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Top 10 Whale Watching Hotspots in Australia

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by Lucy (subscribe)
Welcome to Lucy's collection of ideas and adventures designed to inspire others to get off the couch and explore our local environment.
Published August 15th 2013
Visit The Australian Whale Sanctuary
Whale Watching, Australia
www.environment.gov.au


We are so lucky here in Australia to live in such a pristine natural environment and every winter, thousands of whales come to visit us for their annual migration to warmer waters. Mostly Humpback Whales and Southern Right Whales come to give birth and teach their new calves to swim, before making the big journey back to Antarctica. Please remember, Australian waters are officially a Whale Sanctuary and all whales are to be treated with great respect.

Whale Watching, Australia
Cape Byron - Australia's most easterly point


It is not at all difficult to spot the annual migration from the land, as long as you know the best whale watching hot spots around our extensive coastline. It is estimated that each year around 1.6 million people participate in Whale Watching tours and these are the best way to get up very close to these amazing mammals.

Below, are Australia's Top 10 locations to Whale Watch, beginning in North Western Australia and ending on The Great Barrier Reef in Queensland.

1. Cape Leveque, Western Australia

The north west Australian coastline is a favorite spot for Humpbacks to play and calve from July to October. Read Carolyn's detailed review of Whale Watching here.

2. Exmouth, Western Australia

Exmouth Gulf, the waters off Cape Range National Park, and Ningaloo Reef teem with Whale Sharks, as well as pods of Humpback Whales from August to October each year.

3. Albany, Western Australia

Between June and November, this is the place to spot Southern Right Whales and is their preferred destination for both mating and birthing. Plenty of Humpback Whales also pass by on their way to and from the northern waters.

Whale Watching, Australia
www.environment.gov.au


4. Head of Bight, South Australia

If you sit on the cliffs at the "bottom" of The Great Australian Bite, between May and October, you will definitely see pods of Southern Right Whales frolicking.

5. Victor Harbour, South Australia

This is a known safe haven for Southern Right Whales, who come here to birth their calves around July and August. It is easy to spot them close to shore, enjoying the warmer waters with their offspring. Read Paula's great review of whale watching here.

6. Bruny Island, Tasmania

Just near the southern tip of Tasmania, Adventure Bay is a popular location for Southern Right Whales and Humpback Whales to rest before continuing further north or south. The best times to spot whales here are between May and July (migrating north) and September and December (migrating south).

7. Eden, New South Wales

Between June and August and September and November, there is a high chance you will spot Humpback Whales stopping here with new born calves for a feed.

8. Cape Byron, New South Wales

Australia's most easterly point occupies an easily accessible 100 meter high cliff, ensuring front row views of hundreds of whales passing each day between June and November. If you're feeling particularly adventurous, you can join a kayak tour and kayak with the whales.

9. Hervey Bay, Queensland

Between August and November, many Humpback Whales rest here in the waters of The Great Sandy Marine Park, which is protected from the Pacific Ocean by Fraser Island. There are many whale watching tours to choose from here, but try to be discerning and choose a vessel which is not too big and has access around all the decks. Read Jane's excellent review of her tour here.

10. Whitsundays, Queensland

This is as far north as Humpback Whales venture, and you can see them completely enjoying the tropical paradise with their new calves, before embarking on the long journey south.

Please visit www.environment.gov.au to learn the latest information regarding whale watching in Australia, and I wish you the very best whale watching experiences.
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Why? We live in a Whale Sanctuary
When: May - November, depending on which part of Australia you're in
Where: Around Australia's extensive coastline
Cost: It's free to sit and Whale Watch, however actual boat tours vary in price
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