I level every character in fishing. Why do I do this? It actually occurred to me with our latest toon that it's sort of redundant. We got all the way to level 26, without picking up the old fishing pole.
But then we tamed Washe Pawne, the most lovely red wind serpent ever, with level 3 lightning breath. And wind serpents eat fish, as well as bread and cheese.
But fishing is where it's at. It's free. It can make money.
My brother, who in real life owned a fishing shop for a few years, leveled fishing all the way, but never cooking. I have both maxed out on our main. So he sends me the fish to cook up for him for raids and such. When Golden Fish Sticks go for up to 2 gold or more apiece on the AH, it's so helpful to be able to do it yourself, not to mention a nifty money maker.
And it can be efficient, at least for me. Today, my kids had their piano lessons. The music store has free WiFi. Now 25 minutes is not really enough time to go do a quest or something, especially when it can be interrupted by one of the kids, the teacher, a store employee, or a chatty parent who is also waiting for their kid to finish a lesson. But Fishing is perfect. I can start and stop and start again. While waiting for the boat from Rachet to Booty Bay, I could check our quest log, or dance, or make bandages, or fish. Plenty of time to get a skill point or two before the boat sails in.
So that's the why.
Now the how and where.
Well how is easy. Buy a fishing pole, a shiny bauble and get training.
Where? Horde side I find Bloodhoof Village is best. You'll get both level 1 brilliant smallfish, as well as the next level of lake fish which is the longjaw mudsnapper. And everything you need is right there. The trainer. The guy selling the fishing pole and the cooking recipes for the fish if you need to level up cooking at the same time. There's a big fire for cooking fish. Plus there is a cooking trainer is just across the camp in the big tent. No running from one side of a city to the other and back again. Or from the lake or sea shore into a city and back again. It's just all so convenient.
I don't play enough Alliance to know the best place.
I fish here until I'm up to about 75, or else have about 55 smallfish which is enough to level up cooking to be able to cook the mudsnappers. Raw Mudsnappers also sell well on the AH. Their vendor price is only 1 copper, but on the AH they go for between 1-3 silver each.
Before leaving, don't forget to train up to the next level of fishing. And cooking if you need to.
Then it's off to the Barrens. Pick a pool. Any pool. They yield about one deviate fish for every 3-4 raw bristle whisker catfish (between 5-10 silver each on the AH, or 1-2 gold per stack). Deviate fish, however, are the main ingredient in Savory Deviate Delight, the coveted and highly priced treat that will turn the diner into a priate or ninja. The deviate fish themselves can go for almost as much as the finished product. You don't need the recipe to make money off deviate fish.
Savory Deviate Delight
I have to admit that I have the recipe on four servers. Just lucky, I guess. Or else it could have something to do with leveling dozens and dozens of alts. And had one drop for me the other day. So if you have horde toon on Kilrogg and send Theothana a stack of deviate fish along with a mild spice for each fish, I'd be happy to cook 'em up and send 'em back. Just for reading my blog. The other servers where I have the the recipe are Caelestrasz, Drenden, and Velen. I'm happy to do it on these realms, too. But you'll need to send me an email in real life because I don't usually check those regularly.
Back to fishing. Between 125 and 150, you'll need to find Old Man Heming in the lowest level of Booty Bay. He sells a book for 1 gold which teaches fishing to 225. You can actually use the book at any level. I have. Where to fish. Well, since fishing skills up at the same rate no matter where you are, you could go back to the Barrens for more Deviate Fish. I level one toon all the way to 300 there. Or just fish where ever you happen to be questing or grinding. Bring along a lure or two, just in case.
At exactly 225, you need to go find Nat Pagle who gives you a quest to catch a four different fish all over creation, or at least Azeroth. Bring a couple of lures. Make that 4 lures. After that it's smooth sailing until you hit the Outlands. Then find Juno Dufrain in Zangarmarsh for another fishing book.