Top Whale Watching Spots
Here in BC, seeing a bunch of tourists in puffy orange survival suits on a Zodiac is nothing out of the ordinary, but we realize that not everyone lives by coastal waters. So if you’ve saved up your pennies to take your dream whale watching expedition, here are some places well worth your while. Fortunately,, there are A LOT of places in the world to see whales.
If you’re lucky, you’ll spy a pod of orcas on the ferry from Vancouver to Victoria and you can spend your whale watching money on high tea at the Empress. It’s just that easy on Vancouver Island. The waters off Vancouver Island are home to resident orcas so it’s possible to see orcas in this area year round. Humpback whales and thousands of grey whales migrate past the island yearly. Your best bets to base yourself are probably Victoria and Tofino.
Every year, 6000 – 8000 humpback whales migrate to Hawaii from December to May. They are so plentiful you can easily see them on the shore. Of course, you need to get on a boat to see these beautiful creatures up close in their winter home.
Sperm whales live year-round off the coast of Kaikoura, a small town where whale watching is the main attraction. There is also a wide variety of other marine life, including several kinds of whales, dolphins, and sea birds. Here you can find Hector’s dolphin, the world’s smallest and one of the rarest breeds only found in New Zealand.
Hermanus is known as the place with the best land-based whale watching on earth. In the middle of the whale route, the most common whale on view is the Southern Right, although many other types of whales and dolphins can be seen. Other whale-based activities in town include a yearly festival and a Whale Crier who blows a kelp horn.
This remote chain of islands in the Atlantic is teeming with all sorts of whales and dolphins, particularly sperm and sei whales. There seems to be a real “scientific research” bent to the tours offered here, which are dedicated to protecting the whales and their habitat.
Image Credit: Tourism Victoria