Whale Watching on the Gold Coast

Whales in Paradise

Last weekend, my family and I headed out with the fantastic crew from Whales in Paradise on the Gold Coast. They are a whale watching operator taking 3 tours each day from the centre of Surfers Paradise.

We were waiting on the pier for the 11am tour and I must admit, I was feeling a little anxious. It would be just my luck that we don’t see any whales today and my children were just so excited that I didn’t want to let them down. As we boarded the catamaran, the staff had great energy and were so upbeat as they were telling us about their whale encounters from the morning trip. I started to wish I had booked on the early trip instead…  

Whale Watching - Gold Coast

Whales in Paradise claim to have 100% whale sightings each day and they didn’t disappoint. Within 10 minutes of reaching the open water, we came across our first whale. We weren’t the only ones viewing that whale and soon it was surrounded by recreational boats. Our captain made the decision to head out into deeper water and before too long we met a humpback and her new calf. We were in absolute awe watching them frolic and play as the mum was teaching her calf how to breach. It was certainly a site to behold and I was even quick enough to snap a few photos of them in action.

Whale watching - Gold Coast

Whale watching - Gold Coast

Whale watching - Gold Coast

Whale watching - Gold Coast

Whale watching - Gold Coast

During our time at sea, the captain and the crew provided educational facts and constantly kept us updated as to the whales’ whereabouts. They were more than happy to answer questions which was a good thing as my 8 year old had plenty of those!

A highlight for me was seeing a spyhop which is where a whale vertically raises it’s head out of the water to view its surroundings. It was the first one that the crew had seen this season and we were lucky enough be there. I snapped it on my camera and although it is a little blurry, it is a photo that I will cherish for a long time. I am an amateur photographer and came away with some fantastic photos which you can see here.

Whale watching - Gold Coast

In our 3 ½ hours at sea, we encountered approximately 12 whales including 3 calves which were on their journey north to warmer waters. It was more than I had expected and it seemed like this was just like any ordinary day out for the Whales in Paradise crew.

I felt that my 4 and 6 year old were a little too young to fully appreciate the beauty of what they were witnessing but my 8 year old took it all in and loved every moment. The only thing that could have made it better was if I was able to jump off the boat and snorkel with them!! Overall it was a very enjoyable experience and I would certainly recommend it for a family day out.

For more information, please visit http://whalesinparadise.com.au/

Whales in Paradise

Dates: 3 trips per day, 7 days a week from June 1, 2015 – October 31, 2015

Times: 7.30am – 10.45am, 11.00am – 2.15pm, 2.30pm – 5.45pm

Location: River end of Cavill Avenue

Cost: Adults – $99, Children (3-14) – $69, Family Pass (2 Adults + 2 Children) – $267

Transfers: Available from the Gold Coast for $10 pp each way, and Brisbane for $15 pp each way

Details: www.whalesinparadise.com.au

Related Activities

Below are related whale watching activities for kids.

Sea Animal Puppets Printable  

Printable here.

Shoebox puppet theatre

Travel kit for long car trips

More details on this whale-theme kit Kelly did for her kids here.

Travel kit for kids - whale theme


Easy sea-themed play scene for play at home

See how to put it together here.

Easy whale theme play for kid


Making the Most of Special Family Experiences

Travel Posts

This is an unpaid review post. Read my review policy here.

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