Whale Watching In Sri Lanka
One of the main attractions in Sri Lanka is Whale Watching. The reason this is such a big attraction is that you can see the largest creature on earth: The Blue Whale! Whilst whale watching in Sri Lanka you can expect to see a variety of animals such as Blue Whales, Fin Whales, Sei Whales, Killer Whales, Turtles, Manta Rays, Flying Fish and Dolphins. Obviously, I cannot guarantee you can see any of these animals but you will usually see at least Dolphins and Blue Whales.
Where to go
As Sri Lanka is one of the best places to see these amazing animals there is a lot of choice as to who to go with and where to go. In the south of the island, there is a town called Mirissa. This is one of the hotspots for whale watching. In Mirissa the best time to go whale watching tends to be November to April. There is plenty to do in Mirissa apart from whale watching such as Snorkelling, Scuba Diving and relaxing. In my opinion, Mirissa was the most relaxing place on our visit as it is so tranquil. There are so many tour providers offering whale watching and some of them even have huts on the main beach where you can book. The main thing that I would say is “Do your research” I can’t emphasise this enough (all I can do is put it in italics). Have a look at some review sites and see what real life travellers are saying. The only advice I can give you on WHO to book with is to go with Raja and The Whales. This is because I have travelled with them and had a good time. I can’t compare these to any other trip providers and don’t want to give you misleading information on what I have read about on the internet.
The other place on the island to go whale watching is Trincomalee. Trincomalee is in the North East of the island. The best time to go whale watching in Trincomalee is May to September.
The peak times for sightings of these wonderful creatures are December, January and April.
Preparing for your trip
Once you have found your desired trip provider you need to prepare. You are going to want to take some water and some snacks (most companies will provide these but it’s best to take some anyway). Do you get seasick? If you answered yes, no or I don’t know to that question, then buy some seasickness tablets! You will be on the boat for a long time so don’t take the risk. There must have been about 5 or 6 people who refused to take the tablets and ended up being sick over the side of the boat and if my guess is as good as yours – they didn’t have a good time.
Raja and the whales were selling sea sickness tablets when we arrived at their office but not all places sell them. Make sure you read the instructions because you may have to take them 2 hours before going on the boat.
SUNCREAM! You may know that being out at sea is a lot more dangerous in terms of sunburns as being on land. Whilst out at sea you have the water reflecting the sun back at you and you also have the cool breeze off the ocean cooling you so it is a lot less noticeable if you are burning. Personally, I use factor 15 and 30 as this works for me but you may need higher.
If you’re like me you’ll probably like taking photos. I took my camera on there and it was pretty hard to get shots because the boat was bobbing up and down but I came out with some decent snaps. I also took a portable charger with me to keep my phone charged (gotta get those snapchats!).
What to expect
You should expect an early start, around 6 am, as the mornings are the best time to see whales and I can tell you, they are huge! Blue whales can be up to 100 feet long and weigh up to 200 tonnes. To put that into context that is Peter Crouch in a row over 14 times and the weight of all the kebabs I have ever eaten!
You will board the boat and then have a safety briefing and maybe even some snacks. Expect to have people running from each side of the boat (even though you are told not to). Many people expect to see all of the whale and you might – if it jumps out of the water. But don’t expect to see this – count yourself lucky if you do (if you do see this and manage to get a picture I would love to see it!).
A few facts!
- Blue whales can eat between 4 and 8 TONNES of krill per day!
- Underwater they look blue but above water, they are more of a blue/grey colour
- They don’t need mobile phones as they can hear each other up to 1000 miles away!
- As per my last fact, they are the loudest animals on earth
- So elephants are pretty heavy, right? Well, a Blue Whales tongue can weigh as much as an Elephant!
Thanks for checking out my blog on Whale Watching in Sri Lanka if you have any questions or feedback drop it in the comments or send me an email!!