Placencia

Placencia

If there is anywhere in the world where the permit fishing is better than in Belize, it’s not yet on the map!  The most tantalisingly elusive of all flats sport fish is what lures most serious flyfishermen, of any nationality, to Belize.  And where in Belize do you find the largest permit? – undoubtedly, in the south of the country, off the coast of Placencia.

The Fishing:

Anywhere else in the world, the permit is the rarest of the species within the treasured trio (bonefish, tarpon, permit) – and the one that causes the most grief to those seeking the ‘grand slam’.  Here in Belize it is the principal quarry of the three.

Ignore the fact that – for divers – Belize’s waters are second only in the world to the Great Barrier Reef, and that it’s own reef is the second longest in the world.  What really thrills flats fisherman is the sight of a large permit, or even more a school of permit,  ‘tailing’ at high tide.  And the reason that southern Belize is a permit paradise is because it is blessed with a huge number of flats at precisely the required depth to be able to spot this tailing activity – and this, throughout the year.

While the quantity, and size, of permit is what distinguishes southern Belize from most other Caribbean flats fishing destinations, tarpon, snook and bonefish are also to be found although in lesser numbers.  

And apart from these main sports species, the waters around the reef provide excellent fishing for jacks (mutton and horse eye), barracuda, snapper, grouper, mackerel, sea bass, etc.  Beyond the reef there is blue water fishing available, according to seasson – billfish (marlin, sailfish), dorado, wahoo, tuna (skipjack, yellow fin and black fin), etc. – although this fishing would be by separate arrangement.

Accommodation & Transport:

There are number of inns, hotels and resorts from which to chose in the Placencia village or on the peninsula.  The Westwind Hotel is centrally located in the heart of the quiet fishing village of Punta Placencia. The hotel is locally owned and operated and is attractive, modern and comfortable.  It is located right on the beach and is just yards from Placencia Village’s famous sidewalk along which are to be found a large selection of the local restaurants, tour operators, shops, etc., and even an internet café.  The hotel has 8 second level rooms, all with private bathrooms and air-conditioning – two of these have twin beds, and six have queen size or double beds.  There are two further family units at ground level (without air-conditioning).  Wireless internet access is available.

This hotel is ideal for a true escape.  A strong sea breeze and beautiful views puts you in a calm, relaxed mood. And a thatched palapa on the beach offers hammocks for reading or simply relaxing.

Meals are not included, but a continental breakfast is available to start your day off.  There are a large number of good local restaurants a short walk away (approx $25 per meal).  A laundry service is available.

The Programme:

A programme can be organised for any duration of trip.  However, a 6 fishing day, 7 night package is normally the preferred arrangement, and provides the best opportunity to get full value of all that is available. 

Guides and Skiffs:

We use some of the best and most professional guides in southern Belize.  Each has his own boat, which will pick you up from your hotel (subject to weather conditions).  A 40 minute trip in a sturdy, well designed skiff, with the quietest of all outboard engines, will take you to an archipelago of deserted, knee-deep flats, all of which are ideal for stalking the elusive prey on foot (or, if preferred, by poling from the skiff).  And when sated – or sufficiently frustrated – by this exhilarating experience, there are a series of lagoons with tarpon, of all sizes.

Other Activities:

Placencia is a wonderful centre for anglers and non-anglers alike to sample some of the exotic wildlife, flora and mystic Mayan culture.  Tours can be arranged with the best guides for jungle trips and inland tours – for instance to the Cockscomb Jaguar Reserve, Monkey River and the Xunantunich Mayan Ruins.  Sporting activities such as diving, snorkelling, sailing, and kayaking can be arranged, and finally blue water fishing is always available.

Seasons:

From a fishing viewpoint, the flats species (bonefish and permit) are to be found throughout the year.  Tarpon are also present all year, but the migratory species – normally the larger ones (up to 120lbs.) – start to arrive in April and stay till October.  Peak tarpon months are June, July and August.  However the channels where they are found are close to the reef and weather conditions sometimes do not allow an approach to this area.

Rates – 2009/10:

For a package including 6 days guided fishing and 7 nights, domestic air transfers between Belize City and Placencia, local transfers, and lunch box on board (other meals excluded);  the rate per person on a double occupancy room, shared boat basis is from US$1,815 per person

Alternative quotes can be made for different durations, and alternative lodging facilities.

Supplements:          

Single room, and/or one to one guided fishing, supplements are available.

Conditions:

A 50% trip deposit is required to hold your reservation. Full payment is due 60 days prior to travel.