The bay area (Bill's Bay) is a Sanctuary area and no fish or any other sea
creatures may be taken from this area. The sanctuary includes all the
area bounded by lines joining the south end of the North passage,
Point Maud, Monk's Head and the main reef due west of Monk's Head.
Beach fishing only is permitted in this area but only between the
south end of the bay and Monk's Head.
Despite this there are plenty of options. You may fish from the beach anywhere
north of Point Maud and anywhere south of the bay. From a dinghy,
fishing is permitted inside the reef south of Monk's Head or north of
Boaties should check out the Dept. of Transport's information regarding
There is a boat launching facility located South of the townsite
with ramps for two trailer boats together with a large parking area
Access to the boating facility is via Banksia
drive, turn just East of the Backpackers Ningaloo Club on the way
into town and follow the bitumen road.
With a larger boat, fish outside the reef where the variety of fish is only
exceeded by the number of spots to catch them. To reach the outside of
the reef there are two options. Firstly there is the North Passage.
This is about 5 Km north of Point Maud and is a wide, deep, safe all
weather passage. Its only disadvantage is that other than at high tide
when you can navigate across the bay it is a long way to get there.
Access is via a channel marked through the coral just inside the
reef. Boaters would be well advised to mark the position of the most
northerly markers for their return from the North passage so as to
find them more easily. The other option is the South Passage (Yalobia
Passage) which is about 6 Km south of the bay and immediately West of
the boating facility . This is a fairly narrow
break in the reef and in certain weather conditions is not navigable.
It is marked by three markers on the hill onshore. It is a convenient
way to access some good fishing spots but only if the weather is
the reef you are most likely to catch Spangled Emperor, Sweetlip,
Charlie Courts ( a small but tasty cod), Trevally and Squid. However
venture outside for all of those plus Red Emperor, Pearl Perch, Rankin
Cod, Robinson Seabream, Baldchin Groper, Coronation Cod, Mackerel,
Wahoo, Sailfish and more. All these species can be caught close to the
reef however your chances of catching the prized Red Emperor are
better further offshore.
whole Ningaloo Reef area is a Marine Park and there are special bag
limits as well as possession limits.
Recreational Fishing Guide - Gascoyne Region
for details of limits allowed. Check with the
Dept for more details. Fish must be landed whole, not filleted at
sea so they can be inspected by Fisheries Officers. Public fish
cleaning tables are available on shore.
coral is a precious asset. Treat it with respect. To avoid damage only
drop anchor in areas with sandy bottom.
is an issue which should always be foremost in the mind of boat
fishers. Coral Bay Sea Rescue monitor Channel 90 and VHF. A good
marine radio is an essential in this environment as are other safety
items such as an EPIRB, flares and lifejackets etc. There is a lot of
coral close to the surface and the tide variation is sometimes in
excess of 1.5 metres so beware of prop damage and allow for the tide
when mooring on the beach. If you go out the South Passage and the
weather conditions change you may not be able to come back that way.
It is a long way around via the North Passage (about 28 Km) so make
sure you have plenty of fuel and enough time. It is almost impossible
to navigate safely at night in these waters.
Alternatively fishing with either
charters will ensure the best possible
catch guided by experienced skippers to some very productive fishing
grounds - see 'Deep Sea Fishing'