Whale Watching

Whale Watching

Get close up and personal with a Southern Right whale on a boat-based trip from Hermanus or Gansbaai.

Whale Watching

One of the highlights of the Western Cape

Whale watching is one of the major attractions of the Western Cape.  The peak time, when daily sightings are virtually guaranteed, is during September and October.  Humpbacks and Bryde's whales are mostly spotted offshore from boats, but by far the most commonly sighted species, either from land or from a boat, is the Southern Right whale.  These majestic giants migrate to the South African waters from the Antarctic Ocean to calf from June, and begin the long journey back again at the end of November or beginning of December. 


On the Western Cape, Hermanus and Gansbaai are the main areas for whale watching, either boat-based or land-based, and the good selection of accommodation means a stay of 2 nights here is highly recommended during the whale season.


There are only about 4,000 - 6,000 Southern Right whales left in the world today, and each whale has a unique pattern of characteristic pale callosities (outgrowths of tough skin) on their heads - making it possible to actually identify one from the other.



Coming close up with a Southern Right whale in its natural habitat is an exhilarating experience, and you certainly get a thrill from boat-based whale watching. However, if your sea-legs really aren't that strong, then watching whales from the shoreline or from the cliff tops is still a fantastic experience.


Bryde's whale feedingPlettenberg Bay offers all year round whale watching.  Visitors here can often seen whales just a few metres from the shore, or the cliff based whale watching from points along Robberg and Keurboom beaches and Robberg Nature Reserve offer even better viewing opportunities.

Plettenberg can boast all year round sightings of the resident Bryde’s whales.  The Southern Right whales are in the bay from between June and November, and when they leave, migratory humpback whales arrive with their calves early November and stay until the end of February, returning again during May and June.

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Suggested Itineraries

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*Prices are per person and are based on today's exchange rates. Exchange rates are subject to change and are updated daily.

Prices exclude international flights - ask us if you would like to include these.

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