The Avalon Fleet III Live-Aboard
The Jardines de la Reina (“Gardens of the Queen”) is a vast marine park and archipelago in the southern part of Cuba. Collectively, it is an area and a fishery that is larger in size than the Florida Keys. This resource is ideal for fly fishermen in search of a remote setting, a pristine and untouched ecosystem, and long days on the water. It is a fishery that is home to very large numbers of tarpon in the 40 to 80-pound range, as well as large bonefish, permit, jacks, barracuda and numerous other species. One of the most biologically diverse and healthy coral reef systems in the Caribbean, the fish diversity is exceptional in ‘JDR’.
All fishing weeks onboard the Avalon III yacht run from Saturday to the following Saturday, with five and a half full days of guided fishing. A normal week includes seven (7) nights aboard, and group roundtrip transportation from to Jucaro Port from your arrival city. Upon arrival in Jucaro, clients board Avalon III to head out to Jardines de la Reina. The season in the Jardines de la Reina runs from mid-October through the end of August, though the fishery can offer excellent fishing year round.
Built in 2019, Avalon III offers 15 large staterooms with en suite baths. The 145 foot long boat, accommodates 8 skiffs or 16 anglers max. The boat offers the perfect balance of substantial exploration capabilities, functional style, and total comfort, and offers guests a unique platform for an exclusive voyage through the Jardines de la Reina. All staterooms offer plenty of space, private bathrooms, individual air conditioning, and heating controls and electricity plugs (110). A spacious and comfortable lounge area provides an indoor air conditioned lounge area, a large indoor dining room in located on the main deck with an outdoor lounge area on the main deck and an unparalleled bar on the uppermost deck of the ship. This is the ideal option for large groups.
Food and Beverages
Dining on board Avalon III is always amazing. The menu typically combines fantastic Continental Italian cuisine, fresh seafood every day, and traditional Cuban favorites like rice and beans, black bean soup and fried plantains. If you are someone who enjoys fresh seafood, then you will be in heaven. The chefs aboard are happy to accommodate any dietary restrictions and requests that you may have. Beverages available on board include bottled water, various soft drinks, beer, rum, and imported wines. If you prefer liquor other than rum, you can bring this with you.
Typical Length of Stay
A typical stay in the Jardines de la Reina area is seven (7) nights / five and a half (5.5) fishing days, starting on Saturday and ending on Friday. A normal week includes five full days of fishing and one or two half days (depending on your schedule and mode of transportation to and from Jucaro). Additional days in Camaguey or on other parts of the island can be arranged. Combo trips between the Jardines de la Reina and other fishing areas can also be arranged. Please contact Yellow Dog for more details.
Non-Angling Activities and Options
These are remote live-aboard operations located in the mangrove wilderness of the Jardines de la Reina. This means that non-angling (and non-diving) activities are limited. If you are interested in diving, Avalon’s dive program is incredible and ‘JDR’ are considered by many to be one of the finest, most pristine dive and snorkel destinations in the entire world. Even anglers can participate in a shallow-water dive program on a few afternoons of their trip. This can be arranged after your day of fishing. Overall this specific destination is best suited for anglers and divers.
Wi-Fi is not available on Avalon III. Some cell phone service providers now offer international plans that will allow for your phone to work while on mainland Cuba. While in Jardines de la Reina, there is NO cell service. Also, satellite phones are strictly prohibited in Cuba and will be confiscated at the airport on arrival.
How To Get There
There are direct flights many US cities and Havana (HAV) or you can book flights to Cayo Coco (CCC) can be booked from Canada, Mexico, and Europe. If you arrive into Havana, it is recommended that you overnight in the city prior to and after your transfer days. The transfer from Havana to Jardines de la Reina departs at approximately 7 AM and takes between 6-8 hours to get to Jucaro Port. If you plan to arrive to Cayo Coco, the transfer time is between 2-3 hours to Jucaro Port. It is important that your entire group arranges for the same arrival logistics in order to avoid private transfer costs.
Arrival and Departure Details / Times
Upon arrival to Jucaro Port, you will board the Avalon III and begin your week in the Jardines de la Reina (Gardens of the Queen). On your final day you will typically return to Avalon III around 2 pm so the boat can make the return trip to Jucaro Port where Avalon III will overnight. Early the next morning, you will disembark and return to Havana or Cayo Coco for your departing flights.
A valid passport is required for all visitors to Cuba and must be valid for at least six (6) months beyond the duration of your stay. Visitors to Cuba are also required to purchase a Cuban entrance visa can be secured when checking in for your direct flight to Cuba or in advance of your trip.
Yellow Dog works directly with and recommends Kanna Travel along with other travel agents who are experts depending on the routing that makes the most sense for your travel needs. They can assist with airline tickets, hotels, transfers and all travel logistics for every destination that we offer. Contact them at 855-739-3139 or [email protected] for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services, and trip insurance.
Fishing hours during a stay aboard Avalon III are longer than in most Caribbean fishing destinations and are totally at the discretion of the clients. The day normally begins with breakfast at 7:00 AM and guides are ready to head out any time after 7:45 AM. During your week of fishing, each day you will fish the waters of JDR and depending on tides and current conditions, you can expect runs of 30 minutes or less in order to access different fishing areas and target the top game species. Ask your guide what the plan is and if you have any preferences with regards to specific species, let him know and they will do their best to accommodate your request based on current conditions.
Boats and Equipment
The fishing boats used by Avalon are Dolphin Super Skiffs outfitted with Yamaha 60 or 70HP motors. Radios and life jackets are carried aboard every skiff. For gear and equipment, it is recommended that anglers always bring their own rods, reels, wading boots, etc. Flies, leaders, tippet, all terminal tackle, and all accessories should be packed as well, as very few items are available anywhere in Cuba! Yellow Dog will provide a complete pre-trip packing and equipment list for fishing Cuba.
Remember that Yellow Dog’s services are completely free! When you book a trip with Yellow Dog, you never pay more than when you book directly with the lodge or outfitter. Prices listed for all Cuba packages are per person and quoted in US Dollars (USD).
Avalon Fleet III
Prices listed below include the charter of the entire yacht for up to twelve (12) clients. This includes six (6) skiffs and guides and single occupancy staterooms for nearly everyone in your group. Please contact Yellow Dog for details and to check on availability.
January 5 – March 6 and July 12 – December 28
March 7 – July 11
- Meet-and-greet reception upon arrival to Camaguey International Airport (CMW)
- Land and water transfers to/from Camaguey to Jucaro and Avalon III
- Seven (7) nights accommodations on Avalon III
- Six (6) full days of guided fishing (two anglers per skiff)
- Three meals per day (all-inclusive meal service)
- Taxes and GSTs
What’s Not Included:
- International flights to Havana (HAV) or Cayo Coco (CCC) – Yellow Dog can help arrange
- Entry Visa for Cuba
- Mandatory open bar fee ($200 per angler) includes water, sodas, beer, wine, cocktails
- Fishing tackle, equipment, flies and all terminal tackle
- Gratuities for guides and staff (must be paid in cash with CUCs)
- Other items of a personal nature
- Conservation Fee ($100)
Trip Deposit and Trip Cancellation Information
For all Cuba trips less than 90 days out, full payment is required to secure guides and reservations. For trips outside of 90 days, a 70% deposit is required within 10 days to hold and confirm reservations. Payment for all Cuba trips must be made in US dollars and can be made using check, money order or wire transfer only. Any cancellations on Cuba trips will incur a $250.00 Yellow Dog handling fee regardless of timing. Passport number, date of birth and full name (as printed in passport) is required to confirm any Cuba reservation. Outside of 180 days from the start of the trip, deposits are refundable minus an $800 Cuban operator handling fee, which will be held and retained by the operators unless the trip is resold. Inside of 180 days of the start date of the trip, all deposits and payments are non-refundable unless Yellow Dog or Cuban operators are able to resell your spot(s). No refunds are available for unused portions of packages. Trip cancellation insurance is highly recommended. Please note that credit card payments cannot be accepted for any incidentals or expenses once in Cuba. All programs and execution of programs remain subject to weather and other unforeseen circumstances. Claims for refunds from Cuban operators will not be accepted.