Whether you want to catch a record-breaking walleye or are simply in need of a relaxing day on the pier, Minnesota state parks has the perfect fishing spot for you. Minnesota is consistently ranked as one of the best states in the country for fishing. Fishing is a fun activity for all ages. New to fishing? Learn how at an I Can Fish! workshop- equipment and bait are provided. Pack up your tackle, drop a bobber, and make some memories!
Before you go:
- Fish for free in most Minnesota state parks without a fishing license!
- Get some helpful tips for fishing with families.
- Attend a fishing event in a Minnesota state park.
- Research what makes fishing in Minnesota unique and what species of fish are common.
- Read the weekly fishing report to see what fish are biting and how to catch them.
- Find fun facts, photos, and updates on Minnesota Fish and Wildlife Facebook page.
Purchase a vehicle permit today and get a year of unlimited visits to all of Minnesota's state parks and recreation areas.
Where to go:
Here are a few favorite spots in Minnesota State Parks for fishing. Don't see what you're looking for? Find a lake or search for the perfect pier. Many of our state parks can loan you fishing gear for free!
Bear Head Lake State Park
Abundant walleye, bass, crappies and trout.
Big Bog State Recreation Area
Panfish, walleye and northern pike, plus an accessible fish cleaning house.
Fort Snelling State Park
There is great fishing in this state park just minutes from the metro area.
Red River State Recreation Area
Catch some catfish in the rich waters of the Red River.
Zippel Bay State Park
Catch walleye, sauger, bass, perch and muskie in Lake of the Woods.
Beaver Creek Valley State Park
Clear streams with brown and brook trout.
Father Hennepin State Park
Bass, northern pike and walleye make their home in Mille Lacs Lake.
Glendalough State Park
Large sunfish and crappies for the frying pan, and bass for the camera.
Maplewood State Park
This park has eight major lakes and numerous ponds, all with good fishing.
Whitewater State Park
An angler's paradise with brown, brook, and rainbow trout.
Tips for fishing with your family:
Tips and tricks that will help even the littlest ones hook the big fish, and to ensure the whole family enjoys the whole experience:
- Plan to have fun and remember to bring a camera to document your adventures.
- Remember that catching a small fish is still catching a fish! Try for bluegill, perch or bullhead (Use live bait to increase your chances of catching a fish).
- Use this helpful guide with how-to instructions for the different steps in learning to fish for all ages.
- Remember the basics: sunscreen, insect repellent, and a first aid kit. Don't forget to bring snacks and water!
- Need more family fishing ideas or resources? Try MinnAqua.