Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary Package


Spend 3 days and 2 nights with us chasing gamefish on the Umzimkulu Estuary, in Port Shepstone. Includes luxury self-catering accommodation on the river’s edge, and two daily boat fishing trips. Night fishing. Live bait fishing. Fishing from The Sandspit. Dropshot. Spoons. Price per person.


Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary Package

Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary, as you can see by the gallery below, can be absolutely fantastic.

Lure fishing, with the odd live-bait, is how the pros do it. JP Bartholomew recently caught 8 gamefish in a weekend, including three beautiful rock salmon – our favourite fish. Picture below, this formidable fighter readily hammers a lure – as do kob, perch, kingfish, oxe-eye tarpon, zambezi sharks (even got one on a swimming plug!), garrick, shad, springer – we even hooked a turtle on a LuckShot once!

Chris Lepan and Rory Lawlor troll lures with great success – 5 fish in an outing once or twice.

All fish caught by us and our guests are returned to the water, unless you want to eat one, for sure keep one or two. Rock Salmon are delicious. They are actually open ocean spawners, who hide in and learn to survive in estuary systems. When they get about 6kg’s or so, they become sexually mature and head out to sea up the coast to tropical waters for breeding and more hanging out.

Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary

Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary – our favourite and most cunning quarry – the rock salmon, or “Nkulukulu”, by the old time locals. They devour live bait and lures with gusto and you better tackle up for their devious antics.

The Package

Arriving at any time on your first day, settle in and start exploring. Start collecting bait. Take a kayak, a paddle boat, and then join the good ship The Umzimkulu as it launches for an evening cruise. A bit of trolling and drifting along the edge of the mangrove associates, where spinning for gamefish starts. And does not end until you really have to leave (check out 11am on your last day).


  • 2 Nights luxury self-catering at The Umzimkulu Marina (singles/doubles/sharing available)
  • 2 Daily fishing sessions on the boat of minimum 3 hours each, conditions permitting. Fishing up and down the estuary, and off the Sandspit beach (sharing)
  • Guiding and assistance with bait and anything fishing these waters and the types of fishing equipment and tackle used
  • R200 Voucher which you can use in the Mydo Factory Shop on the premises, if you spend R200 or more. The shop carries everything you need for when fishing with us.


Boat rides available

Two boat fishing trip a day…all included at The Umzimkulu River, down in Port Shepstone, KZN, South Africa – when you join us with 3 day and 2 night packaged fishing trip.

Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu

Live bait action is plentiful but it’s all about the lure fishing. I like to get a few live mullet, prawns, crab  –  and very slow work them up next to the mangroves, giving the anglers on the bow casting lures first chance when coming over a hole or drop-off. The river is full of features, hidden and in plain site, where shoals of fish like to hang out.

One of the biggest kob so far went to local guide and expert Ian Logie. It weighed in at 29kg’s and in typical estuary anger fashion, fought it home with a 9 weight fly rod fitted with a little coffee grinder! Ian consistently catches proper rock salmon, and in good sport angler style, releases most of his fish. Most kob we get are 1 to 6 kgs. But the big ones are out there!

Garrick come into the Kulu, and often get caught inside the estuary, when the mouth closes intermittently in winter. It’s a captive audience and they get hungrier the longer the mouth stays closed. The also readily take lures and live baits, sometimes getting into a frenzy.

Perch get quite large, up to 4kg’s, in the Umzimkulu, and they also take lures, even slow worked spoons. The biggest perch I caught here was trolling past Spillers to go throw for kob or garrick early bells. I thought I would dangle my CD 18 deep diver for fun and BANG there it took me all of a few minutes with my big stick, to get him to the boat. 3.5kgs!


Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary Chris Leppan and his 40kg Zambezi in the Umzimkulu

Gamefishing in the Umzimkulu Estuary Chris Leppan and his 30kg Zambezi in the Umzimkulu. Rory Lawlor holding on tight. At this size, they can actually really be dangerous already.

I also caught my only Zambezi shark on a lure ever, at the top of the main channel, under the Ghost House. We were having a party with impromptu live music when a metre long zambezi pup thundered at my lure. He/she was part of a current generation residing in the river, until they get old enough, to go out to sea and eat people?! Chris Leppan got a 40kg Zambezi recently, pictured below. But we have been seeing monsters in the river. The Zambezi’s have recently mad a show of force with sightings being reported. Big Momma’s!


Big-eye kingfish and baby GT’s love the mullet and herd them against the cliffs and sandbanks whilst they smash at them. You can hear them marauding up and down the river at night time.

The oxe-eye tarpon I caught in this playlist was the most fun fish ever…enjoy a compilation of the video we managed to get. It’s a little light hearted, we are far more serious when we take fishing clients (ha ha!). These were all tourists most of the time…

Call Sean on +27 79 326 9671 or email or…

MYDO Luck Shots and SS Spoons are made down at The Umzimkulu Marina, specifically for fishing the Umzimkulu and other estuaries that needed a stronger drop shot rig with action and versatility. These lures really swim and make all the difference, both in strike rate, and as the hook is articulated and does not pry itself out in radical fish fighting movements. You can change the hook or plastic to suit your quarry – fish heavy is all I can say!

Get them your favourite tackle store, or if they don’t stock, buzz me on or +27 79 326 9671.

A playlist on how to work the MYDO Luck Shot lure…

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