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Top Fishing Charters in Freeport
Fishing in Freeport
Fishing in the Bahamas offers an incredible range of different fishing environments. From the deep blue waters offshore to the shallow sandy flats surrounding many of the islands, you can find the perfect place for just about any fishing technique, and a hugely diverse range of species to practice on. Freeport fishing differs from the overly billfish-oriented islands such as Nassau in that is surrounded by some of the best waters for Bonefishing Bahamas has to offer. You will still find plenty of Freeport party boats and offshore charters, but chances are if you are coming to Grand Bahama, you are here with one species in mind - Bonefish.
Located a mere 67 miles from the Florida coast - just a 30-minute hop from Miami or Fort Lauderdale - Grand Bahama is an ocean paradise where some new adventure is always waiting for you. Even without getting into the amazing world of fishing in the Bahamas, Freeport is the second largest town in the Bahamas, and as such offers great shopping, bars, restaurants and exciting festivals throughout the year. If you want to get away from the crowds, Grand Bahama can happily oblige, with mile after mile of white sandy beaches, as well as three beautiful national parks for you to explore if you ever get bored of the sea. For the more adventurous, the island boasts one of the world’s most extensive underwater cave systems, a diver’s heaven where the ocean waters meets fresh springs among spooky sub nautical stalagmite forests.
But let’s be honest, the reason you are looking at the Bahamas is that you know it has some of the best fishing in the Caribbean, and you’re right! Inshore anglers will find a huge range of Freeport fishing charters specifically set up for exploring the extensive sand flats around Freeport and off towards the island’s West End, with the flat bottom boats and light or fly tackle most flats fishermen are used to. Unlike the flats back home, however, Bonefishing in the Bahamas is a year-round activity, with Silver Ghosts dominating the inshore scene across all four seasons. During the spring the island is also visited by a huge number of Permit, who flock to these warm clear waters in search of food, and can still be found throughout the summer and well into the fall, making the Bahamas fly fishing scene one you really don’t want to miss out on.
So it’s just inshore fishing, you ask? Not at all! Offshore Bahamas fishing is simply legendary, with a huge influx of billfish arriving every year, and several awesome tournaments you can join during the spring and summer months, including the Abaco Beach Blue and White Marlin Tournaments, and the Treasure Cay Championship. You may need to travel a bit further to get best pelagic waters than you would from some of the eastern islands, but you will have plenty of opportunities nearby to catch the big Grouper, Snapper, Barracuda and Sharks which are available pretty much year-round.
When it comes to offshore fishing, however, the thing that Freeport fishing charters are famous for is not the summer billfishing, but the winter Wahoo, which arrive in the area just as the billfish leave, and make the waters around Grand Bahama their home throughout the colder months. Visitors this time of year may have to deal with temperatures of “only” 70 °F, but the milder weather can be a blessing when you are hooked onto a 150-pound fish tearing your line away at interstate speeds.
Rules & Regulations
Most Bahamas offshore charters will provide licenses, although this is always something you should check with your captain. If you are looking to hit the flats on your own you will need a flats fishing license for anyone over the age of 12, which you can apply for electronically ahead of your arrival in the country.
It is now legal for catch to be transported back to the US, assuming all fish are of legal size and species in both the Bahamas and the US, and are not intended for sale. You can find extensive information about this on the Bahamas tourist information website.
There is a closed season on Nassau Grouper from December 16 to February 16 each year to help preserve the local fishing industry.
Types of Fishing
If you are fishing in Freeport and looking to catch some prize Bonefish or Permit out on the flats, a lot of fly fishing guides like to keep things simple, using an 8 or 9 weight fly rod with a weight-forward floating line and a long, 12 foot tapered leader with 12lb test. The extra bit of weight really comes in handy when the wind picks up across the flats.
The caliber of your offshore equipment varies hugely from charter to charter, but you can expect a choice of light and heavy tackle, and the standard mix of Shimano and Penn you would find back home.
Freeport Fishing Seasons
Freeport Fishing Calendar
Top Fishing Charters
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