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That’s Fishin’ – August 2023

The Summer Shootout fishing tournament came to a thrilling conclusion with an impressive display of angling prowess. Teams from far and wide gathered to compete for the top honors, making it an exhilarating event for both participants and spectators alike.

Taking home the coveted first-place trophy was Team Zapatas Sky, whose exceptional fishing skills and teamwork propelled them to victory. Their dedication and strategic approach to the tournament paid off, securing them a well-deserved win.

Coming in a close second was Team Zapata Family, who showcased their family bond and shared passion for fishing throughout the competition. Their remarkable performance demonstrated the strength of unity and collaboration.

In an impressive display of skill, Team Hatta Dream Ladies claimed the third-place position. These talented anglers showcased their talent and determination, making their mark in the tournament and earning them a well-earned spot on the winners’ podium.
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That’s Fishin’ – July 2023

Welcome to the July edition of That’s Fishin’, we are so glad to have you with us and I hope that you get to experience some of our amazing Fishing and stunning coastline during your time here. The seasonal rains arrived a little late this year, due to the present El-Nino which has kept water temperatures unseasonably high but on the positive provided some stunning weather and an extended dry season, to enjoy more time on the water.


July is an excellent month to fish here in Quepos. Marlin, Sailfish, Wahoo, Tuna, Dorado, Grouper, & Snapper are the main Offshore targets right now. We catch primarily Blue Marlin at this time of year during Offshore day trips but some huge Black Marlin can be targeted by livebaiting Bonitos at the Offshore reefs.

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That’s Fishin’ – May/June 2023

Welcome to the May & June edition of That’s Fishin’.


April produced some fantastic Marlin fishing for the Quepos fleet as good numbers of Blue Marlin in the 150-250lb range were released. There were a few big black Marlin caught over the Offshore Reefs as well as a few striped Marlin out deep.

April produced some big bull Dorado and we saw the first schools of baby Dorados of the season, which are almost certainly the Offspring from last year’s peak Dorado run in November. We love seeing lots of baitfish and small juvenile fish out there, showing signs of a healthy ocean and fishery. There have been lots of groups of Tuna about over the past few weeks, however, they have been pretty tough to catch on some days. Bonito livebaits have been the #1 bait but blue runners and some artificial baits have been working too. Marlin, Sailfish, Tuna and Dorado should all still be present as we move into May/June and the Wahoo should make an entrance as the seasonal rains begin and the water temps drop. Our Offshore reefs are the #1 place to catch a Wahoo and May to August is the best time here to do so. Offshore deep drop bottom fishing can also produce some excellent results with Grouper, Snapper, Tilefish and more at this time of year also.

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That’s Fishin’ – April 2023

A huge welcome to all the visiting Anglers from around the world for this month’s OFFSHORE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS being held here at the Marina Pez Vela this April 16-21st. We are so glad that you could make the trip to Costa Rica and hope that you enjoy some excellent Fishing, the beauty of the Manuel Antonio area and our warm Costa Rican hospitality. Have a great visit and Tight Lines to you all!


March provided some great variety for all of our main Offshore species. Blue Marlin were prevalent and there were good numbers of Blues in the 150-250lb range caught throughout the month. There were some really big Marlin caught in recent weeks including an estimated 900lb Blue Marlin caught aboard MY THREE SONS, huge congrats guys for the fish of a lifetime. We had a good run of Black Marlin throughout the month with some really nice Blacks caught at the Offshore reefs. The Tuna fishing was exceptional during March. Livebait was the preferred bait to catch the Tuna for most of the month and there were some really nice sized Tuna caught, with various reports of fish over 150lbs. Dorado numbers thinned out during March compared to previous months as summer water temps continue to rise but some really nice sized Bull Dorado showed up and made dreams come true. We had some great Sailfishing at times with some excellent catch reports posted with some slow weeks mixed in. April should be an excellent month for Sailfish this year and hopefully the bite is on fire ready for this month’ s two tournaments, the Marina Pez Vela Open and the Offshore World Championships.

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That’s Fishin’ – March 2023

Welcome to the March edition of That’s Fishin’ for Tales from the High Seas and all things Fishy in the Quepos and Manuel Antonio area.


The Offshore fishing has been excellent this past month and should continue through March & April. We are in the midst of peak Sailfish season right now and there have been some exceptional Sailfishing days in recent weeks with many boats releasing upwards of 10 Sailfish in a day, and on occasion some boats have been releasing 20+ Sails in a day when the bite is on. The Blue Marlin fishing has been great also with lots of Blue Marlin being caught. There have been some big Black Marlin caught at our Offshore reefs, many of these fish in excess of 500lbs. In addition to the Blues, Blacks, and Sails, there have been some Striped Marlin being caught also and when those guys are running it will give you your best shot at the coveted Grand Slam here in CR of 3 different Billfish species in one day.

The Dorado fishing in January and early February was excellent but as February progressed with long periods of settled weather heating the water up, the masses of Dorados that we had, seemed to thin out in recent weeks. We are seeing a few Dorados on most Offshore trips and you will still have a great chance at catching one during March and April, which is when some of the largest Bull Dorados of the year make an appearance.

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That’s Fishin’ – February 2023


At time of going to press we had literally just reeled in the last lines for this year’s 2023 PELAGIC ROCKSTAR TOURNAMENT, which took place January 14-16. 95 boats with some of the world’s Top Teams and Crews descended on MARINA PEZ VELA to kick off our 2023 tournaments with A BANG! There is too much to mention right here but let’s just say more than US$1.3 MILLION in prize money was paid out and the fishing was nothing short of epic! 1048 Sailfish, 78 Blue Marlin, 3 Black Marlin, & 2 Striped Marlin were released over the two tournament days. 114 Dorado and 35 Tuna were brought to the scales and a huge crowd gathered to enjoy the weigh in and daily tournament festivities.


2nd VAQUERO 33 Sailfish, 2 Blue Marlin
3rd GAME PLAN 32 Sailfish, 2 Blue Marlin

Heaviest Tuna 149lbs TEAM WINE TIME
Heaviest Dorado 48lbs TEAM PURA VIDA
Top Angler & Top Lady Angler Adriana Finkelstein
Top Junior Angler Jonah Smith aboard SOUTHERN PRIDE

Special mentions to Quepos teams, TEAM BUCHANEERS aboard GAUEX FLY & TEAM FULL NELSON who brought home the Daily wins in the non-sonar Billfish divisions with some great catches of Sailfish & Marlin.

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That’s Fishin’ – January 2023

That’s Fishin’- Benn Gilmour

Happy new year to you all, thank you for being with us here in Costa Rica and my best wishes for the year ahead, I hope it is filled with some great catches and more amazing memories made on the water.


Fishing Rockstars from all over North America and beyond will be descending on Quepos over the weekend of January 12-15th for the BIGGEST & COOLEST Tournament of the year, the 2023 PELAGIC ROCKSTAR! This event has literally exploded over the past few years with more than ONE MILLION DOLLARS in prize money paid out last year, making it Costa Rica’s richest Fishing Tournament. We cannot wait to get the party started at Marina Pez Vela and we hope to see you there for the Fishing or even just to come and join the fun at the nightly weigh in’s on Jan 13-14th and the non-stop Party over the weekend. Tournament Teams fish across various categories for the most Marlin and Sailfish released as well as the heaviest Tuna and Dorado over the weekend. This is the tournament that EVERYONE wants to WIN. It promises to be a total blast, wish us luck and we hope to see you there!!

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That’s Fishin’ – December 2022

Welcome to the December edition of That’s Fishin, the official start of the dry season here on the Costa Rican Pacific Coast and our peak tourism period from now through April. I am so pleased that you are here to join us, wish you an amazing, life changing visit and hope that you get to experience some of our incredible fishing.


The Fishing in November was completely world class and safe to say, got the season started with a bang! Allen & Kristy who were visiting from the NJ/NY area, fishing aboard MUY CALIENTE & BUCKETLIST, were ready for a day off to give their arms a rest after fishing 4 days and catching no less than 58 fish! Now we are not talking about minnows here, we are talking 200lb plus Blue Marlin, beautiful Striped Marlin, Sailfish, Dorados up to 40lbs and some non-stop Yellow Fin Tuna action. The fishing that Allen and Kristy experienced is exactly why November is most Quepos Captain’s favorite month of the year. Yes, November will always rain a little or sometimes a lot but when the Fishing is this good, who cares!

The Dorado bite has been nothing short of phenomenal. Seasonal rains in October and November cause huge debris lines of logs, tree trunks and the likes to gather typically around 8-15 miles Offshore which create the ideal feeding grounds for hungry Dorado. Most of the Dorado are in the 12-20lb range but there have already been some huge Bull Dorado in the 40-65lb class landed. Expect Dorado numbers to reduce through December as water temps increase and the debris lines disappear once the rain has stopped. Whilst numbers will likely be lower, the chances of a Big Bull Dorado are at their peak from December through February. November and December are some of the best months of the year for Blue Marlin and this November was no exception with some sensational Marlin fishing experienced by the Quepos fleet. Anglers should book a full day Offshore trip if you would like to target Marlin.

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That’s Fishin’ – November 2022

We are so pleased to welcome you to the start of our brand-new Fishing season! September & October are our quietest months for tourism and mark the height of our rainy season when most of us boat owners take the opportunity to get our boat maintenance done and take a quick break before our new Fishing season begins November 1st. And what better way to kick off the 2022/2023 season than with our first tournaments of the new calendar, the DORADO DERBY’S!


The Dorado Derby is held over two weekends with the Dorado Derby happening on November 12th and the Dorado Derby Dos on November 19th. Each event is a separate tournament, you can enter either one of the tournaments or both. Over the past few years, The Dorado Derby has become one of our most popular events of the year and gains great support from both locals, expat residents and tourists. What makes this event so special is that literally everyone taking part in the event has a chance of winning. Simply catch the biggest Dorado on the day to take home the prize $$$ and the all-important bragging rights! If the fun of the weekend of November 12th is not enough for you then we are repeating it again on November 19th with the DORADO DERBY DOS which follows exactly the same format giving you and your team a second chance at glory.

It is by no coincidence that we choose November to hold this tournament. The Dorado fishing in November out of Quepos is literally some of the best on the planet. The end of our seasonal rains and build up of debris lines of wood, tree trucks and the likes Offshore, create the perfect hunting grounds for large Dorado. Dorado up to more than 60lbs have been caught in the past few instalments of the tournament and there are much larger fish caught here each year, could this year be the one for a record breaker?

If you would like to get involved, simply give myself or the team at the Marina Pez Vela Guest Centre a call to help you find a boat.

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That’s Fishin’ – September/October 2022

Welcome to the September & October edition of That’s Fishin! What a great year of fishing it has been so far, visitor numbers have been fantastic this year and the Quepos Charter fleet have been kept busy on the water taking our visitors from around the world fishing in search of those dream catches.


We enjoyed some truly epic fishing during August. The Sailfish bite popped up a few times and provided some fantastic fishing when the fish were found. The 31 foot BUCKETLIST released 12 Sailfish on a single day charter which was fantastic numbers for the time of year. Capt Franklin aboard BIG EYE had an epic day on August 8th releasing 3 Blue Marlin, 1 Sailfish, 2 Tuna and 2 big Dorado—all in a days work which was one epic day for sure!

The larger boats in the fleet such as THE SPORTSMAN, THE HOOKER, & HOG WILD have been fishing 60-100 miles out at our Marlin FADS & SEAMOUNTS and catching some insane numbers of Blue Marlin. Our Offshores Marlin FAD fishery is one of the only places on the planet where you could be in with a chance of raising upwards of 10 Blue Marlin in a single day when the bite is on. If epic Blue Marlin fishing is on your Bucketlist, this is the trip for you and just drop me a line for more info.

August produced some really solid Yellowfin Tuna with many fish in the 30-50lb range and some 100lb plus fish landed too. Congrats to our good friend Blake Stevenson from South Carolina who has been fishing aboard my boat GOOD DAY with Capt. Manuel Gabuardi for 18 years now. He had a blast on August 6th when he landed a Tuna in the 90-100lb range plus several more up to 50lbs.

Some nice Wahoo have been present over the Offshore reefs and there has been some good Dorado fishing too with good numbers of small to mid-sized fish and the odd 30-50lb Bull Dorado showing up too.

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That’s Fishin’ – August 2022

Welcome to the August edition of That’s Fishin’ for more tales of the high seas from World Record setting Snook, monster Marlin, Trophy Roosterfish and the ever-present Tuna and Dorado keeping the lines tight of our visiting Anglers from around the world.


July provided some solid all-round fishing with some great species variety. There were Wahoo showing over the Offshore Reefs with plenty of fish in the 20-30lb category, and a few larger specimens also. Huge congrats to Reg Talbot from England who landed a huge 60lb Wahoo aboard GOOD DAY which measured 65” in length, just an epic fish by anyone’s standards. There was a surprise Tuna bite for much of late June/early July when the Tuna schools pushed close in and were popping up only 10-15 miles Offshore right in front of the Marina Pez Vela. Most fish were in the 30lb range but there were some larger 50-80lb Tuna mixed in also giving our Anglers some excellent action and some amazing aerial scenes of the Tuna feeding on Flying Fish and Ballyhoo bait schools.

The Dorado fishing was excellent throughout July, the seasonal rains have been keeping a steady supply of debris such as logs, floating trees etc at the current breaks 5 to 15 miles Offshore where the Dorado like to hang out. There have been lots of Dorado in the 5lb to 15lb class with the odd 30-50lb Bull Dorado also.
We have been seeing Sailfish on most Offshore trips and this should continue through August. The Blue Marlin fishing during day charters in July was better than it was during June with most Marlin in the 150-180lb range but with some larger fish mixed in also. Huge congrats to Satch from North Carolina who had the family fishing trip on a lifetime in mid-July catching a 250lb Blue Marlin aboard GOOD DAY which his 12-year-old son tagged for the GRAY FISHTAG RESEARCH program before releasing it. Memories made for a lifetime! The Blue Marlin Fishing at our Offshore FADS & SEAMOUNTS has been firing on all cylinders with boats HOG WILD & CARIBSEA posting some incredible Marlin catches during June and July with the bite not expecting to slow down during August.

Closer to shore, August should continue to provide excellent opportunities for Marlin, Sailfish, Tuna, Wahoo and Dorado plus Snapper and Grouper for those who want to try bottom fishing.

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That’s Fishin’ – July 2022

Welcome to the July edition of That’s Fishin! There is never a dull moment here in the Fishing World at the Marina Pez Vela, it has been a great Fishing year so far with everything from world class tournaments and pro anglers visiting us to locals and visiting families taking their kids fishing for the first time. Magic happens constantly when spending time out on the water and it’s the reason we love what we do and keeps us coming back for more.


July offers opportunities for almost all of the primary Offshore fish that we catch here. This time of year has traditionally been known as ‘meatfish season’ with good catches of Tuna, Dorado, Wahoo, Grouper and Snapper all possible right now. Different tactics need to be deployed for each species, we catch the larger Tuna out deep alongside megapods of Spinner or Spotted Dolphins, just seeing these huge dolphin schools can be a life changing experience in itself! For the Dorado we look for Debris lines where branches, tree trunks and the like gather offshore after being washed out of the rivers during the heavier periods of rain. Dorado love to hang out along these debris lines and the great thing is very often it happens only 6-12 miles Offshore. May-August typically provides the best Wahoo fishing of the year close to Quepos and to target these you need to head to the Offshore Reef pinnacles. Deep diving lures such as Rapala X-Raps, Nomad DTX’s work great, as do Skirted Bait type set ups and never forgetting the trusty old cedar plug! For the Grouper and Snapper fishing, this primarily takes place by bottom fishing in 200-400 feet of water using squid, livebaits or jigging is a popular method also. In addition to the meatfish, there will be Sailfish and Marlin out there too, the Sail fishing was fairly slow during May/early June but things change very quickly here and I would expect there to be some good Sail fishing coming soon in addition to some great Marlin fishing that we usually get in July on day trips. There is literally sometime for everyone at this time of year.

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That’s Fishin’ – May/June 2022

Welcome to the May & June edition of That’s Fishin’. We hardly came up for breath during the November to April high season and are so thankful that it has been a great season so far, most of the Quepos charter fishing boats have fished non-stop and all have their own stories to tell of the monsters caught and of course, the one that got away!


During the past 2-3 years, a simply epic Sailfish bite developed around 35 miles from Quepos between May-July. This coincided with a huge amount of Caballa baitfish congregating in 250-300’ of water and brought with it the motherload of hungry Sailfish providing some of the best Sailfishing we have seen in the area in recent years. We are waiting to see if it occurs again this year but we are hopeful that it will again and stay tuned for incoming fishing reports in the next issue. Some staggering numbers of Sailfish were released in this area last year, boats were going out and releasing upwards of 10-20 Sailfish in a day and on some occasions, many many more, that would be hard to believe unless you were there to witness it yourselves, which most of us in the fishing world, did. Fingers crossed it happens again this year!

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That’s Fishin’ – April 2022

A huge welcome to everyone visiting for the 2022 OFFSHORE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS taking place April 24-29, we are delighted to have you here in Quepos and Manuel Antonio and I wish you a fantastic visit to Costa Rica with some truly excellent Fishing & memories made for a lifetime. The Offshore World Championships is the jewel in the crown of our tournament fishing season and we are so blessed to have such an event take place here which attracts visitors from all corners of the world.


March provided some simply excellent Marlin fishing out of the Marina Pez Vela. Water temperatures have been cooler than normal due to the La Nina weather cycle and a bit more rain than normal in the early part of the year, keeping the water temperatures lower and just ideal for Marlin. Lots of Blue Marlin were caught by the fleet and during the early part of March, we received a great run of Striped Marlin, which are always a welcome surprise and provided some excellent fishing. Striped Marlin here average in the 60-100lb category and are the small cousin to the Blue Marlin which are more common here. There was some fantastic Sailfish fishing during March which looks set to be even better in April. The Big Bull Dorados showed up during March and many 30-60lb Dorados have been caught, which are the highlight of many people’s day on the water. The Tuna fishing has been nothing short of world class with lots of Tuna in the 20-80lb range and some bigger fish thrown in also. The fishing forecast for April looks HOT and I hope you will get to experience it for yourself. We have lots of boats in the 25-60 foot range for all tastes and budgets, waiting to take you on the Offshore fishing adventure of a lifetime.

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That’s Fishin’ – March 2022

What a season it has been so far! Quepos has literally fished its socks off during January and February and I cannot wait to see what March has in store for our visitors from around the world!


The Marlin bite was just epic during the first couple of months of the year. We believe that the Pelagic Rockstar tournament held in mid-January, released more Blue Marlin during its 2 days than any other tournament in history on the entire planet…and that is saying something, just wow!! The Sailfish bite cranked up during February with some lucky Anglers getting involved in WIDE OPEN SAILFISHING and releasing upwards of 20 Sailfish in a day on some occasions. A shout out to FRENZY, HOG WILD, & MONKEYSHINE who are all Marina Pez Vela Charter Boats posting some huge numbers of Sailfish releases recently. The late rains this season really helped keep the water temperatures down and the Dorado around for a bit longer and there has been some fantastic Dorado fishing recently with lots of 20-30 pounders with a few huge 40-50lb plus Dorado showing. Wahoo made a surprise appearance and were caught consistently during January and February over the Offshore reefs up to 50lbs. The Offshore Tuna fishing was epic also with Anglers enjoying scenes of hundreds of Spinner Dolphins, diving birds, and hungry Yellow Fin Tuna busting the surface whilst chasing Flying Fish, in National Geographic-worthy moments.

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