Fishing in Shark Bay, Western Australia

The Shark Bay region is considered to be one of the best fishing destinations in the North West region of Western Australia. Due to its magnificent marine ecosystems and diversity, this is a fishery that many anglers have on their bucket list.

Tailor caught fishing at shark bay
Tailor caught at Shark Bay | Photo by Northern Addicts

What fish can you catch in Shark Bay?

Due to its diversity, there are many different types of species that can be caught in Shark Bay. 

long tom caught fishing at shark bay
Photo by Northern addicts

If you’re land-based fishing in and around Monkey Mia, Denham and Francois Peron National Park then you’re likely to pick up a number of species, these include:

However, if you’re fortunate to be able to fish from Steep Point, Dirk Hartog Island or from a boat then the list of fish you can catch increases dramatically. Fishing off the cliffs at Steep Point or Dirk Hartog often produces big pelagics such as:

Or if you’re jigging or bottom bouncing for reef-dwelling species then the likes of pink snapper, coral trout, baldchin groper, cod, and mulloway are not uncommon.

Map of Fishing Spots in Shark Bay

Shark Bay is host to many awesome fishing spots, whether it’s land-based fishing or fishing from a boat then Shark Bay is the place to be. These fishing spots can be seen on the map below with further info on each spot down the page.

Francois Peron National Park

For those that have a 4WD there are some great land-based fishing spots within Francois Peron National Park.

Cape Peron

Cape Peron is the furthest northern point of the Francois Peron National Park. Although a 4WD is needed, along with a couple of hours to get there it’s definitely a spot that is worth checking out. Depending on the wind conditions you can either fish the rocky platform to the left of the cape, or take a walk up over the red cliff-like structures to fish off the beach.

Fishing at Shark Bay
Fishing at Cape Peron within Shark Bay

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Gregories

Not as far north as the Cape you have Gregories Bay. Similar to other inshore spots you’ll find a number of your bread and butter species. As the sun sets this is also a great spot for tailor and if you fish into the night you might score a mulloway or two.

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South Gregories

Not as protected as much as Gregories is South Gregories. This stretch of coast has some decent rocky ground that holds some fantastic tuskfish so be sure to take a walk along looking for rock outcrops to cast a line.

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Big Lagoon

Still located within Francois Peron National Park, Big Lagoon is another land-based fishing spot that is worth a try. As it’s within the national park you’ll still need a 4WD park to access it though once you arrive it’s definitely worth pulling out the light gear and trying for the likes of whiting, flathead, and tailor.

Note, unfortunately, similar to Little Lagoon, Big Lagoon is known to have a fair few stonefish in and around the shallows so as always best to ensure you have protective footwear on when walking along the shoreline.

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Little Lagoon

Just out of Denham on your way to Monkey Mia you’ll pass Little Lagoon. This is a large lagoon that holds shallower species that love the sand flats such as flathead, whiting , bream, and stingrays. With a 4WD you’re able to venture down and cruise along the edge of the lagoon.

Note, a word of caution that stonefish are known to inhabit the lagoon closer to the mouth of where to lagoon connects to the ocean so if venturing up that way so always ensure you wear appropriate footwear.

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Monkey Mia

Although you’re unable to fish around the dolphin interaction area, anglers visiting Monkey Mia are able to fish off surrounding beaches. Fishing these areas with light gear is great fun and ideal for kids with species such as whiting, flathead, tailor, dart and bream often caught.

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Denham

Although Denham is considered more of a base for fishermen to launch and head out exploring the Shark Bay area there are still plenty of fishing opportunities in and around the Denham area.

During the day fishing the shallow with light gear can be great fun with the likes of flathead, bream, whiting, tailor, and trevally being caught. At night the Denham jetty is great for catching squid and some of the beaches on the north side of Denham are known to produce mulloway.

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Eagle Bluff

Eagle Bluff is also known to provide some decent fishing, especially if your chasing shallower species such as flathead, tailor, and bream. There are also plenty of small sharks to be caught too. Note, when fishing here beware of the limestone cliffs and rocky structures and take appropriate paths and tracks down to the lower beach areas for fishing.

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Whale Bone

Further south of Eagle Bluff you have another well-known spot called Whale Bone. Not really known for bigger species though another great shallow bay to have a flick with some light tackle in the hope of catching the likes of tailor, flathead, bream and whiting.

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Goulet Bluff

Another nice shallow fishing spot to try in the Shark Bay area is Goulet Bluff.

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Nanga Bay

Predominately known as a base for boat fishermen, Nanga Bay still provides some good shallow fishing with the bay holding a number of different species such as flathead, tailor, whiting, bream, small snapper, and spangled emperor. If you do have a boat then check out our Nanga Bay boat launching page for more info.

Boat fishing out from Nanga Bay

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Steep Point

Although you need a 4WD to get there, Steep Point is up there as one of the best land-based game fishing spots in Australia. From Steep Point, you can catch a range of different species including your big pelagics such as spanish mackerel and tuna to some decent reef-dwelling species such as pink snapper and baldchin grouper.

If you’re keen to find out more about fishing at Steep Point, check out our Steep Point fishing guide.

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Can you catch crabs in Shark Bay?

You certainly can. Until recently I wasn’t aware that crabs were really fished for in Shark Bay, however, after camping next to a few grey nomads that had been there for a while I soon found out that getting a feed of Blue Manna crabs was easy as.

Blue manna crab caught when free diving

Obviously, exact spots weren’t given, though a hot tip was to head out from Monkey Mia boat ramp and drop a few nets in the shallower waters;)

Can you catch Squid in Shark Bay and if so where?

Yes, you can definitely catch squid in Shark Bay. Squiding off Denham’s town jetty at nighttime can be productive. Or if you’re fortunate to own a kayak or boat then try drifting over the weed beds around 1 km off the Denham.

Fishing for squid off Denham’s jetty

Boat Fishing at Shark Bay

If you’ve got a boat then Shark Bay is an ideal fishing destination. With a number of boat ramps to choose from you can easily launch and head out wide to catch yourself a feed.

The most popular location boaties usually base themselves is in the town of Denham where there is plenty of accommodation, bait, fuel, and tackle supplies. Alternatively, Monkey Mia and Nanga Bay Resort are other popular destinations as both spots have boat ramps that their guests can use.

Fishing Charters in Shark Bay

If you’re pushed for time or would like to increase your chances of catching a decent feed then check out Mac Attack Fishing Charters which operate out of Denham.

Shark Bay Fishing Competition

Every year Shark Bay has a fishing competition called “Shark Bay Fishing Fiesta”. This is a great fishing comp where many keen fishermen head up to Shark bay to enjoy a great comp including thousands of dollars in prizes, fundraising activities, entertainment, family activities, and much more.

If you’re keen to learn more check out the Shark bay Fishing Fiesta competition page.

Shark Bay Fishing Photos

Shark Bay Fishing Videos

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