Costa Rica Top Fly-Fishing Destinations

Costa Rica, known for its leisurely lifestyle, democratic government, and spectacular natural beauty, earning the name of the “Switzerland of Latin America.”

The country’s waters are clean and teeming with fish, the scenery is breathtaking, and the slow pace of life is enticing. This tiny nation, a tranquil oasis in the center of an often turbulent region, attracts 1.5 million tourists each year.

But what do these tourists do in Costa Rica? I won’t jump into all of them, but I will tell you…  Fly fishing. 

Yes, fly fishing!

Costa Rica is one of the fly fishing capitals of the world. Everyone may enjoy a fantastic fly fishing experience in this country. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or a seasoned angler; the thrill of fly fishing in Costa Rica is unrivaled!


Costa Rica has a world-class fly fishing spot with fantastic opportunities for anglers. Sounds like music to your ears, right?

But where exactly in Costa Rica can you fly fish? 

Let’s get into it!


Best Fly Fishing Destinations in Costa Rica

There are very many fly fishing destinations in Costa Rica. From Pacuare Outdooor Centre (POC) to Lake Arenal and Sierpe to Barra del Colorado and the Pacific Coast. 

Let’s take a look:

1.Pacuare Outdoor Center (POC) 

Pacuare Outdoor Center is located in Turrialba. The center has a garden, terrace, and a view of the Rio Pacuare river. 

At POC, you can participate in activities such as fly fishing coupled with many other activities. The POC is one of the only outfitters that offers 6, 7, or 8-day fly-fishing packages in Costa Rica.

The Rio Pacuare flows through a stunning granite canyon surrounded by cascading waterfalls and lush rainforest vegetation. It’s an exciting place to fly fish, with exhilarating rapids and breathtaking scenery.

Fly fishing Rio Pacuare provides plenty of excitement for daring anglers. You don’t have to worry. You don’t need any fly fishing experience for this!


Once at the lodge, you can choose from several exciting nature excursions. You may couple your fly fishing excursions with guided birdwatching tours and waterfall hikes through the tropical rainforest if you want.

The most commonly caught species in Rio Pacuare are the Pacific crevalle jack and the Machaca.

Pacuare Outdoor Centre is an ideal destination for thrill-seekers, and the ecstasies of this expedition are sure to dazzle even the most seasoned active travelers.


  1. Lake Arenal

Lake Arenal, located at the heart of Costa Rica, is one of the country’s most popular tourist sites that serves as a perfect spot for freshwater fly fishing.

Lake Arenal is shallow on the west end and up to 180 feet deep near the volcano on the east end. Many islands develop and go as the lake levels fluctuate throughout the year, making navigation difficult at low water levels.

However, when the water level is low, fly fishing is at its optimum. As a result, the dry season, which runs from November to June, is the best time to fly fish on Lake Arenal’s freshwaters.

Fly fishing at  Arenal Lake may offer both experienced and inexperienced anglers a great experience. The lake is known worldwide for its tenacious Guapote, also known as Rainbow Bass in the English-speaking sportfishing world.

Fly trawling Guapote on Arenal Lake in Costa Rica is similar to largemouth bass fly fishing in the United States. The fish love floating foam flies with crystal flash, as well as poppers.

Another hard-fighting freshwater fish to interest anglers considering a Costa Rica sportfishing holiday is the tiny Machaca. These fish have rows of razor-sharp teeth and look like a Piranha on steroids. 

Machaca is a unique breed to take on the fly. They get irritated by large flies, and they’re particularly interested in what newly got to their habitat. Most of them are caught on the surface; however, they also consume very subtle bait patterns under the water surface.

Machaca, unlike Guapote, is schooling fish. Anglers fly fishing Lake Arenal may catch numerous in a single spot.

If you find yourself in the La Fortuna region, you should probably try fly fishing in Lake Arenal!


  1. The Caribean

Inshore fly fishing is very popular on the coasts of the Caribbean Caribbean with species to be sought and caught! Tarpon, commonly known as the Silver King, is one of the fish species you will fly fish in the Caribbean. These fish can grow to be more than 200 pounds in Costa Rica. 

Because you’ll be fly fishing in the murky waters of river mouths most of the time, dark flies made on good hooks are ideal.

Casting accuracy is crucial when it comes to Tarpon fishing. While the manner of fishing differs from that of saltwater flats, casting to a moving fish and accurately and swiftly delivering your fly into the water disturbance will increase your chances of a strike accordingly.

The Jack Crevalle, the Atlantic relative of the huge Giant Trevally, is another species found in the Caribbean. These fish are found in large numbers in the Caribbean. Schools of these fish can be observed targeting bait balls on the surface, although they are not caught at will. 

However, in a feeding frenzy, any baitfish pattern will yield a take. The feeding frenzies frequently include both Jack Crevalle and Tarpon. 

When making a cast, do it with a rod strong enough to catch a giant Tarpon. You never know what will connect to your rod.

If you want to catch many of these trophy-size fish, the Caribbean is the place for you!

From the legendary Tarpon on the east coast to the tiny Machaca in most of its rivers, lakes, and the wild rainbows hidden in small rainforest streams, Costa Rica has it all.

I hope you too will love touring and, most of all, fly fishing.

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POC Camp

The POC camp is an extension of the POC lodge and while the POC Lodge is located with vast views of the Pacuare River Canyon the POC Camp is down on the river’s edge. While it might not have the view of the POC Lodge it sits on one of the calmest sections of the river making the POC Camp home to one of the river Pacuare’s best spots for taking a swim and relaxing on the river’s edge.

POCsito is a favorite among so many of our guests. It is a glamping experience with some of the important comforts of home.

POC Lodge

Started in 2011 is the POC lodge. If you haven’t figured it out by now POC lodge is our own lodge and what we like to call the “baby” of the P.O.C. Adventure Company. We wanted a lodge on our favorite part of Costa Rica which is the Pacuare River and with the help of locally harvested supplies and labor, the POC Lodge was born.


This is a 180-acre property that runs over 1 mile of the Pacuare River. Our goal has always been to offer as much comfort as possible without steering too far away from our roots of just roughing it on the river’s edge. Our lodge has hot water, a splash of luxury in the rooms, and 5-Star service and attention to our guests.

Our favorite part about the lodge is that we built a short hike up from the river’s edge. We know we have the best views of the Pacuare River canyon and unfortunately pictures don’t even do it justice.

Arenal Paraiso, Arenal

Have you ever wanted to stay the night at the base of an active volcano? Well here is your chance. The Arenal Paraiso is located at the base of the Arenal Volcano with breath-taking views of the perfectly cone-shaped volcano.

Here at Arenal Paraiso’s, you will enjoy the beautiful property which offers much more than just a view. The property has numerous bungalows that offer a splash of luxury while surrounded by lush tropical rainforest. After a day of adventure, you will love making your way back to relax or hang out in the pool at Arenal Paraiso.

Shawandha, Caribbean 

Located at the edge of the white sandy beaches of Costa Rica sits the Shawandha lodge.  A perfect blend of eco-style luxury along with the sounds of the ocean and vibrant ambiance of the rainforest.

Shawandha lodge is set up with individual bungalows made out of local wood. You will be sure to wake up to the sound of the local residents such as the howler monkeys and green macaws. After your day of adventure, you will have a chance to relax and enjoy the beautiful swimming pool at the Shawandha Lodge.

Hotel Villa Florencia, Turrialba

Located in the valley of Turrialba surrounded by sugar-cane plantations and views of the smoking Turrialba Volcano sits an old plantation home that has been renovated into a beautiful small hotel named Villa Florencia.

This is a great hotel with a beautiful pool and plenty of space to take long morning or afternoon hikes. The Villa Florencia hotel is a chance to enjoy luxury while feeling like you stook back in time. While you are in the valley don’t forget to look up as the Turrialba Volcano can often be seen doing small eruptions from across the valley.

Casa Turire, Turrialba

Casa Turire has been one of our favorites since we started. The grounds are some of the lushest you will find anywhere in Costa Rica. Casa Turire sits in the valley of Turrialba surrounded by mountains and the beautiful Turrialba Volcano. The most amazing part about Casa Turire other than its great restaurant and home-made sugar cane ice cream is that it sits on a peninsula surrounded by Lake Angostura offering great morning hikes, birding, or SUPing around the lake.