Palometa Club – Mexico
Double Occupancy Guest Rooms
Permit, Bonefish, Tarpon, Snook, Triggerfish, Barracuda, Jack Crevalle, Various Reef Fish
Year-round, closed the month of July
Adventure-Seekers, Couples, Fly Fisher(wo)men, Grand Slam Seeking Anglers, Salt Water Anglers
Recommended to bring your own gear, although loaner equipment may be provided (with advanced notice)
Fish the famed flats of Ascension Bay, a top saltwater fishing destination, while staying in one of the world’s premiere permit fishing lodges: The Palometa Club
This little corner of the Caribbean has won the hearts of many worldly anglers looking to pursue the saltwater grand slam, as well as new anglers looking to try their hand at saltwater fly fishing. Offering the most elevated lodge experience with the most sophisticated fishing program on the Yucatan, with species such as Bonefish, Tarpon, Snook, Triggerfish, Barracuda, Jack Crevalle, and the highlight of the program, Permit, this trip is the perfect balance of comfort and consistent fishing! To top it off, this is a rare opportunity to have more time on the water with your own dedicated, experienced guide. The lodge has a maximum capacity of 12 guests and there is a 1:1 guiding ratio, oftentimes with 2 anglers and 2 guides per boat (with the opportunity for a single boat and guide per angler).
Step foot on the most charming and peaceful village in the Caribbean, where you’ll experience gorgeous beaches, friendly locals, lively bars and restaurants, just past where the road ends in Tulum, in the quiet, lobster and fishing village south of the Mayan Riviera on a narrow peninsula at the Northeastern point of Ascension Bay, Punta Allen; Located within the vast ecological splendor of the Sian Ka’an (“where the sky is born”) Reserve, a 1.3 million acre World Heritage Site home to rich marine life, grass savannas, mangrove lagoons, white sand flats, exotic birds, tropical wildlife (like ocelots, jaguars, manatees, and crocodiles), Mayan ruins, and the Palancer Reef (the 2nd largest barrier reef in the world).
Not only is this boutique, old school lodge located in the best fishery to catch Permit and other grand slam species, but it’s also the perfect place to bring your non-angling friends/family to enjoy snorkeling, guided eco-tours, and archeological day trips.
Founded in December of 2005, the Palometa Club has quickly become one of the most respected fly fishing lodges in the Caribbean for serious flats anglers and is the definition of an old-school lodge operation with tremendous hospitality, comfortable accommodations, incredible food, and an all-star staff; The lodge is clean, fresh, new, very well maintained, and the cuisine is absolutely over the top! With a focus on what makes an excellent fishing trip, this exclusive fly fishing lodge has crafted a unique fishing program that was founded on the most experienced and professional team of English-speaking guides in the region. The dedicated and hard-working lodge staff that are local to the area, as well as the guides and managers, have an extensive resume of fishing, guiding, and managing fishing programs around the world; Learn from guides that have honed their skills in the regions of Africa, Argentina, Russia, Seychelles, Alaska, among many other exotic fisheries and locations.
If you’re someone who’s serious about fishing and enjoys a laid-back “mom and pop” atmosphere, then you’ll fall in love and find yourself yearning to migrate back here year after year. If you’re not a die-hard angler, but want to accompany one on a vacation to Ascension Bay, this trip is also for you! The pavement ends in Tulum, and with it, so does the hustle and bustle of the tourist crowds and resort developments. This safe, little corner of the Yucatan is remote enough to remain pristine and easy enough to travel to directly from Cancun, where many US cities offer nonstop flights.
Although the Palometa Club accommodates non-angling guests while their companions are on the water, it is a fishing paradise first and foremost. But, if you’d like to explore other activities, you can look forward to a short boat ride to over 70 miles of the Palancar Reef, the second-largest barrier reef in the world. Experience some of the finest snorkeling in the Northern Hemisphere, where this brilliant marine paradise is teeming with infinite varieties of fish, rays, turtles, eels, starfish, corals, shells, sea fans, and more! You can even explore sunken ships! Although not as popular as the famed Tulum or Chichen Itza, Muyil is one of the most recently discovered and nearby ancient Mayan ruins. Used as a stopping point to pay taxes for spices and other goods traded and sold throughout Ascension Bay, this is one of the highlights within the lodge’s jungle tour; After you explore the ruins, you can learn about local flora and fauna (in English and Mayan language), along with a breathtaking scenic view of Tulum and most of Ascension Bay.
The lodge and fishery are open year-round, with a short closing season between the end of June and the end of July, where the guides historically stop guiding to shift gears, amping up for the spiny lobster season.
One of the goals of the new owners is to incorporate more meaningful involvement from the locals, regarding operations and management, along with remaining true and sincere to the legacy originally built. Combining the strongest fishing program on the Yucatan with an elevated guest experience off the water has contributed to the “cult-like following” in the laid-back boutique; The rebooking rate is strong, with a large amount of loyal and repeat clients so you’ll want to lock in your week quickly!
Originally built in 2005 and recently updated in 2022 and under new ownership, the 2 story lodge, constructed of Mexican brick and mortar against the picturesque oceanside beach, features 6 double bedrooms (max. capacity of 12 guests) with private en-suite baths, a fly-tying study, a library and living room, a large dining hall, and multiple outdoor patios, along with local traditional finishings of hardwood floors and indigenous tiles.
Guests familiar with the lodge beforehand have been blown away by the recent renovations; All bathrooms, decor, the fly shop, high-speed internet, water pressure, and outdoor dining areas have received tremendous upgrades. Other new changes involve a new generator, water and electric systems, purified ice maker, and much more behind the scene infrastructure improvements.
From the moment you step onto the beach in front of the lodge, you’ll feel immediate peace and beauty as you escape civilization and relax in this tropical wilderness paradise! Enjoy the common amenities we’re all used to but easily take for granted with electricity, air conditioning, and wireless internet (no phone service). Featuring daily maid service, laundry services, comfortable pillows and linens, ceiling fans, operable windows, effective mosquito control, and large spaces and storage for all your clothing and gear, all within the tastefully decorated and equipped lodge.
The style and culture at the lodge is very refined and professional, but also VERY laid back and charming. Aside from the lax and comfortable lodging offered, you can end your long day on the water with a massage on the balcony with one of the in-house massage therapists.
The heart of the first pure “permit lodge” in the world, spends their time in the kitchen! Local chefs Rosi, Gloria, Maribelle, and Flor are prized members of the team and do everything they can to make sure you feel as comfortable as humanly possible and well-fed!
When it comes to cuisine, you’ll begin your morning at sunrise with mugs of rich Mexican coffee paired with a range of traditional breakfast items such as eggs, bacon, ham, cereal, juices, toast, and pastries. For lunch, hardy boxed lunches are readily available on the fishing boats to enjoy on the water or under the palm trees and usually include sandwiches, tacos, fruits, desserts, ice water, cold beer, and other beverages. Every morning, your boat’s cooler is well stocked with complimentary non-alcoholic beverages and boat beers (you can request more or less of specific beverages to tailor your boat and afternoon to your liking). After a long day spent fishing, you can spend your time before dinner at Kaye’s Bar, where fish stories are told over complimentary margaritas, beer, rum, and other cocktails. At dinner, meals are enjoyed “family style”, featuring local and delicious Caribbean, Mayan, and Mexican cuisine, along with fresh lobster and locally inspired desserts.
This top-tier fishing program is widely respected and sought after, resulting in over 60% rebooking rates! A major factor of that is the scientific approach the guides have taken in developing their permit fishing techniques, tackle selection, and locations to fish. Aside from the logistical fishing approach, you can also expect to catch some of their infectious enthusiasm and desire to get the most out of every second in the fishing day! It’s paid off immensely, as the lodge has caught over 2,000 permit to date in the last 10 years alone! The guides are constantly comparing notes, tweaking fly patterns, and exploring new areas to fish. The culture the Palometa Club has created is one of excited guides and staff, with a genuine love for all they do, and that feel-good attitude directly correlates to good vibes on the boat, and more opportunities to land permit and other species!
You’ll be fishing out of comfortable 23’ traditional Mexican pangas, modest open skiffs, equipped with custom Seadek flooring and 50 horsepower Yamaha outboard motors, constructed with a forward casting deck, tandem passenger seats, rod storage for 6 rods, and a poling platform. Each boat is run by 2 English-speaking, experienced guides (with 2 anglers, resulting in a 1:1 angler-to-guide ratio), resulting in a productive and effective style of flats fishing. Having two experienced guides on one boat has many benefits: one guide can wade with the angler while the other guide can remain on the poling platform, manage the boat, keep their eyes on the school, and choreograph your approach for the best presentation possible!
The lodge rotates guides and guests daily, so you’ll be able to fish with up to 12 guides during your stay, learning something new and unique from each guide! The guides are on the water over 300 days a year, guiding fly anglers and fishing commercial lobster seasons. All guides at the Palometa Club are stable, local, and the best independent contractors, running their own boats, tying their own flies, experienced casters, calm instructors, and have decades of experience hosting anglers in Ascension Bay and other areas.
While permit fishing is the main focus at this lodge (the lodge is named after the famed fish, after all), the guides are more than happy to switch gears and help you target a multitude of other species such as Tarpon, Snook, Bonefish, Jack Crevalle, Sharks, Barracuda, Triggerfish, and many reef species; In other words, you can focus on Permit fishing, or you can develop a plan to land a multitude of species, or even go with the flow and fish new species spontaneously throughout the week. The choice is yours, no matter the conditions in the world’s most consistent and reliable permit fishery!
Although this fishery is open year-round, there are seasons and times throughout the year that are more favorable than others:
March through May are the most popular months within the angling community, but winter and summer months have been producing better fishing conditions and higher catch rates the past few seasons!
The lodge is open most of the year, generally opening at the end of January, closing briefly from the end of June to the end of July, and closing for the holidays at the beginning of December.
Winter fishing (December-February) can have the possibility of colder fronts coming in, but the weather is typically very favorable, there are very few boats out with low fishing pressure overall, and all species are present.
Spring (March-May) is the most popular time because of sunny days and consistent fishing.
Although the summer season (June-August) is brief before the lodge closes for lobster season, it produces excellent fishing, light breezes, little competition from nearby lodges with less fishing pressure overall, and a large migration of Tarpon.
Fall (September-November) is very similar to springtime, but there can be possibilities of hurricanes in this time of year. September is the BEST month, by far, for permit fishing, with long days and stable weather.
About The Fish
If you’re a saltwater angler, you’re well aware of this sought-after, elusive fish. Permit are rare, unpredictable, and have a nasty habit of snubbing your fly no matter how good the presentation is. But, Permit are actually far more catchable than you may realize and the Palometa Club is the perfect place to catch them because of its optimal ecosystem; You can catch fish from 20-40 lbs! The Palometa Club guides are experts at permit fishing and prefer to do it over all other forms of fishing.
Although Yucatan bones are typically smaller in nature than bones in the Bahamas or other Atlantic and Caribbean fisheries, there are huge numbers in Ascension Bay year-round. The large migratory population of Bonefish makes this an ideal location for anglers looking to catch a lot of Bonefish, or maybe take a break from Permit! Ascension Bay’s flats are great for wade fishing and you can find schools of fish in skinny waters or get in a boat and fish the hoards of bones in the deeper flats (also keying into nearby Permit and Tarpon). Since the commercial netting ban was enforced over 30 years ago, larger Bonefish are appearing once again in the bay, with Bonefish ranging from 4-6 lbs.
The Ascension Bay is first and foremost a Permit fishery, and the Palometa Club specializes in this species, but there are plenty of “baby” Tarpon in the backcountry lagoons. The majority of these fish are native to the area and live here throughout the year, so you’ll have consistent opportunities for completing the Grand Slam. Many other Tarpon are migratory and can range between 80-150 lbs., with schools showing up in the beginning of May and numbers increasing significantly throughout summertime months.
You’ll oftentimes catch Snook when poling around the mangroves and the flats, and will often eat anything you throw at them. Snook fishing is an absolute blast and you can catch multiple 20+ lb. trophies throughout the season.
There are many other underrated, underfished species in Ascesnsion Bay that can test the skill of the most sophisticated and experienced anglers. Fishing for Triggerfish, Jack Crevalle, and Barracuda is at the top of the list of varied species in the Bay and can be caught on the fly or with conventional spinning gear. There are also several species of sharks, snappers, groupers, cobias, triple tails, and many offshore opportunities.
Palometa Club Permit Tournament
Annually for over 10 years, the Palometa Club has hosted the Permit Tournament and Fundraiser. This is a laid-back, super fun competition that supports a good cause, the Rising Tide Fund, a fund dedicated to improving Punta Allen for residents and conservation initiatives for the entirety of the Sian Ka’an Biosphere. There is a $500 entry fee per angler, on top of the normal room and fishing rate. There are a total of 7 two-man teams, with winners earning a free trip back to defend their title the following year! All tournament attendees will get 2 fish days before the competition and 4 competitive fishing days, with individual awards in place for all 6 days, bonus points for Bonefish and Tarpon, and Guide Team and Angler Team prizes; Contact us for more info. and dates for the tournament!
Contrary to popular belief of traveling to Mexico, the Yucatan is a very safe tourist destination. Over 2.5 million Americans travel to Cancun every year without any known incidents of violent crime reported and this area, in particular, has the least amount of crime in all the 31 Mexican states. You will always travel in daylight to/from the lodge/airport. Punta Allen is a small and sleepy fishing village of over 600 residents, who often sleep with their doors unlocked and feel safe enough to let their kids run barefoot throughout the sandy streets. The remote coastal villages within the Yucatan are at least 1,000 miles away from the drug cartels and border violence that Mexico is stigmatized for.
There are many nonstop flights to Cancun within the United States (Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, and Miami to name a few). You’ll travel to Cancun (1) with an arrival time no later than 2 pm. From there, you’ll be picked up by a lodge representative in air-conditioned vans, where you’ll travel within Tulum to the Boca Paila Bridge (2) (weather permitting, or else you’ll be shuttled directly to the lodge via a long, undeveloped bumpy road). From the bridge, you’ll take a boat to the lodge (3).
There is no guided fishing on the first day, but you can feel free to go explore the flats on your own, or enjoy the lodge and relaxing. You’ll fish for 6 full days (or participate in non-angling activities while your family or friends are fishing), before departing by boat back to the Boca Paila Bridge after breakfast the last day. The shuttle driver will then pick you up and take you back to the Cancun international terminal for your flight back home. We advise your flight home to depart from Cancun no earlier than 1 pm.
Please be aware that the last 35 miles of road from Tulum to Punta Allen is usually damaged from recent weather and is under maintenance. The road is plain and simple, uncomfortable, but it’s because of the damaged and rough roads that allow Ascension Bay to remain a beautiful and pristine fishery, untouched by the large tourist crowds that are all too common in Tulum. When weather permits, you’ll be able to enjoy a boat ride from Boca Paila Lagoon to the lodge, which can save you 1.5-2 hours of drive time and substitutes the rough, long, bumpy road.
You do not need to exchange currency for pesos, as the American dollar is widely accepted and preferred. There are no ATMs though, so please bring enough cash to cover any extra expenses (purchases from the fly shop, any extra drinks, souvenirs, and tips for guides/lodge staff). Credit cards are accepted at the lodge, but no checks.
(1) Cancun International Airport (CUN)
(2) Boco Paila Bridge
(3) The Palometa Club
You will receive a detailed gear list upon booking, but generally, we suggest you consider bringing:
- Water filtration system – we recommend you do not drink tap water or brush your teeth with it. There is purified drinking water in your room that’s replenished daily, but for added comfort and convenience throughout your entire trip, consider bringing a water filtration device.
- Your own flies and tackle (but you can purchase these at the Palometa Club)
- 7-8wt rods with floating warm water fly line for Bonefish
- 9-10wt rods with floating line for Permit, Tarpon, and Snook
- High-quality wading boots and a good hip/chest pack
- Close-toed sandals
- Quality wading boots (if you’re fishing for Bonefish)
- Light and layered clothing
- Polarized sunglasses
- A passport that will not expire 6 months prior to your trip
- A notarized affidavit from a parent or legal guardian, if you’re bringing a minor
- 6 Full Days of 1:1 Guided Fishing
- 7 Nights Double Occupancy in the Lodge
- All meals
- Ground and water transportation to/from the airport/lodge
- Happy hour beverages (Margaritas, Beer, Standard Spirits and Wine)
- Non-alcoholic beverages
- Loaner rod/reel outfits
- Wireless Internet
- Mexican VAT tax
DOES NOT INCLUDE
- Flights to Cancun
- Guide and staff gratuities
- Fishing Tackle & Flies
- Organized eco-tours
- Laundry Service
2023 Season: $3,000-$4,500 / person per (3-6 day trip)
2024 Season: $3,250-$4,750 / per person per 3-6 day trip
Massages: $100 per hour (cash only)
Private rooms and private boats available for full trip length for additional cost.
If you’re interested in talking to a consultant or booking this adventure, please complete this form.