Whale Watching on Vancouver Island, BC

Top Spots Whale Watching

An Unforgettable Experience Waiting to Unfold

Travel & Leisure magazine in 2010 chose Vancouver Island one of North America’s Best Whale Watching areas.

A trip to Vancouver Island is definitely not complete without watching, up close, the magnificent beauty of whales, weighing thousands of pounds, enjoying a day of fun and frolic in their natural habitat.

If you have seen this particular attraction featured in magazines and documentaries, witnessing this rare opportunity firsthand definitely takes picture perfect travels to a whole new league of its own.

It’s sheer poetry in bright, living colors!

Meet the Orcas, the Grays and the Humpbacks

Visitors from all corners of the globe make a beeline for this favorite local attraction. Be enthralled by the close encounters with the Orcas, Gray whales and the Humpback whales as they powerfully ply the waves to enjoy their regular watery rituals.

The Orcas (Killer Whales) are an Amazing Site Up Close

The Orcas, in particular, are familiar sightings in certain areas around British Columbia’s coastal waters. The killer whale population is divided into two highly distinct groups: the residents that travel in massive pods, primarily feeding on fish, and the transients that chose to roam in smaller groups all around the key areas of the coast, mostly feeding on marine mammals such as other whales, seals and sea lions.

If you are keen on seeing these truly awe-inspiring Orcas, the ideal months to travel to the northern regions of Vancouver Island, particularly Johnstone Strait is between the months of July to mid-September. However, if you plan to visit the southern parts of the island via Haro Straight, then schedule your trip anytime between early May and towards the last few weeks of September.

Gray Whales

As for Gray whales, they are typically seen as they make their way towards the west of Vancouver Island, during the end of November as well as between March and April.

This is a major event as there are some 20,000 Pacific grey whales making their annual migration along the western side of Vancouver Island. Tofino and the surrounding areas celebrate this with an annual festival.

Humpback Whales

Humpback whales revel and make waves of their own on the northern parts of Vancouver Island, particularly around the outer edges of the Inside Passage (Georgia Straight). Be held spellbound as these fun-loving whales show off their acrobatic skills and their elaborate underwater song. The opportunity to enjoy the beach just mere metres from these whales is definitely one for the books.

Whale Watching Excursions on Vancouver Island

Being one of the sough after and highly visited whale watching destination of the world, there are a number of Vancouver Island tour operators eager to give you that experience to top any pre-existing outstanding vacation experience you may have had.

Aside from whales, you can also enjoy the sightings of Harbour Porpoises, Grizzly Bears, Stellar sea lions, Pacific white-sided dolphins, Dall’s porpoises and several exotic birds including the famous bald eagles.

If you are keen on experiencing a one of a kind adventure with that unforgettable “wow!” factor, Vancouver whale watching excursions is all set to give you just that and so much more.

For the different transportation options in getting around the different key whale watching areas, check out our Vancouver Island travel page.

Whales are one of the most majestic mammals on earth. To see them up close in one of the most amazing places on earth is an adventure you don’t want to miss. Come and enjoy!

Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Amazing Vancouver Island and a clickable link back to this page.

Publisher of Amazing Vancouver Island. Doug grew up in Kamloops and Vancouver. He is also the President of KIAI Angency, an Internet Marketing and Branding agency in Vancouver. He is an avid photographer and you can see his many pix of Vancouver Island on Flickr.

1 Comment

  1. Hi My name is Elizabeth. We are looking to visit Vancouver this summer and we want to go whale watching. One site I looked at said the best time to spot Humpback whales is late August to early September. Is this correct?


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