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Orca, Vancouver Island
(Minden Pictures/Masterfile photo)

Water Activities

Whale Watching

Whale watching, Gulf Islands (Tom Ryan photo)

Whale watching, Gulf Islands (Tom Ryan photo)

Whale watching in British Columbia is an extraordinary experience. Set out on a whale-watching tour to spot Orcas (killer whales), humpback whales, Pacific grey whales – all in their natural habitats.

Whale-watching opportunities abound May through October, and tours leave from major cities such as Vancouver and Victoria, along with more remote locations such as Northern BC and off the north and west coasts of Vancouver Island (named by Travel + Leisure magazine as one of North America’s Best Whale Watching Spots in 2010).

Choose from a range of whale-watching tours, such as a few hours on an open-air high-speed Zodiac; a full day spent on a comfortable cruiser with indoor seating and spacious viewing deck; or even a historic sailboat for a week-long luxury adventure.

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69 Whale Watching in British Columbia

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21

Prince of Whales Whale Watching - Victoria - Victoria

812 Wharf Street
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 1T3
Toll-free888-383-4884
Phone250-383-4884

Prince of Whales is BC's largest marine adventure company. We have been sharing premiere whale-watching and marine-wildlife experiences with the world for 20 years! With year-round departures from Vancouver and Victoria, we have welcomed more than 200,000 guests to our waters. Our floating classrooms provide an educational platform for guests interested in observing unique behaviours of marine wildlife in natural habitats.

From Victoria, tours range from 3-hour Zodiac and Ocean Magic Adventures to longer guided day tours with drop-off at Butchart Gardens private marine cove. Join us from May through September as we embark on an afternoon adventure across Georgia Straight on route to Vancouver. Enjoy comfort and convenience, as well as spectacular views, as we travel through the Gulf Islands behind Salt Spring Island.

22

Remote Passages Marine Excursions - Tofino

51 Wharf St
Tofino, British Columbia
V0R 2Z0
Toll-free800-666-9833
Phone250-725-3330

We are committed to preserving the ecological value & timeless wonder of Clayoquot Sound. We strive to help visitors appreciate the coastal environment through fun, educational outings. Our programs emphasize the many connections between forest & ocean ecosystems.

Whether whale watching, bear watching, dipping into Hot Springs Cove or sea kayaking to a rainforest trail, people of all ages have enjoyed our excursions since 1986.

We launch out of Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, just minutes from Long Beach & Pacific Rim National Park. Tofino is part of Clayoquot Sound, a temperate rainforest area of beaches & fjord inlets.

23

Seasmoke Whale Watching - Alert Bay

Toll-free800-668-6722
Phone250-974-5225

An eco-tour with the viewing of orcas, humpback & minke whales, numerous other marine mammals & seabirds while touring through the protected waters of Johnstone Strait & the Broughton Archipelago.

Departures are from: Alert Bay on Cormorant Island & the Alder Bay Resort on Vancouver Island. Our 4-5 hr "Sail with the Whales" tour offers exceptional service & value to individuals, families & small groups & includes fresh baked muffins & Devonshire Tea.

If you are looking for a unique & eco-friendly experience, join us, our carbon footprint is very small. There is no other whale-watching tour like it on the BC coast!

24

Sidney Whale Watching - Sidney

2537 Beacon Avenue
Sidney, British Columbia
V8L 1Y3
Toll-free888-656-7599
Phone250-656-7599

Breaching, spyhopping, bow riding, tail slapping - if these terms aren't familiar, you probably haven't been on a whale watching tour. Sidney Whale Watching, located in the Cannery Building at the foot of Beacon Avenue, offers 3 to 3 1/2 hour tours starting right from Sidney's waterfront! We are the closest company to the whale foraging grounds which means less travel time & more whale time! Learning about the traditional territory along the way & viewing all the other animals that call this place home is a one of a kind experience.

25

SpringTide Whale Tours & Charters - Victoria

1119 Wharf St
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 1T7
Toll-free800-470-3474
Phone250-384-4444

SpringTide's 61' Marauder IV provides the perfect platform for whale viewing & photography with 360° viewing decks and a terrific sound system to capture underwater vocalizations. Expert Biologists provide informative lectures, while you enjoy free hot beverages, comfortable indoor/outdoor seating and spacious washroom facilities. Charter Marauder for your private events.

Just for the thrill of it, suit-up for a Zodiac tour! Naturalist interpretations throughout your excursion covering biology & behaviour of whales, marine mammals & birds.

3 hour tours are also from April through October. Day trips, including transportation and/or hotels are available from Vancouver & Seattle.

Sportfishing charters available on a 42' sportfish yacht.

26

Steveston EcoTours - Richmond

5180 Westwater Dr
Richmond, British Columbia
V7E 6P3
Toll-free
Phone604-377-5964

Enjoy a unique marine wildlife EcoTour of the Steveston Harbour, Fraser River Estuary & Gulf Islands. Our private group tours depart from Britannia Shipyard National Historic Site in Steveston, to special destinations. View spectacular marine wildlife, explore pristine forest & marine ecosystems & discover ancient historic sites. You will see whales, sea lions, dolphins, seals, eagles & seabirds, depending on the season & tour. Different tours each season! Travel in comfort & safety aboard our custom EcoTour boat Archie V, a 6.7 m (22 ft) aluminium boat with spacious viewing deck, enclosed & heated cabin with large observation windows & seating for 6 guests.

27

Steveston Seabreeze Adventures - Richmond

12551 No 1 Rd
Richmond, British Columbia
V7E 1T7
Toll-free888-272-7203
Phone604-272-7200

Departing historic Steveston village, 'Gateway to the Orcas', join us for a cruise through the Gulf Islands in search of orcas & other whales. Along the way, be on the lookout for seals, sea lions, porpoises & aquatic birds, as well as the majestic bald eagles.

The boats are semi-enclosed with an upper viewing deck. The small group size of 23 passengers allows you freedom to move around the vessel. We are an owner-operated company & each tour is fully narrated. We have on-board washroom facilities & complimentary water & coffee are provided. Pre-ordered lunch is also available.

Guided fishing tours can also be arranged.

28

Stubbs Island Whale Watching - Telegraph Cove

24 Boardwalk
Telegraph Cove, British Columbia
V0N 3J0
Toll-free800-665-3066
Phone250-928-3185

Committed to ethical & educational wildlife viewing, we are the first whale watching company established in BC, now in our 36th season. Based in Telegraph Cove, the Whale Watching Capital of BC, we offer tours through Johnstone Strait, Blackfish Sound & Broughton Archipelago Area.

You'll love our island, the magnificent mammals & bird species you'll see, and the friendly people you'll meet. Depending on the season, you may see Orca (Killer Whales), Humpback Whales, Pacific White-sided Dolphins, Harbour Porpoises, Dall's Porpoise, Minke Whales, Bears, Steller Sea Lions & various birds.

Cruise in comfort in our 60 foot (17 metre) vessel MV Lukwa or the 40 foot (12 metre) MV Kuluta which have heated cabins & toilets, hydrophone (underwater microphone) so that you can hear the Orca vocalizations throughout the vessel.

29

Subtidal Adventures Whale & Bear Tours - Ucluelet

1950 Peninsula Road
Ucluelet, British Columbia
V0R 3A0
Toll-free877-444-1134
Phone250-726-7336

March and April "Gray Whale Adventure" during the northern migration. May through October "Islands Whales and Bears" in this amazing see-it-all tour in Barkley Sound. A photographer's dream. "Bears and Birds" all the activity in Ucluelet harbour at low tide (best for bears). November to February "Broken Group Islands Sunset Cruise" or "Sunset Harbour Tour" featuring low angle light, sea lions, eagles, and no crowds. Choose the boat that suits your style, a fast and fun adventurous zodiac or a cosy enclosed cruiser. Our Guarantee - We can guarantee that if you do not go on a whale or bear watching tour, you will definitely not see a whale or a bear. Unfortunately, you will miss all the other amazing things our tours have to offer.

30

Vancouver Whale Watch - Richmond

210-12240 Second Ave
Richmond, British Columbia
V7E 3L8
Toll-free
Phone604-274-9565

Go whale watching with Vancouver Whale Watch celebrating 16 years of whale watching from the lower mainland in 2015. This adventure of a lifetime starts in picturesque Steveston, travelling through the spectacular Gulf & San Juan Islands. We offer whale watching, wildlife viewing & nature tours in open or semi-covered zodiac style vessels. See Orcas, humpbacks, Dall's porpoises, sea lions, bald eagles & seals in their natural habitat. With Zodiac style boats, we ensure a safe & stable ride for all ages. Avoid ferry hassles by taking your tour direct from Vancouver. Shuttle service from downtown Vancouver available or free all day parking.

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