Regular customer Chris Adams experienced a truly amazing trip to the Andaman Islands last year. Chris expected some superb GT fishing but what really surprised him was the sheer number and quality of game fish species he encountered.
Chris takes up the story...
I had always wanted to fish for giant trevally and it’s fair to say there are numerous locations dotted around the Indian Ocean that offer great GT fishing. After a lot of research and chatting to the likes of Stu Walker and Dave Lewis I decided the Andaman and Nicobar Islands would be perfect. I quickly assembled a group of six likeminded anglers and the adventure was on.
I will get onto the breath-taking fishing and scenery soon but like any far-flung fishing destination there are a couple of things to organise in advance of travelling.
Travelling to Andaman and Nicobar Islands
First, you will need to get a visa to travel to the Andaman Islands. This is a fairly simple affair done online. You will need a PDF of your passport and passport photo which need to be attached to the application, the files need to be small (around 400k) so make sure you keep the resolution down when scanning.
Secondly, you can’t fly direct to Andaman from the UK and you will need to go via one of the many hubs in India to get a connecting flight. We travelled via Delhi - it’s worth allowing enough time between flights just to make sure you and your luggage make the connecting flight.
Our trip was organised by Gamefishing Asia (GFA). GFA offer a vast amount of experience in the Andaman Islands and have been arranging trips for varied groups of anglers from around the world since 2006. Darran Davis and his amazing team did a great job of getting everything sorted for my group.
On arrival at Port Blair we were met at the airport by two taxis and all seven of us and our luggage were taken on a short drive to our accommodation. The Kokari Guest House provided everything we needed for the stay. Rooms are large and comfortable all with air con and en-suite facilities. The quay where the boats are moored is a five minute walk away from the hotel and the helpful staff take your tackle bags to the boat so you just need to carry your rods.
Fishing in the Andaman Islands
GFA have three boats, the largest is comfortable for four anglers and the other two are perfect for three anglers. All the boats could take an extra angler if required however casting space could become an issue with the reduced deck area.
We focused our fishing mainly on popping and jigging techniques on the numerous reefs within reach of our base. During our two week trip I managed eighteen species using poppers, stick baits and a light jigging set-up.
Fishing Tackle Setups
Each day we caught GT on popping and jigging gear. The biggest of the week (35kg) came to a Nomad Chug Norris popper and the 2nd biggest (33kg) came on a PE1-3 light jigging rod using an 80g jig in 40m of water.
"I lost a whopper estimated at 40 to 50kg that took a popper less than a metre from the boat and promptly dived straight into the reef and popped my 100lb braid. I was gutted!"
If you're planning a trip, I’d recommend a medium popping rod (suitable for PE8 braided line) matched with a quality fixed spool spinning reel such as a Shimano Stella 14000 that can cope with the hard fighting fish you will encounter. I took a mates advice and took some small popping lures - they took giant trevally, red bass, gars, and had a lot of attention from numerous other species.
For jigging a PE1-3 jigging rod matched with a Shimano Saragosa 3000 reel proved to be perfect. I used 80-120g jigs very successfully with this outfit.
We also enjoyed some trolling - you can either take your own gear or GFA can provide the tackle. You should take a few trolling lures with you - Rapala Countdown Magnums and Nomad DTX Minnows are ideal.
"Allan at Rok Max was able to equip us with much of the kit that was required and will be happy to help with any tackle or clothing you will need for your trip."
Here are a list of new species I caught on the trip.
Giant Trevally, Bluefin Trevally, Gold Spot Trevally, Bludger Trevally, Black Spot Trevally, Dogtooth Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Bonito, Moontail Grouper, Catseye Grouper, Fingermark Snapper, Blackdot Snapper, Longnose Snapper, Checker Snapper, Blackdot Snapper, Green Jobfish, Red Bass, Garfish and Emperor Fish.
Thanks Gamefishing Asia for two great weeks fishing - it really was the trip of a lifetime.
I am now working with GFA as their representative in the UK and will be happy to answer any questions you may have or if you wish to book a trip.
You can email Chris at email@example.com or call him on 07501 955925.