Where to go whale watching in Sydney

Each year between the months of May and November, more than 40,000 whales make their way along Sydney’s coastline in their annual migration from Antarctica to the Pacific.


For anyone with a love of nature, spotting one of these amazing creatures is a truly unique encounter. And, with whale numbers increasing by 10% each year, now is the perfect time to experience whale watching in Sydney for yourself.


A whale breaches off Sydney’s coast. © Destination NSW


Whale-watching from land

The peak months for spotting whales are the end of June and the beginning of July, but many mothers and their calves can be found making the journey slightly later in October and November.

Nothing can beat getting up close and personal with these stunning animals, but if you’re hoping to stick to the safety of the shore, there are some amazing vantage points where whales can be seen breaching the nearby water.

At Cape Solander, you’ll have an unbridled view of the ocean below. Found in Kamay Botany Bay National Park, it offers a spectacular whale watching opportunity, receiving over 300,000 visitors each year. And, with a new and improved whale viewing platform set to open this month, there’s no better time to check it out for yourself.


Bondi coastal walk © James Horan; Destination NSW


If you’re looking to stay active during your whale watching experience, the cliff-top walking trail from Bondi to Coogee is known to offer some fantastic viewing opportunities. The six kilometre trail takes two hours to complete, but winds its way around the coastline for some great views of the ocean, and any whales that may be making their way past. It’s proximity to several coastal suburbs means there are plenty of food and dining options along the way to keep you motivated.

Or, for quick and easy access to an ideal location, whale spotting hopefuls can travel to The Gap, an ocean cliff on the South Head Peninsula which gazes out across the Sydney harbour. Easily accessed by Ferry or Bus, it’s a convenient and beautiful location for whale watching. Nothing beats the ocean views on offer here.


Whale-watching tours

For those wanting to spot these amazing creatures from the open ocean, Sydney offers plenty of whale watching tours.

Perhaps the most well known, Whale Watching Sydney has over 25 years of experience turning whale watching dreams into a reality. Between the months of May and November, they offer daily cruises from Darling Harbour and Circular Quay on a fleet of custom built boats for speed and comfort.The company has such a high success rate with whale sightings, they’re even willing to offer a free return cruise if your boat doesn’t catch a glimpse of any whales on your journey.


Whale watching © Newcastle Council


A newer company, but just as successful, Manly Ocean Adventures operates Sydney’s fastest commercial vessel straight from Manly, getting you into the open ocean quickly and efficiently. Their boats are entirely open, so you can get up close and personal with the beautiful whales. Plus, you can book a sunset tour for even greater views of Sydney’s amazing coastline.

As whales travel the coastline in the colder months, it’s a good idea to pack a blanket and some warm clothes when planning to undertake any of these adventures. But no matter the weather, seeing these wonderful whales in person is an experience that can’t be missed. It should be at the top of your bucket list coming into whale watching season this year.

Whale watching in Sydney is only the beginning. Click here to discover what else the city has to offer.


Travel to Sydney

For more details about flights, check out the Rex route map or visit their website by clicking here.

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