If you are planning to book a whale watching tour in 2021, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, in most parts of the world, whale watching is seasonal, so do check that your dates coincide with the migrations. Here are a few aspects of whale watching to think about.
Choosing the Venue
For those who want the best experience whale watching, Eden cruises offer an excellent chance of a busy day watching whales. The West Coast of Australia is where you will see the annual Humpback migration from May – October, when the whales head from Antarctica to The Great Barrier Reef and back again a few months later, with their young in tow. Simply search online for a whale watching tour operator and you can book via the website and it is wise to book early in order to avoid disappointment.
The Humpback Whale has quite a few surface behaviours, including:
- Breaching – Most of the body leaves the water, with a spectacular crash when the whale succumbs to gravity. Much like us, some are better at this than others and if you are nearby, it is an experience to be remembered.
- Pec Slap – The whale lies on its side and slaps the water with the pectoral fin.
- Tail Slap – As with the pec slap, the fluke (tail) is slapped hard down on the water surface, sending out quite a wave.
- The Spy Hop – While sitting vertically, the whale pops its head up, which is thought to be for vision purposes. They may be able to see other whales by doing this and it is often seen.
Wearing the Right Clothing
The seas are very unpredictable and even on a calm day, sea-spray is unavoidable, so a waterproof jacket is recommended. Make sure you have a bag to protect your camera and check you have enough memory and your battery is fully charged. A resealable plastic bag is ideal for your smartphone, while a pair of boots with good grip helps keep you safe.
In the event you think you will suffer from seasickness, take some medication about one hour before you set off, which should work. Having a nauseous feeling will ruin the experience, so take precautions if you are unsure about your sea legs.
The whale watching captains know all the best spots and can position the boat to give the passengers the best view. The boats are not allowed to get too close and with years of hands-on experience, the seasoned skipper will take you can close as he is allowed.