Boating & fishing in Sydney

Boating and fishing are two great ways to enjoy Sydney’s waterways, from sailing on one of the world’s most beautiful harbours to casting a line from a sandy beach. You can hire a skipper and yacht to explore Sydney Harbour or join a deep-sea fishing adventure off the coast.

Boating in Sydney

There are delicious harbour cruises, including sunset cocktail and dinner cruises. You can sail aboard a traditional America’s Cup yacht with Explore Sailing, enjoy twilight sailing on the splendid Pittwater, get the adrenaline pumping with Oz Jet Boating, step back in time on a tall ship with Sydney Harbour Tall Ships or Sydney Heritage Fleet Cruises, and even captain a houseboat on the gorgeous Hawkesbury River.

Skipper your own motor boat with Eastsail, and explore the secret beaches around Sydney Harbour. If you prefer to let someone else take the helm, you can also hire skippered yachts. Between May and November, join a whale watching cruise and see the migrating humpback whales travelling along the coastline.

Friends enjoying coastal views onboard a Captain Cook Cruises whale watching tour off Sydney Heads

Whale watching, Sydney

Fishing in Sydney

The deep blue ocean off the spectacular Sydney coastline is teeming with fish. With Deep Sea Fishing Charters, you can combine a harbour cruise with an exciting fishing trip beyond The Heads – the dramatic entrance to Sydney Harbour, which is also known as Port Jackson.

There are a long list of fantastic fishing spot in the Northern Beaches and surrounds, such as Clifton Gardens, Manly Dam and Barrenjoey Head Aquatic Reserve. If you don’t want to do the leg work, join Off The Map for a bespoke charter based out of Pittwater.

Man enjoying an afternoon of fishing on the Hawkesbury River, Wisemans Ferry

Fishing, Wisemans Ferry

If you have time to venture further north, the Hawkesbury River is a fisherman’s paradise. Hire a boat from Brooklyn and make a day of it or catch a Sydney Seaplane to meet a fishing guide upon arrival.

In Sydney’s east, top spots include Maroubra Beach, the wharf at Camp Cove, and a number of headland perches between Gordons Bay and Clovelly Beach. While down south, you’ll find more superb beach fishing spots in Cronulla and the Royal National Park, including Garie and Wattamolla beaches, and Gunnamatta Bay at Port Hacking. A bit closer to town, Brighton-Le-Sands Beach and the nearby Cooks River are hidden gems.

Camp Cove beach at Watsons Bay, Eastern Suburbs Sydney

Camp Cove, Watsons Bay - Credit: Andrew Gregory; Destination NSW

In Sydney’s west, the meandering Nepean River is ideal for boating and fishing. Join Nepean River Tours on a fishing day trip or a two-hour cruise to hidden gems along the river, winding through sandstone gorges and towering eucalypts. Or cruise aboard the Nepean Belle, a paddlewheeler. On the Parramatta River, head to Gladesville Wharf, Huntley’s Point Wharf or Clarkes Point Reserve.

Before you go fishing, you’ll need a NSW recreational fishing licence and to carry the receipt with you. They’re available online at Service NSW. Or your tour guide will supply the licence. You can keep up to date with bag and sizing limits, and closure zones at the NSW Government’s Recreational Fishing.