The best facilities, ever changing lakes and oceans rich in sea life. Let’s face it, if whales dine in these waters, there must be plenty on offer!
You are spoilt for choice, whether you want to motor out to sea, head up river or out to the centre of a lake, fish from shore or dive beneath a wave. There are endless places where you can catch a meal and great facilities to use when you return. The coast is dotted with boat ramps, charter boats and tackle shops. Merimbula's artificial reef, in place since Sept 2018 provides an excellent habitat for a wide range of fish species common to the region. The reef is located 2.5km southeast of the Merimbula estuary entrance in approximately 32 metres of water. Follow the link here for GPS co-ordinates.
If it’s the big game fish you are chasing, charter operators from Bermagui, Merimbula and Eden can take you to where the wild things are; if it’s something smaller and more accessible, then favourites such as flathead, whiting, bream and snapper are among the many species that cruise the Sapphire Coast.
And it is not just about fish: this region is famous for its shellfish, particularly prawns, oysters, mussels. The eco-systems of the coastal lakes and wetlands protect the habitat and the pristine waters nurture them.
If you don’t mind hunting with a net and a torch, then catching your own prawns, cooking them under a summer night sky and washing them down with a cold beer or chilled wine is a memory that will last forever!
If you don’t know where to start on your fishing adventure, there are plenty of local experts to ask. Start with the nearest bait and tackle shop, a local at one of the Visitor Information Centres or wander into one of the coastal fishing clubs – most offer boat launching ramps, fish cleaning facilities and good local advice.
Every Friday night during Summer the Merimbula Big Game & Lakes Fishing Club at Spencer Park, provides an up to date fishing report. The bar is open from 6.30pm and visitors are most welcome to come along, enjoy the ambiance, find out where the fish are biting and what has been caught in the week.
Guides and charters
Reel Affair – Merimbula
Reel Affair Fishing Charters Merimbula, operates Reef Fishing, Deep Sea Fishing, Kingfish Charters and Game Fishing on a private or share charter basis. The Reel Affair is a 38 foot fly-bridge Mariner Cruiser with twin engines.
Ask about Fisherman’s Lodge, which sleeps 12 and is centrally located in the heart of Merimbula, a short walk to shops, clubs, restaurants and Merimbula’s Public Jetty.
Whale Watch cruises are also available during the months of September to November for the southern migration of Humpback Whales.
Merimbula Marina – Merimbula
Merimbula Marina offers a range of ocean adventure tours – from reef fishing trips to whale watching.
Plan your next maritime adventure here, from whale watching, fishing, extreme adventure, discovery tours, and even boat hire.
Find the jetty in the heart of Merimbula and get ready for a unique adventure!
Join Mark and Christine aboard the 11.6 metre ‘Connemara’ at Eden for a personalised, intimate whale watching experience.
In season, Freedom Charters departs daily from Snug Cove, Eden and each 2 hour trip has no more than 12 people to ensure good viewing for everyone. Mornings are best, and tours begin at 8.30am.
Mark and Christine are specialists in catering to your unique needs, including homemade morning tea. Their regular clientele include bird watchers, whale researchers and fishermen.
Ticket prices – adults $80, children under 16 – $65. Special school holiday pricing (Vic & NSW) for children under 16 – $50.
Tickets include morning tea and free entry to Sapphire Coast Marine Discovery Centre.
Rathlin II Fishing Charters – Merimbula
The Rathlinn II is a 41ft steber, custom built from the ground up for maximum space for fishing.
It has a spacious lounge, galley and amenities for your expedition.
The crew specialise in Marlin, Tuna, Sharks, Broadbill Swordfish and a wide variety of reef species.
Fishpen Charters – Merimbula
Departures daily from Merimbula’s iconic Mitchie’s Jetty, get onboard the ultimate fishing adventure!
We cater for the novice to the experienced fisher, specialising in reef and fun-filled family trips. Broadbill is a fully-surveyed stable vessel with experienced and friendly skippers. Your catch is cleaned and ready for the pan!
During September, October and November the annual migration of the mighty humpback whales takes place just off the coast of Merimbula, an encounter with these truly awesome creatures is an experience that will not be easily forgotten on board Broadbill.
Trips depart from Mitchies Jetty on Fishpen Road.
Your enjoyment and safety is our priority, therefore, we DO NOT fish in rough weather.
Head Hunter Charters – Bermagui
Head Hunter specialises in game fishing in the famous waters of Bermagui for Black Marlin, Big Blue Marlin, Stripe Marlin, Yellowfin Tuna and Albacore.
Head Hunter is a 41′ Steber re-powered with twin 425HP Yanmar motors and refitted with state of the art electronics. It has a top speed of 27 knots and cruises at 18 knots to ensure you get to the fishing grounds faster. Our qualified skippers and crew will host your offshore fishing experience, whether you’re a beginner or an expert, using the latest fish-finding techniques and fishing equipment for your enjoyment and safety. All equipment is to IGFA standards.
On board facilities include: Large fridges and freezers, large flat screen TV, DVD, CD & MP3 player, large open saloon area, clean accessible galley, microwave and electric stove, large Flybridge area, full bathroom facilities.
Eden Outdoors and Marine
Owner Barry Ellis has over 30 years of fishing under his belt and his keen staff are in the same boat. This tackle shop is a hub of fishing knowledge, predictions, banter and well stocked with camping and dive gear too. Drop in and see the huge collection of trophies and memorabilia, including the Australian record for Blue Marlin caught on 24 kilo line. Gear repairs are done on site, overnight if needed. Open 7 days 8am to 5.30pm.
02 6496 1513
0409 156 747
Bermagui Bait & Tackle
Drop in for and egg and bacon roll and a coffee before fishing the south coast’s richest fishing grounds.
Bermagui Bait & Tackle is a one stop shop for all your fishing needs, with everything from game fishing gear to the lightest estuary rods & lures, and incredible information network which covers the mountains and the coast. You can even see live weather & sea surface updates while you chat to the crew.
There’s a fleet of watercraft available for hire including 4.3m safe aluminium powered boats, single, fishing and tandem kayaks.
Bermagui Bait and Tackle is also an outlet for Wapengo Rocks, the Sapphire Coast’s famous organic Sydney Rock Oysters, pick up 30 unopened for $40.
Open 7 days a week from 6am to 6pm.
Headland Charters – Merimbula
Going fishing with Headland Charters is a real adventure for young and old, if you have never fished before or you are a pro, we will take good care of you.
You’ll be fishing on the best boat in town with personal service guaranteed. Jadele II, in full maritime survey for 12 passengers and 2 crew, is available for share charters or exclusive hire. Reef, game, shark, king fishing and whale watching (in season). Also scenic coastal cruises.
On-board toilet. Tea & coffee provided. No fishing licence is required. All fishing gear and bait supplied and all fish are cleaned for you.