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15 of the Best Fishing Spots in New Zealand

New Zealand is one of the most beautiful places in the world. The rivers, lakes and surrounding seas have breathtaking views, and they’re full of fish! It doesn’t matter if you prefer freshwater or saltwater fishing – New Zealand has it all.

Freshwater Fishing Spots In New Zealand

Turangi, Waikato

Dubbed the “Trout Capital of New Zealand,” Turangi is near where the Tongariro River flows into Lake Taupo. Here you will find an abundance of rainbow and brown trout. The average weight is 2kg, but there are plenty of bigger trout to be found too.

Rotorua, Bay of Plenty

Rotorua is another area where rainbow and brown trout are popular. The lake here is shallow, and with a lot of fish here, it makes it easy to get a few good catches. It is open all year long, so the serious fishermen who are happy to brave the elements would find happiness here!

Motueka River, Nelson

This crystal river is another wonderful place for brown trout. This river has some wonderful rapids that give a challenge to avid fishermen but also has some calmer spots that are great for beginners.

Haast River, West Coast

The Haast River has been described as “wild” and “challenging” and is a great spot for the advanced fisherman who wants some of the finest brown trout. In the estuary near the Tasman Sea, you can get some moderately-sized trout and whitebait early on in the season.

Upper Clutha River, Otago

The Upper Clutha River is the fastest flowing river in New Zealand and should be for experienced anglers only. Here you will find rainbow trout, brown trout, chinook salmon, perch and sea trout. The river opens into several lakes on its journey to the sea, but most fishermen tend to stay on the upper part of the river, where the catch rate is quite high.

Gore, Southland

Turangi might be the “Trout Capital of New Zealand” with all the rainbow trout present, but if it’s brown trout you’re after, it is pretty much guaranteed at Gore and the Mataura River.

Saltwater Fishing Spots In New Zealand

Bay of Islands, Northland

If you’re looking for a good chartered fishing trip, then the Bay of Islands has you covered. Here you will find snapper (most popular), marlin, hapuku, and kingfish. If you are just learning how to fish, you can rent fishing rods for the day to try it out.

Stewart Island, Southland

Blue cod, grouper, and trumpeter call the bays and coves of Stewart Island home. It can get a bit windy here, but on nice days you can spend hours in this beautiful location.

Kaikoura, Canterbury

With mountains as the backdrop, you can go fishing in the gorgeous waters of Kaikoura that have a wide variety of wildlife. Blue cod, grouper, sea perch, blue nose and tarakihi can all be caught here. You can also throw out the cray-pots for crayfish.

Whakatane, Bay of Plenty

Whakatane has been hailed as one of New Zealand’s best all-around fishing spots. You can have land-based fishing or take a chartered boat out and find skipjack, yellowfin, and albacore tuna, as well as shark and marlin (from December through April) and snapper and kingfish, are found all year round as well as many others.

Inner Hauraki Gulf, Auckland

Kingfish and snapper rule the inner Hauraki Gulf close to the big city of Auckland. There are some pretty strict enforcements though in these waters, so it is advisable to go on one of the many chartered boat trips out to stay within the guidelines.

Coromandel, Waikato

By boat or by land, the Coromandel Peninsula won’t disappoint. You can get some pretty large kingfish and snapper in these waters. Fantail Bay is the perfect place to go for land-based fishing.

Wellington Harbour, Wellington

Even with fishing from land, you’ll find a wide variety of fish at Wellington Harbour like kingfish, snapper, red and blue cod, kahawai, elephant fish, tarakihi, rays and sea trout.

Dunedin, Otago

Fishing is a very popular hobby in Dunedin and for good reason too. The area is rich in salmon at Taiaora Head, as well as other types like red cod and occasionally trumpeter.

Gisborne, Eastland

World class fly fishing goes on in Gisborne and it's no wonder since there are so many different fishing spots all featuring different species of fish. By land or by sea, you can pull in some really impressive snapper, cod and much more.

Whether it’s a short trip or a long break at the best fishing hotspot, you will want to make sure your fishing gear gets there in one piece! Yakima has the best solution for transporting your fishing gear safely in the form of roof boxes and other car accessories. Keep your equipment safe to and from the water with Yakima roof racks.

Last updated: 13th February 2018

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