Fishing in Portugal

A wide variety of fish can be found in the rivers and lakes of Portugal as well as in the onshore coastal waters and deep sea, where big-fish angling is possible. There are competitions for men, women, juniors and disabled and several major fishing festivals through the year.

The Portuguese Sport Fishing Federation (Federação Portuguesa de Pesca Desportiva) has information and resources for anglers.

Licences & Regulations

A licence (licença) is needed to fish in Portugal.

Applying for a Portuguese fishing license is fast and hassle-free. You can do it via email from the Institute of Nature and Forest Conservation (icnf@icnf.pt).

Note: A paper permit is no longer available. If questioned by an authority about a license, give your name and nationality which will then be accessed via database. If the license was ordered by email, you will have proof of payment of the required recreational fishing license in pdf format.

A General Licence for Fishing in Inland Waters (Licença de Pesca Desportiva em Águas Interiores) is required for fishing in rivers and lakes. There are a number of different types of general licence:

  • National Licence (Licença Nacional): allows the holder to fish all over the country where fishing is not restricted, including the offshore islands
  • Regional Licence (Licença Regional): allows the holder to fish either in the north, south or centre of the country
  • Local Licence (Licença de Conselho): allows fishing only in the rivers and lakes in a given local authority district

A Special Licence may also be required:

  • Special Licence for Restricted Areas (Licença para Zona de Pesca Reservada): is required for fishing in protected or reserved zones at certain times of the year (a general licence is required in addition to this special licence)
  • Special Licence (Licença Especial): for some visiting anglers without a Portuguese Residency Permit (Cartão de Residencia)

Portugal has the following rules that affect carp fishing:

  • Angling for carp is on a catch-and-release basis.
  • Night fishing is allowed on some waters as of January 2018. Previously, it was not allowed at all. The restrictions on it are very severe, so pay attention to the rules regarding where you want to fish.
  • Kids under 14 don’t need a license if they are accompanied by an adult with one.
  • There are also a lot of local bylaws regarding fishing in local rivers. You should visit a local fishing club and learn as much as you can about those to avoid getting into trouble.

Seasons

The carp fishing season in Portugal generally runs from 1st July to 14th March.

Resources

Federação Portuguesa de Pesca Desportiva

Website

213 140 177

Institute of Nature and Forest Conservation

Website

icnf@icnf.pt

Check List

  • Fishing Permits (see above)
  • Photo ID
  • Travel Insurance - we recommend RAC (see below)

If you are driving:

  • Green Card (Insurance) - contact your insurer
  • Driving licence
  • Vehicle Log Book
  • GB Sticker (unless GB identifier is on your number plate)

Recommended Service Partners

For the best deals and for Carp Circle assurance use our recommended partners:

Car Hire

Have a car waiting for you upon arrival. Great rates guaranteed.

Travel Insurance

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Flights

Daily budget flights in and out of all main European airports.

    Fishing Portugal

    A wide variety of fish can be found in the rivers and lakes of Portugal as well as in the onshore coastal waters and deep sea, where big-fish angling is possible. There are competitions for men, women, juniors and disabled and several major fishing festivals through the year.

    The Portuguese Sport Fishing Federation (Federação Portuguesa de Pesca Desportiva) has information and resources for anglers.

  • Licences & Regulations

    A licence (licença) is needed to fish in Portugal.

    Applying for a Portuguese fishing license is fast and hassle-free. You can do it via email from the Institute of Nature and Forest Conservation (icnf@icnf.pt).

    Note: A paper permit is no longer available. If questioned by an authority about a license, give your name and nationality which will then be accessed via database. If the license was ordered by email, you will have proof of payment of the required recreational fishing license in pdf format.

    A General Licence for Fishing in Inland Waters (Licença de Pesca Desportiva em Águas Interiores) is required for fishing in rivers and lakes. There are a number of different types of general licence:

    • National Licence (Licença Nacional): allows the holder to fish all over the country where fishing is not restricted, including the offshore islands
    • Regional Licence (Licença Regional): allows the holder to fish either in the north, south or centre of the country
    • Local Licence (Licença de Conselho): allows fishing only in the rivers and lakes in a given local authority district

    A Special Licence may also be required:

    • Special Licence for Restricted Areas (Licença para Zona de Pesca Reservada): is required for fishing in protected or reserved zones at certain times of the year (a general licence is required in addition to this special licence)
    • Special Licence (Licença Especial): for some visiting anglers without a Portuguese Residency Permit (Cartão de Residencia)

    Portugal has the following rules that affect carp fishing:

    • Angling for carp is on a catch-and-release basis.
    • Night fishing is allowed on some waters as of January 2018. Previously, it was not allowed at all. The restrictions on it are very severe, so pay attention to the rules regarding where you want to fish.
    • Kids under 14 don’t need a license if they are accompanied by an adult with one.
    • There are also a lot of local bylaws regarding fishing in local rivers. You should visit a local fishing club and learn as much as you can about those to avoid getting into trouble.

  • Seasons

    The carp fishing season in Portugal generally runs from 1st July to 14th March.

  • Resources

    Federação Portuguesa de Pesca Desportiva

    Website

    213 140 177

    Institute of Nature and Forest Conservation

    Website

    icnf@icnf.pt

  • Check List

    • Fishing Permits (see above)
    • Photo ID
    • Travel Insurance - we recommend RAC (see below)

    If you are driving:

    • Green Card (Insurance) - contact your insurer
    • Driving licence
    • Vehicle Log Book
    • GB Sticker (unless GB identifier is on your number plate)

  • Recommended Waters
  • Getting There
    Flights

    Daily budget flights in and out of all main European airports.

  • Insurance
    Travel Insurance

    Stay safe & stay covered. Best rates for European travel.

  • Driving
    Car Hire

    Have a car waiting for you upon arrival. Great rates guaranteed.