Great Fishing Adventures of Australia : Part II


The remaining part of the collection of independent fishing operators offering unforgettable experiences in Australia’s most inspiring and extraordinary locations;


Ultimate Adventures Barramundi Fishing offers fully guided sport fishing itineraries on the Lower Ord River in the spectacularly beautiful Kimberley region of Western Australia. Visitors to this area can experience the thrill of catching wild barramundi on one of Australia’s famous and unique outback river systems. Ultimate Adventures offers small group, personalized fishing trips, catering for the novice through to experienced anglers. Guests can join the quest to hook the elusive wild barramundi in a unique river system where large crocodiles, myriad birdlife and tropical wildlife coexist. Accommodation is the bush-style Hairy Dog’s Fishing Camp, near the historic bend of the Lower Ord River and Carlton Crossing, with river views, verandah dining and plenty of Kimberley hospitality.


Domestic Airport: Kununurra, Western Australia
International Airport: Darwin, Northern Territory
Time to Lodge: 1 hour 4WD from Kununurra
Peak Season: Late March to early November


The Mackerel Islands are an archipelago of 10 beautiful islands surrounded by pristine waters in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, just 15 miles off the coast of Onslow. Just two out of the ten islands welcome guests - Thevenard and Direction Islands – offering a truly unique fishing adventure with beachfront accommodation in close proximity to world-class fishing. The Mackerel Islands are also the Pilbara’s fishiest waters and anglers happily recount the number of times they reeled in a thumping great red emperor, giant trevally or sailfish. Keen anglers have the choice of beach, boat and fly fishing as well as fishing charters, where an experienced skipper will reveal favorite fishing spots. These waters attract visitors from all over the world to test their skills against nature’s finest.


Domestic Airport: Onslow, Western Australia
International Airport: Perth, Western Australia
Time to Lodge/Vessel: 45 min ferry transfer from Onslow
Peak Season: Autumn/Winter (March - November)


Heralded as one of the best fishing destinations in Australia, visitors to the remote Cobourg Peninsula can expect to experience some of Australia’s best blue water and barramundi fishing, without vying for space. The Aboriginal lands of the Cobourg Peninsula are a perfect example of an environment that has never felt the effects of human interference. Mud crabs can still be speared in the crystal-clear water, oysters can be shucked from nearly every exposed rock and fishing here is in a league of its own. Accommodation at Cobourg Coastal Camp is in eight safari-style tents on raised decking. Dining is in a large, undercover area with the adjacent lounge and library the perfect place to relax after a day out at sea.


Domestic Airport: Smith Point Airstrip
International Airport: Darwin
Time to Lodge/Vessel: 1 minute
Peak Season: April, May, October, November


Dhipirri Barra and Sportfishing Lodge, located on an exclusive stretch of Australia’s remote Arnhem Land coastline, provides personalised safaris for fishing enthusiasts from around the world. Just a short scenic flight from Darwin or Gove, Dhipirri is located on pristine coastline between two tidal rivers – the Glyde and Woolen- where local traditional owners have given their approval to access these amazing fishing locations. Barramundi or “barra” as it’s locally known, is the specialty here and a great fighting fish. Off shore the targets are pelagics and reef fish caught on the hundreds of bommies in the area. Back at the lodge, guests are well looked after in air-conditioned, well-appointed cabins located next to a central lodge, where sundowners are enjoyed overlooking the ocean before an outstanding dinner of freshly caught fish or mud crabs.


Domestic Airport: Gove
International Airport: Darwin, Northern Territory
Time to Lodge: Gove flight 40 mins/Darwin 2 hours
Peak Season: Dhipirri Barra operates from March - mid December


Groote Eylandt Sports Fishing offers a range of fishing charters, for novices through to experienced anglers. Groote Eylandt – Dutch for ‘large island’ - and its sprawling archipelago encompasses some 40 smaller islands. It is around 400 miles east of Darwin (a 1.5 hour flight) in the Gulf of Carpentaria. The Warnindilyakwa people are the traditional owners of the region. On a typical three-day safari adventure, guests will experience reef, blue water and estuary fishing with hard-hitting tropical species from marlin and sailfish to the iconic barramundi. Diverse marine habitats ranging from tidal coastal creeks and sandy islands, through to 150 foot blue water trenches, mean anglers get to experience world-renowned fishing in one spot.


Domestic Airport: Alyangula, Groote Island, Northern Territory
International Airport: Darwin, Northern Territory
Time to Lodge: 1.5 hour flight from Darwin Peak Season:
Bluewater - September to December
Estuaries - September to April
Reef - all year


Tiwi Islands Adventures operates remote fishing lodges on the Tiwi Islands, a scenic 30-minute flight from Darwin. Known for its tropical climate, small and friendly indigenous population and great fishing, the Tiwi Islands is a remote area, consisting of coastal wetlands, mangrove lined river and creek systems, bays and coastal reefs all abundant with marine life. Fishing tours are run from two locations: Melville Island Lodge for up to 20 guests; and the ultra-remote Johnson River Camp in the upper reaches of the river, for up to nine guests. The variety of waters and accommodation allow for tours ranging from two through to six days.


Domestic Airport: Tiwi Islands/Snake Bay
International Airport: Darwin, Northern Territory
Time to Lodge: 5 minutes/vehicle
Peak Season: March - June and September - December


Nomad Sportfishing Adventures has provided pioneering sportfishing adventures to some of the most remote waters of Australia for over 15 years. Their professional guides specialize in lure casting, jigging, trolling and fly fishing for giant trevally and dogtooth tuna, plus a diverse range of pelagic and tropical reef species. The 80-foot mother-ship Odyssey and fleet of 18 to 25 ft center consoles have been purpose-built to fish the most remote areas of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea – the world’s largest and most pristine tropical coral reef system. After a day on the water, Odyssey provides a welcome return, offering guests chilled keg beer on tap and a three-course meal prepared by the on-board chef.


Domestic Airport: Cairns
International Airport: Cairns
Time to Lodge / Vessel: 1-4 hours (transfer times vary depending on the reef chosen)
Peak Season: February to December


The following operators are specialists in providing knowledge and tackle solutions specifically suited to their location and target species. 

Experiences on offer range from single day tours in Victoria's Port Phillip Bay, heli-fishing in the Northern Territory, or a two to seven day expedition through the Great Barrier Reef on Queensland’s coast, to name a few. For those venturing to the West Coast, specialist fly fishing guides will have you sight casting throughout the famous Ningaloo Reef, or chasing mighty marlin on an off-shore game boat.

Bay Fish N Trips – Mornington, Victoria
Fly Fishing Frontiers – Exmouth, Western Australia
Helifish – Darwin, Northern Territory, Cairns, Townsville and Horn Island, Queensland
Hervey Bay Fly & Sportfishing – Hervey Bay, Queensland
Mahi Mahi Coral Bay – Coral Bay, Western Australia
Outback Floatplane Adventures – Darwin, Northern Territory
Renegade Fishing Charters – Whitsunday’s, Queensland
True Blue Bones – Exmouth, Western Australia
Elizabeth EII Luxury Liveaboard Charters – Mackay, Queensland

Of course, there’s so much more to building lasting fishing memories than simply catching fish … even big ones! In the end, it’s as much about context and experience, and you’ll find those ingredients here in healthy servings.

Eye-popping scenery, exotic wildlife and colorful, down-to-earth local characters are all integral parts of the bigger picture. Better yet, because Australia’s situated Down Under, in the southern hemisphere, our seasons are reversed. While North America, is seized in winter’s icy grip, Australia is enjoying long, languorous days bathed in glorious summer sunshine … so come on down and wet a line!

The water’s fine, the fish are biting and the locals are definitely friendly. 


Courtesy : Great Fishing Adventures of Australia, Tourism Australia

Jonathan Campbell

Aussie Trip Advisor, 12H Nob Hill, Roseland NJ 07068

Aussie Trip Advisor hand-craft Australian itineraries on a fee-for-service basis