Please click on the link below. This will take you an electronic questionnaire form that we ask you to complete and submit to The Fly Shop. Please be sure to click the “Submit” button at the end of the form. The information provided will help us and the outfitter best coordinate your trip. Thank you!
Freeport is the second largest airport in the Bahamas, and there are numerous daily connecting flights into Freeport through Nassau, Orlando, Atlanta, Ft. Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and more. Part of the Club’s attraction is the ease in scheduling any one of the frequent flights to Freeport. It’s best to schedule your flight to arrive in the early afternoon, and a morning departure. After collecting your luggage in the small, modern airport, you will proceed quickly through customs and on to the Club.
After exiting the Bahamas customs area, a porter will greet you. Tell them that you are going to North Riding Point Club and they will point you in the direction of the driver. The driver will be wearing an NRPC hat and shirt with the NRPC logo on the breast pocket. It is a short, twenty-minute drive to the Club. Airport transfers are included in your package.
The hustle and bustle of Freeport disappears during the short ride to North Riding Point where the lovely lodge blends comfortably with the rural, “out island” countryside. You’ll arrive at the lodge before dinner in time for a stroll on the beach, a swim in the pool, or cocktails on the porch.
Please make your flight accommodations as soon as possible to secure seats and the best fare. We recommend giving Alicia at Holdy Tours a call for help with flight information and fares at 1-800-446-1111. She books the majority of the travel for The Fly Shop’s travel staff, and many other anglers traveling to all parts of the world.
A Day at North Riding Point Club
Your coffee is available in your room, and the front deck overlooking the water is the perfect place to start the morning. Breakfast is served in the dining room, and the buffet includes yogurt, granola, fresh fruit, coffee, fruit juices, with eggs and meat to order. The guides are waiting after breakfast to load their skiffs with your gear, ready to trailer to one of the several ramps on the island. Driving time to the launch sites vary from fifteen to thirty minutes, and runs to the flats are typically 10 to 20 minutes. The flats on the north shore of Grand Bahama offer opportunities to fish for some of the largest bonefish in the Bahamas, many exceeding the ten pound mark. There are the occasional shots at permit, tarpon, barracuda, jacks, and sharks, and we recommend you bring the appropriate tackle. Rigging a few rods and being ready for permit, bonefish and other species is the way to go. The Club’s guides are some of the most competent, experienced professionals in the Bahamas.
Lunch is generally shared aboard your skiff, prepared by order. They have specialty sandwiches available, cold drinks and sides. After returning to the Club, a swim in the pool or at the beach is in order. Shortly, appetizers and cocktails are waiting in the dining room, and a fabulous dinner focused on fresh seafood and prime meat is ready. The food is first class, and you will not go away hungry.
Visa and documents
A valid passport is required for all travelers, and must be valid for six months beyond the arrival date. All travelers must have return or continuing tickets to pass through customs. A visa is not required for Americans, Canadians or most European countries. Residents of other countries should contact the Bahamian embassy in their country to double check that a visa is not required.
You will complete an immigration card upon arrival. It will be checked at your first point of entry and a copy will be given to you. Be careful not to lose this copy as it must be given to Immigration upon departure.
For charter flights only, there is a departure tax payable at the airport upon departure; the tax is $25 for most points of departure.
The electrical outlets are AC 110 volts (same as the U.S.) and most appliances will work fine. Make sure that you have plenty of spare batteries for cameras and other small appliances, as the cost for replacements in the Bahamas is high.
Mosquitoes and “doctor flies” in the Bahamas are prominent during the rainy season, from April through September. We recommend earing long pants and long sleeves while fishing and insect repellent will deter these bugs.
Gratuities come in two forms: daily tips for guides at the end of each day, and a single tip for the lodge staff at the end of your stay. The economy is primarily cash-based, so the preferred method for tipping is in cash. US dollars and Bahamian currency are interchangeable on the island, and either works fine.
Guide tips average $100 per boat per day. Tipping for guides can be done at the dock each day. It’s helpful to be prepared, have cash handy and if possible to discuss tipping with your fishing partner before reaching the dock. When preparing for your trip, it’s helpful to come with a sufficient amount of cash to cover tipping each day, and to allow for the possibility of an exceptional tip for an exceptional day.
Tips for the staff are collected once at the end of your stay, and are pooled and divided among the entire lodge staff, including the cooks and housekeeper. Lodge staff tips average $30 per angler per day.
All beverages, wine & spirits are included in the package. Guests are welcome to bring along any additional alcohol or specific brands that they prefer.
Fishing at North Riding Point Club
North Riding Point Club is deluxe by any standards, but the emphasis remains focused on the outstanding fishing, superb guides, state of the art skiffs, and miles upon miles picture-perfect flats loaded with trophy bonefish. The guides are all experienced, seasoned professionals who understand the intricacies of Bahamian bonefishing. The majority of the fishing is done from the boat, but wading opportunities exist if you prefer. The Hell’s Bay Marquesa skiffs are powered by 90hp Yamaha outboards, have padded seats, a leaning bar on the casting platform, dry storage lockers, and communication is by cell phone. The Club’s location offers access to a huge expanse of flats on the north side of Grand Bahama Island and outer cays which harbors incredible numbers of trophy bonefish.
Cooled by the prevailing south-easterly trade winds in the summer and warmed by the surrounding waters and the Gulf Stream in the cooler months, Grand Bahama is rarely uncomfortably hot or cold…..Although similar in latitude to Palm Beach, Florida, the winter temperatures average 10° (F) warmer than Florida and the summer highs are generally somewhat lower than those found on similar Florida latitudes due to the moderating effects of the surrounding waters. The average daily highs and lows rarely differ by more than 12 degrees (F), with monthly rainfall averaging about 2 inches in the winter and 6 inches in the summer, primarily in the ‘20-minutes-and-they’re-gone’ afternoon showers.
Non- angler options
North Riding Point Club is the perfect destination to take a non-angler, with a beautiful beach right in front of your private cabana. A driver is always available for a ride into Freeport, which offers endless activities including golf, a casino, restaurants, shopping, swimming with dolphins, horseback riding, and scuba trips.
You’ll need an assortment of personal gear for your days on the flats, and a boat bag to keep them in.
Your boat bag will contain all your gear for the day in the boat and in transfer to and from the dock.
Anglers often prefer some organizing dividers inside, and quick access pouches on the outside. It needs to be large enough to hold your rain jacket, fly boxes, sunscreen, extra leaders and tippet, camera, and back up glasses and fly lines. Fishpond, Umpqua, Patagonia and Simms offer quality boat bags.
You may be wading for hours and the boat will be just a spec on the horizon. Be sure to bring a wading pack to carry your flies, leaders, tippet, clippers, a water bottle, snack bars, camera, etc. The design is your choice, with sling, fanny and backpack the most common. Fishpond, Umpqua, Patagonia and Simms offer proven models in these designs.
Pliers, hemostats, leader snips, hook sharpener, release tool.
Lightweight and breathable is the best for warm climates. Bring your rain gear with you on the boat everyday no matter how clear it looks. Squalls pop up quickly and the boat ride can be wet.
Polarized glasses with amber or copper lenses are the most popular for flats fishing, and having an extra pair in your boat bag is a darn good idea.
Tackle and equipment
We strongly suggest that you have an arsenal of fly rods strung-up, handy and ready to fish. Most of the flats fishing you’ll encounter is what we call “opportunistic fishing.” This means that at any given time, on any given day, on any piece of water, you may see bonefish, permit, tarpon, barracuda or jacks and it may all happen in a matter of minutes or all at the same time. The idea here is to be ready for anything at any time. If you have three or four rods, bring them with you. Have the rods ready to fish, one with a bonefish fly, and another with a permit crab, or maybe a ‘cuda fly, and another with a tarpon streamer or shark fly. If you are wading the flats, have your guide take one of the other rods along. At the least, it will double as a great fish pointer.
The big draw on Grand Bahama is the sight fishing for bonefish. The Bahamas offer some of the best bonefishing in the world. Bonefish range in size from 2 – 15 pounds. On the average, bonefish will be in the 3 – 5 pound range. Smaller bonefish (1 – 2 pounds) tend to swim together in large schools, a natural defense against sharks, barracuda and other predators. Large bonefish often travel alone or in pairs. We have found that most times when fishing to big schools of moving bonefish, the largest fish tend to be in the back of the pack. Bonefish are active feeders and a variety of flies and fishing strategies are effective in taking them. One of the nice things about bonefishing is that the proper equipment needed to catch them successfully is also one of the most common fly rod weight and size. The following suggestions and recommendations should help in assembling your bonefish tackle.
We strongly suggest 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 7, 8 and 9 weights. Fast action rods that generate high line speed are the most popular, and rods that have been especially designed for the rigors of saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice. In that category, we like the Sage, Scott, and Winston rods. Traveling with a spare rod is always good idea.
Reels designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. Features to look for are smooth drags, sufficient backing capacity, and a machined, anodized aluminum, one-piece frame. Large arbor reels are a great choice, quickly retrieving line and backing. Proven saltwater reels are manufactured by Nautilus, Hatch, and Galvin.
A weight forward floating line designed for the tropics is extremely important. Scientific Anglers Bonefish and Redfish Warm are excellent lines, as well as the Rio Flats Pro series. These lines are specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing and have a specifically designed core that provides the proper stiffness to allow excellent shooting while resisting tangles, even in tropical heat. They are extremely accurate lines, and the running portion is a large diameter and floats on top of the water, making it a pleasure for wade fishing. Traveling with a back-up fly line is strongly suggested. It weighs almost nothing, takes up little space in your luggage, and won’t spoil before your next trip.
Flats boots and socks
There are daily opportunities to get out of the boat and wade the flats. If you prefer wading, your guide can have you on foot most of the day. This means that you’ll need a pair of quality flats boot for both foot protection and comfort. Quality boots that fit well are important, and proven models are made by Simms. Simms lightweight neoprene socks will add an additional layer of protection, absorbing the friction from sand that gets inside your boots.
Although bonefish are what most fly fishers are chasing in the Bahamas, tarpon are available. Tarpon in the Bahamas are most often seen in and around creek, freshwater springs and blue holes. Most tarpon in the Bahamas range in size between 30 – 60 pounds. Big tarpon, up to and over 100 pounds, are often sighted in the spring and summer. If you own a 10, 11 or 12 weight rod, bring it to Grand Bahama if you intend to hunt tarpon.
Fast action 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 10, 11, & 12 weights are standard. The Sage, Scott, and Winston rods are excellent choices.
A heavy-duty saltwater reel is a must here. Look for a reel with a smooth drag, plenty of backing capacity, and a sturdy one-piece, machined, aluminum anodized frame. Models to consider are built by Nautilus, Hatch, Abel.
Ninety percent of tarpon fishing is done with a weight forward floating line and the Scientific Anglers Mastery Tarpon Taper is one of the best. A good second choice in a tarpon line is a full sinking intermediate line, and we fish the S.A. Sonar in this situation.
Leaders for tarpon can be simple, or complex. The knots used in building class tippet tarpon leaders take some practice to learn, and it can be very rewarding to acquire those skills. We often build a simple tarpon leader with 8 foot of 40# fluorocarbon followed by 2 feet of 60#, 80#, or 100# bite tippet. You can also purchase Hand-Tied Tarpon Leaders from Rio.
If you would like to tie your own tarpon leaders, some good reference books are Lefty Krey’s “Fly Fishing in Saltwater” and “Practical Fishing Knots by Lefty Kreh and Mark Sosin.” We like to use clear, stiff monofilament or fluorocarbon when constructing our class leaders.
In general, tarpon flies for the Bahamas should be tied on 1/0 through 3/0 size hooks. Slight variations in shape and color can be all that is needed to entice tarpon into striking.
Flies to consider are-
- Tarpon Rabbit Toad – Size 1/0, purple/black, tan, chartreuse
- Cockroach – Size 1/0 & 4/0
- Bigeye Tarpon – Size 3/0, Orange/Grizzly, Sand Devil, Yellow
- Black Death – Size 3/0
- Tarpon Toad – Size 2/0, Yellow, Chartreuse, Red/Black
Permit frequent the waters of the Bahamas in good numbers, and it’s not uncommon to see them on the flats while pursuing bonefish. Permit in the Bahamas range in size from 3 – 30 pounds. Most often you will sight permit in deeper water (4 to 6 feet), along the edge flats or at the top of a high tide change. We recommend taking a 9 or 10 weight rod if you are after permit, and having it rigged and ready in the boat.
We suggest 9’, 4 piece travel rods in 9 or 10 weights. We like fast tapered fly rods that generate high line speed. Rods that have been especially designed for the rigors of saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice. In that category we like rods built by Sage, Scott, and Winston.
Fly reels specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. Features to look for in reels are smooth drags, plenty of backing capacity, and a sturdy, machined, aluminum, one-piece anodized frame. Large arbor reels are a great choice and take up line and backing very quickly. Reels to consider include those built by Nautilus, Galvin, and Hatch.
The Scientific Anglers Mastery Redfish Warm and the Rio Flats Pro are a couple of our favorite permit lines. They cast permit crab and shrimp flies with ease, and both are very accurate.
Fluorocarbon leaders are your best choice for permit as they are virtually invisible in water, and highly abrasion resistant. Fluorocarbon 9’ leaders and tippet in 16 & 20 lb. test are standard.
There are a lot of permit flies these marketed these days, and here are a few of them that have hooked permit.
- Squimp – Size 2, tan
- Rag head Crab – Size 2, tan, olive
- Contraband Crab Size 2, 4, olive, tan
- Casa Blanca Raghead Crab – Size 2, tan, white
- Avalon – Size 4
- Puglisi’s Spawning Shrimp – Size 4, tan, translucent
- Puglisi’s Bead Chain Spawning Shrimp – Size 4, tan
Barracuda and jacks
Barracuda in the Bahamas get big, and they are very aggressive. They attack a fly at an unbelievable rate of speed, and often skyrocket into the air when hooked. When hooked, few fish can match a ‘cudas initial run for speed and sheer violence…hold on!
Jacks are very fast, pull like a freight train, and will destroy both surface poppers and streamers. Watching them blow up on your popper while you strip it as fast as you can is a sight to remember. Endurance is their strong point, and no jack gives up without a fight that you will remember.
Flies for these fish are often large streamers and poppers, so 9’, 4 piece travel rod in a 9 or 10 weights are good choices. Your permit rod is also a barracuda rod. Fast tapered rods that generate good line speed like those built by Sage, Scott and Winston are good choices.
Fly reels specifically designed for saltwater fly fishing are important. The same reel that you brought for permit, your 9 or 10 weight will perform well for barracuda fishing.
Leaders for barracuda and jacks can be simple. We often build a leader with 8 foot of 40# fluorocarbon for jacks, and add a bite tippet of 40 lb. Rio Powerflex Wire Bite Tippet for barracuda.
Flies for barracuda and jacks
- In-Shore Popper – Size 3/0, Chartreuse
- Tandem Cuda Fly – size 2/0
- Cuda Killer – Size 4/0
Fly Fishing for Bonefish
Bahamas clothing and equipment checklist
- Hat with bill and neck protection
- Polarized sunglasses and a backup pair
- Buff® neck gaiter
- Long sleeve fishing shirts
- Evening wear shirts
- Raingear (light-weight for thunder showers or wet boat rides)
- Wading pants
- Sun gloves
- Shorts and swimsuit
- Wading socks (we recommend the Simms light neoprene socks)
- Wading shoes or booties (should have heavy sole for maximum protection)
- Sandals or flip flops
- Sunscreen SPF 30+ UVA/UVB
- SPF Lip balm
- Insect repellent (DEET as the active ingredient is best)
- Line dressing & cleaner
- Forceps, pliers, hook file, line clipper
- Reel lube / oil
- Zip-lock® bags and garbage bags
- Small flashlight or headlamp
- Roll of athletic tape or finger guards
- Camera & Battery Charger & storage Cards
- Smartphone | Tablet & charger
- Small binoculars
- Wading pack and boat bag
- Airline tickets
- Notebook & pen
- 2 Copies of passport (packed separately in Zip-Lok baggies)
- Book | magazines
- Cash and credit cards
- Emergency contact numbers
- Prescription glasses
- Pre-trip information
- Aspirin, Prescription drugs
10 Best Things to Do in Or Near Freeport, Bahamas
BY MICHELE HERRMANN https://www.thetravel.com/
From waterside activities to Bahamian dining, here’s what to find around this city.
In the Bahamas, Freeport is a bustling city on the island of Grand Bahama in the northwest Bahamas. The second-largest city in the Bahamas is known for its upscale resorts, historical and cultural venues, ecological sights, shopping opportunities, and underwater cave exploring. Get ready to plan a trip to Freeport with these 10 best things to do in or near there Victims Unit: Season 24
10/10Bahamas Maritime Museum
Based right in the heart of Freeport, the Bahamas Maritime Museum teaches about the islands’ maritime legacy with intriguing stories and interesting artifacts. Exhibition areas tell of the Bahamas’ Lucayan people and the horrors of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, along with recovered objects from Maravillas, a Spanish ship that sunk in the Bahamas in 1656. Founded by Allen Exploration, the museum is a newcomer to the Bahamas, too, having opened in August 2022.
9/10Bahamas Distilling Company
Bahamas Distilling Company is a small-batch rum distillery that schedules tours and tastings on weekdays. While there, sample their signature spiced and coconut rums and perhaps purchase one of their brands, and order a cocktail from their onsite bar. Currently, the company puts out about six types of rum, from their Floating Pig spiced rum to their Hammered coconut rum, with eye-catching label art.
8/10Port Lucaya Marketplace
For visitors seeking souvenirs or a meal away from their resort of stay, the Port Lucaya Marketplace is the place to go. It is the Bahamas’ largest shopping, dining, and open-air entertainment facility. There are many specialty stores and boutique shops, restaurants and bars, and lounges, so you can spend both the day and/or night here. Retail options also extend to Duty-Free stores, craft centers, and push carts. Tip: Be sure to place an order from Daddy Brown’s Conch and
This commercial enterprise in the Bahamas is working to restore the Commonwealth’s coral reefs at a global level, and the public is able to tour their facilities to learn more about their efforts. Having partnered with science institutions, Coral Vita farms resilient coral at scale and supplies them to restoration projects for transplanting them in reefs. Visitors to Coral Vita can learn more about coral farming and the ocean’s threatened reefs.
6/10Fish Fry at Smith’s Point
This popular foodie tradition is said to happen on Wednesday nights at Smith’s Point, a settlement that is adjacent to Taino Beach. The Fish Fry at Smith’s Point consists of beachfront shacks in which their vendors fry up seafood over oil-drum cookers. Along with trying some Bahamian cuisine, this nightly event becomes a dance party scene. The festivities usually begin at 6 p.m.
5/10Rand Nature Centre
Step away from the sand and surf for a bit, and head to the Rand Nature Centre in downtown Freeport. This park has a native pine forest and is a major birding spot where wintering birds flock here, usually from October to May. A number of walking trails lead across the park, and the entrance building holds restrooms and natural history exhibits on island geology and ecology. There is an admission entry fee.
The Bahamas is the world’s third-largest barrier reef, and these waters are full of caves and dive sights. In and near Freeport, there are locations where you can don a pair of fins and other aquatic apparatus to snorkel or dive. Confirm with tourism companies that offer these experiences on the specifics of these excursions. Tiger Beach in Freeport is one of the best spots for shark diving, while Ben’s Cave, also in Freeport, provides an underwater trek as one of two inland blue holes within the Lucayan National Park. There are also wreck dive sites near Freeport, such as Theo’s Wreck, which is the site of a 1982 ship sinking.
3/10Tony Macaroni’s Conch Experience
Tony Hanna, or might be more recognized by the name Tony Macaroni, has been running his beachside shack, Tony Macaroni’s Conch Experience, since 1992. This eatery overlooking Taino Beach not only can be popular during the famous Fish Fry at Smith’s Point, but Tony attracts crowds during the day, too. His conch burgers and homemade hot sauce bring in diners faithfully. Check out this interview with Tony on The Bahamas’ YouTube channel.
2/10Peterson Cay National Park
The one-and-a-half acre Peterson Cay National Park is big on its stance as a protected marine habitat and an important bird area. In partnership with the Freeport Harbour Company, a coral reef nursery has been developed southwest of this cay. Tour excursion companies can run outings to this park.
1/10Lucayan National Park
Referred to as “The Welcome Mat of Grand Bahama,” Lucayan National Park is an incredible biodiversity site with underwater caves and nature trails. This 40-acre national park has Ben’s Cave, a chartered underwater cave system, and a quite diverse topography. It has pine forests, mangrove creeks, and coral reefs; it also holds Bahamian vegetative zones. Part of Lucayan National Park, Gold Rock Beach, stands out on its own because it is both beautiful and secluded. It’s also referred to as The Welcome Mat of Grand Bahama Island, as the shoreline spans greatly during low tide.