How to Have the Best Fishing Experience in Belize
Have you ever dreamt of landing your own Grand Slam? Or perhaps even obtaining the elusive Gran Grand Slam, landing a bonefish, tarpon, snook, and permit on the same day? Or perhaps you want to head out to deeper waters in an attempt to land a massive marlin or bonito? If so, you need to book your fishing vacation in Belize today.
Often called the fly fishing capital of the world, Belize is truly an angler’s paradise. The lagoons, flats, and open water of the southern Belize Barrier Reef, especially around the Placencia Peninsula, are rich with vast schools of game fish, including Grand Slam species and others like barracuda, grouper, snapper, amberjack, king mackeral, Jack Crevalle, and tuna.
Best of all, you can pre-purchase your fishing license online before you arrive. And the prices are quite attractive, just $10 for a one-day license, $25 for a week, and $50 for an entire year (payment is in Belizean currency, permanently pegged at 2:1 to the U.S. dollar). All persons fishing in Belize are required to have a license, which is catch and release only.
For fly fishermen, the area just offshore of Placencia is nicknamed “Permit Alley”. It’s easy to see both snook and tarpon 10 deep all year long, and bonefish are plentiful off the flats. Permit usually school around the flats and sandbars up and down the reef, a pleasure to fish from either a skiff or from the (wadeable) ocean-facing flats.
Bonefish are found in more abundant numbers between April and October although they can be easily fished all year round. Their primary habitat is the lagoons and flats on the landward side of the islands and atolls on the reef, requiring accurate casting skills to land. May-September is considered the Grand Slam “season”, although again, due to the rich waters of Belize, it is possible to achieve a Grand Slam at any time of year.
As an English-speaking country, you’re guaranteed to get a local guide that you can easily communicate with. They have years of experience in fishing the waters of Belize, and most fishing guides have an ample supply of gear to rent. Most full-day fishing tours last around eight hours, heading out at 9:00 AM and returning to shore at 5:00 PM.
Warm water temperatures and trade breezes make getting outside in nature and fishing for an impressive amount of different species make fishing in Belize a truly unforgettable experience.