Optimal Timing for Viewing Whales in Vancouver

Timing is everything when it comes to experiencing the magic of whale watching in Vancouver.


I’m a local Vancouver resident who is passionate about whale watching. Having been on countless tours over the years, I believe that Vancouver is one of the best places in the world for whale watching. In this article, I will be sharing my knowledge and insights on the best time of the year to see these majestic creatures, as well as reviewing some of the top whale watching tours available in the city. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned veteran, I hope this article helps you make the most of your whale watching experience in Vancouver.

Best Time of Year to View Whales: As a whale enthusiast and Vancouver resident, I know that the optimal time of the year to view whales in this region is from March to October. During this time, various species of whales migrate to Vancouver’s coastal waters, including humpback whales, orcas, and gray whales. The best time to view these majestic creatures is during the summer months, particularly from June to September, when the weather is generally sunny and calm, offering clear visibility. However, keep in mind that wildlife sightings can never be guaranteed, so it’s important to book your tour with a reputable company that has a high success rate in finding whales. I recommend checking the weather forecast and sea conditions before booking your tour to ensure optimal conditions for viewing these magnificent creatures. Additionally, it’s essential to bring warm clothing and protective gear, as the weather can be unpredictable, and the water can be cold. By following these tips, you can maximize your chances of witnessing these incredible creatures in their natural habitat.

Review of Whale Watching Tours:

As a resident of Vancouver and a passionate whale enthusiast, I have been on several whale watching tours in the city. Here, I will review some of the top whale watching tours available in Vancouver based on my personal experience.

1. Prince of Whales Whale Watching: This tour company has been operating for over 30 years and offers a variety of tours, including zodiacs, covered vessels and even seaplanes. I personally went on their covered vessel tour and was amazed by the knowledgeable and friendly crew. We spotted several pods of orcas and even a humpback whale during our 3-hour tour. The prices are a bit higher compared to other tours, but the experience is definitely worth it.

2. Wild Whales Vancouver: This tour company offers both covered vessel and zodiac tours and is known for its commitment to environmental conservation. I went on their zodiac tour and it was an adrenaline-pumping experience. We got up close to a pod of orcas and even saw some seals and sea lions. The downside is that the ride can be quite bumpy and it’s not suitable for those with back problems. However, the thrill of seeing these amazing creatures in the wild is unforgettable.

3. Vancouver Whale Watch: This tour company has been operating for over 20 years and offers a variety of tours, including covered vessels and zodiacs. I went on their covered vessel tour and was impressed by the spacious and comfortable seating. The crew was also knowledgeable and provided interesting commentary throughout the tour. We spotted several pods of orcas and even had a surprise encounter with a minke whale. The prices are reasonable and the experience is great for families with kids.

Overall, there are many great whale watching tours available in Vancouver, each with its own unique features and advantages. It’s important to do some research and choose a tour that suits your preferences and budget. And remember, the key to a successful whale watching experience is to be patient and keep your eyes peeled for any signs of these majestic creatures.

Other Activities to Enjoy While Whale Watching: As a resident of Vancouver, I know that there’s so much more to do in the city besides whale watching! While you’re here, why not take the opportunity to explore some of our local museums like the Vancouver Aquarium or the Museum of Anthropology? Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can go kayaking or paddleboarding in English Bay. For those who prefer a more relaxed pace, taking a stroll through Stanley Park or visiting Granville Island are great options. Don’t forget to indulge in some of our local cuisine too – we have some of the best seafood in the world!