Green and eco-minded tourists have been flooding New Zealand in recent years, and there’s no doubt the country boasts the stunning landscapes these tourists crave. But one of the country’s best attractions is found below the surface of its lakes, rivers, oceans and streams: a teeming and vibrant ecosystem of fish just waiting to be caught.
For the sports fisherman, there’s no moment quite like the instant when a fish takes the bait: it’s a rush of adrenaline and the start of the sometimes long fight to land the fish.
In recent years, more and more sports fishermen are experiencing that moment on the waters of New Zealand. Green tourism in the country has been on the rise ever since the blockbuster trilogy, “The Lord of the Rings” hit theaters in 2001.
In fact, tourists spent twice as much in the country after the trilogy aired than before — $6 billion in 2004, compared to about $3 billion in 1999. So if you’re thinking about heading to the country to check out Middle Earth’s landscapes in person, here’s what you need to know to plan your sports fishing trip in New Zealand.
First, the best time to go fishing is from October to April. At the start of the season, waters are still fairly cool. Fish are just starting to become active again after the lean winter months, and will be feeding heavily to regain weight lost during the winter.
As the season continues, temperatures steadily rise, until the hottest time of year: January. During this time, it’s best to fish in the evenings. Finally, the season wraps up at the end of April, and weather turns cold again in May.
Sports fishermen can cast their lines in almost any part of New Zealand, although some parts of the country are more well-known as fishing hot spots. The Central North Island region, which is dominated by Lake Taupo, attracts thousands of tourists each year. The area supports a vibrant community of rainbow trout, and the fish routinely reach 10 pounds.
But if you’re looking for the road less traveled, The Lower North Island is a great option. This under-fished area includes hundreds of miles of rain-fed rivers. It’s also just a short trip away from the well-known Central North Island region.
Finally, for the angler who wants to capture a variety of fish, The Bottom of the South, a region on the farthest southern tip of the country, offers the widest range of fish. The area’s small streams and larger rivers are well-suited for fly fishing.
If the prospect of trekking through New Zealand on your own is daunting, don’t worry. The country offers a wide range of charter and guided opportunities for sports fishers, ranging from deep-sea fishing excursions to guided river trips. The cost for these sort of guided sports fishing vary depending on the length of the trip, the experience of the guide, the extra amenities offered and the type of fishing. Typically, guides offer discounts for larger groups.
People are drawn to New Zealand for combining the thrill of fishing and the satisfaction of respecting eco rules and preserving the nature green and healthy. The excitement of catching fish is even bigger when fishermen know that they are not disturbing flora of their fishing spots.
Consideration was received for the editing and publishing of this post.