Fishing in Kenya
Here you will find all you need to know about fishing along the Kenyan Coast. From the type of fishing offered, the species of fish, our seasons through to a directory of boats available to charter.
Photo courtesy of Bruce Buckland
caught on Unreel
So what makes fishing here so special...
Fishing off the coast of Kenya is well known as one of the few places in the whole world where one can try for a 'Fantasy Slam' (5 different billfish species in one trip) making it a great destination for fisherman after a trip of a lifetime.
There have also been several world records set along our coastline and two Granders (Marlin over 1000lbs) have been caught. As well as bunch of other monster fish that have been lost during the fight. As all fisherman knows that is part of the package when fishing for Marlin.
African Billfish Foundation
All boats generally work on a Tag & Release basis, which we encourage as a club. The African Billfish Foundation is the nonprofit organisation that is in charge of this. The organisation is dedicated to the conservation and research of the Billfish species in the Indian Ocean.
Tag & Release was originally introduced to Kenyan waters in the early 1980’s by a couple of forward thinking anglers. Thanks to these fishermen billfish Tag & Release appeared on the map in Kenya. This notion of Billfish Conservation quickly spread throughout the whole coast. It wasn’t until 1991 that tagging really took hold, and the African Billfish Foundation was established. There is now over 62,000 fish tagged to date and more being tagged on daily basis.
The most common fishing method along our coast. It is perfect for targeting Marlin, Sailfish, Wahoo, Tuna as well as other game fish. This is the typical way most of the boats along the coast fish and involves pulling lures or strip bait at various speeds depending on what you are targeting.
Or one can use live bait, a specialist technique when Marlin fishing, done at a minimum speed so that the bait stays alive. First one fishes on the bait grounds until a suitable size fish(s) is caught, then you will head out deep to try and attract Marlin.
Lures on Snark
Open Water Fly-fishing
A super exciting way to fish although please bear in mind that not all boats cater to fly-fishing so please enquire with the captains.
Primarily targeting Sailfish but Marlin and other game fish are also available to the fly fisherman.
For most boats anglers must bring their own rod and flies.
We have some great structure around the Kenyan Coast providing some ideal spots for jigging for Giant Trevally and Yellowfin Tuna and also spots for deep jigging.
Sailfish on fly caught by Kingfisher
Colourful fish jigged up by Kingfisher
Colourful fish jigged up by Whatever It Takes
What do I need to bring with me...
All the charter boats along the coast will supply rod and lures etc. but of course if you have some you want to bring then please do. There are coolers on board with water and soft drinks but you need to provide your own pack lunch. Obviously bring sunscreen, a hat and protective clothing from the sun as it can get very hot at certain times of the year.
What if I have never fished before...
All boats welcome complete beginners through to the seasoned pro. Don't worry the skippers and crew are aways very happy to help.
What happens if I get seasick...
Motion sickness pills are available at most chemists in Kenya, however if you are coming from afar you might prefer to buy before you arrive as you will have a large selection.
Where is the best place to stay...
There are many different types of accommodation to find along the coast. In our Fishing Destination section you can find more about accommodation in each area.
When is the best time to visit...
This purely depends on what you want to catch! With a very short off season (Mid April through till end June) there isn't a bad time to visit Kenya. You can find out more information in our Fishing Species & Seasons section.