Fortunately, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources has done an excellent job of not only creating fish habitats offshore of Wassaw and Tybee Island offshore of Savannah. Not only does it benefit fish, but it also provides excellent opportunities for fishermen within a reasonable run time from inshore waters. Except for making long runs to the snapper banks off the Georgia coast, the sea bed in the area is flat and sandy, so it does not allow for good fishing opportunities for fish-seeking structure. What are the three best nearshore fishing structures offshore of Savannah, Georgia?

How Big Of A Boat Is Recommended for Fishing Out In Ocean Waters?

If you’re trailering in a boat and planning to run offshore, it is best to have a boat that is greater than eighteen feet in length and excellent working conditions. Many bottom structures are within 10 miles of the coastline, but this is significant, mainly if the weather turns.

On calm days it’s an easy, quick run but keep an eye on the forecast. Thunderstorms are almost a daily occurrence during the summer months. Additionally, the waters are shallow, causing the seas to kick up quickly as the wind begins to blow. Check the weather before you leave the dock. 

What are the three nearest structures for bottom fishing offshore of Savannah?

The first of the three is the SAV artificial reef.

This human-made underwater structure is just six nautical miles southeast of Tybee Island. The reef consists of barges, tugboats, culvert, and poultry cages, making it a home for various fish species and is ideal for young fish hatchlings to seek shelter. 

When you’re making the trip, be sure to have plenty of anchor line, this reef sits in forty feet of water. Additional scope will be needed to have a firm hold in the sand surrounding the reef.

Another excellent fishing destination offshore is the DUA Reef.

The reef consists of barges, reef balls, and culvert and is seven miles east of Ossabaw Island. Much like the SAV reef, this also provides excellent cover for fish. Keep in mind that the run is longer from the Savannah area.

DUA reef is slightly deeper and the second deepest of the nearest three to Savannah. The underwater structure is in forty-five feet of water. 

The final reef nearshore is KC Reef.

Located nine miles east of Wassaw Island is KC Reef. KC Reef is the deepest of the three sitting in fifty feet of water. The reef is made up of reef balls, culvert, barges, tug boats, and other vessels. 

Keep in mind that this reef is the farthest from land should you see wave heights growing or the sky beginning to darken with the threat of storms.

What kind of fish are found on the reef? 

Many different varieties of fish call the reefs home. Some of the most frequent that you will run into are sheepshead otherwise known as convict fish, flounder.

Considerations when heading offshore

Safety is always number one. As obvious as it may sound, make sure to have filled the boat with plenty of gas. 

Bring along a fully charged cell phone and working VHF radio in the unlikely event of a mechanical issue or other unforeseen circumstance. 

Use either a handheld GPS or unit installed on the boat to help guide you back if the visibility becomes poor. 

Make sure to leave the dock with plenty of hooks and weights. Snags are common, so retying can be frequent. Most fish will be caught with bottom bouncers. 

Have a valid fishing license for the state of Georgia. Licenses can be obtained by visiting the Georgia Department of Natural Resources website. 

What kind of fish can be caught offshore of Savannah?

Many types of fish species roam down near the bottom, in the middle of the water column, and at the surface.

The most commonly caught bottom feeders include sheepshead, otherwise known as convict fish, flounder, big redfish, seabass, and more.

In the middle of the water column, it is not uncommon to find amberjack. These are rod benders, so be ready for a tug of war. Of course, sharks are always on the prowl.

Some of the surface fish include little tunny, otherwise known as Bonita. Fishing fast surface lures can lead to strikes from fish in the mackerel family.

Make sure to follow the regulations of the state. Check out Georgia’s fishing regulations.


Bouncing the bottom offshore of Savannah can be a fun-filled day with a little preparation. Leaving something back at the dock can end the day quickly. With waters up to fifty feet, the tussle of bringing the fish to the surface will be exciting for friends and family and may even lead to a great meal on the table. Have fun fishing some of Savannah’s closest offshore reefs.