Say Puerto Rico and most people picture white sand beaches, blue skies and clear seas. Recently, a growing number of kayak anglers are exploring the fishing potential of one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Imagine catching largemouth and peacock bass, snook and tarpon in the same body of water.
Arrive to San Juan and make the Tarpon Nest Boutique Hotel home base. The staff is schooled in local fishing, they even have kayaks ready to fish.
Stay in town and target snook, tarpon and jack crevalle or head offshore for wahoo, dolphin and billfish. My favorite corner of the island is the lagoons and lakes in the southeast.
Inshore fishing is great year-round. For offshore anglers, winter is hot. September to November is best on the south side of the island while October to December is best in the north.
Fishing from a kayak allows anglers to access secluded waters out of reach for motorboats. Bring an adventurous spirit and be prepared to explore the mangroves for an elusive snook or patrol the edge of reefs for an explosive barracuda.
From bluewater pelagics on the north side of the island, to twelve freshwater lakes, Puerto Rico proves good things come in small packages.
Tarpon Nest Boutique Hotel
Loiza, Puerto Rico
The staff at Tarpon Nest know every corner of San José and Torrecilla lagoons for trophy tarpon. USCG-certified captains are ready to take you fishing.
Capt. José Aponte
787-646-9158 | [email protected]
Facebook: Caribbean Paddlesports, Instagram: josesupfish
Mangrove Gastro Bar
Tarpon Nest Boutique Hotel
Don’t miss the mofongo, a dish made with fried smashed green plantains. Get it plain or stuffed with seafood.
The Tarpon Nest offers boats by Hobie and Ocean Kayak.
Caribbean Paddlesports has fishing kayaks and Live Watersports L2 Fish paddleboards.
Guided trips out of Tarpon Nest includes all fishing gear.
Caribbean Paddlesports has spinning, casting and fly gear.
Bring light tackle spinning rods for artificial jigs and swimbaits. Offshore fishing requires heavy rods and vertical jigs.
Largemouth and peacock bass.
Tarpon, snook, jacks, kingfish, barracuda, snappers, dolphin, wahoo, billfish, permit, bonefish and more.
September to December for dolphin, blackfin tuna and wahoo. Inshore species are available year-round.
2000 to 5000 class spinning gear, 10- to 30-pound braid, 10- to 30-pound fluorocarbon leader, topwater plugs, jerkbaits, jigs and soft plastics.
3wt to 4wt fly rods, 6wt to 10wt for saltwater, 20- to 40-pound leader.
Flies: streamers, poppers, deceivers, glass minnows.
For offshore fish, large topwater, suspending and diving plugs.
Troll ballyhoo with 20-pound conventional reels.
Use 5000 to 20000 class spinning gear to jig and cast.
Standup boards and boats for sight fishing tarpon, permit and snook.
Open water kayak for offshore fishing.
Stay in San Juan and rent a car to explore the island, beaches and historical sites.
Pack light clothing and water shoes.
Bring a mindset ready for good times and the best fishing.
Unmatched diversity, and beauty. | Photo: Jose Aponte