Preparing for a whale watching tour
Whale watching tours offer a unique opportunity to see these majestic creatures in their natural habitat and learn more about their behavior and habits. In this guide, we will provide everything you need to know to prepare for a whale watching tour, including the different types of tours available, what to expect on the tour, and what to bring with you.
Types of Whale Watching Tours
There are a variety of different types of whale watching tours available, each with its own unique features and benefits. Here are some of the main types of tours to consider:
- Boat tours: Boat tours are the most common type of whale watching tour, and offer the opportunity to see whales from the comfort of a boat. These tours can vary in size and amenities, with options ranging from small, intimate boats to larger vessels with amenities such as restrooms and snack bars.
- Kayak tours: Kayak tours offer a more intimate and adventurous way to see whales, as you’ll be paddling your own kayak and getting up close and personal with the whales. These tours are typically smaller in size and may require a moderate level of physical fitness.
- Paddle board tours: Paddle board tours are similar to kayak tours, but with the added challenge of standing on a paddle board. These tours offer a unique perspective on the whales and the surrounding environment.
- Aerial tours: Aerial tours, such as helicopter or small plane tours, offer the opportunity to see whales from above. These tours can provide a unique perspective on the whales and the surrounding landscape, but may be more expensive and less intimate than other types of tours.
What to Expect on a Whale Watching Tour
Whale watching tours can vary in length and amenities, but there are a few things you can expect on most tours:
- Professional guides: Most whale watching tours are led by professional guides who are knowledgeable about the whales and the local area. They will provide information about the whales and their behavior, as well as safety instructions.
- Close encounters: Depending on the type of tour and the location, you may have the opportunity to see whales up close and personal. Some tours may even allow you to touch or swim with the whales (if it is safe and allowed by local regulations).
- Natural surroundings: Most whale watching tours take place in natural surroundings, such as the ocean or a river. This means that you may encounter other wildlife, such as dolphins, seals, and birds, as well as beautiful scenery.
- Possible motion sickness: If you are prone to motion sickness, it is a good idea to bring medication with you on the tour. The motion of the boat or kayak can cause some people to feel nauseous, and it is better to be prepared in case this happens.
Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your whale watching tour:
- Dress for the weather: The weather can vary significantly depending on the location and time of year, so be sure to dress appropriately. This may include layers, rain gear, a hat, and sunscreen.
- Bring a camera: Most whale watching tours offer the opportunity to see whales up close and personal, so be sure to bring a camera to capture these special moments. A waterproof or water-resistant camera is especially useful if you are on a boat or kayak tour.
- Follow the guidelines of your tour group and guides: It is important to follow the guidelines of your tour group and guides to ensure the safety of everyone on the tour. This may include instructions on how to approach the whales and other wildlife, as well as rules for touching or interacting with the whales.
- Stay hydrated: It is important to stay hydrated during the tour, especially if you are on a boat or kayak tour. Bring plenty of water and snacks to keep yourself nourished and energized.
- Respect the whales and their habitat: Remember that you are a guest in the whales’ home, and it is important to respect their space and behavior. Do not approach the whales too closely or try to touch them without permission, and be mindful of your impact on the environment.
Whale watching tours offer a unique opportunity to see these majestic creatures in their natural habitat and learn more about their behavior and habits. By following the guidelines of your tour group and guides, dressing appropriately, and respecting the whales and their habitat, you can make the most of your whale watching tour and have a memorable and enjoyable experience.