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Man fly fishing on river bank

5 Reasons to Fish in New Zealand

Did you know New Zealand is one of the world’s great fishing countries? The country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean is appealing destination for many reasons, but perhaps most notably for its post-card like beauty due to its varied natural landscapes. From the inland rivers, stacked with brown trout and rainbow trout, all the way to the fish-filled ocean that moves along more than 15,000km of coastline, New Zealand is particularly exciting for experienced anglers and beginners alike. 

If you still need convincing, here are 5 reasons why fishing in New Zealand is so great:

  1.  You are bound to catch something somewhere! There are outstanding spots for both fresh and saltwater fishing.
  2. Trout are big and plentiful throughout the whole country. In fact, Trout fishing is so widespread in New Zealand that two towns have claimed the name “Trout Capital of the World”. The crystal-clear rivers and lakes are full of hard fighting, well-conditioned brown and rainbow trout.
  3. There’s a variety of other fish species to catch including perch, tench, chinook salmon, black marlin, yellowtail and much more.
  4. Most waters in New Zealand are in the public domain. Many are easily accessed via public right of way and the Queens Chain. Others can usually be visited through landowner permission.
  5. You’re surrounded with stunning wildlife. A huge advantage to fishing in New Zealand’s ocean waters is the opportunity to spot an array of sea birds. New Zealand’s seabirds make a great indication for the best fishing spots. But just remember to be extra careful when fishing around them.


Because New Zealand aims to be a sustainable country, there are a few fishing laws in place, which are essential to be aware of before heading off on your fishing trip. While there is no license required for saltwater fishing, everyone who is going fresh water fishing must purchase a fishing license to legally fish in New Zealand. Fishing licenses can be purchased either from local fishing stores, visitor information centers or online at the Fish & Game website. Before you venture out, always make sure you also check out the fishing rules of an area. With so many outdoor activities to experience, there’s no better time than now to cross New Zealand off your bucket list!