Located 13km south of Sydney’s CBD, Botany Bay is probably best known as the landing place of Captain James Cook back in 1770. Long before Cook and his crew on HMS Endeavour arrived, untold generations of local Aboriginal people fished and hunted throughout the entire area. Nowadays, however, the famed British explorer – not to mention the original indigenous inhabitants – would probably have a hard time recognising what we now know as Botany Bay.
The southern headland of Botany Bay, known as Cape Solander, is fringed by Kamay National Park, where a memorial marks Captain Cook’s arrival. The national park makes way to a large wharf on the southern shore which is used by the nearby oil refinery. On the northern headland, Molineaux Point features a huge breakwall bordering the entrance to Port Botany, which is a major shipping hub. Tucked a little further west are Sydney Airport’s runways.
In 2002, Botany Bay was designated as a Recreational Fishing Haven with all commercial fishing removed. Since that time, and despite the heavy industry surrounding the area, many local anglers believe the fishing and general health and diversity of the system has improved markedly.
Popular with both serious anglers and family fishos, Botany Bay offers a range of opportunities to target most of the common estuary species via boats, kayaks and from the shore. The Georges, Cooks and Woronora rivers run into Botany Bay, providing yet more access to productive water with the Georges and Woronora offering the chance to catch estuary perch and bass as well as other key species such as bream, flathead, whiting and mulloway.