Altona boat ramp is a great place to launch a boat.

Be it a fishing boat, tinny or even kayak.

Excellent bay access to some equally excellent fishing areas.

It’s a good location for people located in the Western, Northern and even North Eastern suburbs of Melbourne.

Accessible via the Western Ring Road and the Westgate Freeway.


Is Altona Ramp Free?

Yes, it is now. As of October 2019 boat ramp launching and car parking is free at Altona.

This is in keeping with the Victorian Government’s fee-free boat ramps policy.

Launching from the Altona boat ramp gives you access to the Yarra estuary, Hobson’s Bay as well as the wider Port Phillip area.

The ramp is well maintained and there are plenty of facilities nearby.

Altona Boat Ramp Camera

You can check out the boat ramp webcam for Altona by clicking here.

The webcam is a great way to see conditions, how busy the ramp is as well as how full the carpark is.

Altona Boat Ramp Fishing

Some good boat fishing is to be had three or four hundred meters offshore directly south from the Altona ramp.

You’ll often see boats anchored off there targetting Whiting.

As a starting point try the coordinates -37 52.087 south by 144 51.056 east.

Species such as Whiting, flathead and pinky snapper turn up regularly in catches. While schools of Australian Salmon often make their way through the area.

Some of the sandy patches to the south, towards Point Cook, contain some good squid and flathead areas.

Seriously – you’ll see a lot of kayak fishing videos on YouTube taken from around this area – and as far south as Werribee South.

Of all the places in the bay, I’d rate this area as the number one spot for flathead currently.

Though be cautious not to drift or fish within the marine park off Point Cook. The fines are hefty and there are Government patrols that are more than happy to issue fines.

Something that’s worked for me is to launch from the Altona boat ramp and head north (turn left) and make your way a few kilometres to the Kororoiot Creek. Sitting just outside of the mouth for flathead and whiting.

While a lot of people use bait from boats there’s an increasing number using soft plastics to target flathead, snapper and Australian Salmon. When the latter comes busting through.

It would probably be fair to say most kayak fishos tend to use soft plastics and hardbody lures because they work – and are so much easier to rig and cast.

So if you’re looking for a good all-around soft plastic for the Altona area then I really do recommend considering Zman soft plastic lures.

They’re tough enough for flathead and snapper. Plus they certainly catch fish. Motor oil is one of my favourites, with a paddle-tail or swim-swim style minnow being efficient fish catchers.

If bait fishing is your thing then I’d consider a paternoster rig – even from your boat.

This gives you the opportunity to keep your bait above the weeds. While allowing for bait “cocktails” to see what works that day.

It also keeps your bait off the bottom, which in my experience reduces the chance sea-lice will eat it down within minutes.

Yeah. Don’t laugh. It’s happened to me several times when using running sinkers. There can be a lot of these pests around sometimes in this area.

In keeping with my recommendations on all boat ramps, I do not recommend fishing on or in close proximity to boaties launching or retrieving boats.

In Altona, you’ve got such a variety of great land-based spots anyway. Try fishing Altona Pier, the Altona beach etc.

My reasoning here is that it’s risky for the person fishing, the boat owner and the general public.

There’s enough room in the world not to crowd out each other.  Courtesy goes a long way.

So – it stands the reason we should give the boaties, whether they’re fisho’s or not, the same respect we wish for.  Give them some room

One of the things that bug me with fishing Altona Pier land-based is the way Jet Skis buzz your line on the pier.

People who do this are not only breaking the law, risking their license (if this kind of rider actually bothers getting a license) and the safety of the public.

But they’re completely stupid idiots, too.

Not all Jet Ski drivers are like this. Not even most.  But the twits seem to have made their purpose in life – to try and overshadow the good guys.

Note that the Altona Ramp can get pretty busy during peak fishing season (October to March.) Especially on weekends and public holidays.

In fact, it’s so popular there are overflow carparks that operate during this period.

Both adjoining the main carpark and outside on the street.

That means it’s not uncommon for tempers to flare resulting in “ramp rage.”

Ramp rage is truly pathetic and un-Australian. Don’t let it spoil your day out.

Being considerate and courteous of fellow boaties. Help out newbies (we were all new once!!)

Kayak Launching From Altona Boat Ramp

With regards to launching Kayaks. If you’re going to use the Altona ramp please don’t leave your Kayak on the ramp while you run off and grab the gear. It’s guaranteed to make people mad!

Frothing at the mouth, incredibly mad!

You can launch from the boat ramp.

But if you’d prefer to avoid the hustle and bustle, especially over the peak season, then launching from some of the beach areas (where it is permitted to do so) is my preference.

Fish Species Altona Boat Ramp

Fish Species Quick Info
Australian Salmon
Arripis trutta
All Year Round
Common for schools to move through, chopping up the water before moving on. Can be common during cooler months.
Black Bream
Acanthopagrus butcheri
All Year Round. But much more prevalent during warmer months.
Flathead
Platycephalus sp
All Year Round
Gummy Shark
Mustelus antarcticus
All Year Round
Larger species are caught in Port Phillip & Western Port during April to July. With the Peak Month considered too be May.
Mullet
Mugilidae sp
All Year Round
Can sometimes be the only game in town during cooler weather.
Pinky Snapper
Chrysophrys auratus
All Year Round. But much more prevalent during warmer months.
This name applies to juvenile specimens of Snapper
Snapper
Chrysophrys auratus
All Year Round. But much more prevalent during warmer months.
Adult specimens often come closer towards shore to feed on reefs during rougher weather in warmer months.
Squid
Sepioteuthis australis
All Year Round.
Best fished when waters are clear with little turbulence. Top times can be during June to September.
*Some fish species vary according to time of year and local environmental conditions.

Altona Boat Ramp Review Summary

This is an excellent boat ramp.  Plenty of toilets (not always as clean as I’d like, but they are maintained) and plenty of parking.

Both trailers and regular cars.

There are two overflow parking areas for use during the silly season (over summer and public holidays.)

The Altona Boat Ramp gives you excellent access to some great whiting fishing grounds to the south of the ramp.

Full access to deeper waters of Port Phillip Bay for snapper and gummies.  With easy access to Hobson’s Bay and Docklands.

Pros

  • Close To Melbourne
  • Four boats can launch at a time
  • Excellent Docking Area
  • Generally Calm Launching Conditions
  • Free Trailer Parking
  • Free Non-Trailer Car Parking
  • Access Port Phillip Bay, Hobsons Bay and Docklands

Cons

  • Can be “Ramp Rage” central.
  • Gets pretty busy in the warmer months.
  • The council could do a heap better on the toilet maintenance side of things.

Features At A Glance

FishabilityFamily FriendlyPublic Toilets
Boat Ramp ConditionTrailer ParkingFish CleaningBoat Cleaning Facilities