Fishing Spots in VIC

Each state and territory in Australia has its own premier fishing spots and predominant fish species. Some locations may reveal abundant fish stocks of a select species whilst others may offer a more diverse range of species. This article discusses some of the popular fishing spots in Victoria and provides some helpful tips.


Portland is the site of the first European settlement in Victoria and features many historic buildings and short stretches of beach fronting safe still waters. The deep-water bulk port in Portland is strategically located between Melbourne and Adelaide where over 4 million tonnes of cargo is handled annually.

Fishing Spots

Protected from southerly squalls by Cape Sir William Grant, the beach and port waters provides great fishing opportunities for snapper, flathead, whiting, trevally, Australian salmon and sweep. Portland has an excellent launching ramp with cleaning tables for those who want to target game fish like shark offshore. Sharks such as blue, mako, thresher, bronze whaler, school and gummy sharks can be targeted in Portland Bay during the mating season from October to December. They then congregate offshore from the Fitzroy River mouth through October to May. Species such as snapper, whiting and flathead are the commonly targeted fish around Portland. The beach at Narrawong which is 19kms east of Portland provides some top surf fishing for Australian salmon, snapper and even mulloway during the summer months.


Sharks can be targeted on heavy gear using very sharp No. 6/0 to 10/0 hooks on wire trace. When fishing for snapper use 10kgs of main line, a heavy sinker and a couple of droppers. Snapper are not fussy eaters and should respond well to crab meat, garfish, mussel, octopus, pilchard, squid and prawns. They tend to be bottom dwellers and like to hold and feed over very rough reef and in deep holes. Snapper will provide a tough fight and once hooked, tend to run hard and deep. Snapper near Portland is best targeted between November and April. Although snapper is commonly taken offshore from boat over spots like Minerva Reef and Cod Splat, there are some good spots for shore anglers around Lee Breakwater and the marina wharf in the port.

Port Phillip

Port Phillip is a large marine bay in southern Victoria. The bay itself is around 1,930 square kilometres and has a coastline length of 264kms. The bay is very shallow for its size with half the bay being in waters less than 8 metres deep. The ‘Bay’ as known by the locals has many beaches including St Kilda Beach and Brighton Beach. The well-known Yarra River extends through Melbourne from a bay at the northern end of Port Phillip called Hobsons Bay.

Fishing Spots

Respected by anglers for its table qualities and fighting abilities, snapper is the prize in Port Phillip. Snapper head into the bay to spawn during September and stay until May. They seem to favour channels and gutters, around rocks, behind sand flats, over rubble or weeds. Corio Bay holds snapper, whiting and Australian salmon all year round. Land anglers could try the rocks on the eastern side of Point Lillias, North Shore rocks or St Helens. Limeburners Bay near the Geelong Grammar School is a good spot for big snapper, mullet, bream, flathead and flounder especially during winter and spring,

Mornington Pier is a favourite and one of the best piers on the bay. From the deeper half of the pier, flathead can be landed all year round, snapper when the westerlies and northerlies blow and King George whiting during spring and autumn. Many of Port Phillips biggest flathead are taken from Swan Bay from hot spots such as Edwards Point.


Snapper like to feed in shallower waters in the morning and then move into deeper waters as the day progresses. Therefore, the best time to fish for snapper is before sunrise or at sunset and then into the night. This time can also be more rewarding if there is a change in the tide. The run of Snapper in Port Phillip Bay coincides with the blossoming of the Tea-Tree which is around the Sunday after the AFL grand final. Since scallop dredging in Port Phillip has been banned since 1996, everyone now has a chance to catch one of Victoria’s favourite fish.

Upper Murray River

The upper reaches of the Murray River above and beyond the Bringenbrong Bridge flows through mountain country and is fed by numerous rivers, streams and creeks. There are many great spots on the Murray River which are accessible from the Murray Valley Highway (B400) and by nearby towns such as Corryong, Tintaldra, Nariel and Walwa to name a few.

Fishing Spots

The main species of fish caught in the fresh waters of the Murray and its tributaries are Macquarie perch, Murray cod, redfin, blackfish, brown and rainbow trout. Some of the best small streams for trout fishing include Cudgewa and Nariel Creek as they both have gravel and rock beds. The Mitta Mitta River is also highly regarded as a trout hotspot. The granite and gravel-bottomed streams run through beautiful forested mountain country and provides productive catches of brown trout with Macquarie perch in the deeper sections.


Exploring spots especially around the feeder streams of the Mitta Mitta River can be rather difficult to access and seeking local knowledge of the area from townships like Mitta Mitta and Dartmouth can be beneficial.

Trout are elusive fish and great skill is needed when fly fishing. When you are at location, observe the insects that are in the area as well as the insects the trout are feeding on. Then carefully choose a fly that resembles the insects. This is known by fly fishers as ‘matching the hatch’ and the technique can work with bait fishing too. Brown and rainbow trout enjoy baits such as worms, mudeyes, minnows and small bladed lures and flies.

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