“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

TravelHaven Journal – Costa Rica Adventure 12

Deep Sea Fishing

On our third day at Manuel Antonio we go out to fish for blue marlin!

We take a cab at 7:00 a.m. to the muella (pier), where we buy fishing licenses (44,500 colones for 3) and board the Blue Marlin II, operated by Captain Dave and his mate, Garden. We were supposed to go with Dale Weir, one of the charter company owners, but his boat wouldn’t start.

Getting under way around 7:45 we speed out over the blue Pacific waters for about an hour or an hour and a half. After about a half hour, my shipmates (not the crew) are lulled to sleep by the motion of the boat. But I was enjoying the wind through my hair and the sparkling water and sunshine. How exhilarating!

We heave to at last and throw in our lines. Then we sit for almost two hours with not even a nibble . Then Alisa gets a strike and hauls in a yellowfin tuna! It goes into the bucket hopefully to be joined by many more fish very soon! About 15 minutes later, Mike catches a needlefish—interesting, but a throwback, too bony. Five minutes later, I get a beautiful rainbow; unfortunately rainbows are not “eating fish” either, so over the side it goes. Another half hour with some nibbles but no real strikes, then Alisa brings in a nice mahi-mahi—another fish for dinner. After a while, we set out for another area where we catch a lot of little fish, but nothing decent and we decide to call it a day. We head in and get back to the pier, dinner in hand, around 3:45. Our quest for a huge tuna or marlin didn’t materialize, but what a fun day we had! And scored dinner too!

We take the tuna and mahi-mahi to El Avion where they grill them with lemon and butter and flambé them at our table, a ritual they always perform when guests provide their own catch. What a nice touch! We had the same server every night, Luis Lopez, so he is now like an old friend. The fish was delicious (and plenty for Mike, Alisa and I, since Kaley and Torrey don’t eat fish). And Alisa feels like a great fisherwoman, having provided dinner for her family. We have three sauces on the side—soy, pineapple soy, and another that I didn’t try. The pineapple soy was my favorite!

Tired from our day at sea under the strong sun with the constant motion of the water, we head to our rooms right after dinner. Big partiers, huh?