ensenada fishing

Ensenada Fishing Guide (With Our Top Recommended Charters 2023)

Have you always dreamed about reeling in a 100 lb fish (that’s nearly as big as you are) on the open ocean? Take on one of the best fishing charters in Ensenada on your next vacation and make that dream a reality. Thanks to its shallow reefs and plentiful, Pacific depths, Baja is the optimal destination to give sportfishing a try. 


From who to hire and what to bring to when to go, this in-depth guide to fishing trips in Ensenada Mexico is the only resource you’ll need to knock this experience off your bucket list. 


What are The Best Fishing Charters in Ensenada?

Sergio’s Sportfishing Charters

Sergio’s Sportfishing offers both inshore and offshore excursions (ranging from 6 to 18 hours long) on their family-owned, 7-boat fleet. No matter which boat you choose, you’ll have access to comfortable cabins with A/C in case you need a break from the Ensenada sun, a live bait tank, and fish finder technologies. 


From December 15th to April 15th when the humpbacks return to the area, Sergio’s also offers group tours and private whale-watching charters so why not pair the two experiences for the ultimate open-ocean adventure? 

Why We Love It

  • Adjustable schedule allowing you to tailor your itinerary
  • Family-owned business
  • Offers transportation from the cruise ship terminal 
  • Fish count chart is updated daily on their website so you can see exactly what (and how much) is being caught

Todos Santos Adventures Fishing Charters

This deep sea fishing tour is great if you want to try as many techniques as possible. Utilizing a live baitwell, light tackle, and heavy tackle, you’ll become a pro at all kinds of angling practices by the end of your excursion including bottom fishing, trolling, spinning, jigging, drift fishing, and spearfishing. 


When looking at the size of the vessel, you might be wondering why Todos Santos Adventures only allows eight guests on board. Well, they’ve decided to cap the group size well before it reaches capacity to ensure everyone has lots of space to spread out and relax, plus personalized attention from the crew as they teach you. If you’ve come to learn, you’ve come to the right place! 


Why We Love It

  • Offers trips by the hour in addition to full-day charters for tighter timelines
  • Snacks and refreshments available
  • Catch cleaning and fileting service
  • Learn and try several different fishing methods 

Lucky Sport Fishing Baja

closeup photo of black and green fishing rod during fishing charter in ensenada
Photo by Yiran Ding on Unsplash

Besides 35 years of experience, choosing to do your fishing charter with Lucky Sport Fishing Baja comes with a lot of perks. Beverages and fresh fruit will be served throughout the day, the boat boasts a Flybridge, plus the larger vessel size offers a smoother ride on the open water. 


Are you visiting from the U.S.? As part of the excursion, Lucky Sport’s captain is willing to pick you up as far as the border and you can fish your way back to Ensenada. Why not take the voyage by sea and then buy a one-way fare home? 


Why We Love It

  • Life vests for children 
  • Super knowledgeable first-mate who’s great with the little ones
  • A staff with culinary expertise: they will turn your catch into ceviche or sashimi right on deck
  • A crew that prioritizes FUN 

Tours California Norte

Imagine starting your day at sunrise and watching the sky come to life in pastel hues as you drift out towards the open ocean. That’s what life is like with Tours California Norte. They’re known for bringing in tons of barracuda, but these private charters are all about YOU, so all you need to do is let your captain know if you would prefer to focus on a single species you’ve always dreamed of catching, or if you’d like to reel in a variety of local inhabitants. 


Why We Love It

  • Wheelchair accessible boat
  • Multimedia system on board for your entertainment 
  • Keep everything you catch (within license guidelines) 
  • Food and drinks included 

Crazy Tuna Sportfishing 

Captain Pedro at Crazy Tuna Sportfishing is all about quality over quantity, so his aim is to help you earn that prize catch, rather than lose sight of the goal and reel in tiny fish after tiny fish. Bluefin Tuna, Mahi Mahi, Wahoo, and YellowTail Amberjacks will be your main targets, and the crew will make sure everyone has “caught enough” before heading back. 


This team is known for being super patient and experts at showcasing the basic skills, making this option totally beginner-friendly. 

Why We Love It

  • Perfect for total beginners
  • Focus on “prize catch” species 
  • Option to add spearfishing or flyfishing to the itinerary 

Other Ways to Fish in Ensenada

person holding fishing rod during ensenada fishing charter
Photo by Natsuki on Unsplash

Most fishing charters in Ensenada will take you deep sea and/or reef fishing. But are there other ways to enjoy the sport if you don’t have a massive budget or a whole day to spend on the open sea? Absolutely! 


Surf fishing right from the beach is one of the most popular ways for locals and tourists alike to bring home a “catch of the day” or you can find a local with a panga (small fishing boat) who’s willing to take you out for a tour around the bay. Roads, lures, and other equipment can be rented cheaply from any of the local shops.

Top Tips for Your Ensenada Fishing Charter

  1. Bring bottled water and high-SPF sunscreen. The sun reflecting off of the water will intensify its rays and this can take a toll on your body pretty quickly. While you’re at it, a brimmed hat and sturdy footwear are also good ideas to keep you cool and comfortable. 
  2. The open ocean can be unpredictable and occasionally you’ll hit a large swell. These waves are totally safe in the hands of your experienced captain, but they can cause some moderate-severe sea sickness. Especially if motion sickness is something you struggle with on dry land, you’ll want to come prepared with antinauseants medications, a behind-the-ear patch, or a wristband designed for seasickness relief. 
  3. If you’d like to keep your catch – be sure to check in with your captain prior to booking. Some (though not all) boats operate on a catch-and-release basis, while others split the catch evenly among the group. If this is important to you, splurging on a private charter is probably the best plan of attack. Why should you keep your catch? You could either have it preserved and shipped home as the ultimate souvenir, or have it cooked up for the freshest fish dinner you’ve ever had.
  4. Based on the nature of the sport, deep-sea fishing involves a lot of WAITING. Most captains are super chatty and may even offer onboard entertainment, but especially if you’re traveling with kids, it wouldn’t hurt to bring a few entertainment options with you. Books about the sea or compact and quiet toys are both good options. 
  5. Speaking of kids, be sure to choose carefully if you want a family-friendly environment. Some tours are perfect for creating wholesome memories but others offer alcohol on board and may attract the 20-something party crowd. Each charter will have its own vibe, so it doesn’t hurt to check in with your captain and ask if it’s a suitable environment for your little ones. 

Ensenada Mexico Fishing Charters FAQ

Do I need a fishing license?

Yes, and in most cases this is something you will need to purchase yourself prior to boarding your charter. Most fishing shops by the bay will have these for sale and you can grab one for around $6-$12. In some cases, your captain may offer to buy them for you but this cost will be additional and not included in your tour price.

Is Ensenada Mexico fishing good? What kinds of fish can I catch on Ensenada fishing charters?

Ensenada fishing is fabulous! Depending on the fishing methods used and the areas explored (inshore vs. offshore), as well as the season, there will be tons of variety in what you can catch off Ensenada’s coast. That said, popular catches include Rockfish, Mahi Mahi, giant Tuna species, and Yellowtail Amberjack. In fact, Ensenada is one of the most popular places to catch yellowtails in the world!

What is the minimum age for fishing in Ensensada?

Most charters departing from Ensenada are “child-friendly” and do not have a minimum age requirement. Some will be better prepared to have children on board than others, but it would be rare to find a tour where they are not allowed to join in.

How much do fishing charters cost?

Since tour lengths, amenities, and group size varies so much from charter to charter, you’ll find a wide range of prices. Typically tours start at around $300 USD and increase up to around $1000. If this is out of your budget, don’t worry. A few of the bigger charter companies offer “open parties”, where you can join a larger group for as little as $90 per person.

When is the best time to go fishing in Ensenada?

It depends on what you want to catch, but for big species like Tuna and Marlin, it’s best to target the summer months, from the beginning of July through to September.

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About the author

Brenna Harris is a freelance travel writer whose biggest passions in life are travel, reading, beachcombing, and exploring the great outdoors. When she’s not abroad, she spends her time in Canada with her husband and puppy, sharing her greatest travel tips with you.

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