Werribee Fishing opportunities include the Werribee South Pier, Beach and of course access to the Werribee River via the Boat Ramp.

There’s also plenty of land-based and kayak fishing to be had much further upstream, including the upper estuary and freshwater areas of the river.

Launching from the river allows you access to some great fishing in Port Phillip Bay as well as kayak and small craft access upstream.

While a lot of people in the North East and Eastern suburbs of Melbourne tend to turn their noses up at Werribee – here’s the thing.

It’s an awesome spot to catch a wide variety of fish. The old days of the open sewerage farms are long ago. The biggest issue now (in terms of odour) is a few times of the year when the market gardeners fertilise their crops.

If you’ve not taken a crack at fishing the Werribee area, the river, the bay, the estuary – then you’re really missing out!!

Werribee South Fishing Overview

At 29.8km from Melbourne, Via the Princess Freeway, The area can be a great spot not only for fishing but some world-class tourist attractions.

One of my favourite things to do in the area is fishing Werribee South Pier. I’ve spent a lot of time on the pier.

In so doing I have discovered it has good and bad years and good and bad times of year.

The biggest issue fishing in the river estuary is weeds.  It can get pretty thick.  Thick enough to foul a boat propellor.

So – it can make bait and lure fishing from the shore or pier a challenge, too.  Definitely rig a weedless rig when the weed is thick.

You’ll know when this is the case.  If it isn’t visible off (and on) the boat ramp then you’ll certainly notice after you retrieve your first cast.

If you’re bait fishing it’s going to be tough not losing your bait down in the weed.  Making it hard for fish to find.  If the current isn’t to quick you may get away with a weighted float – *at times.*

Bream is the target most often sought by shore-based anglers on the pier. Flathead from the beach – and the pier – and whiting being the other species of interest.

Using the Werribee South boat ramp, heading out of the mouth into Port Phillip Bay gives access to deeper water with pinkie snapper, adult snapper, calamari, and Australian Salmon.

Naturally, other great bay species like flathead are there too.

Setting out from the boat ramp is great for small and larger vessels. The mouth is always open and has a clearly marked channel for boaties.


Werribee South Pier Fishing

Pier Fishing here can vary in productivity.

At times there are some good-sized models of Black Bream.  Some pinkies.  Occasional Whiting.  Good flathead and even the odd Gummy Shark making its way into the estuary.

While fishing the Pier Reports of Mulloway occur from time to time and some Estuary Perch are taken. Though the latter tend to be more common further upstream from the  River mouth.

Werribee South Pier Fishing

Werribee South Beach Fishing

Beach fishing produces bream and flathead with some smaller pinkies.

The beach makes a great place to launch a kayak for fishing.  Especially when the boat ramp is busy.

When the tide is out you’re going to have to wade or use a longer beach rod with some heavier lead to reach the fish.

When the tides in you might get away with flicking some lures or casting bait with a smaller spinning rod.

But I’d recommend at least 10ft to get your offering out of the shallows.

Werribee South Beach Fishing

Werribee South Boat Ramp

The Boat Ramp is a protected, solid concrete four-lane ramp with extensive parking facilities.

It gives excellent access to Port Phillip Bay flathead, snapper, squid and even gummy shark fishing grounds.

It should be absolutely awesome.  But it is sadly neglected.  All too often weed and a lack of dredging make it un-navigable by power craft.  The prop can be fouled in weed.

When it is clear it truly is excellent.  I find it deeply disturbing that the council does not bother to re-invest the money the state government pays them for maintenance – into maintenance.  But not really surprised though.

With some maintenance, fishing from a boat would then offer some of the best opportunities in Melbourne.

Werribee South Boat Ramp

Werribee River

While not as large as the Yarra or the Marrybinong the river is very fishable.

From the estuary upstream into freshwater.  Species include brackish regulars like Bream, Pinky Snapper and Mullet.

While Estuary Perch is more common closer to fresher waters.  Upstream European Carp can grow to some rod bending sizes too.

While land-based fishing is possible a fishing kayak makes an excellent platform for navigating the river.  Some of the banks are pretty steep, with cliff faces in parts.

Werribee River Fishing

Fishing Werribee South River Entrance

Fishing the River Entrance obviously includes some of the places already mentioned.  Including the pier, boat ramp and beach.

However, there are some key aspects that differentiate fishing the beach area adjoining the point where the Werribee River meets Port Phillip Bay.

Werribee South River Entrance Fishing

Wyndham Harbour Fishing The Rock Wall

Wyndham Harbour is a pretty new area and Wyndham Harbour fishing is largely confined to the rock wall.

Due to the poor behaviour of some members of the fishing community and some other people large sections are not closed to fishing.

It still fishes extremely well in the parts that are open.

Please – no matter where you are fishing – take your broken line and rubbish with you.  Share the paths – you don’t own them.  These are the reasons why some areas become closed to us – forever.

Wyndham Harbour Fishing The Rock Wall

Werribee South – A Nice Spot For Families

The river entrance pier is nice for families, though it can get pretty busy, so start early.

The only reason I’ve rated this nice spot as 4 stars is that in recent years there’s been a lack of annual dredging and a lack of upkeep on the toilet area.

This has resulted in some of the boat ramps becoming difficult as well as frequent snagging of your line on weed off the Werribee South pier.

Plus a gut-wrenching experience, at times, if you use the toilets. An indictment on the council.

The state government’s policy of improving Victorias boat ramps should see dredging completed more regularly.  Though there is zero evidence of this to date.

Actually – it’s been the worst I’ve seen it when I took a look in later 2020.

Hopefully restoring this boat ramp and river entrance to its former status and worthy of 5 stars.

I Have A Great Deal Of Affection For The Area

I have fished here a lot. It may not seem like it. But I have a great deal of affection for the area as a fishing location. Especially the Werribee South Pier.

The lack of upkeep has led to a sense of disappointment. I sincerely hope the Victorian State Government and Local Council address some of the glaring concerns.

A lot of Melbourne municipalities would love an attraction like this area. It’s good for the residents, it’s good for Victoria – it’s good for local business!

The area is certainly worth caring for the facilities better than they do.

I rate it as well worth the visit for fishing.



Werribee South Fishing & Other Attractions

Places include the Werribee Open Plains Zoo.  As well as the Werribee Mansion.

The Zoo is a little different to the Royal Melbourne Zoo in Parkville.  Being open range allows you to see some animals at their best.

As a bus runs through the “paddocks” to assist in getting closer to them.  Kind of like the movie Jurassic Park – but without the Raptors and T-Rex.

Some bird-watching groups take advantage of the wetlands for observing migrating birdlife.   Many of whom travel every year to Werribee South from places as far away as Siberia!

The Caravan Park offers both campsites that are powered and un-powered as well as a great range of cabins.  All within walking distance of the beach, pier and boat ramp.

There’s bait available at a takeaway shop almost next to the caravan park where I’ve purchased bait going back for many decades.


Werribee South Fish Species

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.
Blue Spotted Flathead
Platycephalus caeruleopunctatus
All Year Round
More commonly caught in warmer months. But can be caught year round in many places.
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.
King George whiting
Sillaginodes punctata
November to April
Known to migrate from Victoria to South Australian waters during cooler months.
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.

Werribee Fishing Review Summary

Fishing Werribee South needn’t be a single activity exercise.

If family members aren’t into fishing the Werribee Mansion and Open Range Zoo might just be the diversion they need.

While the area was dismissed for years by most Melbournians due to the sewerage treatment centre the fact is the old days of open sewer tanks are long gone.

The odour we associated with the area in the 1960s and ’70s isn’t there now.

The only time I’ve smelt anything odd is when market gardeners – of which Werribee has a lot – have been fertilising their crops.

State Parliament in Spring Street is smellier than Werribee!

Pros

  • A wide variety of fishing environments and species in the area. Saltwater, Estuary and Freshwater
  • Less than 30km from Melbourne, so easy access via the Princess Freeway from most of Melbourne’s suburbs
  • The Pier/Boat Ramp area offers picnic, BBQ, Playground and Free Parking

Cons

  • Public Toilets in the Pier/Boat Ramp area are generally a disgrace
  • Can get pretty busy at times in warmer months
  • Peak Hour Freeway Congestion can be tough during those times

Features At A Glance

FishabilityPublic ToiletsParking
Family FriendlyEnvironment & Pollution


Werribee South Map



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