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“Cozumel bonefish”

Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives
Ranked #152 of 283 Outdoor Activities in Cozumel
Certificate of Excellence
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Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Baltimore
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Cozumel bonefish”
Reviewed 24 February 2014

I fly fished cozumel through Carlos Vega on Feb 14. It was my first time flats fishing, I would say I am an average fly caster at best. Fortunately we had a perfect weather day and I was able to catch 7 bonefish on the fly, an epic day.
I was torn when selecting a guide but finally settled on using Carlos as he was the easiest to contact and has perfect english. His operation is very well run and everything was as represented. Plenty food, water and beer. The guide tied a leader for me and provided the flies including multiple changes. He even hooked me up with some wading shoes he had stashed on the boat because he said my crocs wouldn't cut it.
I picked my day based on the weather, Carlos's main guide Enrique was already booked but he had another guide, Alfredo available. I was a little nervous but I couldn't have been happier with Alfredo. He was as intense at the end of the day as at the beginning. He wanted fish as bad as I did and he knew his stuff, never hesitated to change flys when we had refusals, and pretty good english.
I think I was pretty lucky that we found a cove late in the day with a couple large schools working this made my suspect casting less of an issue. It is important to understand that a large part of your success will depend on your personal casting ability. Also my wife rode along and enjoyed the scenery.
I am thrilled with my trip and Alfredo and plan on going again next year.
thank you Carlos!
Jesse

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
Thank BaltimoreBetty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carlos V, Propietario at Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives, responded to this review, 25 February 2014
Hello Jesse,

Thank you very much for the excellent review on your recent flats fly fishing trip on the Cozumel flats with us on Friday, February 14th, 2014. I'm very happy to hear that the day of your trip you caught 7 bonefish on fly, that you had such great fly fishing trip with your guide, Alfredo and that your wife enjoyed the scenery. I also understand that you will be coming back for another great flats fly fishing experience on the Cozumel flats with us next year.

I will be more than happy to be at your service again next year!!!

Best wishes,

Carlos
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38 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Quesnel, Bc Canada
Level Contributor
35 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Bonefishing with Aquarius in Cozumel”
Reviewed 22 February 2014

Spent a day flyfishing in Cozumel on Feb 15th 2014 with Carlo Vega company. I booked the trip before arriving in Cozumel. Carlo met us at our hotel lobby, took us down to the hotel dock to meet the two guides Enrique, the head guide and his helper, Juan. Don't be concerned about the run up and around the north west end of the island. There is road up to the flats but, trust me, its way faster to run up with a boat. I used their gear which I found to be high end equipment that was well maintained. The lines were in great shape. Enrique also had all the flies that were needed. My buddy was not much of a fisherman but went along for a ride. Enrique set him up with a spin casting rod. They provided more food and refreshments than we could have possibly used. The boat was well maintained and perfect for the task. Enrique may not have a large English vocabulary but certainly has enough to be able to effectively communicate. They were well organized and had me casting to fish very quickly. Best fishing was early in the morning so be prepared to go out early. Both Enrique and Juan worked hard to keep us over fish through the day. We waded for part of the day and then spent time in the boat poking in to small nooks and bays. Bring wading shoes that have a good bottom on them. Most of the shallows are sand and mud but there are some areas of rock just under the surface that would be uncomfortable in thin soled shoe. Enrique and Juan really seemed to know this area very well. Saw some great country, had lots of laughs and even saw some mayan ruins in the middle of the flats. I would not hesitate to recommend Carlo and his crew for a fly fishing trip. If I ever have the chance to return to this beautiful Island, I will certainly hook up with them again.

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
Thank sarabyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carlos V, Propietario at Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives, responded to this review, 25 February 2014
Hola Mike,

Thank you very much for the great review on your recent fly and spin flats trip for bonefish on the Cozumel flats with us on Saturday, February 15th, 2014. I'm glad and happy to hear that you and your fishing buddy had such a great time fishing with your guide, Enrique and his helper, Juan and that you will be coming back to fish us again next year.

I will be more than happy to be at your service again next year!!!

All the best,

Carlos
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great Three Days!”
Reviewed 7 May 2013

If you are planning on fishing the Cozumel flats, you will need a guide. Choosing a guide can be agonizing. It's not just the money, but your time that can be wasted. If you book enough fly fishing guides, eventually, you will get taken for the $400 boat ride. Any type of fish can be picky on any given day, especially Bonefish, but you know when they're just not biting, and when you are on the $400 ride. The best fly fishing decision I've made in a long time, was booking with Carlos Vega! Carlos delivered everything he promised and more. He and my actual guide Enrique, and his assistant Juan, were on time (early) every day. Carlos met me the first morning and took me to the marina. After that, Enrique and Juan picked me up and dropped me off at my hotel dock. The Cozumel flats are firm bottom and most of your fishing is wading. Be sure to pack your flats boots. Having Juan to pole and position the boat ahead of us was a huge help. It allowed us to cover twice the water. Enrique constantly put me on Bones, and somehow managed to keep both the sun and the wind at my back. He also managed not to laugh out loud at some of my less than spectacular wind casts. We caught fish every day, and watching 100 yards of your backing disappear off an 8 wt reel in seconds (sometimes more than once) is a fishing thrill that's hard to describe and guaranteed to give you smiles and goose bumps. Enrique also provided the correct fly for the situation,and hand tied Fluorocarbon leaders. Senora Vega supplied the tasty home made lunch along with a cooler of bottled water, soda and beer. There may be other competent guides on the Island, however I didn't see any. I did see some other fishermen getting the $400 ride. Book with Carlos, you will not be sorry.

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Michael R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carlos V, Owner at Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives, responded to this review, 11 May 2013
Hi Michael,

Thank you for your excellent review about your 3 fishing days with us in Cozumel with your guides, Enrique and Juan.

I’m glad and happy to hear that during your three fly flats fishing trips with us you had a great fly flats fishing time with my guides, Enrique Torres and Juan Alvarez.

I don’t know if you knew this but as a Cozumel native I have been in the flats fishing business for over 30 years. Therefore, I always deliver what I promise.

Thanks again and I’m looking forward to be at your service again in a near future!

Best wishes,

Carlos
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Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Flats Fishing with my two teenage boys in Cozumel with Enrique”
Reviewed 3 April 2013

Its 6 am and I need to drag my two boys out into our cab and off to the Cozumel Ferry.
7 am Ferry is the first Ferry from Playa Del Carmen where we stay every year for two weeks around spring break.
Finally we arrive at the doc after a 40 min Ferry ride. We are met by Carlos Vega an his Wife.
After a short 10 min drive we are at the marina and ready to go!
The boat and gear in this operation are top notch, Cooler is full of beer water and soda, along with Marias special club sandwiches! Enrique the quide speaks little english, but plenty to get by and comunicate with my boys, as he has three boys of his own.
After a very cool 35 min boat ride to the north part of the Island we arrive.
I have all my own Fly gear and flys, but one of my boys prefers not to leave the boat while fishing.
So Enrique myself and my wongest son (who is also a fly fishermen) begin wading the flats as Enriques right hand pole man moves into a couple smaller bays and begin catching large Berracuda on spinning gear! He was exstatic! By far the best day of fishing he has ever had.
Already talking about our next fishing trip. As far as my day it was amazing as ever, we saw two schools in the first hour with over 300 fish!! one was estimated at 700 plus by Enrique, needless to say we both caught fish! The bone fish in Cozumel are bigger, 4-5 pds average with some up to 8 pds. I have been using Carlos Vega every year for 4 years now and ALWAYS have a great time, every year is always a little different, even though we fish the same areas..
I would highly recomend Carlos Vega and his crew any time!!

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Paul L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carlos V, Owner at Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives, responded to this review, 7 April 2013
Buenos dias amigo ,

Muchas gracias for your wonderful review that you posted. I remain your grateful amigo and look forward to seeing you and your sons next Spring.

Carlos
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Silver Spring, Maryland
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Flat Fishing with Dad in the Cozumel Lagoons”
Reviewed 25 March 2013

It's 4:30 am on a clear, cool Cozumel morning. As an avid, occasionally successful angler, I've barely slept thinking about casting for bonefish and snapper in the shallow northside mangrove area of the island.

This little adventure means a lot to me because my 83-year-old Dad is coming along and who knows how many more fishing trips we'll make together?

Getting us to the the Marina is a surprisingly speedy 10 minute hop from the central part of town by taxi. The owner of the fishing guide operation, Carlos Vega, is waiting for us there. He's a charmer, greets us warmly at the marina gate at 5am, points us to the boat, shouting "buena suerte"!

With assists from our Captain, Enrique Torres and first mate Vincente Millan, my Dad and my brother-in-law Tony venture aboard with me onto the solid-looking fishing craft.

It's a white, open-cockpit vessel, broad of beam, seemingly constructed of cement until you realize it's thick fiberglass. You can tell the thing is all business, bristling with rod holders, coolers, backed by a massive 100 hp Evinrude outboard. The boat has comfortable seating for 3 and affords passengers a commanding view.

One of the cool things about Cozumel is that its waters are so clean and clear. Even in this crowded marina, the water is gin-clear, tinged pale green and alive with swarms of tiny minnows. These seem a good omen for today's adventure.


Powering us out of the marina, Captain Enrique sets a northeast course, paralleling the coastline a couple of hundreds yards offshore.

As we begin curving around the northern tip of the island the swells increase somewhat and we begin bouncing a bit through the oncoming 3-foot swells. Captain Enrique skillfully turns the prow of the craft into the larger waves. You get a feeling he's done this many times before and that these seas today are 'par for the course' for him.

As the sun rises over the horizon it warms us and gives the ocean an emerald blue-green Caribbean beauty and we're quickly transported beyond signs of coastal civilization. This is looking good!

After a half-hour gliding off a sandy, deserted coastline we arrive at the mouth of a narrow inlet through which multiple, productive-looking lagoons are visible.

Captain Enrique slows us to a putter as we negotiate increasingly shallow waters. We pull up to an opening so narrow it seems the boat won't fit, when Captain Enrique cuts the motor and Vincente begins poling us forward from the rear deck of the boat. We squeak through the tiny gap, pole forward into a large lagoon about 3 feet deep, crystal clear and - hopefully- brimming with bonefish and snapper.

It's "go time" and Captain Enrique asks "spinning gear or fly rod". Well, that one was easy because it was a little windy and I've never used a flyrod! My colleauges agreed that spinning gear was the thing and Vincente rigged us up with weighted jig heads with deer hair and a piece of squid on the hook. It sure looked like a tasty morsel for hungry fish lurking about.

Dad's quite spry for his age and decides to take a position on the front deck of the boat, Tony and I slung our offerings from behind Dad, off either side, trying to land the jigs near the mangroves. Luckily the lures were heavy enough to allow casting accuracy in spite of a cool and steady 10mph breeze.

As Vincente silently poles us through clear shallows, we see torpedo-like shapes hurtling throw the water, under and around our boat! Bonefish!

This is exciting indeed. Our quarry seemingly is teasing us, daring us to dupe them with a barbed meal. Cast after cast fails to tempt the elusive creatures, though we occasionally think we're getting hits. Tony says, "no, it's a bottom hit", Dad complains "it's just a snag".

Then Tony gets a genuine strike. He sets the hook and the rod is bending over and quick silver is glinting through the water as he reels in a smallish silver fish, probably about a pound. Captain Enrique informs us it's a snapper as Tony releases it unharmed. Catch and release is the name of the game today.

I throw out a cast that lands right under a mangrove overhang and bang, I've got a live one. It's exciting being able to see the fish through the clear water all the way as I reel it in. It's another small snapper and my Dad tells me to 'go get his big brother'.

Sharp squawks startle us while rounding a mangrove bend. Surprisingly, only about 20 feet off our port bow are a pair of bald eagles, an adult and what looks like an immature sitting in a large, elaborate nest. I'm an enthusiastic bird watcher and this close-up sighting makes the trip worth it to me right here. .

I've seen bald eagles before in the Potomac River area of Maryland, I know they're making a great comeback after near extinction from DDT use years ago but this is very rewarding to find them thriving down here too

Dad hooks a couple of snappers, about that same one-pound size, He's having a ball landing these scrappy little fish. He tells us they fight like the big bluegill sunfish he used to catch in clear Minnesota lakes as a boy. I snap a lot of pictures of Dad on the boat as he's reeling them in.

After catching some more snapper but no bonefish, Captain Enrique says it's about time to head back but he wants to make one more stop on the way to see if the barracuda will hit our lures. After going back through the same unbelievably tight opening we came in through, we throttle up and head to a deeper lagoon where the tide is moving through fairly briskly. We cast here for about half an hour, but alas the 'cuda aren't cooperating today.

As we head home, I think about our Cozumel adventure in the mangroves today. I think about my Dad, how wonderful it was to see him still able to scramble about the boat like a kid, artfully flinging out lures. I think of how lucky I am to be with him on this gorgeous day in this exotic locale.

We weren't so lucky today with the fish, but with this super-competent and friendly Captain and crew, I know our angling luck might well change for the better the next time.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Vergne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carlos V, Owner at Aquarius Travel Fishing Representatives, responded to this review, 28 March 2013
Thanks for posting the review of your flats fishing trip . I’m sorry to hear that the bonefish were not very cooperative with you, However, I’m happy to hear that you, your Dad and brother in law caught some snapper and that you all enjoyed the trip fishing with your Captain and guide, Enrique Torres and his mate Vicente Millan.

I’m pretty sure that you all will have a better luck with these elusive bonefish on your next trip.
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