The emergence of Los Cabos as an internationally significant resort destination has been attributed to a number of different factors — the arrival of the Transpeninsular Highway, widespread corporate hotel development along the coastal corridor, and Jack Nicklaus’ legitimization of the area as a golfing mecca, to name but a few — but more than any other single factor, the popularity of the area has always been, and most likely always will be, directly tied to its reputation for world-class big game sport fishing.
Since aviator and entrepreneur Rod Rodriguez opened Palmilla in the 1950s, providing five-star resort accommodations and superb game-fishing opportunities for an upscale clientele that included Hollywood movie stars such as Bing Crosby, Clark Gable, and John Wayne, Los Cabos has seen a steadily increasing influx of anglers seeking to try their luck with the large number of enormous billfish that inhabit the Sea of Cortés.
Image: Slippery Lizzard
The top tournaments are held during the summer and autumn months (October is traditionally the best month for blue marlin, and is when Bisbee’s hosts their jackpot-laden Black and Blue Tournament), but on a year-round basis visiting fishermen can get their hooks into everything from amberjack and bonito to dorado, sailfish, and yellow and bluefin tuna, as well as the blue, black, and striped varieties of marlin.
There are many top quality charter companies in the area, ranging from one-boat operations like Fly Hooker, which are focused on servicing a small clientele with maximum effectiveness, to those such as ABY Charters, Slippery Lizzard, and Pisces Sportfishing that offer a fleet of available vessels, allowing guests to pick the boat type and size (most of the larger companies have boats that range in capacity from roughly 2 to 12 anglers) that works best for their charter requirements.
Although the purchase of fishing licenses is mandatory in Los Cabos, the majority of local companies offer a choice when it comes to “bare boat” or “full boat” options, with the former offering a reduced price point if you provide your own bait, tackle, food, and beverages. Most of the restaurants in the area, by the way, feature “you hook it and we’ll cook it” policies, and are glad to prepare your catch anyway you like it for dinner.