Species
Golden Dorado
Fishing Style
Jungle, Skiff
Season
September-May
Fishing Days
6
Rate
$$$$
Why We Go
  • Experience two unique and complimentary dorado venues in a single week
  • Target higher numbers of dorado in the 5-to 15-pounds at the beginning of the trip and true trophy fish in the 20- to 30 -pound class for the last portion
  • Stay at multiple unique lodges with easy private charter flights between lodges and to/from Buenos Aires included
  • Fish exclusive national park waters in the Iberá Wetlands from two rustic and remote out-camps
  • Enjoy exceptional meals and warm-hearted professional service
Overview
  • Experience two unique and complimentary dorado venues in a single week
  • Target higher numbers of dorado in the 5-to 15-pounds at the beginning of the trip and true trophy fish in the 20- to 30 -pound class for the last portion
  • Stay at multiple unique lodges with easy private charter flights between lodges and to/from Buenos Aires included
  • Fish exclusive national park waters in the Iberá Wetlands from two rustic and remote out-camps
  • Enjoy exceptional meals and warm-hearted professional service

The La Alondra’i and Itati trip is a unique Argentine offering that enables guests to fish two very distinct fisheries and stay at multiple accommodations during a single week. The first portion of the week is based out of the understated yet elegant La Alondra’i where guests will venture out into the lodge’s exclusive-use waters of the Iberá Wetlands. This portion of the trip will focus on top-water fishing for dorado in the 5-to 20-pound class and includes two rustic overnights deep within the wildlife-rich marsh. After an additional night at La Alondra’i, guests will take a private charter flight to Itati Lodge on the banks of the mighty Parana River. Here guests will spend three days targeting trophy dorado with wet flies. These fish are not easy, but every cast comes with a chance at a fish in 20-to 40+ pound class.  With top-notch guides, exceptional meals, and private charter flights to and from Buenos Aires, this is the most efficient, unique and varietal dorado trip in all Argentina.

Fishing Program

All fishing is done from skiffs utilizing a push pole or electric motor.  Anglers cast towards structure, underwater rocks, logs, side channels, pools, and inlets to find likely holding water where dorado wait to ambush their prey.

In the wetlands, most fishing is done with a weight forward floating tropical line, and 85% of the time anglers fish surface patterns. Typically, one angler fishes from the bow of the boat and anglers rotate at each location.

On the Parana River, guests fish two at a time and will cast large streamers on floating lines.  Sometimes guests will fish intermediate clear tip sinking lines, especially in clear water conditions.

All guides speak English and are hardworking, professional, and experienced.

Accommodations

La Alondra’i is the base for the first portion of your trip and is located in a culturally rich town with people going to work on horseback along sand streets.  The outside of the lodge is non-descript, but upon entering you find a well-appointed interior with a great sense of place and a welcoming staff. There are four double occupancy rooms with air conditioning and ensuite bathrooms and they take up to eight anglers per week. Guests stay at this lodge on the first and fourth nights of the trip.

There are also two remote satellite camps in the marsh that each take up to four anglers and provide a special opportunity to immerse yourself in the marsh’s unique ecosystem.  Groups of four stay one night at each camp and rotate on nights two and three.

The Iberá Ruguá camp is a small and rustic, yet comfortable cabin that has electric power and hot water for showers.

Yaguarté Abá is a tented camp on a wooden platform and has electric power and hot water showers.

Itati Lodge will be your base for the Parana River portion of your trip and is a traditional estancia on the banks of the river. You end the week at this lodge, which features five double occupancy rooms with air conditioning and ensuite bathrooms. They only take eight anglers per week.

Itinerary

Day 1: Charter flight from Buenos Aires directly to La Alondra’i.  Overnight at La Alondra’i.

Days 2 and 3: Two full days fishing in the Iberá Wetlands, overnighting at both satellite camps in the Iberá Wetlands.

Day 4: Full day fishing in the Iberá Wetlands.  Return to La Alondra’i to overnight.

Day 5: Early morning charter flight from La Alondra’i to Itati Lodge (30 minute flight).  Full day fishing in the upper Parana River. Overnight at Itati Lodge.

Days 6 and 7: Two full days fishing the upper Parana River and overnight at Itati Lodge.

Day 8: Charter flight from Itati Lodge directly to Buenos Aires.

Rates & Details

2023-24 Rate: Per person based on double occupancy

7 night/6 day package: $8,350

Included: Charter flights between lodges and Buenos Aires, guided fishing, accommodations, all meals and beverages, including beer, wine and alcohol, ground transfers to charter flight airports, fishing license, flies, and equipment

Not Included: International flights, laundry, staff and guide gratuitiesSpecies: Freshwater dorado, pacu, pira pita

Capacity: 8 anglers

Fly Water Q&A

Who is best suited to this destination? This trip is best suited to intermediate to advanced anglers that are not overly focused on numbers of fish landed per day. Guests should be prepared to make a lot of casts using an 8-weight rod and large flies in warm weather. Dorado will reward anglers with good casting skills, although long casts are not necessary to fish effectively. The first part of the trip will have higher catch rates with somewhat smaller fish and the second portion of the trip will have lower catch rates but the chance a true trophy.

Where is the lodge? This program combines La Alondra’i in the Iberá Wetlands with two remote satellite camps, and Itati Lodge in the upper Parana River. Both locations are in Northern Argentina.

How do I get there? Guests fly from a small terminal 30 minutes from downtown Buenos Aires in a private Cessna Caravan to a landing strip 200 meters from their first stop at La Alondra’i. 

At the end of the week, guests fly in a charter flight from Itati Lodge directly to Buenos Aires.

When should I go? The season runs from September through May.

How will I fish? All fishing is done from skiffs utilizing a push pole or electric motor.  Anglers cast towards structure, underwater rocks, logs, side channels, pools, and inlets to find likely holding water where dorado wait to ambush their prey.

In the wetlands, most fishing is done with a weight forward floating tropical line, and 85% of the time anglers fish surface patterns. Typically, one angler fishes from the bow of the boat and anglers rotate at each location.

On the Parana River, guests will fish two at a time and cast large streamers on floating lines.  Sometimes guests will fish intermediate clear tip sinking lines, especially in clear water conditions.

Is there wade fishing? No.

Where will I fish? You start fishing in the Iberá Wetlands, one of the world’s largest freshwater marshlands. Guests overnight at two remote camps enabling them to get into the most remote reaches of the wetlands.  The second half of the week guests will fish the upper Parana River, a large tailwater system that drains from Brazil into Argentina and provides an opportunity for trophy dorado.

How long does it take to reach the fishing grounds? A unique feature of the marshland program is the ability to stay at remote camps that enable anglers to stay on the water longer and fish the best times of day including mornings and sunsets. For this portion of the trip guests will be fishing as they travel into the wetlands, meaning there won’t be many long runs without fishing.

After two nights in the wetlands, you return for one night to La Alondra’i, before taking a 30-minute flight from La Alondra’i to Itati Lodge on the upper Parana River.

At Itati Lodge, the boats are parked right in front of the lodge, and it takes between 5 and 30-minutes to reach the fishing grounds.

What type(s) of fish will I catch? Golden dorado is the primary species, but pira pita and pacu are also available.

How many fish will I catch? Golden dorado are wary and illusive, and it is best to expect modest numbers of landed fish each day. Anglers should be prepared for lots of casting and be attentive and ready to capitalize on every strike with a solid hookset. Anglers with a strong saltwater strip set will be rewarded.

Anglers can expect to have 10 – 15 opportunities per day in the wetlands of fish in the 5-to 20-pound class and hope to land about a third of them.

The upper Parana is a trophy fishery with less opportunities but big rewards. Having five good opportunities a day is a great day.  Solidly hooking one fish per day in the upper Parana is a success, and landing one or more is an accomplishment to be proud of.

Will I see other anglers? In the wetlands, you will only see the other guests from the lodge.  The upper Parana has more boat traffic.

What are the guides like? The guides all speak English and are hardworking, professional, and experienced.

What are the physical demands? You will be casting repeatedly with a single hand 8-weight from a boat and the weather can be very warm.

Are there any special skills required? Long casts are not required, but accurate casts close to the structure will benefit the angler and result in more opportunities. A good saltwater-style strip-set, and good double haul are also very helpful.

Does the lodge provide equipment?  Yes. All flies and terminal tackle are included, and fishing gear is available for guests if needed.

What is your favorite setup for the trip? Any high-quality fast action 8-weight rod and a reel with a strong drag and a tropical weight forward floating line.

What are the top flies? Any fly that is big and moves water, whether subsurface or floating, will work.  The top dorado wet-fly pattern is a 6-inch-long Deceiver-style fly, with a bead chain eye and a sparse bucktail collar tied on a stout, straight eye, wide-gap Big Game hook in sizes 4/0 – 6/0.  The guides here prefer the unweighted pattern over the more common Andino Deceiver, which has a larger muddler head and lead eyes.

What are the options if water conditions become challenging? It is rare that water conditions will prevent anglers from fishing.  The wetlands typically have fishable conditions, and the upper Parana above the confluence with the Paraguay River is a tailwater and fishable 99% of the time.

A benefit of the combination trip is that if it is unsafe to fly due to weather conditions it is only a 2.5 hour ground transfer that allows guests to still fish a full day.

What is a typical day like? In the marsh you typically depart for fishing at around 8:00AM and spend the whole day (including lunch) on the water.

On the Parana River anglers typically fish in two split sessions with a long mid-day break for lunch and a siesta. Guides really like to be on the water for sunup and sundown. 

What is the general vibe, atmosphere and style of the lodge?  The general vibe is very relaxed.  You feel like you are with family that wants to make sure you are having a great time. They do a wonderful job of making sure you know that this is your vacation, and they are happy to accommodate you in any way they can.  They also take every opportunity to make the trip special, doing things like lunch or sundowners on the beach and bringing in local singers and dancers.

Is there an on-site owner, manager or other point-person at the lodge? Yes, there is always a point person onsite at each location.

Where do we eat, and what are the meals like? There is a chef at both lodges and all camps have a chef.  Meals are thoughtfully prepared and feature classic Argentine cuisine.

What is the alcohol policy?  Alcohol is included in the package and guests are welcome to bring their own favorite spirit if they like.

Where do we stay, and what are the accommodations like?  La Alondra’i is the base for the first portion of your trip and is located in a culturally rich town with people going to work on horseback along sand streets.  The outside of the lodge is non-descript, but upon entering you find a well-appointed interior with a great sense of place and a welcoming staff. There are four double occupancy rooms with air conditioning and ensuite bathrooms and they take up to eight anglers per week. Guests stay at this lodge on the first and fourth nights of the trip.

There are also two remote satellite camps in the marsh that each take up to four anglers and provide a special opportunity to immerse yourself in the marsh’s unique ecosystem.  Groups of four stay one night at each camp and rotate on nights two and three.

The Iberá Ruguá camp is a small and rustic, yet comfortable cabin that has electric power and hot water for showers.

Yaguarté Abá is a tented camp on a wooden platform and has electric power and hot water showers.

Itati Lodge will be your base for the Parana River portion of your trip and is a traditional estancia on the banks of the river. You end the week at this lodge, which features five double occupancy rooms with air conditioning and ensuite bathrooms. They only take eight anglers per week.

Is there internet and/or cell service? La Alondra’i and Itati Lodge both have cell coverage and wireless internet, and the remote marsh camps only have limited cell coverage.

Are there other activities?  Horses are a way of life in this part of Argentina and the region’s gauchos are some of the most famous in the world.  Guests that do not fish can go horseback riding and swimming with horses in the marsh.

Birdwatching and wildlife viewing are also available.  There are many endemic animals to the marshland such as ant eaters, long neck foxes, and the elusive jaguar.

Are there any other expenses?  No.

Do I need a visa?  No.

Are there any health concerns, dangers or annoyances?  There are mosquitos during some months, but typically only for 30 minutes during the evening.

We recommend that guests always consult with the U.S. Department of State and the Center For Disease Control websites for general travel information and guidelines.

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