Forbes Top 10 Fly Fishing Lodges...
1. Agua Boa Amazon Lodge, Brazil
Species: Peacock bass
In the heart of the northwest part of the Amazon basin, Agua Boa has exclusive access to its namesake river. The river boasts some of the world's best fly-fishing for peacock bass, a ferocious fish adorned in festive yellows, oranges, and greens. Anglers sight-fish shallow white-sand bars for prowling peacocks; 20-pounders are not uncommon. Caimans and jaguars will check out your cast. Guests stay in air-conditioned bungalows overlooking both a pool and the magnificent river, or on the roomy houseboat.
Weekly rate: $5,500. www.aguaboaamazonlodge.com. Book through Orvis, 800-547-4322, www.orvis.com/aguaboa
2. Alphonse Island Fishing Company, Seychelles Islands
You'll have to travel halfway around the world to reach this remote Indian Ocean atoll about 1,000 miles east of Kenya, but it's worth it. Alphonse has some of the hottest bonefishing anywhere, particularly on the famous St. François flat. The lodge, opened in 1999, comprises ten beachfront chalets with easy access to the atoll's collar of deserted white beaches and vibrant rain forest interior.
Weekly rate: $6,890. Book through Frontiers Travel, 800-245-1950, www.frontierstravel.com
3. the Atlantic Salmon Reserve, Kola Peninsula, Russia
Species: Atlantic salmon
When Peter Power founded the Atlantic Salmon Reserve, 2 million acres of Russian tundra 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle, his goal, he said, was to create happiness. It worked. Fishermen here cast arguably the greatest collection of Atlantic salmon water in the world: the Kharlovka, Rynda, Eastern Litza, and Zolotaya rivers. No more than 38 guests stay in well-appointed cabins, catered to by an all-Russian staff of 100. Helicopters take fishermen each morning to beats on the rivers, where 30-pound Atlantics are caught with some regularity and 40-pounders are not unknown.
Weekly rate: $3,500–$20,000. 44-186-588-3063, www.kharlovka.com
4. Bristol Bay Lodge, Bristol Bay, Alaska
Species: Pacific salmon, char, and grayling
For the quintessential "last frontier" fly-fishing experience, put Bristol Bay at the top of your life list. The lodge looks out over Lake Aleknagik, while outpost camps mix wilderness with comfort. Vintage De Havilland Beaver floatplanes fly guests to new spots daily, where they catch chinook, silver and pink salmon, arctic char, Dolly Varden, or rainbow trout--up to 70 a day.
Weekly rate: $7,350. 509-964-2094 (October–May), www.bristolbaylodge.com
5. Firehole Ranch, West Yellowstone, Montana
Species: Rainbow and brown trout
No lodge in the U.S. is better located for trout fishing. Firehole Ranch, a renovated 1947 family camp, is on Hebgen Lake, which feeds the Madison River, one of the sport's most hallowed waters. It's within an easy drive of the mighty Yellowstone River, the challenging Henry's Fork of the Snake in Idaho, and all the pilgrimage spots within Yellowstone National Park, like Slough Creek, the Gibbon, and the trout-rich river that gives the place its name. The lodge does the little things right: Everybody, from the guides to the chambermaids, knows your name from the moment you arrive.
Weekly rate: $4,775–$5,350. 407-646-7294, http://www.fireholeranch.com/
6. Kamalame Cay, Andros Island, The Bahamas
The 96-acre very private island is a popular getaway for Hollywood types. But fishermen go for another reason: Andros' incredible bonefishing. On the Joulters flats, anglers wade barefoot on reefs topped with white sand, and cast to bones of up to 10 pounds. The lodge hosts 35 guests at time. There is a big soaking tub in each room and a spa at the end of a 200-foot pier with treatments like hibiscus wraps and coconut scrubs.
Weekly rate: $4,700–$7,000. www.kamalame.com. Book through Orvis, 800-547-4322, www.orvis.com/kamalamecay
7. Lower Dean River Lodge, British Columbia, Canada
The Dean River hosts one of the last great runs of summer steelhead. The lodge is just 8 miles from the Pacific Ocean, so the fish--averaging between 8 and 12 pounds--are fresh and rowdy when hooked. Dry-fly-fishing, which is considered the apex of steelheading, is the norm here. Guests helicopter into the camp, composed of handmade wooden buildings and surrounded by snowcapped 8,000-foot peaks. Meals consist of local organic vegetables and wild seafood. The lodge has a 95 percent repeat booking rate.
Daily rate: $1,000. 250-847-1806, http://www.lowerdean.com/
8. Nomads of the Seas, Chile
Species: Rainbow, brown, and brook trout
Technically, Nomads is not a lodge, but we'll let that slide because this 150-foot luxury yacht sailing down the coast of Chile is a movable fishing fiesta. Each day, guests board a Bell 407 helicopter and are transported back in time, to virginal streams and lagoons, some of them only recently discovered, to fish for wild rainbow and brown trout. By night they dine on grouper, abalone, and crab with Chilean wine, then are rocked to sleep by an overnight cruise to new fishing grounds. The ship has an onboard spa as well as a team of naturalists.
Weekly rate: $15,000–$29,000. 56-2-414-4600, www.nomadsoftheseas.com. Book through Orvis, 800-547-3422, www.orvis.com/nomadscruise
9. Poronui, New Zealand
Species: Rainbow and brown trout
New Zealand may have the most challenging trout fishing on the planet, with huge fish that inhabit air-clear water and take only tiny, perfectly presented flies. If that is your cup of tea, Poronui, on the North Island, is your place. Fishermen are helicoptered to secret river pools. Guests stay in the main building, in separate cabins, in luxury tents on the Mohaka River, or in the Blake House, a modernist masterpiece with four bedrooms, a sauna, satellite TV, and full library. The lodge offers wine tours, horseback riding, even nanny services.
Weekly rate: $5,000–$7,000. 64-7-384-2080, www.poronui.co.nz. Book through Frontiers Travel, 800-245-1950, www.frontierstravel.com
10. Wilson's Sporting Camps, New Brunswick, Canada
Species: Atlantic salmon
With cozy cabins and copious amounts of comfort food, Wilson's captures the mellow Maritime Canada mood. This is especially true during the fall run of Atlantic salmon, when the trees on the banks of the Miramichi River burst into brilliant yellows and reds. Keith Wilson is the sixth-generation owner of the lodge, and some of his guides have worked there since the 1950s. The 16 pools at Wilson's include some of the best water on the Miramichi.
Weekly rate: $4,200. 877-365-7962, http://www.wilsonscamps.nb.ca/
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