How you can dive with humpback whales!

Dive Reports, Destinations Questions, and Travel Issues

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Postby scottg » Tue May 25, 2010 8:35 am

A few weeks ago Willie wrote a great article on diving with Humpbacks in the Caribbean. Now another moderator Doug Hoffman has written a great article on swimming with them in Tonga, which is near Fiji. Well done Doug! I hadn't realized we had so many whale lovers on the board :)

In case you are ever interested, Doug also leads trips to see the whales and is known as one of the most experienced trip leaders when it comes to photographing whales in Tonga.

http://www.uwphotographyguide.com/divin ... ack-whales

Scott Gietler Owner/Editor, Underwater Photography Guide & Bluewater Photo http://www.uwphotographyguide.com http://www.bluewaterphotostore.com

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Postby Willie » Sun May 30, 2010 2:27 am

One wouldnt belive how many places in the world there are where one can swimm with whales !
There arent plenty, but there are more than I thought there would be.
After I was in the water with Humpback Whales in the Silverbanks in February 2010 I am joining a small 4 people group in 2011 in the Azores to swimm and photograph underwater with Sperm Whales. Hopefully maybe Scott puts a group of UWP together sometime in 2011 to swimm with Sperm Whales in the Azores or Dominica Island....
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Postby douglasjhoffman » Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:05 am

Two years ago I went to Pico, Azores to swim with and photograph Sperm Whales. I was contributing to a project for the WDCS. We chartered a boat from Aqua Azores and had an incredible experience. The water was so blue, I will never forget it.

The ocean is full of life, and I got in on a bait ball, with birds diving all around me. We had some good encounters with sperm whales too, but these whales are quite different from Humpback whales.

They spent less time on the surface. Perhaps because they were in hunting and resting mode. I would have liked to have seen them during their period of social interaction.

The culture and food in Pico was as wonderful as the whales. Being from Hawaii, I dont exposed to European culture. It was fun drinking expresso, home made wine, and meeting new people.
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Postby Willie » Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:23 am

Hi
I am scheduled for a sperm whale trip in july 2011 on pico island in the azores, I am looking forward to it.
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Postby douglasjhoffman » Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:13 pm

what company are you using in Pico?
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Postby Willie » Sun Jun 27, 2010 8:44 pm

Hi Douglas
I am traveling with Wiro Dive from germany and they charter Pico Sport: http://www.whales-dolphins.net/azores_en/index.html

Regards Willie
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Postby linky » Tue Sep 07, 2010 5:43 am

The whole of last week I was diving in South Africa at Sodwana bay. unbelievable place. All of our dives were done to the soundtrack of hump back whales, and we would watch Hump back whales breaching from our boat above the reef. But they would not let us dive or swim with the whales as they advised they are too aggressive at this time of year due to their mating and having calves etc... would have been awesome to get up close and personal with them.
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Postby PAllinson » Wed Dec 15, 2010 3:19 pm

Hi
I usually run one to two trips to Dominica per year to swim with the sperm whales. Costs vary depending on the number of people going, the boat and the place we stay. Currently starting to plan a trip for Dec 10-17, 201, Jeff Hartog also runs a couple of trips per year.
All swimming requires a permit. Some of my photos from trips to Dominica can be seen http://www.flickr.com/photos/42988059@N ... 224006243/

As for humpbacks, best places/ times: Silver banks in Feb-March, Tonga July-early Sept., French Polynesia August- Early september, Nuie July-September

I am thinking of doing a June/July trip north for narwhals, belugas and harp seals, but it is very costly and cold.

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Postby scottg » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:23 am

hey Linky, sounds like an awesome experience! yes, I've heard of a couple of injuries of people by humpback whales before. everyone be careful out there!

Peter, sounds like an awesome trip! hope I can make it sometime. - Scott

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