You donâ€™t have to been a seasoned angler to appreciate Costa Ricaâ€™s epic sportfishing. Rain or shine, Atlantic coast or Pacific, the fishing is truly phenomenal any time of year. Cast your line inshore for red snapper, roosterfish and snook, or head into deeper waters for the prize-winning beasts â€“ black marlin and sailfish. Costa Rica sportfishing is rated among the best in the world, and the central Pacific town of Quepos is the frequent site of international tournaments, including the recent 2013 IGFA World Offshore Championship at Marina Pez Vela.
Quepos & Manuel Antonio in the center of all the action
Marina Pez Vela has attracted several headlining catch and release tournaments such as the 2012Â Quepos Billfish Cup and the renowned 2011 Costa Rica Classic. The world-class facility just hosted the â€śOlympics of Sportfishing,â€ť which lured more than 200 die-hard anglers from around the globe. Participants fished for marlin, sailfish, and big-eye tuna along with wahoo and mahi mahi (also known as dorado). While trophies were awarded for various categories, the crew that shone brightest was that on the EPIC, captained by Mike Alligood, with Randal Garcia Canales as mate. The team, which is based at Costa Ricaâ€™s Los SueĂ±os marina, released 26 sailfish and one blue marlin, earning a total of 5,700 points. The Quepos marina is just five miles from the pristine beaches and diverse wildlife of neighboring Manuel Antonio and its national park.
Other notable offshore sportfishing hotspots
In Costa Rica, Pacific sailfish are most abundant from mid December through the end of April. In addition to Quepos, other prime destinations for hooking these beauties include Jaco, Playa del Coco, Flamingo and Tamarindo. Blue and black marlin often tip the scales at 500 pounds and also peak during these same months, which coincide with the countryâ€™s dry season. Top marlin spots include Drake Bay, Dominical and Golfito â€“ located on the southern Pacific coast. The slightly smaller striped marlin can also be boated year-round. On the Atlantic coast, Parismina and Barra del Colorado are notorious for their massive tarpon and award-winning snook. The tarpon bite is hot from late January through June, while August through November is ideal for landing fat snook.
Freshwater fishing on Lake Arenal
If you are searching for some freshwater action, look no further than Lake Arenal, where 33 square miles of seemingly placid waters are brimming with rainbowÂ bass. Known locally as â€śguapote,â€ť these fish put up an incredible fight, but the tasty results are well worth the effort! Created in 1979 for hydroelectric purposes, the man-made lake offers fabulous views of the gently active Arenal Volcano. The best months for catching guapote are March through July, though tourists have had great luck throughout the year. Local captains and tour operators offer half and full-day fishing excursions on the lake, where other catches may include tilapia and mojarra.
Contact us today to learn more about sportfishing tours, or to book your Costa Rica vacation rental in one of our world-class fishing destinations including Tamarindo, Flamingo, Dominical and Manuel Antonio/Quepos!