Exploring La Paz’s World-Class Sportfishing Scene

Are you ready for an amazing fishing adventure? La Paz, Baja California Sur, has got you covered! This city, located in the southern part of the Baja Peninsula, is surrounded by the Sea of Cortez, which is also known as the Gulf of California.

The Sea of Cortez is one of the most diverse bodies of water on the planet, boasting over 900 species of fish and a variety of other marine life. With such an abundance of fish species, La Paz is an ideal destination for both line fishing and spearfishing enthusiasts.
 

I grew up line fishing in Northern Ontario and then learned to spearfish around Montreal, Quebec. After my first two-week trip to fish Baja California Sur, I was hooked (cheezy pun intended)! I came down for the fish but ended up falling in love with the city of La Paz as well. Now, I live here from December to May each year and spend as many days as I can manage out on the water.

 

One of the primary reasons La Paz makes a great home base for anglers is the accessibility of beaches and reefs with different weather exposures. Having a choice between multiple spots that are each protected in different conditions means that I can have more days fishing and fewer days wishin’ I could be fishin’!

woman with fish spearfishing from kayak in La Paz

The author with a speared yellowtail. Tacos coming up!

Winter equals wind in Baja California Sur. Perhaps the bay of La Paz and your fishing destination of Espiritu Santo Island are receiving strong north-westerly winds? Check the forecast, and it could be that a simple forty-five-minute drive east of La Paz will allow you to launch or reserve an outing with a charter from Ensenada de los Muertos or La Ventana.

 

If you are open to fishing from a kayak then even more options abound! With the ability to maneuver closer to the coastline and put-in at any beach, you can almost always find somewhere protected to drop your line in the water or jump in with your speargun. Inclement weather is less of an issue during the summer and fall seasons, but variety is the spice of life when it comes to fishing spots!

 

In La Paz, you can catch different types of fish depending on the season. Here’s a general overview:

 

Winter (December-January): Winter is for fishing snappers and groupers, as well as sierra. Amberjack/almaco jack and yellowtail are possible but sparse.

Spring (February-May): In the spring, fishing picks up for yellowtail, amberjack, and roosterfish. Snappers and grouper are also still around. In the later spring months as the water starts to warm, you can also find dorado, wahoo, offshore tuna, and billfish coming in.

Summer (June-August): The summer is great for roosterfish and jack crevalle. You can also fish billfish, dorado, tuna and wahoo.

Fall (September-November): All the fish available in the summer kick it up to maximum for the fall season! These months are your best bet for landing all the billfish – sailfish and striped/blue/black marlin – as well as wahoo and tuna.

man holding a fishing rod in la paz mexico

Photo by Mathieu Le Roux on Unsplash

To sportfish legally in La Paz, you will need to obtain a valid fishing license from the Mexican government. The process for obtaining a fishing license is straightforward, and you can do it online or in person. The cost of the license varies depending on the duration of the license and whether you’re a Mexican citizen or a foreigner. You can purchase a one-day, one-week, one-month, or one-year fishing license, depending on how long you plan to fish.

 

Protip: Go right to the source for your fishing license. The FONMAR government website has a quick and easy online system that accepts international credit cards.

In addition to a fishing license, there are some regulations and restrictions you should be aware of when sportfishing in La Paz. For example, there are specific rules about the types and sizes of fish you can catch, and there are limits on the amount of fish you can catch and keep per day. Follow these regulations! They are designed to protect our fish populations and ensure sustainable fishing practices.

 

It’s also important to note that some types of fishing, such as spearfishing, have additional regulations and restrictions. For example, there are restrictions on the types and numbers of fish you can catch and the equipment you can use (no scuba tanks, folks).

 

Whether you prefer line fishing or spearfishing, are a seasoned angler or a beginner, a fishing trip in La Paz is sure to be a memorable and rewarding experience. The city is home to numerous fishing charters and outfitters, which can provide all the equipment and guidance needed for a successful fishing trip.

 

Check out the Trip&homes accommodations page now to book your sportfishing vacation in La Paz.

 

See you on the water!

 

By: Terri Lynn Manna

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