Cruise for Caribbean Fishing

It's possible to cruise for a week in the Caribbean for less than $500 late in 2017 because of the massive dislocations due to the September 11th disasters. You can leave from Florida or Texas and fish the United States Virgin Islands, Mexico and a sprinkle of Caribbear Islands. If you've ever wanted to take a spouse who doesn't fish on a trip, this could be it.

Wake on the open sea or in exotic ports to the warm scent of the Caribbean with just a hint of sea air. Perfect your tan on sun-baked beaches or snorkle through warm fish-filled waters, wander through verdant forests and stroll through old towns once known to pirates like Henry Morgan.

Cruise ships offer this and much more at a more affordable price than most realize because lodgings, meals, transport and a host of activities are included.

Cruise ship fun in the sun isn't limited to the old and affluent! Shop wisely and enjoy cruises for under $100 a day if you watch shore costs and skip onboard casinos. Short three to four day cruises suit tight budgets. So do special deals such as Norwegian Caribbean Lines Quad Shares that put for singles in a 4-bed stateroom or family rates.

Save more with off-season fares and inside cabins. Budget cabins dock at the same time as the luxury suites and everyone spends waking hours on deck or in public areas. Low cost or free air fare to the port of embarkation completes Caribbean cruise cost cuts.

Fishing need not be fancy bluewater action that might top $500 a day. Bring your usual freshwater gear, surf stick if you own one and some plastic lures and plugs. Fly gear, suitable for black bass or steelhead works too.

The usual flies are fine. Skip waders, in warm water wade in light pants or, where jellyfish aren't a problem, shorts. Always wear sneakers and watch for sunburn. Brimmed hats, sunblock and dark glasses all help here.

What can you expect to catch. Tarpon cruise all Gulf Coasts. Bonefish in the shallows or even in harbors are common. Add all sorts of snappers and other exotics anxious to hit small lures or bait and there's a great selection.

In most cases you can find locals who will take you fishing for a few bucks or a few beers if you let them keep the fish. Then, if you must invest more money, there's the skiff fishing or head boat reef action. It's all there.

Where you travel isn't particularly important to first time cruisers; neither is, for that matter, ship choice or anything else. Some ships are new and large with massive shows and, at times more crowded shore shuttles and smaller cabins than older, now reconditioned, ships designed for Trans-Atlantic Cruises. So check with your travel agent for information and booklets. Then shop for deals options and choose.

Donald S. Cochran

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