Watch out for whales!
Sighting a whale in the wild is not an experience you’re ever likely to forget. These magnificent creatures live migratory lives as they swim the oceans, feeding and seeking out the warm currents where their young are birthed. Many whale species are considered to be greatly intelligent and largely social as well, choosing to live in communities called pods.
Research has shown that each pod tends to have its own language and social mores, resulting in patterns that differ greatly from one pod to the next, even within the same species. This gives added nuance to a whale watching journey, making each one a unique experience no matter how many whale spotting holidays you go on. Of course, you can’t just hop on any boat and hope; there are definitely some places that offer higher chances of sighting these gentle giants of the sea.
The Flexicover Team lists a few of the best destinations to enjoy a whale watching holiday.
From April to December the waters around the west coast of Ireland are witness to significant numbers of minke whales, which migrate here in the spring and stay until the Atlantic gets colder as winter approaches. During the summer you can also spot fin whales, the second largest whale species in the world. But by far the most incredible experience you can have whilst whale watching in Ireland is sighting acrobatic humpback whales as they leap up and splash into the waters. There are also plenty of dolphins and porpoises to be found and, if you’re lucky, you may even spot an orca, also known as the killer whale.
In 1999 an annual migration pattern of blue and sperm whales was noted as they made their way between the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. Serendipitously, Sri Lanka lies right in the middle of this route, giving the turquoise waters around the island one of the world’s highest concentration of cetaceans for spotting. Dondra Point is an excellent place to set off for blue whale watching, although boats head out from most towns along the south coast such as Weligama and Mirissa. The season for whale watching in Sri Lanka runs from late November until mid-April but you can also spot long-snouted spinner dolphins throughout the year.
Northern Iceland is already incredibly attractive to travellers with its surreal volcanic landscape and strikingly beautiful black sand beaches. But Iceland's whale watching is also renowned as it’s one place where you are almost guaranteed whale sightings (chances are reckoned at around 90% in summer), with Husavik being one of the best places to see whales. Here you can readily spot minke whales, blue whales, humpback whales and orcas as well as plenty of seals and harbour porpoises. The season is considered to extend from May through to August, which is also a great time to visit the rest of the country.
The Azores are an isolated chain of nine volcanic islands in the Atlantic Ocean and the waters here are home to at least 20 species of cetaceans, some of which (such as sperm whales and several dolphin species) can be sighted all year long. Of the islands, São Jorge, Faial and Pico are the best places for whale watching with abundant fish supplies that attract migrating blue whales, turtles and striped dolphins. The best time to go on whale watching trips to this Portuguese outpost is between April to October, with frequencies rising from late June, when you can spot pilot, minke and sei whales as well.
One of the other good places on the planet to catch sperm whales throughout the year, Kaikoura is the whale watching capital of the country. You’re bound to spot different species no matter when you go – June and July is best for seeing humpback whales. December to March is ideal for orca watching and you can even catch sight of southern right whales and some smaller species from time to time, along with plenty of fur seals and dolphins. One of the reasons this area attracts so much marine life is the 2km deep Kaikoura Canyon that runs along the coast, creating a unique system of sea currents and an abundant upwelling of fish.
Go ahead, experience some of the best whale watching in the world without a worry, as we at Flexicover are committed to providing you with the highest level of protection to ensure that you are safe and secure, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year when away.
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