Navigation Home - AA-Fishing Lakes Fish

Freshwater Fishing In Hawaii

Pick A LakePick A SpeciesPick A State

Guide to fishing in the Aloha State

By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Big Peacock Bass

Hawaii, known for its stunning beaches and clear waters, offers a rich diversity of fishing opportunities for anglers of all levels. There are a few warm water fisheries in Hawaii. The purpose of this page is to share basic information about the best fishing lakes in the state, plus the species found in each lake.

Coastal species include mahi-mahi, yellowfin tuna, wahoo, and various types of snapper and grouper. These warm water fisheries attract anglers from all over the world, drawn by the chance to catch big game fish in the tropical waters.

In contrast to the warm waters, Hawaii also boasts some unique cold water fisheries. At higher elevations on the islands, especially on the Big Island and Maui, there are cold water fisheries where anglers can find species like rainbow trout. Kokee State Park on Kauai is the place to go. These colder waters provide a completely different fishing experience, and anglers can enjoy the serene and picturesque surroundings while trying their luck at catching these cold water species.

In addition to ocean fishing and cold water fishing, Hawaii has numerous ponds, lakes, and rivers that offer freshwater fishing opportunities. Some of these water bodies are stocked with various fish species, including bass, catfish, tilapia, and more, making them excellent spots for family-friendly fishing outings.

The state offers somewhat limited freshwater fishing options. The islands are dotted with small lakes and ponds, some have a population of bass, sunfish and a few channel catfish. Most fishing waters are small and often difficult to get to. If you want to experience the islands and catch fish in the process, a guide is a very practical way to go about it. Here, you can fish for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, peacock bass, channel catfish, rainbow trout, bluegill and tilapia in local lakes, rivers, ponds and streams.

Major Hawaii Lakes & Species

Hawaii major lakes and fish chart

For a detailed list of primary fish species in the state, plus state fish records, see the list below.

For a more complete list of local fish species, see the list below, which also includes state records.

Fishing lake sizes and locations in the state.

Kōke‘e Public Fishing Area is a series of streams and ponds in Kōkeʻe State Park, in northwest Kauai.

Wahiawa Reservoir, aka Lake Wilson is a 400-acre reservoir in north-central O'ahu, at Wahiawa.

Wailua Reservoir Public Fishing Area is a 5-acre pond in eastern Kauai, above Wailua River State Park.

Fish Species & State Records in Hawaii


Largemouth Bass

Largemouth bass

World record: 22 lbs 4 oz

State Record: 8 lbs 0 oz

Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth bass

World record: 11 lbs 15 oz

State Record: 5 lbs 11 oz


Channel Catfish

Channel catfish

World record: 58 lbs 0 oz

State Record: 43 lbs 13 oz


Rainbow Trout

Rainbow trout

World record: 42 lbs 2 oz

State Record: 5 lbs 10 oz




World record: 4 lbs 12 oz

State Record: 0 lbs 8.5 oz



World record: 4.4 lbs

State Record: 2 lbs 7 oz

Click the images and links above for species details.

Find information about fishing in Hawaii at the Hawaii Department of Fish Management website.

Hawaii Fishing License applications available here.

While the Islands are best noted for bass and peacock bass, rumor has it that some of the streams, rivers and ponds hold a trout or two. The HI state record rainbow trout came from the Koke'e area on the island of Kaua'i.

Bass fishing book

Fish for big bass

Some very good peacock bass fishing opportunities are available to anglers here.


Fishing in all states

AK Fishing AL Fishing AR Fishing AZ Fishing CA Fishing CO Fishing CT Fishing DC Fishing DE Fishing FL Fishing GA Fishing HI Fishing IA Fishing
ID Fishing IL Fishing IN Fishing KS Fishing KY Fishing LA Fishing MA Fishing MD Fishing ME Fishing MI Fishing MN Fishing MO Fishing MS Fishing
MT Fishing NC Fishing ND Fishing NE Fishing NH Fishing NJ Fishing NM Fishing NV Fishing NY Fishing OH Fishing OK Fishing OR Fishing PA Fishing
RI Fishing SC Fishing SD Fishing TN Fishing TX Fishing UT Fishing VA Fishing VT Fishing WA Fishing WI Fishing WV Fishing WY Fishing