They are dubbed “the gangsters of the flats”, and for a good reason. The giant trevally is arguably one of the most exciting species that you can target on the fly. As an angler, you can encounter them in many fly fishing scenarios, including surf zones, white sand and turtle grass flats, and deeper water offshore. 

Fast facts

Equipment for giant trevally

Cosmoledo, Seychelles, Aardvark McLeod

At home practice

Prepare – Practice casting with a 12wt before your trip

One of the most critical elements of a successful fly fishing adventure to the wild flats of the Indian Ocean is your ability to deliver the fly to your target species quickly. 

Practice your casting at home or with a casting instructor before your trip. Twelve weight fly rods and large flies make casting challenging at the best of times. This single yet hugely important thing you can do before your trip adds enormous value to your fly fishing experience on the flats.

Presentation on the flats

Fly fishing in saltwater exposes anglers to a world of moving targets. Few fish will stay stationary for very long. Giant trevally are often found while on the move, and the trick here is to imagine that you’re trying to throw and hit someone running across your garden with a tennis ball. After one or two attempts, you’ll realize that you need to aim a yard or two in front of your moving target to hit it. The same principle applies while fly fishing for GTs. You will see the direction the fish is moving, and you want to land your cast 15ft in front of the fish. You must factor in the speed at which the fish is moving to complete this correctly. The ideal presentation is completed when you have given yourself time to allow the fish to swim onto the fly before it recognizes it as a potential prey item. You can then begin with a long medium retrieve while watching the fish’s body language. A long strip is essential. The moment the fish starts to speed up towards your fly, you should speed up your retrieve. 

Fly fishers who catch a lot of fish all have one thing in common. They do what they can to limit the number of variables in catching a fish to a minimum. The KISS principle (Keep It Simple Simon) should be applied to fly fishing, especially while hunting for Giant Trevally. If you have spotted the fish in time and the angle of the wind or the distance to the fish is too great, move into a better position so that you can make the correct presentation. 

Line management 

Be aware of where your line has gathered on the sand, in the water, or on the boat. It may seem like a chore to continually manage your fly line, but after a while, it will become second nature, and you will find yourself doing it without giving it much thought. Making sure your fly line is free of potential snags like your feet, coral, or a latch in the boat is often the difference between completing your dream catch or watching it swim by.



One of the most extraordinary things about flats fishing in the Indian Ocean is the freedom to explore some of the most pristine and abundant fisheries on the planet. You will be on foot, on the flats, or an island; use your intuition. Your guide has chosen the area you are fishing at that time of the day for a reason. He knows fish should be there. If you see something that looks good or “fishy”, move to it, watch it, and make a cast or two if you are not sure. The number of trophy giant trevally landed by guests who have had a “feeling” and wandered off to investigate is high and proves that those who have the intention to explore catch the big fish.

Have fun

The unique fly fishing targets available might have been the primary reason you’ve travelled halfway around the world to visit a particular destination. Still, it’s important to remember that you’re going to spend six whole days in some of the wildest environments on our planet. The sights, experiences, heartbreaks, and successes are better shared with a good friend or like-minded angler. We love the outdoors, and that is why we have chosen to spend our time in these settings. We challenge you to have fun, enjoy a drink with your fishing buddy and look around; you are going to experience the rarest of resources – ecosystems fully intact and undisturbed by man.

Where is the best giant trevally destination for you?

Several destinations offer anglers the opportunity to cast a fly at giant trevally. If you would like more information please contact Charlotte Chilcott or Peter McLeod or call us on +44 1980 847389. Alternatively click HERE if you would like us to contact you.