22 Fishing Charters
Top Phuket Destinations
Top Fishing Charters in Phuket
Fishing in Phuket
The fishing in Phuket is all about landing a catch to remember. From the depths of the Andaman Sea to the tranquility of a fishing park, there’s no shortage of big game prizes. Here you will find the most sought-after species known to sport fishermen, along with some of the most exotic. Phuket fishing charters offer you a chance to reel in the catch of a lifetime, no matter your skill level or travel budget!
Anglers will enjoy spectacular deep sea fishing in Phuket. The Andaman Sea is home to big game species admired by fishermen from all corners of the globe, including Sailfish, Marlin, Yellowfin Tuna, and Giant Trevally. Reef fishing produces great results, as well, with Snapper, Grouper, and other bottom fish biting year round. A Phuket fishing tour is the perfect way to dabble in these opportunities, whether you come aboard for a single day or an entire week.
What can I do in a single day?
The three major fishing destinations closest to Phuket are Racha Yai, Racha Noi, and the continental shelf. Racha Yai is the larger of the Racha Islands, and this is where many anglers travel in search of sensational big game fishing. Swimming in these waters are Sailfish, Wahoo, Mahi Mahi, Longtail Tuna, Barracuda, and more. Located just 14 miles south of Phuket, Racha Yai is a popular destination for 8 hour charters.
Some Phuket fishing charters will also take you to Racha Noi, where you can target Giant Trevally. This island and the rocky pinnacles to the south give you access to a slightly different variety of game fish, including Rainbow-runners, Dogtooth Tuna, and Black Marlin.
For the best chance of reeling in a Black Marlin, you need only travel a little farther to reach the edge of Phuket’s continental shelf, referred to simply as “the drop off.” Located a little over 20 miles west of Phuket, this is where the ocean floor suddenly plummets from 130 feet to almost 1,000 feet. Out here, you can experience the best deep sea fishing Phuket has to offer in a single day trip. In addition to Black Marlin, you can target Wahoo, Barracuda, Mahi Mahi, Skipjack Tuna, and the occasional Sailfish.
How much does it cost?
Phuket fishing charters vary widely in price, depending on the boat. Eight hour “Budget” trips aboard a traditional wooden Thai boat cost around $350 for a group of four to six anglers. A join-on trip might cost anywhere between $50 and $120 per person, depending on whether you visit both Racha Islands or only Racha Yai. Paying a little extra is worth the cost for those who prefer using high-end fishing gear.
On the other hand, you can charter a private Phuket fishing trip aboard a speedboat, which costs around $815 for four to six anglers. If you are looking for a decadent experience, there is no shortage of yacht charters which range from $2,000 to $3,600, depending on your destination.
What if I stay out longer?
If you are looking to land a record breaking Billfish, your chances improve with every extra mile into the Andaman Sea. With some extra time on your hands, you can visit Koh Ha and Koh Rock. Koh Ha is a cluster of small islands located 40 miles from Phuket’s Chalong Bay. Another 20 miles beyond that lies Koh Rock. The waters surrounding these scattered bits of land host multitudes of Sailfish. The best time to target this species here is from October to April. Spending several days on the water is recommended to get the most out of your experience.
If you’re up for an even greater adventure, set your sights on the Similan Islands. These fishing grounds are just shy of 75 miles north of Phuket, and many consider them to be the hottest fishing spot in Southeast Asia. This area’s countless underwater mountains make for a dynamic environment, attracting multitudes of baitfish and their predators. This is where you will find some serious Black Marlin action. While trolling the area, you can also catch Wahoo, Yellowfin Tuna, Mahi Mahi, Giant Trevally, and Sailfish.
How much does a multi-day trip it cost?
Trips to the Similan Islands aboard traditional boats are typically about $1,150 per day, whereas a yacht charter could be anywhere between $2,500 and $3,500 per day. Similan Islands liveaboard trips usually last three to five days. If the boat is fast enough, you can visit the Similan Islands in a single day, for about $700.
Freshwater fishing in Phuket is a one-of-a-kind experience. Visiting anglers have their choice of local “fishing parks”—resorts with lakes which have been artificially cultivated to support a wide variety of species. Though some parks may not be far from the bustling city center, trees and twittering birds create an atmosphere of peaceful seclusion.
The lakes in Phuket fishing parks are filled with local fish as well as dozens of imported, exotic species. Anglers enter these parks and come away with stories about Giant Mekong Catfish, Arapaima, Siamese Carp, Alligator Gar, Wallago Leeri, and Pacu (a relative of the Piranha). Many of these monster fish range between 300 and 500 lbs. Even smaller species like Snakehead and Spotted Featherback (which can swim backwards) are sure to leave a lasting impression.
How much does it cost?
The entrance fee for a full day of fishing (8-11 hours) ranges from $100 to $320 per person (3,321-10,627 Thai Baht). This typically includes rods and a bucket of bait. Prices for fly fishing may be higher (about $225 for a full day, roughly 7,472 BHT). A fishing guide is often on hand to assist, sometimes for an additional fee. Many fishing parks do not charge a fee for non-fishing guests.
The entrance fee for half a day is $100 to $270 (3,321-8,966 BHT). Depending on the park, a half day may be four to six hours. Some fishing parks do not offer half day admittances.
A number of parks offer overnight accommodation and meals. Prices vary depending on how many rooms you would like to book and how many guests plan to fish.
Rules & Regulations
No license is required for rod fishing in Phuket. However, regulations apply to some areas and endangered species. Phuket fishing tour operators typically provide any permits necessary. Fishing is prohibited in Marine National Parks.
Phuket fishing parks usually enforce catch-and-release. Every park has its own set of rules regarding the handling of fish.
What to Expect while Fishing in Phuket
The average Phuket fishing tour comes with tackle, bait, and all other necessary equipment. Bear in mind that budget charters typically do not include top of the line tackle. Fishing parks supply bait and tackle for one to two anglers. You can rent additional rods and reels for less than $20 (660 THB). Some fishing parks allow anglers to bring their own tackle, as well. Bringing bug repellent is recommended; however, this can have an impact on certain fish species and some anglers argue that your chances of catching them are better when you don’t wear any repellent!
The weather in Phuket is generally warm year-round. The hottest periods last from April to May, and again from September to October. During this second season you can expect sporadic, heavy rains. It rarely rains heavily for more than two days at a time in Phuket.
Types of Fishing
Deep sea fishing in Phuket consists of trolling and bottom fishing. Trolling is considered the method of choice in these waters, and you are likely to land any given game fish using this technique. On excursions to the Racha Islands and the drop off, you will bottom fish for Snapper and Grouper, trolling on the way for pelagic species like Barracuda and Mahi Mahi. You will have success with live bait, strip baits, and lures. You can target Giant Trevally by jigging and popping.
Lake fishing in parks is typically conducted from shore, often from the shelter of a small hut. Depending on the species and your fishing guide’s recommendation, you are likely to target your catching by spinning and bottom fishing. Hand nets are provided so that you can lift your catch out of the water for a photo. For an especially large catch, it is common to wade into the water and lift the fish up with the help of several people.
Phuket fishing parks typically provide gear, including light and heavy tackle and a wide range of bait. Some parks allow anglers to bring their own gear. Depending on the species, effective bait includes Shrimp, pellets, and frogs. Some species like Black Shark Carp, Big Head Carp, and Black Pacu will even go for fruits and nuts. You can entice Siamese Carp, Striped Catfish, and Golden Carp with bread.
You can fly fish for Pacu, Arapaima, Tilapia, Giant Gourami, Alligator Gar, Featherback, and Redtail Catfish.
Phuket Fishing Seasons
What better way to start the new year than by landing a massive big game fish off the coast of Phuket? It’s the middle of dry season, meaning you can catch Marlin, Sailfish, Yellowfin Tuna, and much more.
Fishing near Koh Rock and the Similan Islands promises a record-breaking catch. Meanwhile, fishing the reefs near Racha Yai and Racha Noi are a great way to reel in something fresh for dinner!
Phuket’s dry season is coming to a close. This is your last chance to get in on big game fishing during its peak. Bottom fishing for Snapper and Grouper will continue to yield great results.
Mahi Mahi and Wahoo have entered the scene, just in time to make sure you can still have a blast while fishing near the Racha Islands and the drop off. As usual, you can count on good bottom fishing.
At this time of year, you might not find many available trips to the Similan Islands. Even so, you can enjoy fishing for Giant Trevally, King Mackerel, and other big game fish near the Racha Islands.
June is a great time to explore the drop off and Racha Islands. Try bottom fishing and trolling near Racha Yai or head to Racha Noi and enjoy popping for Giant Trevally.
You might see a Sailfish or Wahoo now and again while fishing in July, though most big game species are scarce. Of course, it’s never a bad time to fish the reefs.
While fishing near the Racha Islands and the drop off, you might reel in anything from Snapper to Tuna. Then again, you can always try your luck at a local fishing park for a change of pace.
September marks the beginning of Phuket’s rainy season. While the downpour may be heavy, it doesn’t last for long. In between showers you can still enjoy great fishing near the Racha Islands.
October marks the beginning of Phuket’s dry season, which is also a great time for big game fishing. You will find many species biting vigorously, from Sailfish and Marlin to Wahoo, Mahi Mahi, and Tuna.
November is the cue for Wahoo and Mahi Mahi to take their leave, but you can still enjoy fishing for all the other big game players. Trips to the Similan Islands are now widely available.
December in Phuket brings awesome game fishing. Giant Trevally, Yellowfin Tuna, Sailfish, Marlin, and other prizes are all enjoying their peak season. Treat yourself and book a trip to the Similan Islands!