School of Fish - Aquamarine
School of Fish - Aquamarine Lineart
School of Fish - Aquamarine
School of Fish - Aquamarine Lineart

Best Fishing in Exuma

School of Fish - Aquamarine Lineart

Fishing in Exumas

Exuma is an angler’s paradise. There is really not a bad time of year to fish although what is at peak season varies month to month. We've assembled some useful information on the best fishing around Great and Little Exuma. There is a link to Best of Exuma Fishing Guides and also fishing regulations.

Best Fishing Exuma -  Chart of Best Fish by Month Around Exuma

Fish Species
Location
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Blue Marlin
Offshore
White Marlin
Offshore
Sailfish
Offshore
Broadbill Swordfish
Offshore
Mahi-Mahi
Offshore
Wahoo
Offshore / Reef
Kingfish
Offshore
Mackerel
Offshore
Allison Tuna
Offshore
Blackfin Tuna
Offshore
Oceanic Bonito
Offshore
Bluefin Tuna
Offshore
Bonefish
Flats
Permit
Flats
Tarpon
Flats
Amberjack
Reef
Grouper
Bottom / Reef
Snapper
Offshore / Reef
Barracuda
Any
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None
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Occassional
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Fair
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Good
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Good to
Excellent
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Excellent
Deep Sea Fishing

The deep sea fishing around Exuma is great. I celebrate my "50th birthday" each year with a boys fishing trip to Exuma; we have tried different times in the year but our favourite is January when the Wahoo are running or April/May and into early June with the Mahi-Mahi are plentiful and the inshore Snapper are also great. There are some great guides that you can find in our directory here.  They know the best spots to fish around Exuma.

Deep Sea Fishing | Best Fishing in Exuma
Bonefishing

Bonefishing is good all year long in Exuma. Many say it is the best bone fishing in the world.  It is best to hire a guide as finding the Bonefish is not easy and the Exuma fishing guides are incredibly skilled. A half day of bonefishing costs about $350 USD for two people plus tip. The guide will provide either fly or spin reels. While early morning on calm days is best, the guides can almost always get you in to the mangroves and find a quiet spot. Bonefish is strictly catch and release. Here is a blog and a great video with more info on the challenging Bonefish.

Lobster

The spiny lobster season (also called ‘bugs’ locally) runs from August to March in Exuma, Bahamas subject to certain restrictions. Local guides can take you out with snorkel gear and an Hawaiian Sling. (It is illegal to use scuba gear or a spear gun....only free diving is allowed.)  It takes a little work to get used to it but there is something very satisfying about catching your own lobster for dinner. You can see our blog on how to BBQ and Exuma lobster here.

Reef Fishing

While the Bonefishing and Deep Sea Fishing are particularly legendary in Exuma, we find the reef fishing particularly fun. We have not yet found a month that is bad, but the snapper are particularly good in April through May and also also great on the BBQ.  If you go as a family, this is what type of fishing we would recommend. Often a shark is attracted by the activity so you need to reel fast or lose your dinner to the better fisherman! We often combine reef fishing with either a trip to see the sandbars of  Sandy Cay or a little deep sea fishing.
 

You need a license To fish from a boat in Exuma; better yet go with a Bahamian who has a licensed boat. Here is a list of guides, we would recommmend Outisland Explorers or Drex Rolle. (Drex is also one of the best Bonefish guides on the island and can also take you deep sea fishing.)

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Shore Fishing

The best spot for fishing is the Little Bridge to Little Exuma on a rising tide. We use Squid as bait (you can get this frozen at Exuma markets or Brown’s Marine). There is a range of fish from Jack, Blue Runner, Snapper, Grouper to Barracuda and Grouper that can be caught here. For a real challenge try fishing with a hand spool like many of the locals. I would strongly suggest wearing gloves when 'hand fishing' because when you catch something it takes some strength to bring it in!

Don’t eat the Barracuda as it can make you sick.

Some of our local friends claim that the way you tell is that you clean the Barracuda and if the flies come then it is good to eat and of the flies stay away then the barracuda is poisonous. I think it is safer and tastier to stick to Snapper and Grouper!

You can buy fishing rods, lures and other accessories at Brown’s marine (Southeast of Georgetown and also at either hardware stores in town).

School of Fish - Aquamarine Lineart
School of Fish - Aquamarine

If you strike out, Ron at Prime Island Meats usually has some fresh or frozen fish and lobster. If you are lucky you can also often buy fresh fish from the fisherman at the bridge to Little Exuma at the end of the day about 5pm. You get to know their trailer so you know the days that they are out fishing and people show up to buy fresh from the returning boat.  Doesn't get fresher than that!

Happy fishing. Tag us in your photos at #discoverexuma and @exuma_info.

Here are the local fishing regulations. It is important to note that it is illegal to fish anywhere on the Exuma Land and Sea park. It is also illegal to catch any kind of shark.

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Fishing Regulation Exuma
Fishing Regulation Exuma
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