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Cairns Fishing

Cairns Fishing

Cairns is the destination for many anglers who seek to catch a Black Marlin, and is known as the Black Marlin Capital of the World. With excellent estuaries, Great Barrier Reef, and Continental Shelf just off its shore, Cairns delivers many different options for fishing.

Fishing offshore Cairns for Black Marlin is best between September and December. Yellowfin Tuna are around all year long, and Dogtooth Tuna are thick the last half of the year. December through February are ideal for Blue Marlin and Sailfish, which also corresponds to the Mahi-mahi (Dolphinfish) and Wahoo season.

Reef fishing is excellent all year round with species like Coral Trout, Giant Trevally, Nannygai, Red Emperor, and Tricky Snapper, but the highlight is June through September. Near shore you can expect to catch Spanish and Spotted Mackerel.

The rivers and creeks around Cairns offers Blue Salmon, Flathead, Mangrove Jacks, Estuary Cod, Queenfish, and School Trevally. Barramundi are also found in this area and are most active during the breeding season between October and February.



Top Cairns Fishing Spots

  1. Pixie Reef
    4/26/2017 1:09:37 AM -


  2. Batt Reef
    10/4/2014 1:33:12 AM - Batt Reef


  3. Vlasoff Reef
    10/4/2014 1:43:09 AM - Vlasoff Reef


  4. Arlington Reef
    8/22/2018 8:52:39 PM -


  5. Koala
    5/16/2014 11:27:36 PM - Koala


  6. Ellis Beach North
    5/5/2017 5:09:08 PM -


  7. Akaroa
    5/16/2014 11:26:06 PM - Akaroa


  8. Oyster Reef
    4/26/2017 1:09:14 AM -


  9. Yule Reef
    10/4/2014 1:43:20 AM - Yule Reef


  10. Arlington Reef South
    8/22/2018 8:52:38 PM -



View more Cairns Fishing Spots



Let us custom design a SD Card of Cairns Fishing Spots for your GPS unit!

We will create a SD card of all fishing spots in the Cairns, specifically for your GPS Unit, and to your specifications. Alternatively, you can create a custom GPS map yourself by using one of our methods.

Cairns Fishing Forecast

Target Species of Fish

Based on historical data for fishing Cairns, you should target one of the following species for this time of year:
  1. Barramundi

  2. Barramundi

    There is a 24.62% catch rate for Barramundi, based on 16 Barramundi counted.

    Cairns Barramundi Counts Chart
    Barramundi

    ENLARGE CAIRNS BARRAMUNDI COUNTS CHART


  3. Black Marlin

  4. Black Marlin

    There is a 16.92% catch rate for Black Marlin, based on 11 Black Marlin counted.

    Cairns Black Marlin Counts Chart
    Black

    ENLARGE CAIRNS BLACK MARLIN COUNTS CHART


  5. Two Spot Red Snapper

  6. Two Spot Red Snapper

    There is a 15.38% catch rate for Two Spot Red Snapper, based on 10 Two Spot Red Snapper counted.

    Cairns Two Spot Red Snapper Counts Chart
    Two

    ENLARGE CAIRNS TWO SPOT RED SNAPPER COUNTS CHART


  7. Blue Marlin

  8. Blue Marlin

    There is a 6.15% catch rate for Blue Marlin, based on 4 Blue Marlin counted.

    Cairns Blue Marlin Counts Chart
    Blue

    ENLARGE CAIRNS BLUE MARLIN COUNTS CHART


  9. Giant Trevally

  10. Giant Trevally

    There is a 4.62% catch rate for Giant Trevally, based on 3 Giant Trevally counted.

    Cairns Giant Trevally Counts Chart
    Giant

    ENLARGE CAIRNS GIANT TREVALLY COUNTS CHART


  11. Great Barracuda

  12. Great Barracuda

    There is a 4.62% catch rate for Great Barracuda, based on 3 Great Barracuda counted.

    Cairns Great Barracuda Counts Chart
    Great

    ENLARGE CAIRNS GREAT BARRACUDA COUNTS CHART


  13. Mahi-mahi

  14. Mahi-mahi

    There is a 4.62% catch rate for Mahi-mahi, based on 3 Mahi-mahi counted.

    Cairns Mahi-mahi Counts Chart
    Mahi-mahi

    ENLARGE CAIRNS MAHI-MAHI COUNTS CHART


  15. Spangled Emperor

  16. Spangled Emperor

    There is a 4.62% catch rate for Spangled Emperor, based on 3 Spangled Emperor counted.

    Cairns Spangled Emperor Counts Chart
    Spangled

    ENLARGE CAIRNS SPANGLED EMPEROR COUNTS CHART


  17. Yellowfin Tuna

  18. Yellowfin Tuna

    There is a 4.62% catch rate for Yellowfin Tuna, based on 3 Yellowfin Tuna counted.

    Cairns Yellowfin Tuna Counts Chart
    Yellowfin

    ENLARGE CAIRNS YELLOWFIN TUNA COUNTS CHART


  19. Bigeye Tuna

  20. Bigeye Tuna

    There is a 3.08% catch rate for Bigeye Tuna, based on 2 Bigeye Tuna counted.

    Cairns Bigeye Tuna Counts Chart
    Bigeye

    ENLARGE CAIRNS BIGEYE TUNA COUNTS CHART


Recommendations above based on 15 species of fish and 65 fish counted for December around Cairns.

To date, there are 49 species of fish and a total of 1136 fish counted for Cairns and within a 30 mile (48 km) radius since 1/1/1901 (121 years).

Last Update: 12/8/2022 1:13:31 AM

*** PLEASE NOTE ***
Please check local, state/province, and federal laws before fishing for any species found on this site. All data is based on historical data found for this area, and in some cases as far back as the year 1600.

View full Cairns Fishing Forecast to see all species and best lures and colors to use.

Latest Cairns Fishing Reports

  • Thu 28 Jul 2022 02:07:55 +0000
    7/27/2022 10:07:55 PM - The Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) is a not-for-profit private sector membership-based organisation representing the interests of Queensland’s tourism and hospital


  • PHONE ISSUES
    3/20/2022 5:22:37 PM - We’re currently experiencing some phone issues so you can contact us on 0438291094 as an alternative.


  • Reef Closures 2021-23
    2/3/2021 11:56:47 PM - 2021 Reef Closure dates are 3 to 7 October and 2 to 6 November 2022 Reef Closure dates are 22 to 26 October and 21 to 25 November 2021 Reef Closure dates are 12 to 16 October


  • Short Bill Black!
    11/3/2020 7:42:47 PM -


  • Great shot thanks Julian Pepperell!
    11/3/2020 7:42:45 PM -


  • Birthday Big One!
    11/3/2020 7:42:42 PM -


  • 5 for 6 days with 2 big ones ….
    11/3/2020 7:42:40 PM -


  • Kaitlin’s best haul yet!!
    11/3/2020 7:42:37 PM -     #cairns #marlin


  • BIG BLUES!
    11/3/2020 7:42:35 PM - Went offshore in search of a blue marlin today with father and son Justus and Roger from Germany.  Caught a hard fighting 500lb and jumped another nice one off raised another


  • CAIRNS BLUE MARLIN FISHERY ….
    11/3/2020 7:42:32 PM - The Cairns Blue Marlin fishery keeps proving itself as a year round proposition in the canyons off the edge of the Great Barrier Reef.  If you’re looking for some line burning


View Cairns Fishing Reports

Top Cairns Bait & Tackle Stores

  1. Bransfords Discount Tackle Shop
    Located in Cairns, Queensland, Australia, Bransfords Discount Tackle Shop specialise in good service, and will give you honest, no-bull advise on fishing tackle equipment ranging from rods, reels, combos, any type of fishing line, lures, hooks, sinke

  2. Tackle World Cairns
    With over 20 years serving the local fishing community the modern and fully stocked CAIRNS TACKLE WORLD caters for all styles of fishing and species. From the western rivers and coastal sweet water rivers chasing the Sooty Grunter, Jungle Perch,and o

View more Cairns Bait & Tackle Stores

Top Cairns Fishing Charters & Guides

  1. KEKOA Sports Fishing
    KEKOA is a 56 foot O’Brien Boat custom built for the Cairns Marlin Fishing (Giant Black Marlin) season and integrates luxury, quality and comfort to cater for all your individual charter experiences.

  2. Iona Game Fishing Australia
    Iona Game Fishing Australia offers the optimum in fishing charters in Australia from as far north as Cairns, the Great Barrier Reef, following the migrating marlin along the East Coast of Australia to as far south as Port Stephens and Newcastle.

  3. Ross Finlayson Marlin Charters
    Ross Finlayson is one of Australia's leading marlin and sportfishing captains. With more than 23 years professional game fishing experience. Captain Ross provides exclusive marlin and game fishing charters directly from Cairns year round on the G

  4. Cairns Fishing Charters
    Cairns Fishing Charters is a locally owned and operated fishing charter business based at The Marlin Marina, Cairns, in beautiful Far North Queensland. We take pride in giving our passengers an enjoyable, reef and deep sea fishing charter experien

  5. Shikari Expeditions
    Wether your ambition is to target the "Grander" Black Marlin or catch the most remarkable sport fish on the Great Barrier Reef - Big Game can customise an amazing experience.

  6. Fishing Cairns
    Whether your goal is to land a "grander" black marlin out from the continental shelf, or Australia's premier light tackle sportfish, the famous barramundi up the creek, or a prime-eating reef dweller from the largest fish attractor on t

  7. Cairns Reef Charter Services


  8. Fish Tales' Charters


View more Cairns Charters & Guides

Top Cairns Marinas

  1. Cairns Marlin Marina
    Australia's premier marina, Cairns Marlin Marina provides first-class facilities and customer service for a diverse fleet including some of the world's most advanced super yachts.

  2. Yorkeys Knob Boating Club
    Yorkeys Knob Boating Club is located at Yorkeys Knob, one of the northern beachside suburbs of Cairns – just 15 minutes from the Cairns CBD and easily accessible by land or sea. The 197 berth marina was constructed in 1994 and is nestled in the pi

View more Cairns Marinas

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