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Action packed spearfishing trips in the stunning Azores – Pico island

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Key facts:

  • Price: €800 – €1000 per day (for the entire boat – so divide price between number of divers, 4 divers max)
  • Price includes: Food and drink on the boat, airport transfer
  • Spearfishing awesomeness:  5-star-rating
  • Groups: Both private and mixed groups – if you’re on your own just let us know!
  • Season: June – September (sometimes October depending on water temp).
  • Group size: 1 – 4
  • Boats: Big game boats and ribs
  • Guide and instructor available: Yes, included.
  • Blue water targets: White marlin, blue marlin, big eye tuna, yellow fin tuna, long fin tuna, blue fin tuna, wahoo, dorado, bonitos, yellow mouth, barracuda, great amber jack.
  • Reef targets: Endemic species like guelly jacks, grouper, parrot fish, lobsters and many, many more.
  • Family friendly: 100% yes! See below.

Why go here?

On the spearfishing boat in the Azores

The Azores has always been a legendary spearfishing destination – however it really got thrown into the spotlight when in 2014 the Bigeye tuna world record got smashed by Paulo Afonso and it was a MONSTER at 110.1kg!! As soon as this happened, we knew we needed to arrange spearfishing trips here. We scoured the islands and vetted various skippers until we were happy that we had found the very best. Pedro and Luis have been hunting the biggest monsters around the islands with rod and gun for over a decade. Turns out the Azores has one massive tuna season, that includes the biggest bigeyes in the world, yellowfins and the goliath blue fins which we can spear when the law permits – incase you didn’t know, bluefins can grow up to 680kgs!

Back to the skippers and never before have we worked with such professional hunters. Tracking water temperatures and currents while watching bird activity to pinpoint the fish, you’ll be amazed at what goes into putting you on your fish and how they maximise the odds of finding the big ones! Although we vary the locations we target to give you the best chances on the day, these are some typical locations that been established as monster magnets:

  • Princess Alice Bank: 50 miles offshore, with 30 meter pinnacle. This spot is wild – we say that it’s time to leave the boys at home and only let the men play here 😉  This costs 1400 euros because its so remote.  We leave at 3am and return after midnight – it’s a long day but worth it.
  • Azores Bank: 30 miles offshore, with 180 meter pinnacle.
  • Condor Bank: 25 miles offshore, with 160 meter pinnacle.
  • Rosais Pinnacle: 18 miles from Pico, 3 miles from S. Jorge.
  • Baixa do Sul/Baixa do Norte: (2 pinnacles between Faial Island and Pico) 2 miles offshore.

On top of these locations we have a whole treasure map of secret spots boasting great amberjacks up to 50kg.

What makes the Azores so amazing for spearfishing?

Take a look at its location on the world map. Right in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean it’s one of the remotest collection of islands on the planet. With remoteness comes the opportunity for these fish to grow, and grow, and grow! Monster tuna of all varieties, billfish and world record wahoo all pass the Azores on their travels chasing full bellies.

Spearfishing underwater shot in the AzoresPlanning your trip:

The way to start planning your Azores spearfishing trip is to get your head around what types of spearfishing there is to partake in.

Reef diving:

We have reef dives that offer an endless supply of tasty fish.  You could literally dive for a few hours and have enough fish to last you a week.  As soon as you drop down you will be surrounded by parrotfish and grouper as well as many other species.  This is great spearfishing in itself and you never know what else you may see, from the barracudas, atlantic bonitos to amberjacks.

In our eyes it’s best to start your trip with a day or two diving the reefs.  Relax, shake of the plane journey and open up the lungs.  Nothing too deep if you don’t want yet rewarding all the same.

Blue water spearfishing:

Now you have the pinnacles and bait balls to target the monsters.  The pinnacles act as magnets to the migrating pelagic fish like the various tuna and Marlin as well the resident greater amberjacks plus many others.  We hit the close ones and remote ones to see whats working.  Beyond that we are watching for bait balls to jump in on.  For those who have yet to experience what that’s like, well, let’s just say it’s a little wild :)

Ultra remote pinnacle Princess Alice Bank:

If you undertake this expedition it will be one of those days that you will remember forever.  It takes 4 hours just to get there and we like to stay for as long as possible to make it worth everyone’s while.  The average trip starts at 3am and ends past midnight, a very long day.  However it’s worth every second as Alice bank is famous for attracting pretty much everything, in its biggest format.  It’s a wild place where you could see absolutely anything, a regular hang out for monster specimens!

At the time of writing we are the only people to offer big game spearfishing.  There are many places offering ‘blue water’ but no go to the places we go, its just inshore opportunities from a rib.  While you can get barracudas, they cannot target tuna etc.  The skippers are also well respected spearo’s in their own right.

The best way is to think how many days you want to do each type of spearfishing for and then add some extra rest days that we can use should some bad weather churn things up unexpectedly.

 

Prices:

  • Guided shore dives (no boat): €150
  • Inshore spearfishing, reefs and inshore pinnacles: €800
  • Blue water spearfishing, bait balls and offshore pinnacles: €1000
  • The remote Princess Alice pinnacle: €1400 (it’s the equivalent to 2 days)

The prices above are for a big game boat, not a rib, and include food and refreshments.  We also have all the big game rods so if you want a break we can do some fishing and trawling no problem.

 

Family friendly: 100% yes!

The Azores consists of nine volcanic islands famous for their outstanding natural beauty, each being as unique as the next. When not hunting underwater giants you will be spoilt for choice for what to do next. Voted the best location on earth to watch Cetaceas (that’s various types of whales, dolphins, and porpoises to me and you), you can seek out a whole host of whales and dolphins and even swim with them if you’re brave enough :) We have scuba diving, shore fishing, boat jigging, Lava tubes in The Azoreshiking on various marked trails, mountain climbing, cave tours, lava tubes, bicycle renting, quad biking – and Pico Island alone has over 50 natural small lagoons to take advantage of. Beyond that, it’s famous for its fine restaurants, local cuisine and wine. The problem, as you will find, is ‘going home’. Unlike other destinations which tend to be about 100% spearfishing, this is a perfect trip to share with the family. With so much on offer, you can be assured everyone will be having a trip of a life time, be it spearfishing or exploring the islands with all their activities.

Accommodation

Accommodation can vary depending on what exactly you are after. Everything is available from camping up to 5 star hotels, ensuring all needs can be catered for.

Other

To truly understand how naturally beautiful the Azores really are, please flick through the gallery below or simply Google images of the Azores :) The trip prices can vary slightly depending on holiday specifics, exchange rates and accommodation preferences so get in touch to start firming up the prices. Also please be aware that the accommodation on the Azores can start to book up very early so to ensure you get what you are after, it’s best to reserve them early. tuna-railgun Remember that all people who go on our spearfishing trips are entitled to MASSIVE discounts on all the spearfishing equipment we stock, so if you are short on equipment then don’t let this put you off as we are here to help :)

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Gallery