The Telegraph has published a list of the top 10 best whale-watching holidays around the world, and South Africa has come out at number 1!!!
Hermanus, South Africa – South Africa is one of the best destinations worldwide for watching marine mammals, and The Telegraph agree! Whether from land or boats, with spectacular annual visits from the southern right and humpback whales and enormous pods of dolphins year-round.
This is what The Telegraph had to say:
“Heading out to sea isn’t everyone’s cup of tea – and you don’t have to if you go to the small fishing village of Hermanus, overlooking the Atlantic two hours east of Cape Town. Southern right whales come to calf and mate off this coast between June and November, performing their acrobatics incredibly close to the shore. Tailor-made specialist Turquoise Holidays includes a visit to Hermanus on its 10-day South Africa itinerary.”
Every year, southern right whales migrate from their icy feeding grounds off Antarctica to warmer climates, reaching South Africa in June. The country’s coastal waters teem with the giant animals, mating, calving and rearing their young – and giving whale-watchers spectacular displays of raw power and elegant water acrobatics.
The best time for watching the southern right whale in South African waters is from June to November along the Cape south coast, although some will already be as far north as KwaZulu-Natal. Peak calving season is July and August, but whales can be seen through September and October.
The curious humpback whale can be seen between May to December, moving up along the coast from Hermanus to St Lucia in KwaZulu-Natal.
The medium-sized Bryde’s whale can be spotted all year round, and while rare, orcas can also be seen.
In terms of the Marine Living Resources Act of 1998, it is an offence to approach any whale closer than 300m without a permit, so if you book a whale- watching cruise, make sure the company has a permit before you get on board.
South Africa beat out many incredible whale sighting destinations in The Telegraph’s list. Check out the full list below:
10. Madeira – Portuguese Island
9. Christchurch – New Zealand
8. Cetaceans – Azores
7. Queensland – Australia
6. Grundarfjorour – Iceland
5. San Ignacio Lagoon – Mexico
4. Vancouver Island – Canada
3. Canary Island
2. California – United States of America
1. Hermanus – South Africa