Fly fishing, fly tying, fish stories, BBQ’s, lounging, cold libations, relaxing, rejuvenating, paddling, swimming, campfires, stargazing, good friends, and lazy, lazy dogs.
Cayo Frances Farm & Fly
Cayo Frances Farm & Fly is a remote, off the grid, fly-fishing and SUP camp and small farm on the leeward side of Ambergris Caye, Belize. One by no means however has to be a fly-fishing or paddle sports enthusiast to enjoy the camp. The camp is well suited and outfitted for any slightly adventurous folks looking for a place to relax and escape.
Well, 10-odd years in the kitchen proved long enough for me. The island also had grown and changed. The small fishing village I had originally moved to was now a bustling hub of tourism. Quiet sandy streets were replaced with pavement, trucks and traffic and what was once “way outside of town” did not seem all that out of the way anymore.
Over the years there was a place I’d take haven at on my days off… a small property way up north on the back of the island. “The farm” we’d call it, as we grew stuff for the restaurant there (the entirety of the property is black soil, an anomaly on the island.) It’s a supremely peaceful place… a place to fish, read and simply enjoy being at, as you escape from everywhere else. The property, we decided, was too special and unique not to share a bit.
For two years we worked on building the camp. In our first year of operation, we hosted anglers from all walks of life, who travelled to the camp from nearly a dozen different countries and ranged in age from late teens all the way up to a young 82 years of age. Some gorgeous fish were caught… Tasty meals and refreshing libations were enjoyed… And many a memorable moment was etched into the annals. The number of repeat guests returning each new season leads me to think we might be onto something here? We know the camp is not for everyone. But for the right folks, we think it’s just about perfect.
— Jeff Spiegel
Accommodations at the Camp are simple, airy, and comfortable. We have two 1 bedroom cabanas, with two single beds each, and the Bote House cabana, which has two bedrooms each with queen beds and a living room. All three cabanas have en suite bathrooms, showers with hot and cold water, fans, and verandas with Adirondack chairs for relaxing, reading, and BSing about your day’s catch!
Our main lodge building has a lounge area, fly tying bench with two vices, and an indoor dining area for days when the weather does not cooperate. Most days, dining, drinking, party games, and fish stories take place outside at our renovated palapa/bar area. We have a floating dock perfect for afternoon lounging or casting practice! Our waterfront fire pit features chairs for everyone and is perfect for stargazing and nightly campfires.
The Camp is run on solar with diesel backup. Water is a combination of rain catchment and water produced through desalination. Purified drinking water is provided. There is internet service at the Camp throughout the main lodge area as well as cell service.
BOTE House Belize is a custom built cottage on property at Cayo Frances Farm and Fly. Featuring two beds, one bathroom, a comfortable living room and large veranda, the BOTE House was constructed in the spirit of BOTE brand.
BOTE stand-up paddleboards are the perfect watercraft to explore and fly fish in the protected waters surrounding the camp. With an entire fleet of paddleboards available for use at Cayo Frances, you can see for yourself why the BOTE brand belongs in Belize.
Ask about the BOTE House when booking your stay at Cayo Frances Farm and Fly.
What to Bring
In short, bring as little as possible. You are not going to need a lot.
General Vacation Stuff
- Lightweight breathable shorts and shirts
- At least one or two lightweight LONG sleeve shirts for longer days in the boat/sun
- Good polarized glasses
- Flip flops
- Wading booties or boots
- A hat
- An extra hat
- A sun buff
- Lip balm with sunscreen
- Lightweight breathable rain gear
- Bug spray
For Fly Gear
- Rods, 7 and/or 8 wt for bones, 9 and/or 10 wt for permit and 10 and/or 11 wt for tarpon
- Large arbor reels saltwater reels with a GOOD DRAG and floating line with 200 yards 20# backing (we oft over line our reels by +1 wt.) For tarpon, it’s nice to have a set up with an intermediate line for when you’re trying to quickly get the fly down a bit and 200 yards 30# backing.
- Saltwater tapered leaders of 9-12 feet
- Shock leaders for tarpon
- Tippet, 10lb, 15lb, 20lb for bones and permit
- Flies, all the usual suspects…