Fishing in Belize- All You Need to know


Belize is a world-renowned fishing hotspot. Come try your luck in the crystal waters off of Ambergris Caye. Whether you are looking for a trophy, dinner, or just the experience of being out on the blues with a line in your hands, Belize is the destination for you. There are three main types of fishing in Belize: fly fishing in the flats, deep-sea fishing across the reef and reef fishing. Each type of fishing trip takes you to a different marine habitat near Ambergris Caye where you can target different sport fish.

For the people in your life that are not into fishing, there is a wealth of activities and excursions for them to explore while you fish- including snorkeling, jungle trekking and plain old relaxing by the pool at your resort. Ambergris Caye is a well-situated home base for a successful fishing holiday. With the Belize Barrier Reef located just off-shore providing a variety of marine habitats and a thriving restaurant scene in lively San Pedro, you are sure to enjoy both your days and nights in Belize.

Fly Fishing the Flats of Belize

Explore the many flats around Ambergris Caye in your search for tarpon, permit, and bonefish. Your guide will take you to the western flats around the island with a special focus on permit and bonefish. Belize is the unofficial world capital for permit fishing, the thrill of the chase is what sets it apart. The clear and shallow water, paired with the very alert and wary permit takes a combo of luck, local knowledge, and skill to reel one in. Bonefish is another highlight that you can try for. For the dedicated, chasing a Grand Slam of all three species in one day can be an unBelizeable memory. The best time of year to attempt a Grand Slam is May-August, when all three fish are prevalent. These excursions are half-day, your choice of morning or afternoon. This is catch and release only.

Deep-Sea Fishing

Deep-Sea Fishing is done outside of the local reef in the deeper water found there. Larger fish, like Dorado, King Fish, Billed Fish, and Sail Fish are the most common catches to expect in the deep waters off of Ambergris Caye. As conditions outside of the reef can have much larger waves than other areas of the sea, your guide will assess the wind and wave conditions before heading out. Spring and fall tend to be the best times of year to spot larger fish passing through. A speed boat is used, group size is from 2-6 persons. This is a half-day excursion, 8am-12pm or 1pm-5pm.

Reef Fishing

With warm water year-round and steady food supply, reef fishing is almost always successful. Snapper, barracuda, and jack are the most common fish you will catch during a session of reef fishing, though many other types are possible as well. This is conducted on a speedboat at the reef not far from the shoreline. Tours are half-day, in the mornings from 8am-12pm or in the afternoon at 1pm-5pm. Reef fishing can also be done in tandem with a catamaran day sail, where a speedboat can take small groups to fish the reef while the rest of the guests enjoy sailing or snorkeling. It’s a great way to keep everyone happy, and still get your fishing fix. Bonus points for catching your own lunch to be grilled on the beach.

What to bring

All of our tours include the necessary fishing gear (Flies, leaders, rods, and reels), though it is recommended that you bring your own equipment if you prefer. When booking your fishing tours, let our team know what your plan is and we will take it from there. Our fishing excursions include water, soda, and local beer. Dress for the tropical sun and bring along a sun hat, sun shades, and sunglasses. The minimum age is 12 years old, all tours are private. Weather conditions are closely monitored for safety. High winds or other weather events can make it unsafe to go outside of the reef, our guide team will assess the conditions and adjust as necessary. Safety is always our first concern.

Fishing in Belize is a great way to get out and explore. It’s also important to adhere to the fishing regulations set by the Belize Fisheries Department in order to preserve the nation’s fisheries for the future. Some species, like bonefish, permit and tarpon are catch and release only. Others have annual closed seasons. Caribbean Spiny Lobster season is closed February 15th- June 14th and the minimum cape length is three inches, minimum tail weight is four ounces. Marine turtles are never to be harvested, except for traditional use with a special license from the Fisheries Administrator. Nassau Grouper season is closed December 31st- March 1st.

The adventure and excitement of a catch is worth the trip! Paired with a luxury resort experience, fine dining at a variety of restaurants and your choice of marine or mainland adventure tours, you can have the ultimate Belize fishing vacation. Charter your fishing tour with our tour partner, Tuff E Nuff Tours, at least 48 hours in advance. Contact us today to get started!