Grand Isle, Louisiana
Target species: redfish, seatrout
January avg. temps: 61 high, 49 low
Round-trip airfare to New Orleans: $165
Accommodations: Camping at $12 per night

There’s no better light-tackle target for kayakers than redfish in the vast coastal marshes of Louisiana. Good fishing water is plentiful south, west, and east of New Orleans, and the Grand Isle region about 95 miles south of the city is prime. This barrier island is an old-line resort area, now recovering from Hurricane Katrina. Calmwater Charters ( offers both rental kayaks (about $40 a day) and guided kayak fishing ($125 a day). Pitch your tent at Grand Isle State Park, or stay at one of the many inexpensive motels you can find through the local chamber of commerce (

–John Merwin