Whale Watching Afternoon

Inclusions

  • Afternoon Whale Watching Cruise operates daily
  • Morning cruise operates Sat-Sun
  • See Humpbacks & the occasional Southern Right whale during migration
  • Open water cruise through the entrance of Sydney Harbour aboard an ocean catamaran with open-air & all-weather lounge viewing
  • Whale Sighting Guaranteed or cruise again for FREE* (see more info for details)
  • 2hr 45min cruise with commentary

Need to know

Timetable

Departs 20 May - 01 Nov 2017 Circular Quay Wharf No.6
Afternoon Cruise departs daily Depart 1.30pm, return approx. 4.15pm
Morning Cruise departs Sat-Sun Depart 10.15am, return approx. 1.00pm

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Afternoon cruises operate daily, while morning cruises depart on weekends only. 2016 proved to be an amazing year for whale watchers! Humpback sightings have continued to increase every year and these amazing mammals just love to show off with tail slapping, breaches, and even a close up wink when they are feeling extra curious. Don't miss this extraordinary opportunity to experience the gentle giants of the sea on their annual migration. Tickets on sale now. More Info ...

The whale species you are most likely to see along the New South Wales Coastline are

*Humpback Whale
*Southern Right Whale

Throughout June and July Humpback Whales head north for breading before return south with their calves from September to November.

Other whale species you may see include:

  • Minke Whale
  • Blue Whale
  • Sei Whale
  • Fin Whale
  • False Killer Whale
  • Orca or Killer Whale
  • Sperm Whale
  • Pygmy Right Whale
  • Pygmy Sperm Whale
  • Bryde’s Whale

Whales are highly social and intelligent mammals that have graced our oceans for our fifty million years.  They breath air, give birth to live young and suckle their calves through mammary glands.  Their streamlined bodies are insulated from the cold by thick layers of blubber. The largest species of whales were hunted almost to extinction and have survived only thanks to conservation and protection efforts. There are 86 recognised whale species. The largest animal on earth is the gigantic blue whale.  

Whales can travel immense distances to meet their food, mating and calving needs. Many make annual migrations from cold to warm climates for calving.

The Whales close cousin, the dolphin is second only to humans in intelligence. The degree of intelligence of whales and porpoises is still to be determined however, their sophisticated behaviour and ability to learn suggest they have a capacity for complex thinking.

Typical whale behaviour includes: Breaching, Spy Hop, Pectoral Fin Extension, Tail Slapping, Peduncle Slap, Tail Cocking, Tail Slash and Tail Swish, Pectoral Stroking and Pec Slapping all of which are explained on our About Whales - Whale Watching Guide.

What to bring
This is an open water cruise and you will experience sea motion. We recommend you eat lightly before and during the cruise. Travel sickness tablets are generally most effective if taken prior to the cruise. Please dress according to the weather - it will often feel colder at sea. Smoking is not permitted onboard.

Selection of soft drinks and snacks available for purchase on board, subject to change.

Whale Guarantee
We have a 95%+ success rate. The Whale Guarantee applies when a whale is not sighted during your cruise. Cruise again in the same season for free on Standby Basis confirmed 24 hours prior, subject to availability.

This Week's Predicted Comfort Levels & Weather
Passenger comfort is our priority. Waves, swell, winds & visibility can be very different outside the Harbour. We only operate when we believe you will enjoy the experience.

Passengers must complete a Contact Information form prior to cruising in case of emergency - submit online or download the form here & return by email to [email protected] after you have made your booking.

Daily Whale Sightings

Whale Images

Reconfirmation & Cancellation
As this is an open water cruise, names of all passengers and their individual contact details are required for each passenger. Cruises are subject to cancellation due to weather & other operational requirements. Please ring (02) 8062 3623 from 7.15am on the day of your cruise for the latest information. If your cruise is cancelled by us passengers may (1) rebook another afternoon Captain Cook Whale Watching Cruise in the same season or (2) seek a refund from the original place of purchase or (3) a credit can be made with Captain Cook Cruises towards another cruise within 12 months of original date of travel. If purchased through an agent, please refer to the agent’s terms &conditions. 

Special Conditions apply to all Special Offers

YOUR SAY NEW YEARS EVE - I would like to compliment all your staff on New Year's Eve for the outstanding service aboard your Captain Cook III. Helen Talbot

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78 % approval from 37 responses

Date
Rating
1 day ago
5/5

I didn't expect to see whales breaching on this wonderful cruise.

1 day ago
4/5

Service: The crew did a good job explaining everything, lots of information on the animals and made us feel safe

They didn't take long to find whales either

Product: I would recommend this trip

1 day ago
2/5

Service: I found it nothing special I have done one before and it was a lot nicer cruise I went on. The staff was very good but I would not do one again .

Product: I did not find it anything special as I been on one before and it was a very nice trip I don't think I will do one again .

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Sandra,

Thank you for your review of the Whale Watching Afternoon Cruise with us on Sydney. Our crew report on the day shows that whales were sighted immediately after leaving Sydney Harbour and whales were breaching and a pod of dolphins were also encountered  We appreciate your comments on our staff, we do strive to provide the best customer service from booking all the way to the end product.

Once again thank you for your feedback and we are sorry to not have met your expectations.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 day ago
5/5

Service: Todo fue perfecto , en especial las vistas y el confort del barco.

Lo recomendaría.

It was an unforgettable experience that I recommend.

I miss that among the language of the website there is not Spanish with 1000 million people who speak it in the world. It is just a suggestion.

Ahhh! The first to see Australia was the spaniard Luis Váez de Torres, It wasnt Captain Cook.

Dont forget it.

Kind Regards

Product: Todo fue perfecto , en especial las vistas y el confort del barco.

Lo recomendaría.

It was an unforgettable experience that I recommend.

I miss that among the language of the website there is not Spanish with 1000 million people who speak it in the world. It is just a suggestion.

Ahhh! The first to see Australia was the spaniard Luis Váez de Torres, It wasnt Captain Cook.

Dont forget it.

Kind Regards

1 day ago
5/5

we got to see 6 whale breeches. Amazing mind bending life changing experience. Apparently very rare to see. We were very happy.

3 days ago
5/5

Service: very patient and informative guide. i would recommend and buy their services again.

Product: imformative and great staff who pa attention to detail.

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Roselyn, 

Thank you for your review of the Whale Watching cruise with us on Sydney. We are pleased to know that you would recommend us and that you found our staff pleasant and attentive. We hope to see you again on one of our cruises.

Once again thank you or your review and your recommendation, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service

Captain Cook Cruises

4 days ago
4/5

Great cruise. Saw heaps of whales. The crew was very good.

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer,

Thank you for your review of the Whale Watching with us on Sydney. We are delighted to read that you would recommend us and that the crew was friendly and attentive towards you. 

Once again thank you or your review and your recommendation, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

5 days ago
4/5

Service: Clean boat, good commentary

Product: The relatively small viewing side areas restricted acces as there were quite a few on the boat

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer, 

Thank you for your review of the Whale Watching Cruise with us. We are pleased to read that the boat met your expectations and that you found the commentary interesting. We understand that the areas provided are restricted when full, but our boats must correspond to the Marina regulations.

Once again thank you for your review, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
4/5

Service: A perfect day on the water! Calm and sunny. Humpback whales lazily active - no breaching, sadly. Friendly staff. Not crowded. Most enjoyable family outing. Could have cleaned windows on upper deck, my only complaint.

Product: Easy to navigate to website online in response to email. Ordering a cinch. Check in went smoothly - friendly, helpful lady at the desk.

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer, 

Thank you for your review for your Whale Watching Cruise with us on Sydney Harbour. We are very pleased to read that you had an exciting time onboard with us and that our staff were attentive and friendly towards you. As you know we strive to provide the best customer service from booking all the way to the end product. 

Once again thank you for your review, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
2/5

Service: I booked the cruise at good price but had to cancel this morning of the event as my husband fell it.. I left a message to this affect and didn't even get a call back from anyone.

Product: It too a very long time for someone to come back and make contact with me,

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Jan Clark,

Thank you for your review with us on Sydney Harbour. We were disappointed to read that you were unable to contract us and we have made a note in your booking that if you wish to re-book you are able to do with the appropriate booking fare difference. Please contact our reservations team.

Once again thank you for your review, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
3/5

Service: A good cruise but the boat had limited outdoor space which meant you were competing to get by a rail to see the whales. The Captain Cook whale watching cruise that left 15 minutes earlier was in a much better boat (like the one in their advertising)..

Product: Even when you pay and book online for a whale watching cruise you still have to queue at Circular Quay to then get a ticket.

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer,

Thank you for your review of your Whale Watching Cruise with us on Sydney Harbour. We were disappointed to read that you did not enjoy the cruise and that the sighting was not as you expected. The vessel used on these cruises follow all the Marine regulations and was ‘Maggie Cat’ which is the same as the one used in all our promotional pictures. The boat that departed prior was our usual Hop On Hop Off service. Check-in is necessary for this cruise as we are legally required to ensure that passengers have filled the emergency contact form.

Once again thank you for your review, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
5/5

On Saturday we enjoyed an afternoon Whale watching cruise. Everyone was very professional & informative. I recommend Captain Cook Cruises. I will definitely be using this company again.

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer,

Thank you for your review of your Whale Watching Afternoon Cruise with us on Sydney Harbour. We are delighted to read that you appreciated the professionalism of our staff and that you enjoyed your time with us. We look forward to welcoming you on board again.

Thank you for your review and recommendation, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
4/5

Boat could have more outside areas for whale watching like other whale watching boats

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear customer,

Thank you for your review of your Whale Watching Cruise with us on Sydney Harbour. We were disappointed to read that we did not reach your expectations as the vessel used has ample outside areas and has a capacity of 200 passengers and we only board 120 on our whale watching cruises .

Once again thank you for your review, and we are sorry we did meet your expectations.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 week ago
4/5

Service: Good value. Informative commentary.

Product: Enjoyable cruise. Good commentary.

1 week ago
5/5

Service: Made every effort to find whales to view, boat was clean and comfortable and an excellent commentary on the whales and other sightings dolphins and sea birds

Product: Booking was very easy online

1 week ago
4/5

Service: After we tracked some pods down we had about 20+ sightings with a number of breaches. There were many encounters close to our boat (50-100mtrs)

Product: A great day but might have been better with a better kiosk

4 weeks ago
4/5

Service: Would by again. Flat ocean made it difficult for the whales to want to breach, but the commentary was good,

Did not hear if tea or coffee was available which would have been a nice touch.

thanks for the experience.

Product: Calm ocean, pleasant time. tea, Coffee or water would have been good.

4 weeks ago
4/5

its good

1 month ago
5/5

Service: The whole crew was so helpful, it was not just whale watching, but more informative about the characteristics of humpback whale, sperm whale and the cruise ride was a roller coaster! (The crew had indeed informed us well upfront about the rough tides in the ocean even before we had started and we wanted to experience those rough tides! :-))

Would strongly recommend!

Product: Value for money and worth every penny!

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Prasenna and Swetha,

Thank you for your review of your Whale Watching Cruise with us on Sydney waters. We are delighted to read that our crew was helpful and attentive and that you found our commentary informative and educational. Being on the open water is the best way to view these fascinating mammals.

Once again, thank you for your feedback, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Service
Captain Cook Cruises

1 month ago
5/5

Service: Ich kann diese Fahrt nur bestens empfehlen.

Die Crew ist mega freundlich, hilfsbereit und bestens gelaunt.

Was mir am Besten gefallen hat war, dass der Captain länger auf See blieb als alle anderen, da wir erst sehr spät Wale entdecken. Er hat uns dankenswerterweise genug Zeit gelassen, diesen doch sehr seltenen Moment mit unseren Kameras und Smartphones festzuhalten.

Die Mannschaft ist super bemüht, kann aber gegen Seekrankheit kann auch sie nichts ausrichten.

Bitte lest euch Ratschläge durch, um zu vermeiden, dass ihr nur über einem Beutel hängt..... man ist immerhin auf einem Ozean....

Herzlichen Dank an die Crew

Martina

Product: Wie zuvor beschrieben war es ein unvergesslicher Moment....

1 month ago
5/5

Fun cruise and well organized

1 month ago
4/5

Service: the whole experience was first class

Product: very informotive and good value

1 month ago
2/5

Service: I took the time to fill in the Emergency Contact form online for my 2 bookings for 6 adults and 3 children, but on the day of collecting the boarding tickets from your booth, your staff said she could not find my completed online form and made me do a handwritten one on the spot. Why should that happen? I even received an email acknowledgement thanking me for filling in the online form - I just didn't think to print that out!

Product: Half of my passengers vomited, some of them a few times. Yes, we understand there's nothing anyone can do about the weather/tides but after the cruise we spoke with some other fellow passengers who were NOT sea sick during the cruise, and most admitted that the catamaran was too small for the open sea, and this was made worse by the waves. Well, while the waves are beyond anyone's control, at least with that forecast in mind, Captain Cook should have considered a bigger vessel. So busy vomiting and sitting very still in the open deck that most of us just couldn't even think about watching the whales (though from the commentator's speech we know he found a few).

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Cindy,

Thank you for your recent review of our Whale Watching PM Cruise on Sydney Harbour. We were very disappointed to read that we did not reach your expectations as we often receive good feedback on that cruise. Safety is our primary concern and we apologise that we were unable to locate your completed form and therefore you were requested to fill another one on check-in. All our whale watching vessels are licensed to operate in open-water and the vessel you were on has operated our whale cruises for a number of seasons and we do remind all our clients that these are open-water cruises and that sea sickness may happen and to take pre-cautions to prevent or minimise this possibility.

Once again, thank you for your feedback.

Kind regards,
Head of Customer Services
Captain Cook Cruises

1 month ago
5/5

Service: 开始看到了几条鲸鱼,后来吐的已经没力气看了,如果你没有seasick的问题的话尽管来看好了:)

Product: 观鲸的经历很难得,值得去一趟,一定要提前备好seasick的药,一定

1 month ago
4/5

Service: Service great Commentary great Weather turned poor hard to view any whale movements through the windows Needed WIPERS

Product: commentary great .weather turned poor visibility through windows poor need wipers

1 month ago
5/5

convenient with good service !!

1 month ago
5/5

Prepared staff, interesting and organized cruises.

I can't imagine a better way to visit Sydney Harbor

1 month ago
4/5

Service: Commentary was really throughout the whole whale watching. Several whales were seen but waters was quite choppy in big sea.

Product: Smooth purchase but slight hiccup on submitting details. I have sent it online but not captured on system.

1 month ago
3/5

Service: The staff in the night were exceptional- very friendly and quick with the food. Our waitress overheard that it was my mothers birthday and made the night extra special. The music was also lovely. Getting a drink was a little difficult as the staff were so busy serving food. Overall the night would have been a 4/5. The reason I rated a 3 is the online booking staff member. I sent an enquiry regarding a non alcoholic package for the designated driver and a few other questions regarding view and children packages. We went back and forth a few times but I felt the responses were very generic and I did not feel I was listened too. It felt like a generic computer response. The only reason I decided to give you a go was a previous experience with your company otherwise I would have went else where based on that experience. I hope this feedback helps.

Product: Staff were wonderful- informative and very caring (one of my party was not well). We saw lots of whales and I felt my comfort and experience was the crews main priority. Thank you.

My only suggestion would be to include an afternoon tea service (even for an extra few dolllars). There were a few other companies that do this.

1 month ago
4/5

Service: On time and good services

Product: First experience watching whales during cruise. It's worthy!

2 months ago
5/5

Service: Friendly, knowledgeable crew. The boat was clean and the trip was punctual and just the right length of time

Product: As already stated above. Same feedback

2 months ago
5/5

Service: we thought that he hole whalewatchig experince was great the comentry was excellent and the crew were helpful at all times

Product: day all together was excellent comentry was very good and crew was very helpful

2 months ago
3/5

Service: Commentator was good but the cruise was just average. Didnt see much whales and only from afar. A little boring.

Product: Boring cruise. Hardly saw any whales.

2 months ago
4/5

Service: The trip was the second day of the whale watching season. We were a little bummed that only one whale was seen. I awarded a good rating as the captain and crew were professional and did everything in their power to provide a good experience. The tour guide was well informed and entertaining. On the trip out and back he provided more information on Sydney harbor's history and features than the guide on the harbor tour we took two days before.

Product: Value was great. We booked on-line in advanced for a 50% discount.

2 months ago
3/5

Service: The captian/commentator was very charismatic. Reminded me of jack nicholson. Great guy :D. The experts picked up from Taronga zoo were also very friendly. Shame we only saw one lazy whale, but you can't help that.

Product: Good package; good value!

2 months ago
2/5

Service: We bought tickets for the Vivid 1 hour cruise . The organisation on the night was dreadful . We stood in the queue for a good 20 minutes begore we realised we were in the wrong queue and had then missed our departure @ 6.45. When I collected the tickets I was never told they're were 4 separate queue's.

Luckily we managed to get on the 7pm departure but we had to wait until everyone had boarded.

Product: Very well organised and amazed that we actually saw the whales . I have definitely recommended this trip

Response from Captain Cook Cruises: Dear Ms Crompton,,

Thank you for your review of VIVID and we were disappointed to read your comments as we did have a very large number of guests on the first night of VIVID over a range of Lights and Dining cruises and did have a coloured flag system to let our guests know where to queue up for their cruise.

We are glad we were able to accommodate you on the next lights cruise fifteen minutes later and we hope you enjoyed the lights of VIVID from the water.

We were  glad to read that you enjoyed your Whale Watching cruise too and thank you for your recommendation.

Sincerely
Head of Customer Services
Captain Cook Cruises

2 months ago
4/5

Service: My husband and I loved the whale watching cruise , as we did get to see 3 whales swimming together, but as the swell was alittle rough, so by the time we got back to Circular Quays we were feeling alittle green, as in off colour. But besides that, we did enjoy our time. :)

Product: We had an awesome time whale watching and seeing 3 whales swimming together. It was a part of my husbands 50th birthday present, as it was something we both had always wanted to do. The only negative(s) was the rough swell which by the end of the cruise we were feeling a little green around the gills ourselves, plus the inside of the cabin was too warm with the central heating been set to high. Besides that...it was great and I would thoroughly recommend it to everyone..and we would love to do it again ourselves.

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