You just went out for the sportfishing trip of a lifetime and are heading back to the marina with an ice chest full of Dorado and Wahoo, but you are unsure of what you are going to do with them. What can you do with our fish? Here is a breakdown of several different things you can do with your catch, from eating the meat to hanging it on your wall.

Catch and Release: If you are fishing for marlin, it is recommended that you use a catch and release method of fishing to help the local conservation efforts. Cabo San Lucas is one of the world’s top fishing spots and we like to keep it that way by letting the big fish go. If it is your first time fishing or you catch the marlin of a lifetime, it is acceptable and legal to bring back in one billfish. If you only want it for a wall trophy, the technology we have today is capable of creating exact replica wall mounts that will last much longer and let your fish live.

Clean and Fillet Your Fish: The fish that you end up bringing back to shore will need to be cleaned, filleted, and thrown on ice immediately. If your charter did not already include the cost of cleaning in the total price, you will have to pay it yourself. Dorado, Wahoo, Yellowfin and other smaller gamefish will cost around $2 per fish and if you bring back a large billfish it will cost anywhere from $12-$30 depending on the size.

Take to a Restaurant: One of the most popular things to do with your fish is to take some of it to either your resort’s on-site restaurant or a local restaurant that will cook it up for you just how you like it. You will be charged a small fee, but being able to eat your fresh catch of the day while enjoying a Cabo San Lucas sunset is one of the most rewarding experiences, and best tasting too! Your charter will have some good recommendations for restaurants that will cook it for you, some of which are located right their on the marina like Captain Tony's and Solomon's Landing.

Smoking and Freezing: If your charter doesn’t include the freezing of your catch in the price, they will offer the service to you once you get back to the marina. Prices range from $2-$30 per fish for your charter to fillet and freeze your fish but if you want them to vacuum pack it there will be an additional $1.50 per pound fee. Smoking adds great flavor to your fish and is around $5 per pound which should include vacuum packing for you to take home.

Taking Fish Home: Unless you drove your own vehicle down, you are probably going to have to cart the fish back on the airplane. Luckily, the San Jose Del Cabo airport is very familiar with people bringing back fish so it shouldn’t be a problem. Don’t worry about bringing an ice chest down with you to Cabo, you can easily purchase one at the local grocery store or Wal-Mart. Buy the cooler, throw in your frozen fish packed tightly, then wrap the chest up really good with duct tape to make sure you don’t lose your fish when they are being thrown around under the plane. As long as your fish are thoroughly frozen, it is not necessary to add ice (unless you are traveling a very long distance). Most airlines have a 44 pound restriction on what you can bring back but you can bring more as long as you are willing to pay the $1 per pound excess baggage fee. Do not forget that this ice chest will count as one of your checked bags, so do not bring two checked bags down to Cabo with you because then you will have to figure out what to do with the rest of your luggage. To play it safe, always check with your specific airline policies ahead of time so there are no surprises once you get to the airport.

Taxidermy: All captains should be using the catch and release method for marlin fishing but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a taxidermy made of your prize fish. Before you release your fish, get an accurate measurement of the size and take a few good photos. When you get back stateside, look up a reputable taxidermist and send in the photos and measurements for them to create an exact replica made of fiberglass. The fiberglass replica will look great and last much longer than a real billfish skin, and promotes the preservation of the beautiful creatures.

For more information, read our complete Cabo San Lucas fishing guide

Reviews

Dear Bob, Many thanx for all your help/advice when speaking last evening as well as making the booking process extremely easy. Rest assured, I'll certainly be recommending you and your firm!! Let me know if you ever find yourself in NH!! Best regards, Michael

Thanks so much for the wonderful vacation. No complaints at all, everything was absolutely fabulous. The room was great and staff was so friendly. Overall everything was amazing and we could not have asked for a better trip!

Melissa Rosen

I just wanted to take a minute to let you know how much we enjoyed our recent Cabo vacation. The Villa del Arco was just a fantastic place to get away and enjoy the awesome weather that is Cabo San Lucas. More importantly, I would like to thank you for the professional way in which you handled all of the details of this trip to make it as hassle-free as possible. Having been in the vacation reservation industry for several years, I can appreciate how many details need to be addressed to make a trip and stay a great experience. All of the information and coordination you provided was excellent. I especially appreciated the recommendations of several outstanding restaurants that turned out to be the best finds of the trip. This also applies to the trip my son made to Cabo a few weeks before. He had never been to Cabo and absolutely loved everything about it. For a relatively inexperienced traveler, you made his trip one that he will remember for a lifetime. Again, thank you for doing an outstanding job and providing a service that is second to none. I will certainly be a repeat customer. Sincerely, Wayne Hoover Lexington, KY

Wayne Hoover, Lexington, KY

Everything went very well. We did end up upgrading which made a big difference. Thanks for all your help and I would lean on you the next time we go as well !! Thanks again, Mike

Mike Biskupski, Minnesota

We had a wonderful time, Villa Del Arco is an awesome place great for children, my 1 year old granddaughter loved the water fountain pool. The 1 & 2 bedroom suites were very nice and spacious, both had great balconies with an ocean view. I would highly recommend travelers try some of the restaurants you suggested, we did and were very pleased. Everything was perfect from the ground transportation to and from the airport along with Villa Del Arco, we could not have gotten a better deal. Thanks for all of your help Bob.

Lou M., Huntsville

Thanks for a great time. No complaints at all. Had an awesome time and look forward to renting from you again next year.

Joe B., Newtown, PA

We had the most amazing time in Cabo, and the resort was much more than we imagined. It looks very nice on the internet, but to see it in person is so much more -- it was truly beautiful. The staff was so friendly and more than willing to assist us with any questions. We would also like to thank the two of you for all your patience and assistance throughout the planning of our vacation. You were so helpful and really put our minds at ease. We will definitely rent from you again on our next trip to Mexico.

Ed McKenna and Kris Dever, Seattle Washington

Bob, What a terrific place...Luis moved us to Villa Estancia (I'm sure due to your relationship here!!) and it's a gorgeous 2 BR (w/ wonderful views and just perfect)!! All you have suggested has been "spot-on"--and our trip has just begun...now on our way downtown, might get sidetracked by some seaside bars/eateries... Again, many thanx...this is looking like a wonderful choice--and I'm glad to have your help!! Best, Michael

Bob, We had a wonderful vacation in Cabo. The condo was very nice, we all loved it! Everyone at the resort was very helpful and lovely! We certainly will come back and go through Destination Cabo! We travel quit a bit and my only 3 topics of improvement which I'm not sure you can do much about: wi-fi. Typically at high end resorts, paying for wi-fi no longer exists, felt nickel and dimmed having to pay $10/day/per device. The pool attendants are very kind and helpful, would be nice to not let people come down at sunrise and lay towels on chairs only to sit empty most of the day. If the pool attendants helped guests find chairs as they arrived, I think everyone would have a chair when and where they wanted. Perhaps even adding more cabanas: we would have rented a cabana, they only had 2 seats per cabana and would only let us reserve 2 of them, with 6 of us, did not work. I would also suggest the facility buy new towels for the condo, we had plenty. however, they are looking rather worn. What we loved: The catered dinner on Christmas Day was amazing! Your tips on everything including Costco and Walgreens saved big $$ Not buying the inclusive package was fantastic advice Restaurants: our 20 something kids enjoyed Tabascos for lunch, Panchos for dinner was very good as was LaDolce. Your transportation recommendation was terrific, service awesome We all had a great time, everything you presented on your website was accurate. Thank you for your help in making our Christmas memorable and Happy New Year! Wendy

Wendy, Seattle

As I sit in Los Angeles, shivering from the cold air, I'm dreaming of the warm breezes that blew into our Villa del Arco room, the amazing salsa, fresh grilled fish and lovely people of Mexico. We were completely overwhelmed when we walked into the end unit and saw the most amazing view of the ocean from our patio doors. Icing on the already sweet cake was having that wonderful personal hot tub on the patio. It was beyond our expectations! We encountered a couple of minor issues but the positive aspects of Villa del Arco far outweighed those issues. We enjoyed being just far enough away from The Office and Mango Deck to not hear all the noise yet it was close enough to walk to when we wanted some action. I was a little apprehensive to pay up front for the condo instead of paying upon checkout but everything turned out wonderful! Thank you again for hooking us up in a ROCKIN' condo and putting an exclamation point on our wonderful girls vaca. LOVE CABO and will definitely use Destination Cabo again. Debbie H

Debra Hoffman, El Sugundo California