Types of fishing in Scotland

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Fish in Scotland  ››

Download the official guide to fishing in Scotland

  • Close up shot of an angler fishing from a pier on Loch Fyne
    Inveraray Pier on Loch Fyne
  • Two fishermen in a small boat on Loch Awe with Kilchurn Castle in the background
    Loch Awe
  • Man fishing up in the River Annan with the clock tower of the town hall in the background
    River Annan
  • An angler fishing on the edge of the River Dee
    River Dee

Scotland offers anglers and fisherman alike a world-class fishing experience. From the ‘king of fish’, the salmon, the ‘lady of the stream’ grayling, hard fighting wild brown trout to the exceptionally large pike, skate and porbeagle shark, you won’t be disappointed.

Salmon fishing

The return of hundreds of thousands of Atlantic salmon each year to spawn in the country’s rivers attracts anglers from all over the globe, who come to enjoy world-class fishing in some of the most scenic areas of the country. Thanks to their size, speed and striking beauty, the rivers Dee, Spey, Tay and Tweed are amongst the most prolific and beautiful salmon rivers in the world. Fishing for salmon is generally by fly only.

Trout fishing

Scotland offers some of the best trout and grayling fishing in Europe. The variety of species range from migratory sea trout, to the wild brown trout of the country’s lochs, rivers and streams and the stocked rainbow trout found in our many fisheries.

You will find a wide variety of fishable trout rivers throughout the country from the large famous fishing rivers of the Annan and Tweed in the south and the Don and the Tummel in the east. Excellent fishing can also be found on the smaller spate rivers of the Highlands and islands, to the large reservoirs in the central belt and the smaller lochs dotted around the country. In fact you will discover almost every loch in the country has fine trout fishing.

Coarse fishing

Coarse angling includes fishing for pike, carp, perch, roach and any other freshwater fish other than salmon and trout.
 
Scottish pike are internationally renowned for their size and quality - fish over 20 pounds are regularly caught. Loch Lomond, Loch Awe and Loch Ken produce big pike and top catches. Pike are widely distributed throughout the mainland.

Carp fishing is becoming increasingly popular, especially in the central areas and in Dumfries & Galloway. Other coarse species include bream, chub, eel, gudgeon, rudd and tench. The rivers and lochs around Dumfries & Galloway offer some of the best coarse fishing in Scotland and three records for the largest chub, bream and tench have been set in the waters around Lochmaben.

Sea fishing

Scotland’s 11,800 km of shore line provides fantastic boat and shore fishing throughout the year. Try catching cod and pollock, both provide exciting fishing from the shore, and look out for bass which is now found regularly around the country.

If you are looking for larger catch, charter a boat to take you in search of whiting, ling, conger, spurdog, coalfish, haddock, porbeagle shark and the infamous giant skate.

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