If you cannot wait to get away from Old Man Winter, a Costa Rica fishing trip may be just what will recharge your batteries! There are several Costa Rica vacation packages available on-line for sportfishing. With dozens of fishing world fishing records to its credit, Costa Rica is said to have the best ocean fishing in the world.
Sure, you can dip a line in a a little frozen lake or stream by your house. Those little crappies and sunnies were fun when you were growing up. Long-johns, parkas, and electric socks and sitting for hours on end over cold ice, your butt numb from cold and sitting in a little ice shack all day.
You are a big kid now. Is it not time to have big kid fishing? Trade in shoveling snow ’til your back aches, a runny nose and depressing weather for shorts and a funny looking tropical shirt. Put away your Chapstick, get out your suntan lotion, head to tropical beaches where you can be fishing in crystal waters with not a care in the world.
Do not know where or when to take that Costa Rica fishing trip? No worries. Here is the straight skinny.
Start with the basics. Just a couple of hours south of Miami lies Costa Rica. With about 780 miles of coastline on two great oceans, it is a salt water fishing mecca. So many places to fish, where to begin?
Here is an idea. Follow Columbus. More than 500 years ago, that famous explorer landed on the Caribbean coast in a place so incredible he named it—-Costa Rica—the Rich Coast. It was filled with fish, thick with sea turtles. Since it was good enough for Columbus, it is good enough for you, intrepid fisherman.
On the Atlantic coast, you will find the world-famous Tortuguero National Park and Barra del Colorado fishing waters up to the Nicaragua border. The seas here can be very choppy but when the waters are flat, this is fishing paradise! From May to November, the silver fighting tarpon is bountiful here, and they can attain weights of to 150 pounds. If you are very lucky, you might land a rare Atlantic sail. This is also a great place for large snook. Jack Crevalle, guapote, giant grouper, and tripletail can also be caught here. And, be sure to visit the world famous green sea turtle nesting beaches at Tortuguero.
To get to either Barra del Colorado or Tortuguero National Park, you will have to go by boat because there are no roads. This is wilderness country. Typically, people travel to Limon, a small Caribbean community, charter airplane, car, or express bus, then head north on watercraft.
But—and this is a secret—some of the absolutely best tarpon fishing anywhere in the world now has a road right to it! Literally just a few kilometers from where Columbus made landfall is a place that some fishermen call the “mother lode” of tarpon and snook fishing. Check out Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Reserve along the southern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, nearly at the Panama border.
Deserted beaches for miles, crystal clear waters, and when the tarpon are in, fabulous fishing. Fishing is good year-round here but the best months for tarpon typically are March, April, May and September through October. And, If you come between March and July, you will also be able to see the sea turtles nesting.
Another great place for a Costa Rica fishing vacation is its North Pacific coast. This area is known as the “Gold Coast” because of its amenities and is conveniently reached. Simply fly into nearby Liberia International Airport where you will be just a short drive away from your waiting boat. You will find the fishing centers of Tamarindo and Flamingo with miles of great beaches and lots of Costa Rica attractions. If you are in search of sailfish, visit this coast between May and August for the best fishing, though these fish are here year-round, too. From August to October, you might find large schools of different tuna species with some weighing up to 400 pounds and many exceeding 60 pounds. Catch the shoreline-dwelling roosterfish here November to March not far from the Papagayo Resort. You also have a good chance of battling large marlin, wahoo, and brightly colored dorado fish.
Many visitors fishing in Costa Rica are looking for billfish and these beauties are very common along the Central Pacific coast. Drive to world famous Los Suenos Marina or the little town of Quepos and charter into the offshore waters to catch marlin and sailfish. December through April is the best time to catch these fighters. The vibrant dorado fish is often found here May to October while trolling. Closer to shore, folks commonly catch snapper, snook, roosterfish, and wahoo. Tuna are offshore.
Finally, for many, Costa Rica fishing paradise is found on the southern Pacific coast down to Panama, off Puerto Jiminez, Golfo Dulce, and Drake Bay. When the water is warm, sails and marlin are abundant. Inshore, you will likely run into roosters, large snapper, wahoo, and amberjack. The Golfo Dulce is reported by charter operators to offer the finest inshore fishing in Costa Rica. This is because it contains many small coves and is very rocky, giving fish a great place to hide. There are lots of kinds of fish here, including large groupers, delectable sea bass, and the toothy barracuda. Sometimes, you will have hundreds of porpoises around your boat as they follow the bait fish.
Of course, you can only catch the Big One if you are fishing for the Big One. So, turn off your computer, bid your comrades a fond adieu, and take that long needed Costa Rica vacation.