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Deep and productive waters only 15 minutes from shore, well-equipped sport fishing boats and scenic views add up to a quality fishing experience in Jamaica. Common species include blue and white marlin, wahoo, tuna and dorado.
The waters around the Cayman Trench are an angler's dream as the regular one to two knot current clumps the seaweed together into substantial weed lines. Also heavy seasonal rainfall around island erodes the riverbanks and washes trees and additional debris out to sea. These floating shelters attract baitfish and hence bigger fish. In the summer months, while the sea is flatter, these weed lines grow even larger and attract more marine activity.
Banks and cays around the island are home to a number of bottom fish, such as snapper and grouper. Pedro Bank, which follows the south coast, is the largest. Buckner Bank is located just 15 miles from Montego Bay. Here you'll find also find yellowtail, mutton and red tail snapper.
Timing is as important as location and there are periods of the year when certain species are more common. Dorado are in season January through to April, whereas the black fin and yellow fin tuna season picks up in April lasting until August. The core marlin season is from August to December. However, it's still common to catch these species year round.
Jamaica attracts anglers from all around the world, particularly for its blue marlin tournaments. October is a great time for any fishing lover to come to the island since you'll find the Port Antonio International Billfish Tournament in action: this is one of the most celebrated and prestigious in the Caribbean. Every year, the event can attract up to 50 boats, with anglers coming from the USA and the neighboring Caribbean island to take part. You can also find other tournaments in Montego Bay, Falmouth, Discovery Bay and Treasure Beach.
Anytime you're in Jamaica is a great time to go fishing. You can charter boats for half or full day trips in pretty much any resort. You'll find the prices vary from place to place, so do enquire about what is included in the package and who gets to keep the catch. Some places even offer to mount your prize fish and can even arrange to have your fish cleaned and cooked to order.
Fishing in Jamaica is more than just line, bait and wrestling with marlin. It gives you the chance to breathe in the island's topographical beauty, where the coastline spreads out against blue seas, offering stunning views from the comfort of your sport fisher. Whether or not you catch the big one, the experience will be one to remember. So sit back, play some reggae and enjoy some refreshment while the boat carries you out to sea. Keep an eye out for porpoises and sea turtles that lurk around Jamaica's coastal waters.