Ahh, Melbourne, Australia: home to amazing street art, excellent coffee, and nearly 5 million people! On the map, it lies in the southeastern part of Australia, lining many bodies of water perfect for leisurely activities such as swimming and fishing. Here in Australia, you’ll find plenty of creeks, rivers, beaches, and rock pools, all offering various species of fish. So we’ve compiled a list of the 7 best fishing spots in Melbourne to help you out on your next fishing trip so you can catch your own trout!
1. Patterson River
Patterson River is a popular destination with optimal fishing conditions; it is a man-made waterway of Port Phillip Bay in the suburbs of Melbourne created in 1876. Surprisingly, it is only about 5 kilometers long and functions to launch boats fishing for specific species out into the river. It gets remarkably busy in this area due to its popular canal system and its wet and dry storage. In general, you’ll find a range of fish in this rather small river, including flounder, flathead, mulloway, bream, Trevally, mullet, salmon, and estuary perch, bream being the more abundant species. The mouth of the river is abundant with Australian salmon and flatheads. The further away you are from the commotion of the boats, the more successful you will be in your fishing endeavors. This area also offers plenty of amenities to enhance your fishing experience, such as jetties, launching areas, and fish cleaning stations.
2. Yarra River
The Yarra River is where it’s at. Nestled right in the heart of Melbourne, Australia, this huge expanse is riddled with sights of the city and opportunities for a good catch. Back then, this river, originally called Birrarung, supplied a lot of the food and resources for indigenous Australians, and today, it continues to be a source of home and and fun for the whole family. It is an urban icon and runs 242 km long starting at CBD and ending at the Yarra Valley ranges, perfect for spending the day sight-seeing, biking, and fishing. This stretch offers a front row seat to Melbourne’s nightlife and sporting arenas, but is also popular for its fishing opportunities. The Mulloway species, fish that are highly sought for, are plentiful in the Yarra River. Mulloways are difficult to catch, but the Yarra River offers fruitful opportunities for anglers to catch them. Apart from Mulloways, you’re greeted with bream, mullet, estuary perch, redfin, Murray cod, and carp. Thankfully, this location is productive all day, meaning you can catch plenty of fish during all times of the day.
3. Albert Park Lake
Albert Park Lake is a conventiently centralized location for fishing in Melbourne, not too far from Melbourne CBD. When not hosting the Australian One Grand Prix, this lake is open recreationally. At about 1 to 2 meters high, this lake is relatively shallow. However, it is beaming with a variety of fish, including rainbow trout, European carp, mirror carp, and golden perch. The Yellowbelly and Estuary Perch have been stocked in the lake by the Victorian government as well. Though it can be quite challenging to catch fish due to the weeds, this is an excellent location for those dedicated to the craft. The best fishing times at Albert Park Lake are around sunrise and sundown, all year round. Albert Park Lake is the place to be for experienced anglers looking for an enriching time.
4. Queenscliff Pier
Queenscliff Pier is another versatile outdoor location found on the south-western end of Port Phillip Bay, about 100 km from Melbourne. It rests in a lively town, boasting parks, cafes, beaches, and shops near the harbor, making it the perfect destination for weekend trips. Unlike other areas, Queenscliff Pier offers deep water for local anglers. You’ll find plenty of squid here at Queenscliff, as well as mullet, flathead, salmon, whiting, trevally, wrasse, snapper, gummy sharks, and rays. Though this area offers many different species, you’ll likely have different set-ups for each catch. The best times of the day to stop by would be when the wind is stirring and the tides are high, specifically around dawn or dusk. Queenscliff Pier is the best place to be when you need to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and rest by the seaside.
5. Maribyrnong River
The Maribyrnong River of Brimbank Park rests on Melbourne’s northwestern suburbs, about 15 km from the city, making it accessible to local Melburners. Brimbank Park itself is quite picturesque and scenic, grassy, lush, and great for cycling and walking. This homey spot is great for families, but be wary of the active animals in the area; you can find snakes at Brimbank Park! Brown trout, bream, salmon, mullet, stocked estuary perch, eels, redfin, and especially carp occupy the Maribyrnong River, a primarily freshwater river that spans about 40 km long along Brimbank Park. You’ll most likely be targeting bream and carp here. The future of fishing at Nong River is bright; the Fishing Mad team is planning upgrades set to be complete by 2022 with the approved $815,000 fund. These upgrades include stocking the river with 300,000 Estuary Perch, installing wood structure habitats, creating a new boat launching ramp and new facilities, improving waterway quality, and investing study and research into the behavior of stocked fish. You’ll definitely want to keep this river on your radar.
6. Jells Park Lake
Jells Park Lake is another man-made lake settled in Dandenong Creek that greets nearly one million people a year. Jells Park itself provides over 127 hectares of space for recreational activities, such as cycling, bird watching, and fishing. The lake offers two jetties available for visitors and locals to fish freshwater species at. The kind of fish you can find here include Europen carp, big eels, and redfin; the best times of the day to reach these fish are during dawn and dusk, especially in the warmer months, when they feed more insistently.
The Best Time to Fish In Melbourne
The sun, moon, and tides all come together to impact fishing conditions; the sky gives you a good indication of fish activity. Thankfully, Australia offers terrific conditions for fishing all year round. However, many species tend to be more actively feeding around the milder and warmer periods of the year, so we recommend fishing around from September to November and from March to May.
And don’t forget: always have your Victorian fishing license handy!