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Top picks of best Saltwater Fishing Rods

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To land with the best saltwater fishing rod focus on the rod’s length, sensitivity, strength, and weight. Next, saltwater doesn’t have mercy upon any of the fishing gear if you are using your same regular fishing rod and reel. Make sure to add corrosion-resistant and durable gear to bear the saltwater bruises. Next saltwater fishing is a vast field that includes inshore, offshore, surf fishing, jetty fishing, beach fishing, trolling, and much more. So you will be targeting the smallest to the giant one.

This fishing type demands the perfect fishing rod to detect the slightest fish nibbles and at the same time has the guts to land a big saltwater buddy. But finding this level best fishing rod might be crucial if it is a big-budget bouncer. To find you a perfect and affordable saltwater fishing rod we have short-listed some of the recommended options.

Splitting out the secret, this list of the best saltwater fishing rods includes almost every type of fishing rod, whether it’s telescopic, casting, spinning, or multi-piece travel rod. So there is something for everyone. Let’s dive into it!!!

Besides this, if you are looking for a combination of performance and budget check out our article on the “Best Saltwater Spinning Combos Under $100”.

Top 3 Picks for the best Saltwater Fishing Rods

Penn Battalion Inshore Spinning Rods
Penn Battalion Inshore Spinning Rods
  • Carbon Fiber rods
  • Alconite guides
  • Fuji reel seat
  • Total 8 guides
Okuma Longitude Surf Graphite Rods
Okuma Longitude Surf Graphite Rods
  • Graphite rod construction
  • Stainless steel guides
  • Medium and Heavy power rods
  • Available in 5 lengths
St. Croix Rods Triumph SaltwaterSpinning Rod
St. Croix Rods Triumph Spinning Rod
  • Carbon Fiber rod construction
  • Cork Handles
  • Stainless Steel Lines guides
  • Available in 6 different lengths

List of the Best Saltwater Fishing Rods

1- Penn Battalion Inshore Spinning Rods

best carbon-fiber saltwater fishing rod

  • Carbon Fiber rods
  • SLC2 construction
  • Alconite guides
  • Fuji reel seat 
  • Cork handle
  • Total 8 guides
  • Fast Action

What I like about these top brand products is that they produce very well thought designs of fishing gear. What makes me say this, is the manufactures name PENN Battalion as an inshore spinning rod.

To prove it as the best for inshore fishing, the rod is available in exactly the ideal length required for inshore casts i.e. 7 to 7.6 ft. The rods exceeding this length are difficult to handle.

Moreover, these length rods are perfect with casting accuracy to target smaller inshore fish. Now if we move deep into PENN Battalion details it’s an SLC2 construction.

What is special about SLC2 construction? It’s a rod with inner spiral carbon wraps and outer layers of longitudinal carbon fiber so overall it’s a carbon fiber saltwater fishing rod. It is a tough rod and gives you the fish fighting power even to land the bigger one.

In order to land in saltwater fully equipped against its abuse, the rods have eight Fuji alconite guides and fuji reel seats that locate your reel firmly on its position. Both are highly durable and highly resistant to corrosion.

There is a long cork handle fitted on the rod to offer a firm grip to the anglers even with wet hands. Also features rubber shrink tube handles but varies with the model. They are comfortable to handle and being longer allows easy swapping from the dominant hand to the other.

This rod is pretty lightweight but still has the strength to land bigger fish on deck. What I like about the PENN battalion is that it is flexible but at the same time it has the required backbone for quick hook sets.

With all these quality features you will get a thinner, lighter, and more durable rod that can catch a fish above its line weight.

It is available from light to extra heavy power with fast and extra fast action so ideally sensitive rods. Something this level, under $200 is not to miss to add to your arsenal.

  • Perfect for jigging from shore
  • Durable rods you don’t have to sacrifice sensitivity over durability with PENN Battalion
  • The rod is light in weight
  • Its line guides can bear braid line abuse
  • Casting accuracy and distance are achieved with this rod
  • Suitable for both freshwater and saltwater fishing
  • 1 piece rod is not an ideal rod for traveling

2- Okuma Longitude Surf Graphite Rods

 best offshore fishing rod

  • Graphite rod construction
  • Stainless steel guides frame
  • Medium and Heavy power rods
  • Available as both Spinning and Casting rod
  • Available in 5 lengths

Surf fishing requires longer, stronger, thicker, and, heavy power rods. As the power increases the weight of the rod also increases. To overcome this issue, these rods are graphite constructed.

If you are looking for some sturdy, powerful, and sensitive rods Okuma Longitude rods are the optimal pick. I wouldn’t say that it’s extremely lightweight, with no arm fatigue because a 12 ft. long rod with heavy power is something you will surely feel in your hands.

But being graphite surf rods the weight is bearable than a pure heavy power fiberglass rod. For casting heavy spinner baits and crankbaits with more line weight you may need a rod with enough backbone as you are clearly up to something big, tough, and aggressive fish to trap.

Its stainless steel guides with Aluminum oxide inserts offers a smooth cast. These guides reduces friction to prevent line breakage and are braided line approved. So perfect rod for off shore fishing.

Okuma surf rods have long cork handles a bit thick construction but comfortable to hold with solid grip. This rod is a bag for the buck because when you catch a 4 foot big fish, can cast a maximum of 8 oz. lure, and a maximum of 40 lbs. line weight, all at a decent price of under $100.

Even if you are a recreational surf angler or a serious angler. This rod is recommended to everyone. Pair it with a Daiwa or PENN slammer reel or any other Shimano saltwater spinning reel for a decent price. 

It is available as a heavy power rod and in five different lengths i.e. 8 to 12 ft. so overall it is designed for hard and serious offshore and inshore fishing.

  • Durable off-shore spinning rod
  • Can perform beyond the line and lure limit
  • Affordable price range
  • Heavyweight rod

3- St. Croix Rods Triumph Spinning Rod

best inshore saltwater spinning rod

  • Carbon Fiber rod construction
  • Cork Handles
  • Stainless Steel Lines guides
  • Sea guides
  • XDPS reel seat
  • Available in 6 different lengths
  • Fast Action
  • Ultra-light to medium heavy power rods

What about the fishing rod which is of carbon fiber material i.e. stiffer than fiberglass and an enhanced version of graphite and all of it within $100? Sounds Amazing? It actually is!!!

St Croix has never disappointed me with its quality performance whenever I fish inshore. However, I wouldn’t recommend this rod for offshore where you will be targeting the giant fish because with the medium-heavy power rod rating that would be difficult.

The rod is ideal to target small to medium-sized saltwater fish. Its SCIII carbon construction with a Fortified Resin system makes the rod 33% stronger than ever before.

Cork handles are a great choice for saltwater fishing as they are durable, long-lasting, and lighter in weight than EVA grips so they don’t add any additional weight to the rod.

St Croix Triumph spinning rods are all upgraded with Sea guide Atlas performance line guides which are basically Stainless steel guides and feature sea guides XDPS reel seat which is durable for both saltwater and freshwater fishing. 

These stainless steel guides are corrosion-resistant and smooth with performance. It’s a 2 piece rod so can be carried on trips and its guides wouldn’t bend, so also recommended as a travel spinning rod.

In order to make this best inshore fishing rod last longer, make sure not to exceed its line and lure limit otherwise you may end up with a broken rod.

Overall it’s a great st Croix rod at a reasonable price and suitable for every skill level angler as it is available in minimum 5 and maximum 7.6 ft. length with ultra-light power to medium heavy.

So maximum power is medium-heavy which can be handled by any novice fisherman.

  • Affordable fishing rod
  • Lightweight spinning fishing saltwater rod
  • Available as a 2-piece rod
  • Not available in heavy power
  • Not an ideal choice for big saltwater off-shore catches

4- Sougayilang Telescopic Fishing Rod

best portable saltwater fishing rods

  • Carbon fiber rods
  • Stainless steel line guides
  • Ceramic inserts
  • EVA Handles
  • Available in 5 different Lengths

Telescopic fishing rods are the rods that are underestimated. Although it’s a fact that they are more prone to breaking if you pick the right lure and line weight, these rods can land saltwater catches. Not the big giant because it’s a medium power rod.

It’s a graphite rod with stainless steel line guides. I really appreciate those high-quality saltwater fishing rods that along with the performance also comes at a cheap price.

Sougayilang Telescopic Fishing Rods are the perfect example of weight and strength. The rod is lighter in the hands but tough with the target. Its 24T carbon fiber construction gives this rod a strong structure to land something up to 10 pounds.

The appreciating part is the fast action rod’s tip, which offers sensitivity to detect nibbles. In order to withstand saltwater corrosion, the rod is equipped with stainless steel guides.

These guides not only resist corrosion but play an important role in the rod’s balance when casting and retrieving lures for smooth operation. One issue commonly faced with telescopic fishing rods is their bending.

As portable fishing rods are the best travel rods, their guides may bend during transport. Glad to share that this isn’t the issue with these rods. Their ceramic inserts also prevent line tangles.

You are free to use any fishing line type, either mono or braided, as guides are durable to bear braided line abuse.

The EVA grip makes sure to offer a tight hold of the angler over the rod increasing comfort and enhancing the casting experience. Overall they are durable rods that load less power to catch heavy fish.

The rod is available in 5 different lengths and the maximum length is 9.9 ft. These lightweight rods are easy on the arms and perfect for camping and traveling anglers to pull bass, trout, and other saltwater plus freshwater species.

Two tips that can save your saltwater telescopic fishing rod is a freshwater wash after saltwater fishing and whenever you expand the rod start it from the tip while collapsing start from the lower bottom section of the rod.

For best results use lightweight lures with this carbon fiber saltwater rod.

  • Collapsible fishing rod best for traveling
  • Equipped with corrosion-resistant guides and reel seats
  • Carbon fiber mixed with fiberglass construction makes it a stronger and thicker telescopic fishing rod
  • Not recommended rod for giant catches up to 20-30 pounds
  • The real placer needs improvement for the perfect positioning of the reel

5- St. Croix Rods Legend Tournament Inshore Rod

 best saltwater casting rod

  • Carbon fiber rods
  • Stainless steel guides
  • Cork handles
  • Fast action
  • Blue color rod
  • 3/8-3/4 lure weight
  • 5.5 oz. rod weight

St Croix brand upgraded their fishing rods and instead of SLC construction they applied the Advanced Reinforcing Technology in their rods. The primary benefit of this technology is the 10 times more strength than other carbon fiber rods without any increase in weight and diameter.

The legend Tournament Inshore is still a lightweight and thinner rod and tackles a tough fight against aggressive bass and skittish trout. It is available in both fishing techniques i.e. spinning or casting.

If you are perfect with the techniques and professional in your skills then casting legend is perfect otherwise spinning is suitable for all. It is recommended rod for inshore fishing.

For off-shore fishing picking rod lengths, less than 8 feet is a total mess and St Croix Legend is available at 7’9” feet maximum. The casting distance required for off-shore fishing can’t be achieved with these rods.

Featuring a stainless steel guides frame and alconite rings, a Nylon reel seat, and cork handles. I really like its real seat that resists reel loosening especially when the reel is under pressure.

With 3/8-3/4 lure weight, cast jig heads, and some topwater lures. The rod with all of its advanced features is an excellent choice for inshore hard saltwater battles.

  • Stiff rod
  • Thinner and stronger rod than regular carbon fiber rods
  • Advanced Technology blank construction
  • Long backup plan with 15 years of warranty
  • Attractive rod cosmetics
  • Not for off-shore fishing due to smaller length

6- Penn Spinfisher VI Saltwater Combo

best saltwater rod and reel combo

  • Graphite rods
  • Stainless steel guides
  • IPX5 sealed reel body
  • 2500-8500 reel size available
  • Available in 4 different lengths

Are you looking for the best saltwater rod and reel combo? The PENN spinfisher combo is worth buying. The rod and reel that are officially combined by the brands’ experts. So you don’t have to search about the perfect reel for the rod.

Each reel is paired with its perfect size rod to perform its best according to the type of fishing. It’s a versatile saltwater combo that supports inshore, boat, surf fishing, and is an optimal pick for jigging.

Following the size chart pick the right combo as they have categorized and mentioned the combo type with each model.

These graphite rods have the sensitivity to detect nibbles and enough backbone for amazing catches. The reel is IPX5 sealed, protection against saltwater rust.

Smoother casts and retrievals, reduced line tangles, and quick hook sets with moderate-fast action and medium to medium-heavy power are all its popularities.

It features stainless steel guides although they are durable, this can be more innovative and productive if there were zirconium guides placed. It’s a little recommendation, not a dark side.

Overall, a satisfying saltwater combo that gives back every penny spent on it. Save your time from wrong reel pairs and pick this combo to be saved from endless searches.

  • Each size reel is paired with the perfect length rod
  • Can land big saltwater fish
  • Affordable combo
  • One-piece rod ( 2-piece design is only available in 8 and 10 feet. Length)

best saltwater rod for jigging

  • Carbon Fiber Construction
  • Stainless Steel Guides
  • Aluminum Alloy reel seat
  • EVA foam handle

If you are searching for a sensitive rod and preferably for saltwater jigging, Fiblink 2-piece saltwater spinning rod is my top recommendation for this. It’s a 6 feet long heavy power and fast action rod.

The ideal rod for fast hook sets and the lure will we dropped right on the desired point. Enjoy the vertical jigging to land your desired fish with a lightweight rod because it’s a carbon fiber constucted.

With more fiberglass durability and graphite sensitivity, these rods are perfect package of performance and price. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much from this rod at first. But then got a chance to cast this rod which forced me to add it to the list of best saltwater fishing rods.

My favorite part about this rod is the aluminum reel seat, it tightly fixes the reel and make sure it doesn’t loosen up especially during a tough fight. It’s a powerful and durable rod for big catches as saltwater fish aren’t the calm fish to catch and cast out more line when get hooked.  

In addition to all this, its stainless steel line guides (one per rod section and their count is according to the rod’s length) with a tip eye, are all placed on the rod for maintaining the perfect balance during a cast.

Each component on the rod is corrosion-resistant and lasts longer. The rod has enough backbone to cast heavy lures. You can cast a 7 oz. lure even with a 6 feet rod so the rod is ideally designed to catch jumbo. Use heavy plastic lures and live bait.

Fiblink 2-piece rods are available in 3 different lengths 6 to 8 with medium-heavy to heavy power rods. Overall it’s a tough and sturdy rod with a solid grip EVA handles. Perfect for your next summer fishing trip.

  • Lightweight rod
  • 2-piece rod, a perfect strong portable saltwater rod
  • Corrosion-resistant guides and reel seat
  • Contains a hook holder above the handle
  • Budge-friendly jigging rod
  • No drawback found

8- Daiwa D-Wave Saltwater Spinning Combo

best budget saltwater combo

  • Fiberglass rod
  • 2-piece rod design
  • Stainless Steel Ball bearings
  • Available in five rod lengths
  • 4500-5000 D-wave reel size

When it comes to saltwater fishing, you need a rod and reel combo that can stand up to the elements and the fish. Moreover, I really like the combos in this way I am free from search of best pairing reel.

The Daiwa D-Wave Saltwater Spinning Combo is a great choice for both novice and experienced anglers.The D-Wave rod is made from high-quality materials that are designed to withstand the rigors of saltwater fishing.

The blank is made from fiberglass for strength and durability, while the guides are made from stainless steel for durability. The reel seat is anodized aluminum for added strength, and the handle is EVA foam for comfort.

The D-Wave reel is a saltwater-specific spinning reel that features a corrosion-resistant body and drag system. The two ball bearings and one roller bearing provide smooth operation, while the infinite anti-reverse ensures solid hooksets.

The Machined Aluminum Spool provides plenty of line capacity, and the Right/Left Hand Retrieve makes it easy to use for both left- and right-handed anglers.

The Daiwa D-Wave Saltwater Spinning Combo is a great choice for anglers who want a durable, reliable, and affordable rod and reel combo for saltwater fishing. A recommended rod for surf anglers

Although its a durable rod but it is recommended to use monofilament line than braided.

  • Durable and stiffer rod
  • Ideal rod for surf fishing
  • Perfect for both lure and bait fishing
  • Heavy rod due to fiberglass construction

How to choose the best saltwater fishing rods

There is always a criterion to find something perfect and suitable according to the fishing condition. Each of the listed rod models is available in various options regarding length, power, and action.

To make your selection easier for the best saltwater fishing rod we have created this buying guide to help especially beginners with their confusion.

Rod Material

When fishing rods have a strong base, they can tackle different fishing situations. The material of the rod impacts a lot and is also picked according to the fishing type or your target fish.

So considering the material of the rod is the first step towards the best fishing rod for saltwater or any other type.

Mainly you have three options graphite, fiberglass, and composite rods and the advanced and enhanced form of graphite rods i.e. carbon fiber which are more rigid than fiberglass but still light in weight like original graphite rods.

Graphite rods are stiffer, prominently sensitive, and lighter in weight than fiberglass rods. These rods are also higher in price than fiberglass. Whereas, fiberglass rods are popular due to their durability and strength.

Composite saltwater fishing rods are a combination of both graphite and fiberglass. Having features of both, you can have sensitive rods to detect the slightest strikes along with fiberglass durability.

This all sounds great that’s why composite rods also come with great prices same is the case with carbon fiber saltwater rods.

Solving this puzzle when you fish inshore, you might be targeting smaller and pan fish, so rods with sensitive tips are great in that case. Pick graphite rods for inshore fishing.

Next, when fishing offshore, you must be targeting big-saltwater fish with heavy lures and lines. And when you cast heavy-big fishing lures, the bites are detected easily even rod isn’t ideally sensitive.

So fiberglass rods are the optimal pick for offshore fishing. In other cases, if you are okay with the budget, you can jump to composite and carbon fiber saltwater fishing rods because in their case you don’t have to pick sensitivity over durability and vice versa.


The length of the rod significantly affects your cast i.e. casting accuracy and casting distance. The longer the rod is, the longer you can throw your lure but at the same time, the shorter the rod, the more you can cast with pin point accuracy. So what’s the solution?

Honestly at this point, I wouldn’t recommend a rod longer than 10 ft. A rod longer than this limit is difficult to hold and handle. Because as the rod expands in its length, its weight also increases.

For regular saltwater fishing, 6-8 ft. rods are the optimal pick.  They are good with maneuverability and lighter on the arms, also a wiser choice for novice anglers.

Surf anglers may require longer rods up to 10 or more. You can follow the surf fishing rod’s guide in this context. Although there is a separate guide for inshore rods for in-depth details.   

Summing up, 6-8 ft. rods are perfect with sensitivity and offer the required stiffness and backbone to land the bigger fish.


First of all, eliminate ultra-light power rods from the list when you are in search of a rod for saltwater fishing. Although they are good for targeting pan fish, I recommended some stiffer material for this fishing type and medium power rods are perfect fit for this.

Medium to medium-heavy power rods are perfect for targeting medium to larger sized inshore and offshore fish species.

In case of serious fishing to catch big and aggressive fish with heavy baits and lures, you can go with heavy power rods. More power means more stiff and heavy in weight so medium heavy is also a good choice to prevent arm fatigue.

Medium-light will be perfect for inshore smaller catches as stiffer rods are priority rods for saltwater fishing and this power rod in addition to durability also have sensitive tips to detect the slightest fish nibbles.

To learn more about fishing rod power check out this guide.

Rod Action

The action indicates how fast your rod returns to its original state after bending under pressure. The more fast the action, the less your rod bends.

In addition to this, the higher the rod action scale is, the more sensitive the rod is. That’s why fast and extra-fast action rods are widely adopted by anglers.

The combination of fast action and light power rod is ideal to target panfish but in case of saltwater fishing rods, I recommend fast action and medium power or you can deviate to medium-fast with medium-heavy rods for larger catches.

Fast and moderate action fishing rods also make quick hook sets and are perfect with soft plastic lures.

Summing up, in the case of inshore fishing rods moderate action is a better choice, for off-shore fishing, extra-fast, fast, or even moderate-fast are good to good.

Slow-action rods are too bendy so wouldn’t recommend them at this point but there are other ideal situations where slow-action are exceptional in performance. To learn more about fishing rod action check the guide.

Line Guides

If a rod has one guide per foot, it’s perfect for saltwater we usually pick longer rods so there should be a greater number of line guides.

Fishing Rod’s line guides also influence the smoothness of the cast. If the inner surface of the guides is plain, the fishing line runs smoothly without any line breakage and the result is the smoother cast.

The major and most common damage to line guides is corrosion, in order to safe your guides from this destruction make sure to go with corrosion-resistant material guides.

Saltwater fishing requires the durable, corrosion-resistant, and long-lasting line guides. In this scenario, stainless steel guides can be trusted.

Line guides of metal like titanium and Alconite will never disappoint you with their performance against saltwater abuse.

Frequently Asked Questions

Final Verdict on Saltwater Rods

Finding the best saltwater fishing is quite hectic as your rod should be durable, strong, and powerful to withstand harsh conditions and at the same time should be sensitive to detect nibbles. Only few brands maintain this balance whose rods are listed here.

Confidently pick any of the saltwater rod from the above listed as they are all best tested and recommended by my fellow anglers.

If I have to pick one rod the Okuma Longitude Surf Graphite Rods will be my best saltwater fishing rod. It withstand undesirable and harsh conditions and at the same time budget friendly.