Go Cuba Fishing

A site about fishing in Cuba

Go Cuba Fishing is made by Fishermen, for Fishermen

About Permit

The Permit is the most exclusive sport fish, and the most prized element of the Grand Slam.(See: Grand Slam)

Permit tegning

It also got a reputation of being the most frustrating fish of the flats, and lots of skills and patience(and some luck?) is required to catch it.. 

The fish is hard find and spot, very fastidious when it comes to food, and hard to hook. It seem to have a sixth sense when it comes to flies, and sometimes reject even to look at some of the flies you present.

The Permit can become more than 20 kg's(44 pounds), but the most common size is 5-10 kg's(11-22 pounds). They could svim around one by one or in groups of 4-5 fish. We have also seen shoals up to 30 permit in our trips...



Adults feed on crustaceans as shrimps, crabs, gastropods, bivalves, mollusks and smaller fish.


Permit are usually found in shallow, tropical waters such as flats, small reefs, channels, and muddy bottoms.
They are usually seen as individuals or in small schools.

You can also find the permit feeding together with Stingrays, where it eat crabs and shrimps that is trying to escape from the Stingray.

Flies and equipment 


Crab patterns in sizes 1/0 to #4 (smal crab patterns is also ideal for big Bonefish)Some recomended patterns: Enrico Puglisi Palometa crabs in Tan and Beige (1/0 and 2), Anderson McCrab in size 2.     Light colors of Mantis Shrimp patterns size 2-4( good at schools of "floaters") 

There are many good crab patterns though, so bring several patterns.


9-10 Wt rod 



10 Wt reel with capacity for the line plus at least 150-200 yd. of 30 lb. backing.

The reel must have good backing capacity and a strong, smooth drag.



 9-10 wt tropical line in neutral colour.(light blue or sand/beige)

Leaders: 9-12 foot, 16-20 lb. fluorcarbon tippets


How to catch and land Permit

You are supposed to present your fly just in front of the fish, and then let the fly sink. If the fish doesn't take your fly while sinking, try some short and gently strips, where the speed and movement depends if you fish with a shrimp or crab imitation.

Try to give the fly the same movement as live shrimps/crabs have. When the Permit "Tails" in more shallow flats, it could be recomended to drop your fly a few meters in front of it, so the crab imitation sinks down and land at the bottom, cause sometimes thePermit sucks up the fly up from the sand.

Remember, crabs cant swim faster then the Permit and normally will try to get to the bottom and hide. This means that you could try to make your crab imitation swim until the Permits gets close to it, and the let it sink to the bottom and see if the Permit tails over your fly. If so, gently thighten up your line to se if it have taken your fly. If any resistanse, make a strip to hook the fish. We try to set the hook as on Bonefish.

It looks like the Permit prefer flies which is not moving to much or to fast. The fight will be a memory of a lifetime. With its huge flat sides and its sharp fins, it got huge power and a good "grip" in the water.

When the fish is at the side of the boat, gently lift it up and remove the fly.

Then remember to take a photo of the fish of your life ;-) Now your guide probably will try to go for a tarpon, and then a Bonefish to get the Grand Slam. They say that you have made more than 50% of the Grand slam when you catch a Permit..


Beautiful Permit Cayo Largo 2009


Big Permit Cayo Largo 2009


Cayo Largo Permit 2009


Cuba JDR permit Alberto guide


Permit from Mathias Avalon


Released Permit