Werner aboard Live Oac's Stingray. This Yellowfin 17 Skiff offers a fantastic ride and the ability to get into super skinny water where the redfish like to hide. Capt John's years of experience as a fishing guide and an athletic coach provide a perfect blend of talents for both beginning anglers and lifelong fishing fanatics. You'll have a blast with Capt. John on the Stingray.
  • Stray Cat Charters

    Stray Cat

    27' Power Catamaran

    Capt. Jim Clark

    Featuring quick access to the Hilton Head's north end fishing grounds, enjoy a quick and easy ride aboard the Stray Cat fishing for Hilton Head's best catch.
  • Sweet Pea Fishing

    Sweet Pea Fishing

    22' Glacier Bay

    Capt. John Brackett

    Capt. John Brackett is an experienced fishing charter captain as well as a professional photographer. Enjoy a great day of fishing on a comfortable riding cat boat with the latest electronics, tackle, and an enclosed head. Fish for species including Redfish, Seatrout, Sheepshead and more.
  • More Hilton Head Fishing Charters…

    Awesome Adventure Charters

    23' Jones Brothers & 17' Ranger Skiff

    Capt. Kai Williams

    Private fishing charters with Awesome Adventure Charters include light tackle and fly fishing Hilton Head's inshore and nearshore waters.

    Bay Runner

    Pathfinder 2400

    Capt. Miles Altman

    Over 4 decades in the charter and seafood business, Capt. Miles brings a wealth of knowledge to your service aboard his Hilton Head fishing charters with Bayrunner.


    32' Prowler Sportfish

    Capt. Christiaan Politzer

    A second generation charter fisherman, Capt. Christiaan brings a tremendous amount of experience to you aboard the Bulldog. Fish inshore or offshore for a variety of species including king mackerel, cobia, grouper, snapper, tarpon, and monster sharks.


    27' Pro Sports Catamaran

    Capt. Jim

    Decades of HHI fishing knowledge are at your service with Capt. Jim on the Catmandoo. Enjoy a Hilton Head fishing charter anywhere from a foot of water inshore to 100 miles out, there is something for everyone.

    Cleopatra Charters

    18' Hewes Bonefisher

    Capt. Jimmy Reese

    Capt. Jimmy Reese is one of Hilton Head's most experienced flats fishing charter captains, and he'd love to share that expertise with you on a Hilton Head Fishing Charter aboard Cleopatra.

    Fishin' Coach

    22' Century Bay Boat

    Capt. Dan Utley

    Captain Dan is an expert inshore fisherman with the patience to "Coach Up" beginning angler and the knowledge to challenge the experienced fisherman.

    Gullah Gal

    34' Crusader Fly Bridge

    Capt. Jeff Kline

    Family fishing fun aboard the Gullah Gal departing Shelter Cove Marina for your next Hilton Head fishing charter.

    Honey B

    35' Bertram

    Capt. Jeff Kline

    Family fishing fun aboard Honey B departing Shelter Cove Marina for your next Hilton Head fishing charter.

    LoCo Fly Charters

    18' Maverick

    Capt. Mark Nutting

    Hop aboard LoCo Fly Charters' 18' Maverick skiff with Capt. Mark who is a fly fishing specialist. Beginners are welcome and light tackle is available as an alternative.


    23' Parker SE Sportfish

    Capt. Kent Bird

    Capt. Kent Bird is a native island local who started fishing in the early 70s. Benefit from his lifetime of Hilton Head fishing experience aboard the Megabite for a fantastic charter trip.

    Mighty Mako

    Custom 25' Center Console

    Capt. Dave Fleming

    Capt. Dave has over 20 years guiding experience and his resume includes thousands of satisfied and appreciative vacationing anglers. The Mighty Mako has a huge amount of fishing space, with a wide 9 foot beam. It's shallow 10 inch draft allows access to tight spots you can't reach in other boats, and this can make the difference in finding the fish.


    27' Key West & 19' Hewes Flats Boat

    Capt. Eric Moore

    Join Capt. Eric for a Hilton Head fishing charter inshore for cobia, trout, redfish, tarpon or sharks, or head offshore for an additional variety of species.

    Off The Hook

    21' Egret Flats Boat

    Capt. Bryan Vaughn

    Capt. Brian is a light tackle and fly fishing specialist with over 25 years experience guiding charters.

    Papa Bear

    30' Sportfish

    Capt. Michael Perry

    Capt. Michael Perry is a third generation fishing guide who has been guiding Hilton Head fishing charters since the mid 90s. You'll enjoy a great experience inshore or offshore fishing with Papa Bear.

    Southern Spots

    Skeeter SX240

    Capt. Wes Chesnutt

    Capt. Wes will lead your Hilton Head fishing charter in search of inshore and nearshore targets like redfish, cobia, sharks and more. His custom bay boat has a tower for spotting fish and a bimini top for shade.


    31' Custom Carolina

    Capt. Richard Pollitzer

    Enjoy a great ride, lots of fishing space, and the comfort of a full enclosure aboard Tallboy with Capt. Richard Pollitzer.

    Top Shot Sport Fishing

    31' Morgan

    Capt. Jay Prescott

    Enjoy a Hilton Head Fishing Charter with Capt. Jay Prescott aboard the Top Shot, a beautiful 1989 Morgan sport fishing boat powered by a Caterpillar turbo diesel.

    True Grits

    34' Fitz Fly Bridge

    Capt. Jeff Kline

    Family fishing fun aboard True Grits departing Shelter Cove Marina for your next Hilton Head fishing charter.
Our "charter" mission is to provide the best Hilton Head, SC fishing charter information to visitors and locals in the Lowcountry. Our goal is to promote positive fishing experiences and showcase the best adventures that Hilton Head has to offer.
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