Belize is lucky to have consistent fishing 365 days per year. Of course, certain months of the year will produce more fishing success than other periods on the calendar, but fishing can be had year-round.
The climate in Belize is ideal for creating memorable fishing experiences on any date on the calendar. The temperature averages about 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and rare sees temps over 100 degrees. It is more common to have passing showers than all-day deluges during the rainy season, so rarely is the fishing day cut short by rain. Belize’s rainy season traditionally spans from June 1st through the end of November. The rainy season doesn’t mean rain all day, every day. Instead, it means small individual rainstorms that tend to move through quickly. The rainy season can be when we experience the best fishing of the entire year.
The dreaded “Northern” or cold front will most likely produce the most challenging fishing any time of the year. A cold front will bring cold rainy, windy weather from the north. This cools the water temperatures on the flats, sometimes to undesirable temps that will get the fish from showing up in the shallow water. The most common months for a “Northern” is mid-December through mid-February, but if one doesn’t happen during your fishing trip to Belize, the weather conditions are likely to be ideal, and the fish will respond.
Fly Fishing Opportunities by Month
In our part of Belize, bonefish, permit, and tarpon can be caught year-round. Some periods of the year are more likely to have better fishing for a specific species than other time frames. We’ve broken down the fishing by month. NOTE: different parts of Belize have slightly different seasons. This is what you can expect to see in the Southwater Caye Marine Reserve each month.
January: The new and full moon tide will create the most productive fishing for permit. Bonefish are a daily option. Tarpon schools are migrating and following bait. The fishing will be great if you find them, but they can be challenging to locate cause they move frequently. January is the most likely month for a dreaded “Northern”. The high winds can make fishing the flats more challenging in January.
February: Similar to January, in the first two weeks of the month. The best tides remain the new and full moon. Weather is the most significant factor this month. By mid-month, the chances of a “Northern” diminish dramatically. By mid-month, we expect to start seeing some of the best catch rates for permit of the year.
March: March brings the beginning of the most favourable time for fly fishing for permit in southern Belize. For the next six months, the permit fishing will be the best of the calendar year. Bonefish remain catchable daily. Permit are the primary focus, and all-tide cycles will give the advantage to the angler. Tarpon continue to migrate with baitfish and, when found, will eagerly eat a fly. March can have higher winds, but it is not common to have a north front.
April: Bonefish are always an option. Permit fishing will remain outstanding with the new and full moon phases. During the full moon this month, more tarpon will arrive in the region. These tarpon tend to be larger than the resident tarpon that swim in the waters of South Water Caye Marine Reserve. The weather in April is settled and typically calm with little rain.
May: This is the hottest and often the driest month of the year. It is common to have calm clear weather for weeks in a row. Bonefish are available. Permit fishing is excellent, especially during the new and full moon phases. Tarpon are caught with daily regularity. Weather is always the factor, but rarely this month.
June: Technically, June is the start of the rainy season, but don’t let this stop you from fishing during one of the best fishing months of the year. The rainy season is highlighted by quickly passing rainstorms. These storms can drop inches of water in less than 30 minutes. Luckily, they are most commonly isolated storms and won’t interrupt the fishing. June is the start of one of the best months for a grand slam: permit, bonefish, and tarpon on the same day. Again, new and full moon phases will bring the best fishing.
July: Nearly identical conditions as of June. One of the best months for fishing in Belize. Hurricanes can be a factor.
August: This is one of our favourite months of the summer season. In the first part of the month, the new moon has consistently produced more Grand Slams than any other time of the year. Hurricanes can be a factor.
September: By mid-month, the migrating tarpon have mostly moved to other areas of Belize or the Caribbean. Permit fishing will be good this month too, but we will start to recommend focusing on the first and last quarter moons, especially in the latter part of the month. Bonefish remain a daily possibility.
October: Weather and tides are the biggest challenges in October. The new and full moon tides are so high they create challenging conditions, as the flats will have too much water on them. The first and last quarter moon phases offer the best fishing in October. Tarpon are still possible, however, they are mostly the resident fishing (who often migrate throughout the region). Permit continue to dominate the focus, with bonefish being possible every day of the month. Hurricanes are still a potential complication during the first weeks of October.
November: At some point during November, the weather will slide into a calm, clear weather pattern, with little to no wind or rain. Ideal conditions. Bonefish are still a daily target, with permit productivity picking up, especially during perfect weather. Full and new moon phase is preferred. Tarpon can be found. As the month grows long, the chances of experiencing a “Northern” becomes more likely.
December: Some years, the ideal weather spills over into December. When this happens, the fishing remains excellent. Same story for bonefish daily. Permit and tarpon can be found, as long as the weather pattern is calm and settled.
Our experience supports that mid-February through the end of August offers the best fishing of the calendar year. November has a ‘sweet’ some for fishing too. September and October can produce great fishing, but not as consistently. December and January have the highest likelihood of weather affecting the productivity of your fishing trip.
For more information on Blue Horizon Lodge please contact Peter McLeod or call our office on +44(0)1980 847389.