Decided I'm going to try and organise a trip whale watching for the wife and I. Want to try and stick with europe or Scnadinavia any time next year just was wondering if any one had been on a whale watching trip and whether they could give me some advice or recommendations?
Cheers matPosted 8 years agoredxSubscriber
The Bay of Biscay is supposed to be a good place to see whales. I think you need to find somewhere warm where mothers & babies go, as they'll be more active than places where the males tend to go.
I've been whale watching from Cape Cod and in New Zealand, but from what I remember both places are where the males head and neither day was that great……Posted 8 years agoGrahamSSubscriber
I went whale watching on a boat off the east coast of Oz. They did a deal where if you didn't see any whales you could go again for free. It took three trips to find some whales, but when we finally did it was amazing.
I realise this is a bit far to go, but the point is…
Leave tho poor sods alone?
The whales we saw were protected species. Boats were not allowed to approach any closer than a couple of hundred meters. Instead they moored up and got everybody to make some noise and wave.
The juvenile whales are very curious, so they came over to check us out. We had three or four of them "spy hopping" right next to us, close enough that we could smell their breath (which is minging).
So basically, it was a meeting on their own terms. The adults just glanced us over to make sure we weren't a threat. The juveniles played for a while till they got bored and then carried on their journey.
I'd hope that any similar trip in the UK would be made on a similar basis.Posted 8 years agoGarry_LagerSubscriber
Went whale watching off the Australian East Coast as well. Couldn't move for humpbacked whales – spectacular sight.
Couldn't move for people being seasick, either. It was a bit choppy and there must have been 5 or 6 people laid out inside the boat. Felt a bit green around the gills myself – something to do with the boat constantly stopping and starting going after the whales.Posted 8 years agobereavementmonkeySubscriber
Mexico….. San Jose Del Cabo on at the bottom of Baja California, go quad biking and then stand on one of the many bluffs watching the whales and dolphins playing together!
Cheaper than you would think when you take into account local costs.
Then you can go and pretend to be Brad Pit in Troy as that is where the beach scenes were filmed.Posted 8 years agomidlifecrashesSubscriber
I've been lucky and seen quite a few on trips from SW Ireland and NW pacific. Can't remember the Irish ones, but from north of Seattle, Island Mariner Cruises were excellent. You need to go Spring or Autumn to catch the big ones as they head north or south if you go Seattle/Vancouver. Orcas live in Puget sound all year so are pretty much guaranteed.Posted 8 years agobeamersSubscriber
We went whale watching out of Tofino in BC. It was early in the morning, we were one of the first boats on the water and as such the boat drivers had not worked out where all of the whales. Consequently we only saw a couple of grey whales and they didn't do anything to impressive in terms of leaping out of the water. This is all we saw:
We did see a wolf though, sauntering along on the beach:
The boat was a RIB with twin 150hp outboards. Awesome.Posted 8 years agoBigButSlimmerBlokeMember
i saw a Minke in the Cuillin Sound and another off Noup Head, westray, Orkney.Posted 8 years ago
orca are regula visitors to Westray and North Ronaldsay, and i was once told that, during the summer they go for their dinner to the rocks jst off the north end of North Ronaldsy at high tide. Apparently on a high spring tide, there isn't enough room for all the seals.
If you wanr to do some UK whale or cetacean watching, have a look here
Husavik, North East Iceland. Prices are much better nowadays due to their desperate need of foreign currency. We have sailed with North Sailing, who use beautifully converted wooden trawlers, warm and quiet. Always fantastically helpful to work with, fluent english speaking.
Best bit- if you don't see any whales- you get another trip until you do! Sorted.
Locally the scenery is awesome, but not too far away is Myvatn…Posted 8 years agoebygommMember
We also stopped off at an island just off the coast and had a dip in the hot springs. I think the trip would have been worth it without the whales to be honest.
We saw Orca on the ferry from Washington State to Vancouver IslandPosted 8 years agoNZColSubscriber
I was paddling my ski along the S coast of Wgtn last summer with a mate when he said "did you feel that?" , it was a weird sort of displacement kind of feeling (was flat calm that day). Next thing this mahoosive eye appears beside us – a big Orca and its calf. Very very scary, cool, amazing, weird all at once. We stopped paddling and just sat there as it cruised round us while the calf played, when we started to paddle again the calf came and played in the boat wash – mum eventually came near and nudged it away and off they went. She did a huge flare which we thought was a spiritual way of saying "seeya"*. The whole experience was cool, we regularly get dolphins playing with us but thats my first close whale encounter.
* in the pub later we came up with that description but we'd had a few 😀Posted 8 years ago
Amos- I've been all over Iceland a few times now, so have stayed in a wide variety of places. Probably my favorite is staying in the mountain huts (bookable, 4×4 not always needed, some have a 'mountain bus' service passing close by) Hvitarnes is idyllic, close to the shores of a glacial lake. Hveravellir is right slap bang in the interior, in the middle of what is to all intents and purposes a desert, and has some amazing hot pools. Tourists by day, you have it to yourself from 4:30 onwards. You can camp (stunning) or stay in the huts- like old school youth hostels. Myvatn- hotel is supposed to be good, but the Reykjahlid campsite, closest to the village offers wonderful views, fantastic ambience and cannot be beaten.
Akureyri is really nice, sort of like a nice Swansea or a nice Plymouth, but MUCH smaller. Reykjavik is fantastic. Acommodation can be tricky to get, we stay with friends. Loads to be had out of town though, try Hafnafjordur park! (a proper site, in a park) We ended up having an impromptu infant school play session one morning as Mrs Ambrose is an infant teacher and the school uses the park. Everyone is SO unbelievably, amazingly friendly
To be honest, of all the places I've stayed in the worst was…. well I can't think of a bad one at all. Give me a ring if you want, there is a LOT to tell. Oh- have you seen this, a lovely treat for your wife 🙂
And this place is high in the mountains above Myvatn, views of midnightish sun, and the northern lights….
Call for a chat if you want, O778O988381
I cannot rate Iceland highly enough. It is proper breathtaking, everything about the place impresses. They Really have it all. Apart from a working economy that is, but hey- I'm on holiday!Posted 8 years agoshedfullMember
My folks went for a 24 hour trip to the fjords to see Orca a few years ago and loved it. I've no idea who they went with but this is the kind of thing.
TBH, I'd rather go for a long weekend, stay in the area, sample the local food and hospitality and get a few whale watching trips in.Posted 8 years agocorrodedMember
Next thing this mahoosive eye appears beside us – a big Orca and its calf.
Had a similar experience while kayaking in the Bay of Islands a few years ago – mum (I guess), dad (massive dorsal) and calf. The calf had a skate/ray in its mouth but it's strange because I can only remember fragments like that – it was so scary but wonderful. They were close enough to touch with a paddle and didn't seem bothered at all.Posted 8 years agorobgarriochSubscriber
Maybe one to try if you're on a domestic trip…
It's a bit of a 'try-your-luck' case, probably best in late spring / summer. I've seen minke whales, porpoise, basking sharks from the shore a few times. There were even reports a few years ago of a great white a little further north.Posted 8 years agoatlazMember
Problem with a lot of whale watching tours in the Pacific NW is they crowd pods and it's frequently been the cause of calves becoming separated from the pods. A LOT of the locals (my other half is from the San Juan Islands) want whale watching in the sound more strictly controlled as it's been a cause of problems for a while.Posted 8 years ago
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