Like so many people who grew up near the coast, Capt. Borja couldn’t resist the call of the sea. So after 12 years of working on land, he finally decided to become a seafarer, and eventually a charter operator.

Capt. Borja shares with us life on board a commercial fishing vessel and the perks of living in Basque Country.

Where were you born? I was born in Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain1003663_372110636222845_2027174998_nThe place you consider as your hometown? I consider Zumaia [also in Basque Country] as my hometown.

How did you become a fisherman? I have always loved the sea, after being a photographer for 12 years I decided I wanted to learn to repair things and studied nautical engineering and started in fishing vessels, where I still am nowadays.

How did Getari Charter started? Getari Charter started because we saw that there was not such service for tourists or locals (those who do not have a boat).


How did your career as an officer in a tuna seiner influenced your putting up of Getari Charter? Life in the engine in a tuna seiner is very hard, learnt a lot in ship maintenance so I decided to make the jump.

You’ve fished from Africa to Europe, which country would you most likely to go back to? Why? I like the Gulf of Guinea, nice weather everyday and calm sea. We fished in Ireland but very rough seas, it was cold and wet there.

What’s the best aspect of fishing in Basque Country? Best aspect is that I am in my house every night!!

When the best time go fishing in Getaria and the best fishing technique to use? Best time for fishing is between October and March, loads of fish. Bottom fishing works nice this time.


Basque country looks like a place straight out of fairy tales. What is it about Getaria or Basque Country that you’re most proud of? The people are very open, always welcoming you to their home, a little brute but very honest.

What’s your best fishing memory? When we were fishing tuna in Ireland, we caught them one by one, we had the face of exhaustion and happiness after fishing for 2 hours non stop.trip_14

What’s your worst fishing or sea experience? When I had my practical captain exam, we were stranded for 36 hours in the coast of France, we nearly went down. The boat could not go forward, we were caught among very strong currents. The waves passed over us and broke astern without being able to do nothing, finally we managed. We even phoned home!!

If you’re not a fisherman today, what would you be doing? If I was not a fishermen I really don’t know, I also volunteer in search and rescue for the red cross in Getaria base.

There are people who genuinely love fishing. Would you consider yourself as one of them? Yes,I love fishing, I like the pull of the line. And whenever you get a huge bite, you know you’re doing a job very few people would do.



Captain Borja  operates from a charming fishing village of Getaria. It’s a town made up of cobblestone streets and rolling green hills sloping to the sea – a common scenery in Basque Country. It’s the birthplace of fashion icon Balenciaga, and home to the Txakoli – the unknown Basque white wine.

Off its coast lies Bay of Biscay, one of the oldest maritime waters in Europe. Wrecks here go back for hundreds of years, and are now teeming with marine life. Go fish for tuna, sea bass, mackerel, dentex, grouper, bonito and other species.

Capt. Borja offers half days and full day trips which consists of bottom fishing and trolling. For enquiries, visit or click here to go fishing with Getari charter.


Like most men his age, he has a day job. But unlike most men his age who love fishing, he doesn’t have to wait for the holidays to use his tackle. Neither did he wait for retirement to get his own boat. That’s the beauty of having your own charter. And he takes full advantage by sharing the fun to others, even a few fish tales which he shares below.

Where were you born? Baghdad, Iraq

The place you consider as your hometown? Abu Dhabi, UAE

How did you become a fisherman? My father is a fisherman and I’ve been fishing with him since I was 5 years old.


How did Cristal Charter started? It started as a hobby in 2001 with a 17-foot boat. It became a 25-foot boat in 2007 and then the cost of this hobby become a burden. So I moved to a 31 feet boat in 2010 to enjoy the fishing and cover the expenses at the same time.

What is your favorite fishing technique? Hand line fishing


What is your favorite fish and why? Spangled emperor, easy to catch.

What is the biggest fish you caught in your life? Where was this and when? A Zebra shark that weights 30 KG in Sharjah, UAE back in 2008.

Have you ever fished in other cities or countries other than yours? How did those places compare to Abu Dhabi? I’ve fished in Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Philippine, Ukraine but I’ve never found a more fun and nicer place to fish than in UAE. Maybe because I know more about the fishing techniques and fishing spots here than anywhere else.


What’s the best part of fishing in Abu Dhabi? Even if the weather is not good for fishing, you can go through the channels between the islands and spend a great day with a lot of fishing spots.

When is the best time go fishing in Abu Dhabi and the best fishing technique to use? Early morning before sunrise using fresh bait with hand line, there’s this amazing feeling when the fish touches the bait.


What’s your best fishing memory? Back in 2007, I went fishing with Capitan Abdullah Al Shamessi on his boat Aneed1. I cannot forget it, I caught the biggest barracuda in my life, almost 15 kg. I also caught more than 60 huge Yellow Snappers, each one between 3kg to 5kg.

What’s your worst fishing or sea experience? In 2010 I was having two old engines then we left to the sea and the both engines one after one damaged before we reach to Abu Dhabi and we call the coastguard. It took more than 15 hours in the hot weather before they found us.


There are people who genuinely love fishing. Would you consider yourself as one of them? Why or Why not? Yes! I cannot last out at sea without fishing. I’ll go trolling alone sometimes just to relax. I’ll take my boat out at night and just watch the beautiful city of Abu Dhabi from the sea. It makes me feel more comfortable before going home and going to work the next day.

thumb_13430_agentBoat_medium2Cristal charter offers 4 hours to 6 hours trip from 1,000 AED. It departs from Rainbow Marina in Abu Dhabi and carries up to 6 people. Click here to go fishing with Capt. Nauaman.


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He is one of the most prolific charter captains in Muscat, an excellent fisherman with excellent people skills. He’s such warm person, you can feel his enthusiasm oozing from the phone. There are captains who thrive in fishing but fails to connect with the anglers. This one can be terribly sweet to the people on board. He keeps you entertained, attends your needs, and teaches you how to work the rod and reel. He has the balance of guiding you and letting you do your own thing.

I’m yet to hear a bad review for this guy. His guests always leave his boat grinning and with a handful of fish. 31 out of 32 gave him excellent reviews in a famous travel website. 1 person gave him a very good. Maybe because he has a way of making the day memorable, regardless of fishing conditions.

Captain Salim owns and operates Sansool 1 and Sansool 2. He was born and raised in Muscat, Oman. And he lives there still, in a house near the sea.

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Capt. Salim, fishing charters Muscat, Oman

Tell us a bit about your background and why you became a fisherman? In early 1975 I went fishing with my father for the first time. My dad’s a fisherman. During those days fishing tools were very limited and considered low tech. I started loving fishing and used a wooden boat to go after Blue Marlin, Swordfish, Tuna, Kingfish and others. I loved fishing and it has always been my life, I thank my father for that.

I have plenty of experience in the science of the sea and methods used in fishing. I can also read the weather, wind, and waves. Most of this knowledge came from my father. He taught me since I was a kid, and now I’m still doing it 30 years later.

What is it about your home that you’re most proud of? I always have a great time here, and my boys are becoming the next generation fishermen in the family. They have the instinct for it.

As a child, what were your best memories about fishing? I used to go out with my father everyday from 4:00am to 2:00pm. We would go to great depths and fish for bluefin tuna, marlin, and swordfish. I remember when boats reach the coast, fishermen would unload tons and tons of fish in the market.

What’s the best lesson you’ve learned from your father about fishing? My dad always told me not be stubborn and don’t be impatient in catching the big fish because it will reflect on you. You need patience until you get to them, and it’s not easy. If you hurry, you’ll cut off hooks.

What is it about fishing that you love so much? I like catching different kinds of species, because you use a different method for each type of fish: there are surface fish, bottom fish and so on. Hunting for fish is always a great fun.

Dorado caught with Capt. Salim
“We caught some mahi-mahi [and went] dolphin watching…my mom got sick and Capt. Salim helped her through it…[he] has a lot of experience and skill. I highly recommend for an enjoyable fishing trip.” – Rayyan, July 2014
In your experience, what’s the best thing fishing has taught you? A lot. From sardines to big fish, each has a lesson.

What is the biggest fish you caught in your life? Blue marlin 250kg with my father, white shark more than 200kg with my older brother, yellowfin tuna 110kg, sailfish 60kg and kingfish 45kg.

sailfish fishing in Muscat
sailfish caught aboard Sansool 1

What do you think is the best fishing technique to use in Muscat? Bottom fishing and trolling.

Best customer you’ve had? All customers are happy. I talk to them, get their information, what they think about the sea and fishing, and give them a different experience each time. They’ll have a great time and we’ll return to the marina. And again, they’d like to return and go on a fishing trip.

grouper Sansool 2
happy angler with his grouper on Sansool 2

There are people who genuinely love the sea, would you consider yourself as one of them? Yes, I am of those people who love the sea not only for hunting. I really enjoy the water, everything is beautiful especially the different organisms. I love the fishing, swimming, diving, and relaxing on the beach.

Captain Salim offers 4-hour and 8-hour trips for 1 to 8 people from Marina Bandar Al Rowhda in Muscat.



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