stand up paddling in Panama

Sport Fishing, Whale Watching and Stand Up Paddling at the Pearl Islands, Panama

At the end of September we had a visit from six ladies. Five of them had come from Florida and were yacht brokers and professionals from charter management, and the sixth, Anne Gordon de Barrigón who has been resident in Panama for over ten years and is well known for whale watching and other naturalist activities.

26 Sept: Arriving to a Feast of Fresh Tuna

We met the ladies at the Tocumen Airport and went straight to ‘Ms B Haven’ at Flamenco Marina on the Amador Causeway in Panama City. Capt Justin Suarez greeted the party with chilled champagne and we chatted the evening away in the warm tropical evening coming inside to each a feast of fresh tuna prepared by the yacht’s resident chef.

27 Sept: The Ladies Fishing at the Pearl Island

Early the next morning we sailed the short distance to the Pearl Islands archipelago. It was to be a brief yacht excursion with the first and last nights spent at the Flamenco Marina, and two nights spent anchored in a bay at Isla Pedro Gonzalez. Once the leisurely breakfast was finished we boarded the Cherin III sport fishing yacht, where sport fishing expert Agnes Nulle briefed the ladies on technique and common practices. It wasn’t long before the ladies were reeling in Dorado (Mahi Mahi), Yellowfin Tuna and Bonita. A great end to the fishing trip was seeing some whales as we were returning to the anchorage. After returning to the mother ship in an inflatable, the chef quickly made a feast of our catch which accompanied the evening’s tales.

28 Sept: Whale Watching with Anne Gordon and Stand Up Paddling

After breakfast we went to the outer Pearl Islands to catch a sight of some more whales. Anne told us many interesting facts about the behaviors, lives and habitat of these majestic mammals and then explained what we were seeing when they started surfacing in front of us. We did not witness any spectacular leaps, but enjoyed watching them cruise and surface for air in a very relaxed way.
After cruising we took a flats boat and went to a completely empty beach with golden sand to enjoy a swim and some stand up paddle boarding. Two of the ladies took to the new challenge like ducks to water and were soon accomplishing great distances.

29 Sept: “Pearl Island Panama”

Today was time to discover Isla Pedro Gonzalez. The whole island, which has almost 30 kilometers of coastline, 14 private beaches and one of the richest marine and bird sanctuaries on the planet, has a master-plan for developing mixed hotel and luxury residential homes and apartments. We were driven around the lush tropical island and then unwound whilst enjoying the ambiance of the beach club and drinking fresh coconut in the pool. Late afternoon we returned to Flamenco Marina to share another evening together before the journey home tomorrow.

30 Sept: The Panama Canal Visitor Center

Enough time to visit the Miraflores Locks and the Panama Canal Visitor Center before the drive to the airport. We sure packed a lot into this short trip.




Sailfish Bite at Pinas Bay, Panama

IMG_7683Whilst we know the Republic of Panama and its two oceans very well, the arrival of our yachts for sport fishing vacations and luxury yacht vacations in Panama, and the assembly of our team is quite recent. We now have the boats, the equipment, the captains and the personnel to offer a really top class nautical vacation, whether your focus be sport fishing, water sports, just relaxing and sight-seeing, or a combination of those.

In mid September we left the Flamenco Marina in Panama City and travelled to the Pearl Islands and enjoyed the sight of these beautiful islands. We then travelled to Piñas Bay in the Darien province of Panamá looking for a bite from the Billfish.

On the first day we had bites from 2 Blue Marlin and 2 Sailfish (trolling Ballyhoo), catching and releasing one Blue Marlin (300 lbs) and the Sailfish (150 lbs) that you can see in the video “Sailfish Bite at Pinas Bay, Panama”. A third Marlin was seen on the surface but did not go for our bait.

On the 23rd of Sept we had strikes from 6 Blue Marlin (250 lbs & 440 lbs), catching and releasing 2 of them (trolling lures), as well as catching and releasing a Black Marlin (300 lbs) (trolling lures) and catching two Groupers (20 lbs & 7 lbs) (deep drop). A great debut for the boats in Panama.

The Sailfish in the video is caught by Cheryl aboard the Cherin III. Both Cheryl and our fishing expert ‘leader lady’, Agnes,  were previously telling me how women are superior to men at landing larger fish.  This, they told me, was due to men using brute force throughout the whole fight thinking that they can dominate the fish with physical strength, whereas women are more responsive to the movements of the fish allowing them to run a little more and then reeling in more efficiently when the fish is travelling the right way or tired. I’ve had the line snap on me before, so perhaps they’re right.