Fishing in Tasmania

There are fighting trout in just about every freshwater stream, lake and river in Tasmania but you will need a licence if you want to catch them. The fishing season runs from August to May, with the best time to be on the water between October and April. There are also private lakes where no licence is required, these include the Launceston Lakes (15 minutes from the city) and the Snowy Range Trout Fishery (an hour south of Hobart). Special licences are required to catch crayfish, scallops or abalone.

It's difficult to recommend any particular area or stream because trout are everywhere. In the north there are many streams (including the Mersey, Meander, Liffey, North and South Esk, Macquarie and Elizabeth) where trout are consistently found. To the south and west Lake St Clair, Lake Burbury and Lake Peddar are popular trout fishing favourites. On the Central Plateau there are numerous lakes including the luxurious London Lakes, which is rated as one of the world's top five specialist angling lodges.

The estuaries, bays and beaches in Tasmania are also an angler's paradise; filled with bream, flathead, whiting, Australian salmon and big game (tuna/marlin). Bottom fishing can also be found in the East Coast ports of Bicheno, St Helens, Coles Bay and Triabunna. On the West Coast at Strahan, at Eaglehawk Neck on the Tasman Peninsula and on both King and Flinders Islands, there's some great fishing to be found.

A few tips:

  • There are accredited fishing guides who will have you fly-fishing within a day's tuition and fully-guided expeditions who'll take you to the best kept secrets.
  • Some of the lakes and streams are so crystal clear that you can stalk trout by sight. Polaroid sunglasses and a sunny day will also improve your chances.
  • Local knowledge counts. If you're not keen on a guided trip, tackle and bait shops are the best source of information on what's biting where and what gear/bait to use.
  • The best months for marlin and tuna are from February to June. All catches are tagged and released.
Fishing at Kentish Hills Retreat