Are you flying into Fort Lauderdale, FL, during your next visit to South Florida? Maybe a local looking for your first experience. If you ever wondered, “What can I do in Fort Lauderdale near me?”

We have the perfect outdoor activity for you. It only takes minutes to get you on the water for a Markham Park fishing charter in search of beautiful peacock bass and snakehead with our local fishing guide.

Markham Park is located in Fort Lauderdale, a county park offering a wide range of activities. Fishing may be a highlight, but you can also do some camping, exploring, hiking, shooting, and so much more.

We will cover these South Florida waters and more in this article.

4 Best Peacock Bass Fishing Spots in Florida

Florida offers a uniquely placed opportunity to catch an unusual fishing species that has never been seen elsewhere in the continental U.S. Many anglers consider the capture of this new species, called the peacock bass, an unforgettable experience.

But for people living along the Florida southern coast, this is just another day in the water, but another species to add to their list. The exotic peacock bass is known for its vivid color and vicious strike and has surpassed many other species. They beat largemouth bass pound for pound in a fight. Peacock bass originates in Florida and Miami specifically and has now spread to Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, and Naples.

But these species were spotted by authorities with an intent unlike some of the species that have entered state waters. Before we go into where, what, and when, let’s touch more on the peacock bass!

What Are Peacock Bass?

Peacock Bass is another fish species native to the Amazon Rivers and other tributaries in South America. The fish caught in Florida are called butterfly peacock bass and are usually about 16 inches long, weighing three to six pounds.

These brightly colored predators have been released into Florida waters since 1984 and have helped combat the invasive cichlid, Oscar, and tilapia. Peacock bass are susceptible to invasive infections when they are exposed to cold weather. Temperature below 68 C is fatal, and the species cannot survive, although, over time, we are seeing the Florida fish species adapting to the short winter season in Florida.

Markham Park is the Perfect Destination For Family Fun Time

Markham Park is the perfect location close to home for a great day. Bring the family; there is so much to do. Starting with the ever-popular dog park that has become so popular over many of the Broward County Parks.

If you like bikes, extensive mountain bike trails, walking paths, and even a fox observatory. Markham has a lovely nature trail through pine forests with a view across the Everglades. So something for everyone in the family, mountain bike trails and nature trails are so popular and fun.

For outdoorsmen and women, Markham Park also has a target range, consisting of a rifle range, pistol range for the gun owners, and sporting clays course, all located along the river canal banks. Not forget the archery range, which is so much fun in the early morning.

Markham Park also has a growing community of radio-controlled enthusiasts. Whether it’s a personal watercraft, model airplane field, or truck driving course aims to test your driving agility and driving technique. Several obstacles and elevated bridges are unique and fun in the park. With 670 acres to play in, you will find the ideal spot for your family and friends.

Now let’s talk Markham Park fishing!

Catch Peacock Bass at Markham Park

freshwater fishing tour is an excellent way to get an introduction to this hidden park tucked away in West Fort Lauderdale. As you travel through the river canal or new river canal, you can target peacock bass.

Our experts and professional fishing captains will take you on Fort Lauderdale Boat Tour throughout this urban fishery. Each adventure will provide a unique fishing trip.

When you decide on a Markham Park Fishing adventure, the chance to catch exotic butterfly peacock bass is almost guaranteed, and maybe even some saltwater species.

Family Fun By Boat or Shoreline

Peacock bass fishing is an exciting family-oriented way to get into the outdoors and spend a day on the water. You need no experience; we provide fishing gear, plastic worms, and live bait for the best fishing trip. You will also get the chance to catch largemouth bass, exotic snakehead, Mayan cichlids, snook, and so much more.

If you’re not using the boat ramp and fishing from shore. There are no fishing piers to speak of but a few docks and ample shoreline along the new river canal. Plenty of room for the whole family; it’s one of the best locations with top-notch facilities.

What Type of Fishing Charters are Offered

If catching a Peacock Bass while at Markham Park fishing, we offer 4, 6, 8, 9, and 12-hour fishing trips. All prices are displayed online, and as well all availability and reservations are made online by clicking any of the “instant booking” buttons.

When you board our Fort Lauderdale expert’s fishing boat, you will get the opportunity to get a fully-guided fishing charter equipped with all light-tackle spinning rods and reels, along with a cooler, ice, and water. Fish can be kept along with state guidelines or release allowed.

You can rest assured that when you go Markham Park fishing with our local Fort Lauderdale experts, you will catch largemouth and peacock bass. Bring your friends, families, and loved ones abroad for a South Florida fishing trip; you will never forget the beautiful peacock bass on your next trip to Fort Lauderdale, FL!

How to Catch Peacock Bass in South Florida

The Peacock bass are aggressive prey, and often they strike lures recklessly that surprise anglers accustomed to fishing for largemouth bass at a slower pace. Many lures used for largemouth bass work for peacock bass. So leave your plastic worms on the table.

Peacock bass generally eats small-bodied fish; the most effective bait for them is a live bait called wild shiner. They will strike topwater lures, poppers, crankbaits, or walking lures, but you need a higher skill level.

Peacock bass can be caught using a small spinning tackle and a heavy eight-pound line. Fly fishing is also fun, as peacock bass will hit minnow-imitated streamers and popper flies.

Can you Fish at Markham Park?

Markham Park fishing lakes and access to the levee leading to the Everglades through Markham Park provide excellent fishing adventure with ample opportunities. There is also bass fishing in the north and west rivers along the parks surrounding canals with boat ramp for personal watercraft in each location.

What kind of fish are at Markham Park?

Markham Park fishing is unique as it has multiple species in one South Florida location. Largemouth bass are caught, but not the dominant species, but snakehead and peacock bass have the top target range for success. Saltwater species are also being caught like tarpon and snook, but not consistently.

What is the best lure to catch peacock bass?

Butterfly peacock bass prefer live bait rather than plastic baits commonly used in largemouth bass fishing. But if wanting to throw artificial lures, plastic top water frogs are great for the snakehead and small jerk baits or spinnerbaits in 1/4 oz size is best. But butterfly peacock bass consistently like most effective live shiner bait.

How much does it cost to get into Markham Park?

$1.50 per person are the parking lot fees on weekends and holidays. You can enter the parking lot of Markham Park for free during the week. All children under the age of 5 and under are free.

The shooting range is $14 per person for three hours. Skeet shot is $8 a round of 25 clay shots. If shooting on the sporting clays course its $40 good for 100 targets.

A fee for campsite is different than the shooting range and other activities like mountain bike trails we suggest visiting the Fort Lauderdale Broward County Parks website.

How do I reserve a campsite at Markham Park?

You’ll need to make reservations for the campground on website. Call the Parks office at 953-557-8868 for details.

What is the largest park in Broward County?

The biggest regional park in the South Florida Broward County, named after the late C. Robert Markham who served as County appraiser briefly before his passing in September 1966. Now known as “Markham Park.”

Similarly, there are other great locations in Miami to catch peacock bass, as well as Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, and Naples providing a great variety of opportunities.