One of the questions we often get asked by clients is whether they can go fishing on their Kimberley cruise. The Kimberley Coast is renowned for its fantastic fishing – from the iconic Barramundi through to Mangrove Jack, Fingermark, Giant Trevally, Queenies and more - so it’s little wonder anglers are excited to have the opportunity to cast a line in these bountiful waters.
Not every ship cruising the Kimberley Coast offers the option to fish though, so it’s important to tell us when planning your trip if fishing is a priority. Some ships don’t have licenses to fish, others don’t have the equipment and some simply don’t have the time or flexibility in their itinerary to allow for it.
The ships that focus on fishing tend to be the smaller vessels, where fewer guest numbers mean more flexibility with the itinerary. Smaller vessels also tend to be ‘owner-operated’, crewed predominantly by locals who know the spots fish are likely to be biting, and often love to fish themselves. With that in mind, the three ships we recommend for serious fisherman are True North, Great Escape and Kimberley Quest II.
I still thank back to my first morning of fishing aboard the Kimberley Quest II. In little more than two hours, this novice's haul was thirteen good size Mangrove Jack & Fingermark. Not bad for a first timer and well appreciated by the chef who promptly served up a seafood feast onboard that night.
The great thing about travelling on one of these smaller vessels is that you can do as much fishing as you want. Just say the word and the crew will have you up bright and early and in to a ‘tinny’ (dinghy) heading off to a secret spot ‘where the big Barra bite’! They also have high quality equipment already on board, so there’s no need to bring your own from home.
Of course, even though you will have ample time for fishing, it doesn’t mean you will miss out on any of the sights during the voyage. You’ll have plenty of time to see everything, and still get some good fishing in.
Another option is a dedicated fishing expedition, and these are offered several times each year by both True North and Great Escape. True North’s 8 day ‘Barra Bonanza’ is specialifically built around targeting Barramundi, and is a great option for keen sports fishers after their next thrill.
Of the slightly larger ships cruising the Kimberley Coast, Coral Discoverer and Coral Expeditions I offer a couple of fishing excurisons each trip – using hand reels only. Fish are caught on a ‘catch and release’ basis so you wont be able to tuck in to your catch for dinner.
Larger ships, such as Caledonian Sky, Silver Discoverer and the new Ponant vessels aren’t equipped for fishing and are best avoided.
If fishing is high on your list of priorities then give us a call today and let us help you start planning your ultimate Kimberley fishing adventure!