Holbox is home to a wonderfully prolific nursery fishery that yields reliable year-round opportunities for baby tarpon and snook throughout protected backcountry lagoons and flats. Most anglers visit Holbox during the summertime when enormous populations of adult tarpon arrive to feed a few miles off the coast of the island. This unique mix of venue and opportunity make Holbox as consistent and reliable as any tarpon fishery in the world.
A typical summertime itinerary begins with an early morning wake-up and fresh espresso delivered to your room by lodge manager and Italian ex-pat, Luciano Govi. After breakfast, anglers run in comfortable panga style boats approximately ten – twenty minutes offshore to a series of submerged rock formations home to thousands of adult tarpon that reside near Holbox from May – September. On a flat day, anglers usually encounter schools of rolling, cruising, and feeding adult specimens in the 60 – 160 pound range. Although not your typical Florida Keys style of fishing, 95% of the fishing is done sight casting to pods of fish on or close to the surface. Guides hurriedly intercept a school of cruising fish, cut the engine, and get anglers in position for a couple of shots. This “run and gun” style of fishing is super exciting and totally unique for even the most experienced tarpon pros.
Depending on the conditions, some anglers will opt to spend the entire fishing day outside in search of the big boys. Following the morning session, most anglers return to the protected flats and lagoons of Holbox to mix it up with some juvenile tarpon and snook action. Such famous areas such as Cabo Catoche are home to zillions of baby tarpon in the 5-25 pound range, which are a ton of fun on an eight or nine weight. These shallow white flats are more reminiscent of a typical bonefish flat than a baby tarpon lagoon; and guides will stake out in a likely area and wait for unsuspecting fish to cruise and feed towards the boat. Sighting fish is usually very easy and casts are not typically more than forty feet, making this very user friendly fishing for the most novice of anglers.
It can also be productive to venture into the backcountry lagoons and creeks of interior Holbox and encounter some excellent snook fishing, even during the windiest conditions. The typical fishing schedule is from 6:00AM – 2:00PM, thus taking advantage of the usually calmer morning breezes. Anglers have the balance of the day to cruise the beaches and town with non-angling guests, or simply relax at the comfortable lodge with a cerveza.