Cayo Largo

Welcome to Cuba
Location, Type of Fishing:

Just off the southwest coast of Cuba, about 110 miles from Havana, lies the long, skinny island of Cayo Largo, translated “Long Key” in Spanish. It is a part of a group of islands in the Canarreos Archipelago, the capital of which is La Isla de la Juventud, or “The Island of the Youth”. The climate is similar to that of the Yucatan Peninsula with generally fair conditions in the winter, convenient for tourists and fishermen eager to escape the cold entombing the north at that time of year. Alternatively, the summer months are hot, and it is also when flats fishing is in full swing as all of the inshore species are very active on the flats during that time. The outfitter operating in the area is Avalon Cuban Fishing Centers, and they have made accessing Cayo Largo’s pristine flats easy by enlisting a fleet of 16’ Dolphin super skiffs equipped with Yamaha 60HP outboards to get you around the area quickly and reliably. There are also good hard-bottom, sandy flats perfect for the angler who enjoys wading, although they do still require a boat to be accessed. Cayo Largo is also the birthplace of the Avalon Crab. Not a crab at all, it is rather an awesome shrimp pattern that was developed by guide, Mauro Ginevri, who created this keel-style fly pattern specifically for the permit of Cayo Largo’s flats. It rides hook up, so as not to snag while being retrieved, and the beads of the keel not only right the fly in the water, but also rattle to better imitate the sound a shrimp makes when it is fleeing. It is truly a must-have permit pattern in any saltwater angler’s fly box.


  • Season: Year-round
  • Species: Tarpon, Permit, Bonefish, Snook, Barracuda
  • Rods: 8-12 wt. Saltwater, Fast-Action
  • Rates: 8 nights/ 6 days fishing $8200




What Makes It Special:

The fishing at Cayo Largo is very exclusive. There is only one outfitter operating in the area, and they allow no more than twelve anglers per week to fish a very well-protected Marine Park where commercial fishing has long since been extinguished and netting of any kind is just not allowed. It has been divided into seven separate fishing areas, each with about ten miles of top quality flats with excellent water for inshore fly fishing. A rotation of just six skiffs for seven areas allows one area to rest each day of the week while guaranteeing that no two skiffs will be found fishing on a flat at the same time. You can be certain that your assigned flats are exclusive to just your boat on any given day. All of the fishing areas at Cayo Largo have been implemented as fly fishing-only, insuring that the pressure on these fish from day to day is very light, if any. Recognized as some of the world’s finest flats fishing, since it first opened up in 2008, Cayo Largo has quickly become known as the “Permit Capital of Cuba”. It is also a great destination for a grand slam, as all of the inshore slam species are present on the flats year-round. This presents the unique challenge to the angler by trying to catch tarpon, bonefish and permit all in the same day. In doing so, you will join an exclusive group of people to have accomplished this difficult but rewarding feat.



The fishing season at Cayo Largo runs from November through August, with the peak season occurring between February and June. While the peak season is excellent with generally mild weather conditions and a high concentration of species on the flats, the low seasons on both sides can still offer fantastic fishing opportunities when the weather’s right. The beginning of the season can be especially good for bonefishing, as there are a lot of them on the flats at that time. It is not uncommon to have excellent opportunities for tarpon, snook and permit as well, so don’t count them out. Fair skies and calm weather return to the flats in mid-winter and with it the fishing season ramps up in earnest as all of the species are becoming more active with the return of frequent high pressure systems and the decreased chances of tropical depressions. As the season moves into May and June, the larger migratory tarpon return and are found just about everywhere on the flats come summer. This is also a great time to try for a grand slam. Cayo Largo produces the most grand slams out of all of the destinations in Cuba. The best chances for the success of an angler lie in the spring and early summer when slams and super slam are consistently produced every year. The cycle of high pressure systems followed by tropical depressions continues through the summer with some very dramatic swings in both directions. Hot days with just a bit of wind find fishermen catching a lot of big tarpon on the flats as well as some permit and big bonefish.



Just minutes from the International Airport (CYO) on Cayo Largo is Melia Cuba’s Sol Cayo Largo, an all-inclusive resort set harmoniously amid all of the pristine beauty of the island’s southern shoreline. Breath-taking beaches, some of the finest in the world, where crystal-clear waters meet fine white sand, cool to the touch, make this an ideal setting for anyone wanting to get away from it all. Settle into the wonders and beautiful scenery that the archipelago has to offer. The resort offers comfortable rooms equipped with air-conditioning. Terraces or balconies are perfect for relaxation and reflection. There is direct access to the beach and the different pools, restaurants and bars onsite. Please keep in mind that this is not your usual fishing lodge, but a large resort with many guests there to enjoy all that the resort has to offer. This a great destination for couples, as a non-angling wife or girlfriend may enjoy lounging by the pool, taking an educational tour at the turtle observation center, snorkeling and diving or simply combing the 17 miles of beach, considered one of the world’s finest.




There are three restaurants onsite at the resort. All meals and drinks are included in your fishing package, even alcoholic beverages. The main restaurant in the interior of the resort offers an international menu with a Caribbean flair served buffet-style for both breakfast and dinner. It is here where you will take the majority of your meals as a guest of the resort. There is a restaurant at the beach as well as a gourmet restaurant that both serve dinner offering an ala-carte menu of international as well as Caribbean delights. Advanced bookings are recommended for the specialty restaurants. Breakfast is served buffet-style.


How to Get There:

Your all-inclusive fishing package begins with your arrival in Havana (HAV). The week typically begins on a Saturday and finishes on the following Saturday, with 6 full days of guided fishing in between. Although there are direct flights to the International Airport on Cayo Largo, most anglers will choose to fly into Havana on the Friday just before the trip, so that they may rest up and experience a bit of the rich Cuban culture that the Capitol has to offer before heading down to the island early the next morning. A representative of Avalon Cuban Fishing Centers will be there to greet you after you pass through customs. Your stay at the hotel for your first night in Havana is included in your package. Early the next morning, you will transfer to the domestic terminal at the airport ahead of your flight to Juan Vitalio Acuña Airport on Cayo Largo (CYO). The flight takes about 30-40 minutes in the air. A shuttle will take you to the resort from the airport. On your departure day, you’ll return to the airport via the hotel shuttle. Boarding the return flight to Havana, constitutes the completion of your fishing package. There are 3 documents you’ll need to obtain to enter Cuba: a passport, an affidavit and a visa. All visitors from the US to Cuba must have a valid US passport that does not expire for a minimum of six months past the date of your stay in Cuba. You will also need to obtain an affidavit from the US Treasury departments’ Office of Foreign Assets Control approving travel under one of twelve travel rules. Lastly, you will need an entrance visa which can be purchased at the ticket counter for $25 when you check in for your direct flight to Havana.


Typical Day:

Breakfast at Melia Cuba’s Sol Cayo Largo begins at 7:30 am at the Las Dunas restaurant in the interior of the resort. They serve a breakfast buffet in the morning, with typical hot meals which include scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, and french toast among others. The highlight of the breakfast service at Las Dunas is the omelette station. They also serve a variety of fresh pastries, including croissants, and there are typical buffet items, like fresh fruit, cereals, yogurt and milk. Coffee, tea, a selection of fresh juice, as well as champagne is made available until 10:30 am. Fly fishermen who are planning to head out to the flats,  should plan on leaving the room with all of the gear they’ll need for the day before heading to breakfast. After filling up with a quick meal, meet at the main entrance of the lobby to depart in vans at 8 am. There is a short drive of about ten minutes to meet the guides at the boats docked at Villas Marinera, a small hotel on the opposite side of the island with access to the flats located on the north side of the island. Your lunch will be packed in a cooler on the boat, ordered the previous evening. There’s enough ice, drinks and water to last the day. You will spend 8 hours fishing the flats, returning in the late afternoon. Back at the resort, you may wish to enjoy appetizers and drinks poolside, take a swim in the ocean or walk the beach before dinner. There is no set schedule for dinner.

What’s Included:

5-star hotel in Havana, round-trip domestic flights to and from Cayo Largo, 7 nights lodging at Sol Cayo Largo, 6 days guided fishing, all meals and drinks including alcoholic beverages and ground transfers on the island.

Not included: Taxis to and from the airport in Havana, meals while in Havana, gratuity for the staff and guides, and your airfare to and from Havana.


Non-angling Activities:

The hotel provides a broad array of services and attractions. There are language classes where you can learn to speak Spanish, dancing classes, as well as cocktail and cooking classes. There is a gym where you can better your health, schedule a massage and enjoy the amenties that include a sauna, jacuzzi and steam bath. There is a dive school nearby, as well as a water sports center. The hotel has two lighted tennis courts. You can take complimentary bikes to check-out the island to learn a little about the local cultural. There are also eco-tours where you can discover the fuana and flora of Cayo Largo.


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