The Los Sueños Resort Marina has more trophy fish caught year round than any other destination in Central America. In addition to being known internationally as the Fishing Capital of Costa Rica, it is also home to the beautiful Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort.
Surrounded with palmtree lined pools and decks, nestled between the ocean and a tropical-rainforest, it was easy to see why Travel & Leisure magazine recognized it as one of the "World's Best Hotels.” This was the perfect compromise between a vacation with avid fishermen... and me.
My only other sport fishing trip had been with my family years ago in Mexico. All I remember is driving aimlessly for hours into the ocean, falling asleep on the top deck, waking up with the most ridiculous sunburn, and then hurling up my breakfast. To this day I still can’t drink Sunny Delight without feeling nauseous. We did return home with a tuna, so I guess the trip wasn’t all bad.
I’m always up for adventure, so when my buddies told me we were going fishing for the day I figured it was worth another shot.
We woke up before sunrise and headed to Costa Rica Dreams Sportfishing where we were greeted by our experience captain and 2 mates who spoke perfect english. We boarded our huge 35’ Cabo Express and were quickly off to sea.
After driving about 2 hours from shore, we had rods baited and set already in the water. Within minutes we had fish on and were catching Mahi-mahi left and right!
Often with multiple people reeling in at the same time, it was unbelievable how fast-paced it was!
If you’ve ever gone deep sea fishing before, you know what a drag (pun intended) it can be. You can spend hours at sea only to return home without even as much as a bite. This was not the case all!
The mainland of Costa Rica runs from the northwest to the southeast which provides a cover from high winds and makes for extremely calm waters and perfect fishing grounds. It felt like we were out on a calm lake catching sunfish.
Of course these fish were far from reeling in a sunfish.
“Mahi mahi” means strong in Hawaiian, and this fish sure lives up to its name.
Weighing on average of 20-30lbs, these suckers put on quite the show, taking nearly half an hour to get into the boat.
We (mostly the guys; I caught one and almost got pulled overboard. I did make an excellent cheerleader and photographer though!) caught 6 mahi in a matter of hours. Now, it was time for lunch!
Right then and there one of the mates pulled out a knife and filleted one of the mahi right on the side of the boat.
After some of the best (and no doubt freshest) sashimi I'd ever tasted before, it was on to bigger and better things: Sail fish!
With their grand sail, iridescent colors, lit up stripes, and spotted dots going up and down its body, the sailfish is among one of the most beautiful species in the water. Reaching speeds of 68mph, they’re the fastest fish in the ocean. Their large size and acrobatic fight make them a favorite among fishers.
Jumping, thrashing, and whipping their body side-to-side, it’s very exciting watching them get reeled in!
Because sail fish are just catch and release, the best way to get a picture is to jump right in with it!
On our return home we boasted 6 mahi and 11 sailfish catches.
The guys had a bucket list fishing experience and I had a great tan and my first big catch under my belt.
Successful day of fishing accomplished!
The fish you catch is yours to keep. We took one back to our hotel where the chef gladly prepared us a fest of mahi-mahi cooked several different ways.
Sport fishing can be expensive, costing about $1,500 per charter plus 20% tip for the crew. It included everything for fishing, lunch, snacks, beers, and the entire day out on the ocean. Split between a group, I think this excursion is well worth it.
The Los Sueños Resort is located about 1 ½ hours from the Juan Santamaria San Jose Airport and near many other popular towns to check out. Booking and more information can be found on their website: www.costaricadreams.com
Check out the quick video my buddy Terry put together that pretty much sums up the day