Quepos Fishing Packages


Fishing Info


Available Species



Long before any world class marinas or luxury resorts were ever built, the small coastal town of Quepos had been known as the ‘fishing capital of Costa Rica’. Today the state of the art Marina Pez Vela now exists, and the fleet of Quepos charter fishing boats continues to produce incredible amounts of sailfish and marlin. With its idealic location along the Central Pacific Coast, the boats can run north to fish near Los Suenos or south to fish close to the Osa Peninsula. The inshore fishing in Quepos is also some of the best that Costa Rica has to offer thanks to various islands, reefs and three different major river mouths. The Quepos Fishing Packages below will give you an idea to the type of fishing vacations we can offer, but we will customize your package once you contact us. Trust our local expertise and you’ll see why nearly 40% of our guests are repeat & referral anglers!

Quepos Fishing Adventure
The Best of Costa Rica
Coast 2 Coast
Target: Roosterfish
Inshore Galore
Fly Fish Quepos

Quepos Location

The town of Quepos, also known as Manuel Antonio, is located along Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast. For all Quepos fishing packages you will want to fly in and out of the Juan Santamaria Airport in San Jose (SJO). From there we will take you down to Quepos in a private, air conditioned van with a professional, insured English-speaking driver. The drive time between the SJO Airport and Quepos is approx 2.5-3 hrs depending on traffic. If your flight arrives early enough we can also fly you from San Jose down to Quepos on a short, 25-minute domestic flight.

Quepos Fishing Info

Perhaps more than any other beach in Costa Rica, Quepos is responsible for putting fishing in Costa Rica on the world map. The combination of calm seas for offshore fishing, highly productive inshore fishing, the Manuel Antonio National Park, wildlife, and beautiful beaches was hard to beat – and still is today! For the anglers who have been fishing Costa Rica since the 90s and early 2000s, chances are they remember walking out on the big cement pier, “El Muelle”, and then putting their knees and ankles to the test walking down the floating ramp (which was often wet) to board their fishing boat. Today Quepos is the proud home of the Marina Pez Vela, a world class marina that features 195 wet slips, shops, restaurants, and new luxury condos. The Marina Pez Vela hosts several international billfish tournaments each year, including the biggest offshore fishing tournament in the world, the Offshore World Championship, every year since 2013.

Offshore Fishing in Quepos

Most days, the run to the offshore fishing grounds will be 22-30 miles away from the Marina Pez Vela in Quepos, which typically takes 45-60 minutes depending on the boat. Some weeks the best action can be as far as 40-45 miles away or as close as 12-15 miles. Offshore fishing from Quepos typically consists of slow trolling plastic teasers and ballyhoo rigged on circle hooks. Most boats will set some variation of a spread with a plastic teaser or squid daisy chain just off each side of the stern and then two to three lines with ballyhoo on each side of the boat. If you come across a pod of spinner dolphins that are swimming with yellow-fin tuna the crew will quickly take down the spread and allow you to start fishing with cedar plugs, poppers, or keep trolling ballyhoo depending on how they are feeding. Many dorado are caught while trolling for billfish, but if you spot a log or some other garbage flow you can slowly troll or cast around it to see if there are any lurking. Fishing out of Quepos gives you easy access to fish a popular offshore pinnacle called The 26, which is gernerally a great spot to speed troll for wahoo. Every year, especially in the green season, lucky anglers are surprised by black marlin who are also fishing the reef for a snack.

Inshore Fishing in Quepos

When inshore fishing in Quepos you’ll stay much closer to home and will always have the coastline in sight. Quepos is home to some of the best inshore fishing in Costa Rica due to the various rocky islands spread along the coastline, reefs, Rio Parrita to the north and Rio Savegre & Rio Naranjo to the south. Many of the bigger offshore boats can take you inshore fishing, but for the best experience we prefer to fish with one of our dedicated inshore guides since they’ll be on smaller boats and they know the various spots better than anyone. Hands down the best way to get bit while inshore fishing is using live bait. The bait in the area can be sardines, lookdowns, and the roosterfish favorite – blue runners. For anglers who don’t enjoy trolling all day you can also cast poppers and stick baits towards the various rocky islands or over reefs. Bottom fishing with chunk bait or jigging is also productive for edible fish like groupers, sea bass, amberjacks, and snapper.

Fly Fishing in Quepos

Quepos has long been known as one of the best spots for fly fishing in Costa Rica. More than all the other sport fishing destinations in Costa Rica, the fleet in Quepos has several boats that specialize in offshore fly fishing for sailfish and marlin. The offshore fly fishing in Quepos is so good that there was even an annual fly fishing tournament held here for many years in the early 2000s. Our experienced fly fishing captains are experts at teasing fish up behind the boat so that you can make a short cast and present your fly to an agitated billfish. Most of our dedicated fly fishing boats will provide all fly tackle, leaders, and flies that you need. While offshore you can also come across schools of yellowfin tuna and dorado that can be cast to. Inshore flying fishing in Quepos is also an option, though much more difficult as it involves a lot of blind casting. The various islands, reefs, and river mouths hold a variety of species like jacks, mackerel, snook, snapper, and of course the prized roosterfish. Last but not least, freshwater fly fishing from Quepos is also an option as we offer float trips down our nearby jungle rivers. The main target on this trip is the feisty machaca, but roncador, tepemachin, and even snook & snapper can be caught in these costal waters.

Quepos Fishing Charters

The charter fleet in Quepos is as diverse as any fishing destination in Costa Rica. The offshore fleet consists of anything from a 26′-28′ economical sport fishers to top of the line 50′-60′ luxury yachts and tournament boats while the dedicated inshore fleet are typically 26′-33′ center consoles and super pangas. We have three tiers of offshore fishing charters in Quepos: Small (26′-34′), Medium (36′-42′), and Large (45′-60′). All of the offshore boats will have bathrooms, but the the Medium and Large boats typically have air conditioned salons. While many of the same offshore boats can take you inshore fishing, we often prefer to fish on a dedicated inshore boat with a captain who knows the tides, the best spots and typically drives a smaller, more agile boat to get you close to the islands and river mouths.Every captain has a different personality and every boat has different pros and cons, so trust our local knowledge to hand pick the perfect fishing charter for your group. All our Quepos fishing charters are private so the boat is 100% yours, we do not set up shared charters. All Quepos fishing charters include bait, tackle, gas, lunch, snacks, and drinks (beer/water/soda). A quality tip for your crew is generally 15%-20% of the cost of the charter.

When is the Best Time to Fish in Quepos?

Due to the combination of offshore, inshore, bottom fishing available, Quepos truly does offer great year round fishing. The peak billfish season runs from November through April, then the peak variety and meatfish season runs from May through November. The months of May through September are when we offer our overnight trips marlin fishing at the FADs. Inshore fishing is productive year round, but is certainly better when the baitfish are around. Below you can review our Quepos fishing calendar, but keep in mind these are general patterns, not an exact science as every year is different.

Available Species Fishing in Quepos

Offshore Fishing

Black Marlin
Blue Marlin
Striped Marlin
Yellowfin Tuna

Inshore & Bottom Fishing

Cubera Snapper
Jack Crevalle
Horse-eye Jack
Bluefin Trevally
Schoolmaster Snapper
Red Snapper
Lane Snapper
Black Grouper
Broomtail Grouper

Quepos / Manuel Antonio Accommodations

The Manuel Antonio area offers so much more than just sport fishing, it’s also home to beautiful beaches, wildlife, and Costa Rica’s most visited national park, Manuel Antonio. Both have been attracting visitors to the area since the 70’s and 80’s, so their is no shortage of options when it comes to accommodations in Quepos. For anglers on a budget, or who simply prefer to spend more on fishing than a luxury hotel, there are several 3-star options that have been around for decades. The nicer, more luxurious 4-star and 5-star hotels tend to be newer, offer more amenities, and boast incredible views of the surrounding rainforest and Pacific Ocean. For larger groups and families there are also several private villas and condo rentals available if you prefer something more exclusive. If the wildlife and ocean views don’t interest your fishing group, the Marina Pez Vela Villas are eight brand new fully furnished 2 and 3-bedroom condos that sit on the second floor of the marina village so you are right in the heart of the action and steps away from the dock. We will hand pick the best fit for you once we start customizing your Quepos fishing package.

Quepos Day Tours & Non-Fishing Activities

Our Quepos fishing packages don’t need to be all fishing, all the time. Whether it’s an off day from fishing or for the non-anglers in your group, there are tons of great eco and adventure tours available from the Quepos/Manuel Antonio area. The list includes:

  • Canopy zip-line tour
  • ATVs
  • White Water Rafting
  • Horseback Riding to a Waterfall
  • Guided Tour of Manuel Antonio National Park
  • Guided Tour of nearby Private Nature Reserves
  • Catamaran Cruise + Snorkeling
  • Surfing
  • Jet skies
  • Parasailing
  • Spice Farm
  • Mangrove Tour (by boat or kayak)
  • River float fishing trip

What Our Guests Love
Quepos Fishing


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What We Love
About Quepos Fishing


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Costa Rica Fishing FAQs

Do I need a fishing license to fish in Costa Rica?

YES. All anglers need a fishing license to fish in Costa Rica. These are sold by the Instituto Costarricense de Pesca y Aquacultura, or INCOPESCA as they are known here. Unfortunately their website has functionality and language issues so it’s not easy to use, so you can buy the license in the morning right before you fish for the first time. The cost is $15 for one week or $30 for one month and it must be paid in cash.

How many people will be on my fishing boat?

All fishing charters booked by Central America Fishing are private, so the boat is 100% yours. We do not set up any shared charters.

What is the standard tip for a fishing charter in Costa Rica?

A standard tip for a charter fishing crew in Costa Rica is 10%-20% of the cost of the charter. Most captains are paid a low salary with the idea they’ll earn more tips the more they fish, but many mates rely 100% on tips for their income. Tipping in USD or Costa Rican colones is fine. We recommend giving the entire tip to the captain and let him divide it up with the mate.

Can I bring my own fishing gear?

OF COURSE! Even though our private charters provide all the fishing tackle and bait you’ll need, you are always welcome to bring your own lures, reels, and even rods if you want to catch fish using your own tackle. Fly anglers are always encouraged to bring their own fly gear.

Which fish in Costa Rica are catch and release and which ones can I keep to eat?

By law, all billfish in Costa Rica are strictly catch and release. While not a law, we also strongly encourage releasing all roosterfish, tarpon, and cubera snapper as they are such prized inshore species. Other species like tuna, dorado (mahi), wahoo, snappers, groupers, corvina, snook can be kept and enjoyed for a fresh seafood dinner.

Can I bring fish back home with me to my own country?

If you really want to enjoy your catch our best advice is to eat it while it’s fresh here in Costa Rica. We understand many of you love the idea of a Costa Rican seafood dinner in the comforts of your own home, so the good news is there is no law against it and people do it all the time. However – we do not have the final say in this so there are some things you need to keep in mind:

1 – Unlike some other popular fishing destinations, in Costa Rica there is no service that will package and ship fish home for you. If you want to bring fish home with you you’ll have to do it yourself in your own luggage. Our best advice is to bring down a soft sided, leak-proof cooler, have your fish frozen completely solid, wrap them in newspaper, and then check your cooler as part of your luggage since it will stay cooler in the cargo hold of the plane versus in the cabin as a carry-on. If you don’t have a cooler or forget to bring one, you can purchase affordable plastic coolers here in local grocery stores.

2 – While Costa Rica does not prohibit you from bringing fish fillets home with you, your international airline might. We strongly recommend you confirm this with your airline (in writing if possible) or you may have the fish confiscated from you at the airport check-in.

3 – Even if your airline lets you fly the fish home, your local customs may have an issue with you bringing in meat products from a foreign country. In our experience most customs agents don’t seem too interested in you bringing back frozen fish fillets from your fishing vacation to Costa Rica, but it can depend on the agent and depend on the day.

What if there is bad weather on our fishing day?

First of all, it is extremely rare to have a fishing day cancelled due to bad weather. Costa Rica is too far south for hurricanes, and on top of that we custom design every single one of our Costa Rica fishing packages to factor in not only where you’ll have the best fishing but also the best weather & sea conditions for the time of year you visit us.

It does happen every once in a while however, so if the captain, local marina, or government deem the conditions are unsafe the trip will be cancelled.  The first course of action is to try and reschedule you, but if that is not possible you will be refunded in full.

Please note that rain and dark clouds are not considered bad weather. We are in the tropics and rain is a common occurrence here so that is not a cause for cancelling the trip. Many great fishing days happen in the rain – as they say the fish are wet anyway!

Why Fish With CAF?

We have been fishing, living, and traveling around Central America since 2003. Plan your trip with local experts to make sure you are in the right place, at the right time, and on the right boat. We’ll help you fish for what you want, the way you want.

Free vacation planning + the best direct rates. No booking fees!

Personalized service from pre-arrival to 24/7 in-country support.

Hand-picked accommodations, fishing captains, expert guides for the best vacation experience.


Nearly 40% of our anglers are repeat & referral guests. CAF puts you on the fish!

We are proud to have a global reach and have hosted anglers from 14 different countries here in Central America!

About the Author

I first visited Costa Rica during a semester abroad in 2003 and instantly fell in love with the language, culture, and natural beauty. I caught my first roosterfish on that trip and knew that I wanted to live here, so I graduated and returned full time in 2005. Today I can proudly say that I’ve been in Costa Rica for half of my life, I met my wife here, and my two boys were born here so they are “Ticos”.

I’ve been working in the sport fishing industry in Central America for twenty years, I’ve had articles published in fishing magazines, hosted fishing TV shows, fished in several tournaments, and I’m a four-time IGFA trophy club member. I am however most proud to say that 40% of our anglers are repeat and referral guests. I’ve personally visited every destination, hotel, and fishing lodge that we partner with so that your next vacation with us is one of the best you’ve ever had.

All fishing vacations booked with Central America Fishing include the following:
  • Free Vacation Planning (no fees + direct rates)
  • VIP Airport Meet & Greet upon arrival into SJO
  • Private, air-conditioned transfers with English speaking driver.
  • Luxury, private accommodations hand-picked and customized for your group. Choose between private condos & villas, luxury beach resorts, exclusive boutique hotels, and fishing lodges.
  • Private fishing charters
  • All eco / adventure tours you’d like to include
  • All Costa Rican taxes
  • Free quotes on travel insurance
  • Pre-arrival assistance with dinner reservations, tee times, pre-stocking your condo or villa, hiring a private chef, and special requests.
  • 24/7 support once you are here in country
Inquire Now
Plan With Local Experts

Please fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch within 24 hours. If you wish to speak to us sooner please call us anytime at 1-855-414-FISH. Your 100% customized vacation starts here!

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