Fishing in Dominica
Fun Facts About Dominica
Dominica (not to be confused with the Dominican Republic) is an island-country located in the Eastern Caribbean and is part of the Windward islands situated in the Lesser Antilles archipelago in the Caribbean Sea.
Columbus first passed the island in 1493, but Dominica wasn’t colonized until the arrival of Europeans during the 1690s. France and Great Britain have had predominant roles in the colonization of Dominica, resulting in both French creole and English being spoken, with English becoming the official language. The island only gained its independence from the British Crown in 1978.
Dominica has earned the nickname the ‘Nature Isle of the Caribbean’ thanks to the breath-taking natural beauty of the island that remains mostly unspoiled. Not only are there stretches of beaches, stunning coastal waters, 365 rivers, scenic mountain views and dormant volcanoes but also lush rainforests that are home to beautiful and rare plant and wildlife, such as the rare Sisserou parrot that is only found in Dominica. Trafalgar Falls, the spectacular twin waterfalls just a 20 minutes drive from Roseau, the capital city of Dominica, is the island’s most famous destination.
The island of Dominica, although popular with travellers, has been spared the mass tourism the Caribbean is known for because, unlike most of the Caribbean, it lacks the flashy resorts or even international flights. But if you are into culture and people, lush-green backdrops, breath-taking natural beauty or just spectacular sport fishing, then this is a place for you.
Dominica Sports Fishing Opportunities
Anyone that has enjoyed a holiday to Dominica will notice just much of an important role sport fishing plays. A large number of locals rely on the business provided by tourists, and sport fishing is pretty big on this Caribbean island so there is no shortage of opportunities in Dominica.
Fishing, as a whole, is a big part of the local economy, with catches primarily serving the domestic market. Dominica fishing is decidedly un-modern, which may appeal to people looking for that old-style charm of simple fishing.
Dominica, as stated, has many rivers and streams; however, fishing the rivers in Dominica is usually restricted for most of the year to old family and friends. So you’ll probably need to make friends with a local fishing guide if you want to try the fresh-water route. Dominica fishing guides can also help you explore the burgeoning prawn and crayfish markets throughout the commonwealth.
Deep sea fishing is the most widely available on the island, which make sense given the impressive drop-offs found a short distance from the island. You can easily charter a boat and find yourself in the perfect spot for some deep sea fishing in just 15 minutes.
The leeward side of the island is where most of the deep sea fishing is done, although the Guadeloupe Channel found off the north coast and the Macaouba Bank towards the southeast are also great locations.
Charting a boat shouldn’t be too difficult either due to the large number of local fishermen relying on travelling anglers to help support their business. As a result, there is a diverse selection of charters available, from small handmade boats to those more commercial types powered by big motors.
Many rely on hard lines, so you will likely want to bring your own rod and reel – local bait shouldn’t be hard to come by however!
Species and Seasons
As previously mentioned, deep sea fishing is very much the focus here in Dominica, which means there is quite a few impressive species worth catching. Among the most popular catch found in Dominica includes tuna, marlin, yellowfin, wahoo, barracuda, dorado (mahi), mackerel and tarpon.
While these species can be located year-round by local anglers, visiting during peak seasons will improve your chances of netting your desired catch.
December to June is the best time for dorado, wahoo, and both blackfin and skipjack tuna, while yellowfin tuna fishing is best found from December to May. Blue marlin will be an obvious attraction for many, and will be at their peak during October to June.
Big eye tuna can also be found throughout most of the year, with peak times lasting from Match to May and then from October to December.
You will have your choice of activities in Dominica, but If you are looking for something more leisurely to do with the family in between all the fishing, maybe a Dominica river tubing adventure down the Layou, the island’s longest river, with its incredible views, is the thing.
Dominica Fishing Charters
Luckily there are a handful of Dominica fishing charter companies which you can use as your base for exploring the quality fishing on the far eastern edge of the Caribbean Sea. Explore the waters in and around Dominica and the area north of Martinique. Just tell your fishing charter captain what type of fish you are looking for in the area and they’ll lead you to where you’re almost certain to get a bite.
Additionally, your crew can tell you more about what species are available and the likelihood of finding one, depending on the season and many other factors. Below are some of the fish you can expect to find:
Catching fish is never a sure thing (but we’re pretty sure you’ll go home happy), what is certain is that you’ll have an awesome time in these amazing Caribbean waters.