How to Plan Your Own Sydney Fishing Trip

Whether you’re a first time fisher or a seasoned angler, there’s nothing quite as rewarding and fun as a really good fishing trip. Relaxing on a boat, enjoying the company of friends and family, with the possibility of catching some fish, it all makes for a fishing experience that you’ll always remember!

Are you a first timer planning your own fishing trip and wondering what you need to make the day a success? This fishing guide will give you everything you need to know and will help you plan the most amazing fishing adventure for you and your friends!

Picking a fishing spot

Location is everything when it comes to fishing! It’ll determine a bunch of other important fishing factors such as the best angling times, the type of fish you’ll be able to catch and what type of gear and bait you’ll need. It’ll also determine if you need any particular permits to cast your line.

For example, fishing in Sydney Harbour will potentially net you Australian bass, bream, flathead and leatherjackets and the best times to fish in the Harbour include sunrise and sunset.

Fishing to conditions

Fishing to conditions means letting factors such as the weather and tides dictate where and when to fish. Some other factors to take into account when planning your fishing trip include wind and rain forecasts and water temperatures. Do you research to find out these things because they will have an impact on your fishing results.

Packing your gear

Once you’ve determined when and where you’ll be taking the crew (or just yourself), you need to pack and organise all the gear you’ll need. We break down the essentials below:

  • Fishing license: this is the first thing on the list because it is a must, especially if you are planning to fish in NSW waters, regardless if it is freshwater or saltwater. Getting a license is a quick process and you can apply for a NSW one here.
  • Rods and hand reels: your main fishing tool will consist of a quality rod. There are a ton of things to consider when deciding which rod to use including length, material and action. You can go through a guide like this one to find out. Hand reels are great for your more casual or less enthusiastic fishers.
  • Hooks and sinkers: Even the most seasoned fishers will lose some hooks and sinkers during a fishing trip. Carry some extras so you’ll always have some on deck when you lose them.
  • Knives: these are essential tools for any fishing trip. Knives allow you to cut fishing lines, portion your live bait and cut up any fish you catch.
  • Pliers: pliers are used to help pull hooks out of fish and do so in a way that doesn’t cause too much pain for the fish.
  • Gloves: you can handle fish with your bare hands but many fish often have scales, spines or spikes that might nick your skin. Err on the safe side and use gloves whenever handling fish.
  • Storage: an esky or bucket is essential for taking home any fish you catch (making sure they’re of regulation size).
  • Extra Clothing: unless you like the smell of fish on your clothing, bring some spare tees to change into or a layer of outerwear to cover yourself up. Your fishing trip can last into the sunset – extra clothes can help you stay warm on the water.
  • Food and drink: what’s a fishing trip without a BBQ, some snacks and a few tinnies of beer? If you’re hiring a boat to fish on, they might be able to provide their own catered food. BYO is also another option you can choose.
  • Tackle and bait: to get fish onto your hook. More on this below!

Tackle and bait

Tackle and bait are one of the most important things to bring to a fishing trip. The hard part is deciding what kind of bait you’ll be using. We break down the two most common types of bait: live bait and lures.

Live Bait

Live bait refers to any sort of living creature that is placed on a hook to attract fish by scent or taste. Because they’re alive, they will move and wriggle which makes them more appealing to fish. There are many kinds of live bait including worms, minnows and sardines. You can also use live bait which has been frozen and packed for use such as prawns and pilchards.


For the squeamish, lures are a great bait alternative. Not only do you not have to handle live bait, but lures can be cast further and are great for catch and release fishing. Types of lures include:

  • Plugs (or divers)
  • Jigs
  • Spinnerbaits
  • Spoons
  • Soft Plastics
  • Flies

Enjoy the fishing trip of a lifetime

Whether your fishing trip takes you out onto a boat or you’re fishing from a wharf, with this guide, you’ll have everything you need to plan your own trip, one that hopefully nets you a ton of fish!

Want to have your fishing trip on a boat? We’ve got you covered! All of our boats at Charter Boats Sydney are fantastic for fishing in the waters of Sydney Harbour. Our friendly fishing charter staff will also help you organise everything you need for a great day fishing. Contact us to find the fishing boat of your choice today!


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