More than 40,000 humpback whales swim past Sydney every year making our city a fabulous place to see whales. But, it’s not just humpbacks that we can see in the waters off of the coast. Sydneysiders have been lucky enough to catch sight of southern right whales, minke whales and even blue whales—although those are pretty rare. And while setting up at your favourite coastal lookout can prove fruitful, it’s just so much more thrilling to see these heavyweights of the oceans up close on an intimate whale watching tour.
Sea Monkey Sailing offers whale enthusiasts and nature lovers the chance to spot whales in their natural habitat. Hop aboard the intimately-sized catamaran to sail Sydney Harbour and into open waters where these majestic sea creatures swim up close. You’ll be able to take photos or even just bask in the beauty of these cetaceans.
Sail alongside the gentle giants for a spectacular encounter with nature in Sydney.
Whale Season in Sydney
Sydney is blessed with a prime position on Australia’s eastern coast for the annual whale-watching season, which takes place between May and November. It’s pretty much seven months of whale action every year where whales first swim north to their winter breeding grounds before returning south to the antarctic and their summer feeding feast.
Humpbacks are also known for leaping out of the water, rolling in the air with their huge pectoral fins outstretched, and making a huge splash as they crash back into the water. Male humpbacks are particularly renowned for their ‘singing’, which you might get to experience on a tour with Sea Monkey Sailing.
The Northern Whale Migration
From May to August, Sydney sees plenty of whales breaching as well as active males displaying dominant traits in order to impress females. The peak of the northern migration takes place between the end of June and the beginning of July. August makes for a fascinating time of the whale watching season in Sydney as the first whales moving south cross paths with the final stragglers swimming north.
The Southern Whale Migration
Towards the end of August as well as in September, very curious whales tend to swim up close and circle boats making for a whale of a time on board Sea Monkey Sailing’s whale watching experiences.
Come October and November and the end of the whale watching season in Sydney, it’s time for whale mothers and calves to swim south. They tend to swim closer to the coast as the mothers are teaching their calves how to do whale things, like how to properly breach. Sometimes it works out, other times it’s just a clumsy attempt. But, they all got to learn.
What else can you see on a whale-watching tour?
Although humpback whales are the most common species you’ll get to see on a whale watching experience in Sydney—almost guaranteed to see on any boat tour—we’re blessed with the chance to see other animals off of the coast. Dolphins are quite common and so are a variety of sea birds and fur seals. Other species include fish, rays and turtles as well as a variety of sharks.
Rare sightings include blue whales and orcas. However, less than a handful of these majestic creatures have been seen in the past decade. Fingers crossed, though.
Sea Monkey Sailing
Sea Monkey Sailing is a family-owned and operated business in Sydney. Their catamarans have a maximum capacity of 34 people on board, which provides ample space for guests to move around and seek out the best vantage point to spot whales. The small-size vessels also make for simpler navigation and easier maneuverability for some of the best whale-watching experiences in Sydney.
Sea Monkey Sailing’s three-hour Intimate Whale Watching Experiences begin on 1 June with weekday tours departing Aquarium Wharf at 12:30pm. On weekends, the whale-watching tours depart at both 9am and 12:30pm. The boat is sheltered in the case of rain and wind.