The US Virgin Islands Best Guide

St. John: Fishing

Anglers will have a terrific time testing their skill and trying their luck while fishing on vacation in St. John! Go offshore in pursuit of Marlin, Dolphin Fish (Mahi-Mahi), Wahoo and Tuna. Or try inshore fishing and see whether you can get some Kingfish, Barracuda, Jacks or Yellowtail Snapper to bite!

Wondering if your big catch, the one you will be talking about for years to come, will be in season at the time of year you are planning your visit to St. John. The quick answer is that some species are around all year and others have peak seasons. Experienced fishing charter operators and captains in the area know the islands’ waters and seasons. They can provide information on what you might find on the end of your line when you go out fishing with them during your St. John vacation.

Fishing charters on St. John offer trips that will excite everyone from the seasoned pro to the novice. They include inshore, offshore and marlin trips. Most operators offer trips lasting: ½ day (4 hours, typically between 8am and noon, or 1pm and 5pm); ¾ of a day (6 hours); full day (8 hours); and Marlin trips (10 hours, usually 7:30am to dusk). Short trips are generally inshore fishing only. Boat capacity of 4 to 6 passengers is common. Rates for fishing charters varies depending on length of trip, size of boat, inclusion of fuel in the rate versus fuel being a surcharge, and differences in services and equipment provided. Fishing charters generally have the details of their trips listed on their websites, and can provide the information by email or telephone upon request. Explore your options; book a fishing trip and a have a great time

Are you looking forward to eating your catch? Guests can typically request some of their catch, for example up to 20 lbs, the remainder stays with the boat. If you are interested in keeping some of your catch to take back to your vacation villa to cook for dinner be sure to ask about it. If you are staying in a hotel, ask the captain for suggestions of restaurants on the island that will cook your catch for you!

If you are really a fishing enthusiast you might consider planning your vacation to St. John around a fishing tournament, to be a spectator or to participate! Some fishing charters are available for tournaments. You’ll find various tournament options on neighboring St. Thomas, there aren’t any hosted on St. John. Here is a sample: Couples Tournament (February), Dolphin Derby (April) and the USVI Open/Atlantic Blue Marlin Tournament (August).

For more information on fish species caught around the Virgin Islands including location, season and bait visit the Virgin Islands Fishing Guide and for regulations visit VI Fishing Regulations.

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