Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge//Yucatan, Mexico

Quick Facts

  • Price: $3495 // 7 NIGHTS / 6 DAYS FISHING
  • Fish Species: TARPON
  • Seasonality: YEAR ROUND
  • Location: ISLA HOLBOX, MEXICO

ISLA HOLBOX, QUINTANA ROO, MEXICO

Anglers travel to Cancun (CUN) where they are picked up and transported two hours to the north end of the Yucatan to the village of Chiquila. From Chiquila, guests are loaded onto a water taxi equipped with twin outboards for the twenty minute boat ride to the island. It is also possible to charter a small five seater charter flight from Cancun directly to Holbox.

HOLBOX IS MORE OR LESS A DEDICATED TARPON FISHERY

Baby tarpon are present year-round, but the main event is the summertime fishing for large migratory tarpon upwards of 150 pounds. When the conditions are right, anglers will also find snook in plentiful numbers in the inshore lagoons. Other species like barracudas and sharks are also present.

HOLBOX’S BABY TARPON AND SNOOK FISHERY IS YEAR-ROUND

Most anglers visit for the summertime migratory tarpon fishing from May – September.

HOLBOX IS AN EXCELLENT SPOT FOR ANGLERS GUNG-HO ABOUT TARGETING TARPON EXCLUSIVELY

Holbox is ideal for anglers and non-anglers in search of a laid back and slow paced beach holiday without all the glamour or the high powered resorts on the Riviera Maya around Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Like any destination fishery focused on one species, poor fishing conditions don’t often allow for alternative species like bonefish to keep a bend in the rod. Anglers need to understand this risk, and we encourage a minimum stay of five nights to help ensure you will encounter nice weather and productive fishing.

7 Nights / 6 days (April – September) . . . $3495
7 Nights / 6 days (October – March) . . . $2695

Rates are per person based on shared room / boat. Shorter and longer stays as well as non-angling rates are available. Fishing packages include accommodations, guided fishing, breakfast and lunch, and beer. Additional expenses are airfare to Cancun, dinner meals taken in town and gratuities. (See RATES for details).

You the client don’t pay a penny for our travel services! Our destination recommendations, organization, and pre-trip planning services are completely free of charge – and oftentimes less expensive than booking direct with a lodge or outfitter. We can assist with every question, concern, or special request related to your adventure at zero cost!

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Isla Holbox (pronounced HOLE-BOSH) is a small remote island located in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo on the most northerly tip of the Yucatan Peninsula. Holbox offers a slow paced and charming atmosphere with stunning beaches, sandy streets, a couple of hotels, and a half dozen restaurants. The lodge sits directly on the secluded white sand beach just a ten minute walk from the center of town and is a completely updated and modernized facility that will accommodate up to ten anglers in five comfortable air conditioned rooms.

The island is approximately twenty miles long and is composed of vast inland flats and mangrove lined lagoons — perfect habitat for juvenile tarpon & snook. This nursery fishery and reliable summertime adult tarpon fishery combine to create a year round, quiet, and affordable alternative for the serious tarpon angler exhausted with the overpriced and crowded Florida Keys.

Anglers run in comfortable panga style boats approximately ten – twenty minutes in search of large schools of adult tarpon from May – September. On a flat day anglers usually encounter schools of rolling, cruising, and feeding adults in the 60 – 180 pound range. 95% of the fishing is done sight casting to pods of fish on or close to the surface. This “run and gun” style of fishing is super exciting and unique for even the most experienced tarpon pros.

Destination Details

Destination Description

Isla Holbox is a small and remote island located in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo on the most northerly tip of the Yucatan. Holbox (pronounced HOLE-BOSH), is a twenty minute boat run from the mainland village of Chiquila. Travel to Holbox is accomplished via a comfortable two hour van ride from Cancun on smooth blacktop. Although demolished by a series of hurricanes in recent years (including Wilma in 2005), the little fishing village of Holbox is largely rebuilt and as charming as ever.

Holbox is the quintessential opposite from the high powered resorts and touristy development of the “Maya Riviera” around Cancun, Cozumel, and Playa del Carmen. With less than 1600 inhabitants, secluded beaches, sandy streets, a couple of hotels, and a half dozen restaurants, Holbox offers a slow paced atmosphere welcome to vacationers in search of a true “Margaritaville.” The endless and idyllic white sandy beaches and turquoise waters in front of the lodge are perfect for taking a swim. Add a handful of bikini clad tourists to the mix, and you have the perfect atmosphere for relaxing between intense fishing sessions.

The island of Holbox is approximately ten miles long and one mile wide, and is composed of vast inland flats and mangrove lined lagoons; perfect habitat for juvenile tarpon, snook, the odd bonefish or permit, as well as a myriad of bird life including pelicans, osprey, and flamingos. This vast nursery fishery combined with the reliable summertime adult tarpon fishery meld to create a reliable, affordable and solitude rich alternative for the serious tarpon angler sick and tired of the overpriced and crowded Florida Keys. Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge runs a very attractive and service oriented program catering to anglers in search of solitude, some R & R, and a phenomenal tarpon resource.

The Fishing

Holbox is home to a wonderfully prolific nursery fishery that yields reliable year-round opportunities for baby tarpon and snook throughout protected backcountry lagoons and flats. Most anglers visit Holbox during the summertime when enormous populations of adult tarpon arrive to feed a few miles off the coast of the island. This unique mix of venue and opportunity make Holbox as consistent and reliable as any tarpon fishery in the world.

A typical summertime itinerary begins with an early morning wake-up and fresh espresso delivered to your room by lodge manager and Italian ex-pat, Luciano Govi. After breakfast, anglers run in comfortable panga style boats approximately ten – twenty minutes offshore to a series of submerged rock formations home to thousands of adult tarpon that reside near Holbox from May – September. On a flat day, anglers usually encounter schools of rolling, cruising, and feeding adult specimens in the 60 – 160 pound range. Although not your typical Florida Keys style of fishing, 95% of the fishing is done sight casting to pods of fish on or close to the surface. Guides hurriedly intercept a school of cruising fish, cut the engine, and get anglers in position for a couple of shots. This “run and gun” style of fishing is super exciting and totally unique for even the most experienced tarpon pros.

Depending on the conditions, some anglers will opt to spend the entire fishing day outside in search of the big boys. Following the morning session, most anglers return to the protected flats and lagoons of Holbox to mix it up with some juvenile tarpon and snook action. Such famous areas such as Cabo Catoche are home to zillions of baby tarpon in the 5-25 pound range, which are a ton of fun on an eight or nine weight. These shallow white flats are more reminiscent of a typical bonefish flat than a baby tarpon lagoon; and guides will stake out in a likely area and wait for unsuspecting fish to cruise and feed towards the boat. Sighting fish is usually very easy and casts are not typically more than forty feet, making this very user friendly fishing for the most novice of anglers.

It can also be productive to venture into the backcountry lagoons and creeks of interior Holbox and encounter some excellent snook fishing, even during the windiest conditions. The typical fishing schedule is from 6:00AM – 2:00PM, thus taking advantage of the usually calmer morning breezes. Anglers have the balance of the day to cruise the beaches and town with non-angling guests, or simply relax at the comfortable lodge with a cerveza.

Accommodations

Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge is a completely updated and modernized facility that will accommodate up to ten anglers in five comfortable air conditioned rooms. Manager, Luciano Govi, is service oriented whose quick wit and knowledge of the area are always entertaining. The lodge sits directly on the secluded white sand beach just a ten minute walk from the center of town. An upstairs patio outfitted with an open bar, refrigerator, ice maker, and a wonderful view of the beach, sun bathers, and the sunset is a welcoming and cool gathering area for thirsty anglers. Guests enjoy a home cooked breakfast and fresh coffee prepared by Luciano and lunch is taken on the water. By mid-afternoon anglers are enjoying hors d’oeuvres and cocktails on the patio, followed by a stroll into town where the dinner meal is taken at one of the village’s authentic and inexpensive restaurants. The lodge is complete with a freshwater rod and reel washing station and cozy beach furniture underneath a traditional beachfront umbrella.

CAPACITY

Ten Anglers in 5 Double Occupancy Bedrooms

Travel

Travel to Holbox is quite simple with direct daily flights into Cancun International Airport (CUN) from numerous portals inside the USA including Dallas/Ft. Worth, Houston, Miami, Atlanta, New York, and others. Guests are instructed to arrive into Cancun no later than 2:00PM to ensure a safe and timely delivery to Isla Holbox before sunset and in time for dinner. From Cancun, guests are collected by a representative of Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge and driven approximately two and one half hours by air conditioned van on comfortable blacktop highway to the small coastal town of Chiquila. From Chiquila, guests are loaded onto a dry and seaworthy water taxi equipped with twin outboards for the twenty minute boat ride to the island.

It is also possible to charter a small five seater charter flight from Cancun directly to Holbox. Please inquire for specifics.

Sample Itinerary

TRAVEL DAY

International flight to Cancun International Airport (CUN). There are numerous direct flights daily from most major US cities including non-stop flights from Dallas / Ft. Worth, Houston, and Miami. Upon arrival into Cancun and immediately after clearing customs, anglers are met by a representative of Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge and driven approximately two hours by air conditioned van on comfortable blacktop highway to the small coastal town of Chiquila. From Chiquila, guests are loaded onto a dry and seaworthy water taxi equipped with twin outboards for the twenty minute boat ride to the island.

Anglers typically organize tackle, check gear, and string up fly rods upon arrival. Following appetizers and a cerveza, guests cruise into the village of Holbox for the dinner meal.

FISHING DAYS

Anglers are awakened by the smells of fresh espresso and a gentle knock on the door by lodge manager, Luciano Govi. Following breakfast at the lodge, anglers depart at 6:00AM for the day of fishing which usually concludes around 2:00PM.

DEPARTURE DAY

There is no guided fishing on the day of departure. After sleeping in and enjoying a leisurely breakfast, anglers are returned to Cancun in time for an international departure back home.

When to Go

Isla Holbox is a reliable year-round fishery for juvenile or baby tarpon. Other than the occasional cold front which can impact wintertime fishing, for the most part anglers can plan on visiting Holbox twelve months a year with success.

However, most anglers organize their trip to correspond with the adult migratory tarpon season during the summertime. The beginning on the season is late April and concludes in mid September – with the peak numbers of fish being found in late May through August. Temperatures are usually quite warm and humid, however tropical breezes while fishing and air-conditioning at the lodge rarely make conditions unbearably hot.

Non-Angling Activities

Although primarily known to our guests as a fly fishing destination, Isla Holbox offers a remote and tranquil environment for non-angling guests to enjoy some serious rest and relaxation. Holbox is actually a popular destination for low maintenance travelers who are attracted to beautiful beaches, reading a book, sunbathing, cruising around town, and generally enjoying tropical paradise.

During the summer months, the Caribbean waters surrounding Isla Holbox are home to a large and predictable Whale Shark migration. There are a handful of reputable tour operators on the island who escort snorkelers to swim with these docile giants. There are also opportunities for horseback riding, bird watching, and golf carts are available for rent if guests would like to cruise and explore the island.

Rates

APRIL – SEPTEMBER

(based on shared room / boat)

7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing . . . $3495 per person
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing . . . $2695 per person
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing . . . $2195 per person
3 Nights / 2 Days Fishing . . . $1495 per person

OCTOBER – MARCH

(based on shared room / boat)

7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing . . . $2695 per person
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing . . . $1995 per person
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing . . . $1795 per person
3 Nights / 2 Days Fishing . . . $1395 per person

Please inquire about rates for private room / boat and non-anglers.

ASK ABOUT THE “WIVES FREE SPECIAL”

WHAT’S INCLUDED

Accommodations as Specified; Full days of guided fishing as specified; Two meals daily (breakfast and lunch – no dinner included); Ground and Water transportation between Cancun Airport and the lodge; Open “Cerveza Bar”, Afternoon Hors d’ oeuvres and all beverages

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

Domestic or International airfare to Cancun; Dinner Meals (taken in town); Fishing equipment and flies; Use of telephone and laundry service; Gratuities; Non-angling activities such as use of Golf Cart, Kayaking, and Horseback Riding, and Tours of Mayan Ruin Sites; Mexican Airport Departure Taxes; Misc and Personal Travel Expenses

TERMS & CONDITIONS

Tailwaters Travel must adhere to the cancellation policies of the guides, outfitters and lodges which it represents. Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge’s policy follows: This package requires written notice of cancellation at least 120 days prior to your departure to receive a refund of deposit less a $100 per person cancellation fee. Cancellation within 119-61 days will result in a 50% refund of initial deposit. Cancellation within 60 days of departure will result in full loss of applicable land and commercial air costs- no refund will be made unless replacement clients are provided. No refunds will be issued for unused land/air/fishing arrangements included in cost. If the final payment is not received at least 60 days prior to your arrival date, Tailwaters Travel and Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge may elect to cancel the booking and resell the space. Receipt of deposit and/or final payment is acknowledgement that registrant has read and accepts the cancellation, refund and responsibility clauses.

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