Pete Vines

Welcome to the latest fishing report for December 2023 in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. This month brings about significant changes, primarily marked by cooling weather and adjustments in water temperatures both in the bay and offshore. Following the favorable temperatures/fishing experience we had in November, which hovered around 83 degrees, the recent slight drop has impacted our inshore and offshore fishing strategies.  See what’s coming this December in our fishing report.

Puerto Vallarta fishing in December

In response to these changes, our approach involves adapting to new conditions. This includes switching lures, varying bait choices, and adjusting our favored fishing spots for the winter months. Despite the decrease in temperatures, it’s worth noting that the water in the Bay of Puerto Vallarta and offshore remains relatively mild. Nevertheless, these shifts influence our fishing techniques during this season. It never gets cold like other places up north to have to close for the winter season. The winter is when are just getting started for our winter fishing season. Most anglers are packing away their fishing for the season and are putting in new fishing lines or our reels fishing for marlin.

Let’s dive into the inshore action first. In the inshore waters, expect to encounter mahi-mahi, yellowtail, roosterfish, Spanish mackerel, snapper, and the delectable California Bonita. Trolling remains an effective method, and if we’re fortunate enough to locate schooling fish, pitch baits and different jigs become valuable tools. Some of the larger spoons work well for schooling fish. The large schools of yellowtail, typically caught on live bait, are expected to make an appearance. Roosterfish and snapper can be found in specific coves on the South Shore, where live bait or pitch baits are commonly employed. When the bait balls move into our fishing area we experience incredible fishing. Inside the Bay, water temperatures have slightly cooled to around 78 to 81 degrees, while offshore fishing enjoys a slightly warmer 80-degree water temperature. Conditions are favorable with excellent water clarity and calm winds during most trips. Some days you will see different water colors inside the bay and offshore.  This is red tide which happens every year and nothing to worry about. If you’re planning a weekend trip and want to check the latest conditions or have any questions.Dorado fishing in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico


One of the bonuses we have during the winter months is the arrival of the humpback whales that play here for several months. We often see the calves born here in our beautiful bay playing all day long. It’s a spectacular site to see if you have never been close to a 20-ton whale up close.

whale watching puerto VallartaAs winter progresses, schools of snapper may be spotted inside the Bay and just offshore. For those seeking a shorter adventure, our four or six-hour trips promise a delightful experience. Feel free to contact us via email or our toll-free line to secure your spot.

The weather conditions contribute to fantastic water clarity, with calm seas for most of our recent trips. If you’re planning a weekend getaway and want to stay informed about the latest conditions, don’t hesitate to reach out to Captain Pete on our toll-free line. We are happy to address any questions regarding fishing, water-related sports, or upcoming weather. During the winter months, we have 99.9 % of the time perfect weather.

Now, let’s shift our focus to offshore fishing. As the water cools, larger marlin and tunas migrate further offshore, making way for the arrival of striped marlin. Tuna will still be present, often roaming around thermoclines, though not as abundantly as in the Fall.  During these fishing months, it’s a must to keep your eye on the water temperatures. Our eight-hour trips target big game fish like sailfish, striped marlin, and mahi-mahi. If the action offshore is slow, we can easily switch gears and explore productive spots inside the Bay for a bountiful catch.catching marlin in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

During the winter months, trolling with skip baits, high-speed lures, and sewn-up baits like goggle eye or mullet proves effective offshore. When we know there’s a concentration of marlin or tuna, we prefer using live bait in the 5 to 10 lbs range. The best method for offshore fishing remains live bait, live bait, and more live bait.  As you can see we love to fish with live bait.

Merry Fishmas, and we hope to welcome everyone out on the water in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

Tight lines,

Capt. Pete and Crews

Fish Species: sailfish,marlin,mahi-mahi,tuna
Bait Used: mullet,goggle eye,lures
Tackle Used: avet and gold penn stand up
Method Used: trolloing,kite,jiggingd,pictch baits
Water Depth: 300 plus
Water Temperature: 82 deg
Wind Direction: n/a
Wind Speed: 7 knots

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Pete Vines

About The Author: Captain Pete Vines

Company: Puerto Vallarta Fishing

Area Reporting: Puerto Vallarta Mexico

Bio: Been here in Puerto Vallarta offering my charter services for over 35 years at great prices, we have fishing,sailing,snorkeling and whale watching at discount prices.

Click Here For Past Fishing Reports by Captain Pete Vines