Ideally situated midway between Lake Macquarie and Port Stephens, two hours from Sydney and close to its own major airport, Newcastle Harbour is a destination in itself for fishos.

It’s a nirvana for all manner of boats and, not surprisingly, the region has one of Australia’s highest per-capita ratios of ownership.

Newcastle Harbour itself is the nation’s oldest export port, the catchment being fed by the Hunter River that meanders 300km inland and intersects with the Williams and Paterson tributaries. Its coastline also boasts superb beaches and productive fishing grounds.

The Harbour is renowned for producing loads of bream, with a favourite spot being around the Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club marina at Carrington. There’s also flathead, jew and a mixed bag of other species in the deep holes in the marina basin.

There are plenty of spots to cast a line along the Honeysuckle waterfront. Species include tailor, bream, flathead and whiting.

A small breakwall at Horseshoe Beach sports whiting and flathead. Early morning is the best time to fish here. The gutter along Stockton Beach also provides an abundant catch.

The ponds upriver from Stockton Bridge also fish incredibly well, with solid flathead, bream and whiting taking soft plastics and worm baits.

Nobbys Beach is a great spot for beach fishing, particularly under the Light House, adjacent to the breakwall. Kingfish, salmon and jewfish lurk here.

Kooragang Island, which is flanked by the north and south channels of the Hunter River, is favoured for bream and dusky flathead.

The waters off Newcastle are laden with large reef systems and gravel patches which are perfect for attracting all kinds of table fish.