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“Kids had a blast!”

Encanto Sport Fishing
Reviewed June 18, 2014

I met the captain's brother the day before on a river boat excursion, so that's how I found Encanto. I didn't see the other review beforehand, which is good as I likely would have cancelled. We all had a great time. My kids, ages 7 and 10, caught 5 fish each including mahi-mahi and tuna. I caught something at the end of the trip that we never saw, but the crew believed it was a tiger shark. I spent 20 minutes trying to reel it in, then one of the crew tried for 20 minutes, then another member of crew tried for 5 minutes and the line snapped. The crew was very friendly and my kids learned some Spanish. They served fresh fruit and chips during our half-day excursion (5.5 hours), and cooler was fully stocked with cold beverages, including beer. I didn't ask about life preservers, but I wasn't that concerned as they had noodles and lots of other boats were nearby. The girl who picked us up at our hotel was a wild driver who needs to get a bluetooth. The crew cleaned our fish on the back of boat (out of sight) and had it all in ziplock bags for us to take at the end of the trip.

Thank HighStandards02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed April 22, 2014

We were in Tamarindo over Spring Break this year and instead of following our hotel's recommendation for a boat and crew to go deep sea fishing, I foolishly elected to book the adventure independently. The picture of the boat looked great, the agent smiled and gave good eye contact. She wanted $150 in cash up front, the balance of $350 to be paid by credit card upon completion of the trip. Seemed reasonable for a private boat, 33' with twin Yammi's and a small cuddy equipped with head, beer, soda, fruit, fresh water for half a day. It was not.

At the appointed pick-up time from our hotel we were met punctually by a cab and driver and driven to Old Flamingo Marina, and when they say "old" it isn't a word applied casually. Our rattling cab/van with shabby torn seats pulled off the dirt road onto a small litter strewn clearing with a stone/concrete breakwater/quay jutting out into murky water. There we were approached by another agent who asked that we settle the total balance "Before" going out to fish. Well, OK, we were here, what were we going to do, go back to the hotel? Card run through the portable machine and receipt signed we were led down to the end of the quay where a dilapidated and ancient fiberglass skiff clunked lazily against the concrete wall. Standing by were two young men who idly gestured that we board the questionable vessel. We did. After about 10 minutes of sitting there another van sputtered up to the quay and a bag of ice was handed to the guys who were by then onboard. After a few pulls the little two stroke outboard showed signs of a tenuous life and five intrepid souls, the three of my family and the two crew putted away from the quay. No life preservers, not a word had been said.

Around the end of the quay, between moorings where other deep sea fishing boats proudly rode, their clean white fiberglass and chrome sparkling in the sun, there it was. Our yacht. Oh rapture, oh what bliss to behold. NOT.

It looked a bit rickety and unkempt from this distance in comparison to the other craft around us, and that impression only grew worse and worse the closer we got. The Captain was already there with another crew member, the ice and we three were then unceremoniously loaded onboard and we cast off and motored out of the harbor under, to my surprise and consternation, the power of only one of the two Yamaha 115 HP outboards hanging grimly on the transom.

They threw out a five lines, two on broken outriggers which were duck-taped together, both also having their top sections completely broken off. We trolled around listlessly in a slow arc with no apparent plan to find fish on any of the employees mind. No english was spoken on board. No fish were sighted, not a swirl, not a bite. The foul odor from the head continuously wafted out from the cuddy reminding us of its' brimming contents. It was hot. Hot. I could not see a GPS, a fish finder, or any navigational equipment on the fly bridge. There were no lifejackets onboard.

After an excruciating hour and a half I told the crew with sign language that we wanted to end the trip and be taken immediately back to the dock. We were done. Anymore time I knew would have been a torture I did not wish to inflict on my family. Those guys need to get their act together. It was awful.

Thank William A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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