Every day off the coast of Cancun, scores of visitors are introduced to the ultimate Caribbean sport. Aboard all types of boats – from tiny fishing vessels to luxurious private charters – tourists of all ages have a chance to experience some of the world’s best deep-sea and sport fishing. While these exciting sports took some time to catch on in Cancun, experienced anglers and general adventure seekers have come to love the vibrant Caribbean waters of the Mexican Riviera. For those hoping to reel in some fish or simply enjoy an afternoon at sea, Cancun is home to an ever-increasing array of charter boats and tour companies that cater to all tastes and budgets. If you want to witness the sights of the Caribbean Sea while in Cancun, there is nothing better than day of deep-sea or sport fishing.
Though Cancun is a young city, this ideal coastal location has been used by fishermen for centuries. Long before the birth of this resort hotspot, Mayan communities thrived with the fish pulled from the Caribbean Sea and inland lakes. After the fall of the Mayan Empire, small fishing villages along the Caribbean coastline supplied fresh fish to the cities of Mexico. Despite the proficiency of local fishermen, it wasn’t until groups of vacationing World War II veterans began fishing for sport along the Caribbean coastline that today’s style of fishing began to develop. After the city of Cancun started welcoming visitors in 1970, the local fishermen used the skills they learned from vacationing soldiers to provide fishing tours. Over the past several decades, the industry has developed steadily with more and more expert anglers offering tours in Cancun each year.
Most deep-sea fishing tours in Cancun last 4-8 hours and include the services of a captain and often a first mate. Aboard many boats, you will find fishing gear, bait and refreshments included in the price of your tour. While most tour companies help visiting families put together friendly fishing groups to achieve discounted rates, it is also possible to hire private charters for a peaceful day of Caribbean fishing. Most importantly, despite the fact that deep-sea Caribbean fishing promises one of Cancun’s most exciting experiences, fishing tours for families are often very affordable. For instance, 4-hour fishing tours for groups of four people average between $200 and $400, while groups of eight can enjoy the open Caribbean for prices averaging $500 to $700. If the quiet relaxation of fly fishing suits you and your family better, many of the same tour companies also offer affordable fly fishing excursions that visit the best sites along the Caribbean coastline near Cancun.
While the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean Sea are certainly a sight to behold, so are the nearly 500 species of fish swimming in the nutrient-rich coral environment offshore from Cancun. For deep-sea fishers, much of the excitement lies in the fact that different species fill the waters throughout the year, ensuring that no two excursions are the same. From September to February – generally the height of the tourism season in Cancun – it is common to reel in fish such as barracuda, red snapper and mackerel. From February to April, it is common to find some larger fish such as blue marlin, kingfish and some small shark species. During the summer months, tuna and mahi-mahi appear in large schools in the Caribbean waters near Cancun.
As Cancun’s ideal coastal location has helped the city become a tourist Mecca, an afternoon of deep-sea fishing in the Caribbean Sea promises an incredible vacation experience. Even if you have never fished before or are concerned about your budget, there are plenty of options available in Cancun designed to fit your budget and help you enjoy the remarkable sights of the Caribbean Sea.
Justin Burch writes articles about travel in Cancun for the Marriott Resorts.