Playa del Carmen, Mexico's virtual guidebook written by locals

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Deep Sea Fishing

Fishing in Playa del Carmen

Two more to go for the Grand Slam!The quality of deep sea fishing in the Playa del Carmen area may come as a surprise to you. This area is perhaps more famous for its fantastic diving and its amazing Mayan ruins, but the truth is that fishing is here is ranked extremely high by serious anglers from all over the world. Local deep sea fishing has been featured several times on ESPN as well as in a number of fishing magazines, like Saltwater Sportsman and Marlin. After all, this is the Caribbean and many of the world's most wanted fish swim in the waters off the coast of Playa del Carmen. We'll help you arrange your fishing experience before you get here.

The Easy Going Local Day Cruise

Until quite recently Playa del Carmen was a little fishing village with a few thousand inhabitants. Though the size of town has grown significantly the last few years, old fishing traditions live on. Early in the morning the typical Mexican pangas set out to bring back whatever the sea has to offer that day. The panga is an open skiff, around 26', with an outdoor engine and sun protection. This is the local deal - you'll get picked up on the beach right here in Playa del Carmen. There are lots of options when it comes to booking a captain and boat, so unless you already have it sorted out, book your boat through us! The captains we work with have many years of experience in these waters!

The Full Monty

If you are in the market for some exciting deep sea fishing, with the panga or a bigger boat, Playa del Carmen and the Riviera Maya is a fantastic choice. This part of the coast is especially good. Why? Pure geography – the channel between the coast and the island of Cozumel creates a perfect game fish highway. The big fish run so close to the shore that you start putting on the bait as you leave the marina or beach! While the panga leaves from the local beach in Playa del Carmen, the bigger fishing boats work out of the marina in Puerto Aventuras, only 20 minutes from Playa del Carmen. However, it is advisable to book a boat before you get down here, especially during peak season. We work with the most experienced fishing operations in the area. No matter what the group size or budget, there's a combination that will get you on the water and catching fish. Big Crusader for 6 people? You got it. Small Pangas for two? No problem. Book your fishing trip now and you'll get a great day with drinks, snorkeling, private beaches, ruins, and, oh yeah, big fish! First, check out what different kinds of boats are available!

What Can You Catch?

Whatever time of year you are in Playa del Carmen you will be able to catch fish. The huge and attractive billfish (sailfish and marlin) migrate through the Cozumel channel during the spring and summer. Catching a fish like this is a thrilling experience and one that will truly pump your adrenaline up. They are plentiful off the coast in Playa del Carmen and they are caught year-round and on a daily basis during the season. The main target for many is the impressive sailfish, which is abundant from March to July. We also see plenty of both blue and white marlin, both of which are highly desired. Every year there are numerous grand slams made up of a sailfish, a white marlin and a blue marlin. A few world records have even been set here. All these amazing billfish are released back to continue their journey, so don't forget your camera!

I'm Hungry!

The waters outside Playa del Carmen are also the home for one of the best tasting fish in the oceans of the world – the Dorado. This tender but firm fish is also called mahi-mahi or dolphin fish. Barracuda, wahoo, tuna and kingfish are some of the other commonly caught (and eaten) fish here. Naturally the ubiquitous reef fish, such as snapper, jacks, grouper and mackerels also make a fantastic dinner! Whatever you catch the marinero will fillet it for you and we can recommend several restaurants in Playa that will be happy to prepare it in your favorite fashion. Get out there and catch supper!


It's a good workout to catch fish in Playa del Carmen!Most of the fish we have mentioned are here on a year round basis, for example tuna, wahoo and the reef fish. Whatever time of year you are here, there is some exciting and good fishing to be made! If you want to catch one of the big billfish you need to time it with their seasons. One fortunate coincidence is that the high season for billfish is also the low season for tourism here on the Riviera Maya. That means you have plenty of chances to get a good deal on both flight and hotel! High season for billfish is March to September, but you can catch sailfish all year around. During the peak months, March to July, people gather from all over the world to take part in the abundance of the magnificent sailfish. Whereas white marlin is here only when it is season, blue marlin is seen throughout the year.

Excellent March - July
Very Good July - August
Fair September - February
Excellent April - June
Very Good July - September
Blue Marlin
Good March-October
Fair October-February
White Marlin
Excellent May-June
Very Good July
Excellent All year long
Excellent All year round
Excellent All year round

Reef fish (snapper, jack, grouper, sea bass etc)

Excellent All year round