Cuba, Garden of the Queen 2024
Havana – Gardens of the Queen, Cuba: November 14th-24th, 2024
Jardines de la Reina means Gardens of the Queen in Spanish and was named for the Queen of Spain when Columbus first arrived here in the 1400s. This archipelago lies nearly fifty miles off the south-central coast of Cuba and is considered one of the most pristine marine habitats on planet Earth. Nearly one hundred and forty miles long and made up of hundreds of mangrove islands, birds flourish here, as do iguanas, hutias, and saltwater crocodiles. With healthy coral and an intact reef system, the underwater life here is amazing, with an abundance of apex predators such as sharks and goliath groupers.
The amazing protections set in place for Jardines de la Reina allow for a proliferation of the flats fish that fly anglers love to target. With a diversity of habitats, Bonefish here are prolific, and Permit is always a real possibility. This is the perfect habitat for Tarpon to grow up, and residents are here throughout the year, with larger and more Tarpon arriving during the migration of early Spring and Summer.
About the trip...
To maximize time in Havana, it is recommended that guests arrive early in the day on Thursday the 14th, American Airlines has a good number of flights throughout the day, originating in Miami. Your group will be free to roam the city after checking into your lodging. Old Havana is very interesting and full of history. Walking tours, car tours, cigar factory visits, and entertainment will be arranged for those guests flying into Havana. Hotel costs and other expenses while in Havana are not included in the price of the trip. That said, this is not a large expense.
On Saturday morning, your group will meet a bus that will transport you across rural Cuba to the small port of Jucaro. This journey does take about 6 hours, but for those prepared, it is time well spent seeing life in Cuba through the windows of the bus. Once at the port, your group will board the AVALON Fleet 1 yacht and immediately steam towards the archipelago. During this time, guests will have time for drinks and meals, unpack in their cabins, nap, and rig fishing gear.
The Avalon Fleet 1 will ultimately moor for the week in a Zone that will be fished exclusively by your group. The Gardens of the Queen archipelago is over 100 miles in length and comprises hundreds of mangrove islands. The habitat is pristine, very protected, and hosts all flats fish that we, as fly anglers, love to pursue. Bonefish are plentiful and can be stalked both from the skiff and on foot. There are many resident Tarpon here, most of which are between 10-30 pounds. This is also an excellent Permit fishery, with a multitude of habitats for them ranging from interior soft flats to outside beaches to coral islands. There are also many Snappers, Jacks, Grouper, and Barracuda.
After your time fishing is done on Friday the 23rd, the Avalon Fleet 1 will transfer back to the port of Jucaro. This gives the guides and much of the staff a little time to see their families before starting work again the next afternoon. Guests will be well taken care of by a small crew while they spend this night in port. Your bus leaves early the next morning, going directly to the Airport in Camaguey (a two-hour ride) for flights home.
GARDENS OF THE QUEEN, CUBA – HOSTED BY ROYAL TREATMENT FLY SHOP
Joel and Jennifer La Follette
November 14th –24th, 2024
Price: $ 5995 per person*
Includes: Transport from Havana to the port of Jucaro, transfer to Camaguey Airport at trips end, 5.5 days fishing, 7 nights lodging on Avalon Fleet 1 yacht, all meals, open bar, conservation fee, fishing license
*Not Included: Flights to and from Cuba, Tourist Visa, *lodging and expenses while in Havana, fishing tackle, and staff gratuities.
Please call me at the shop if you are interested in joining us on this adventure. We will add time in Havana if there is enough interest. We found Havana to be safe and very interesting, if not a bit sobering. One needs to see it for themselves to really understand the city and its people. I hope you'll join us.
Joel and Jennifer La Follette