Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula is a shallow water paradise. Many flats fishermen make a yearly pilgrimage to the Yucatan. From Isla Holbox in the north to Campeche in the west and from Xcalak in the south to the flats north of Cancun at Isla Blanca, this peninsula is filled with sportfishing opportunities. But, the most prolific area lies south of Cancun in the waters that surround Ascension Bay. Without a doubt, one of the best and most economical ways to fish Ascension Bay is by headquartering at the Punta Allen Fishing Club, which is strategically located at the north end of Ascension Bay in the village of Punta Allen.
The Punta Allen Fishing Club is located in the heart of the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve. To the east, lies the blue Caribbean and to the immediate north, the Palancar Barrier Reef stretches from southern Belize to north of Cancun. To the west lies a vast laguna system made up of shallow flats cut by pale azure channels and dotted with small mangrove cayes. Both the interior lagunas and the more oceanic Ascension Bay boast some of the Caribbean's most productive fishing areas.
Punta Allen Fishing Club was built in 2009 and is constructed of traditional Mexican brick and mortar with indigenous hardwoods and tile. The club is owned and managed by Tiziano Rizotto and Pascale LeBlanc, two passionate fishermen, who know well the needs and expectations of international anglers.The club has five very comfortable rooms each with a private open shower, Italian bathroom. Rooms come with two twin beds, fans, geothermal cooling system (an air-conditioning system that works with cold water without a compressor), operable window and plenty of space for clothing and gear. Each room receives two bottles of water each day. Upstairs, the palapa contains the kitchen, a hardwood bar, and a dining table, plus several tables and seating areas for relaxing, playing cards, or tying flies. This is the perfect place to share the day's fishing with your friends first with local cocktails (margaritas, beer, local rum cocktails) then over excellent home cooking.
Dinner is served family style featuring delicious local Caribbean, Mexican with a French and Italian touch including fresh fish, fajitas de pollo with mole, chilis rellenos, aranchera, paella, shrimps pasta, followed by scrumptious locally inspired desserts. Purified water is used for drinking and ice.
The guides are all from the village of Punta Allen and include Juan Briceno “Juanito” (the head guide), Daurin, Henry, Agustin, Gerardo and Eliesel. The guides are very experienced, well-respected and know not only Ascension Bay waters extremely well, but also the secluded lagoons and secret flats. The guides all speak English . Even when sharing a boat each angler has a private guide. With two anglers per boat and two guides, one guide/angler team wades the flats while the other team fishes from the boat, and then the teams switch off.
The guides utilize 23-25 ft. fishing pangas. The pangas are specially outfitted for flats fishing and are very stable in shallow water and chop. These boats have a wide casting area on the flat bow, and a poling platform at the back for sighting fish. Each boat is outfitted with a 40 to 60 hp engine, comfortable seats, rod holders, and coolers.
At Punta Allen Fishing Club, the level of personal service and interaction you get with the owners is one of the reasons to choose this lodge. Both Tiziano and Pascale attend to every detail of your trip. They are always there to interact with guests. While the lodge is not luxurious, it is very comfortable and the owners work hard to meet your needs and provide exceptional service. You can certainly pay a lot more at some of the lodges and likely get more luxurious accommodations and food. But, for the hardcore angler, visitors at Punta Allen Fishing Club you will want for nothing, have great access to the fishery and receive a high level of personalized service.
There is no doubt that the waters in and around the Yucatan's Ascension Bay offer one of the most prolific areas in the world for the light-tackle saltwater fisherman both in terms of diversity and numbers. Angler can often cast to bonefish, tarpon, snook, permit, jacks, barracuda and many different reef species in a single week. If you've always wanted to explore this area or are an old veteran of Ascension Bay, the Punta Allen Fishing Club offers a great experience all at a very economical price.