Whale season is a truly magical experience. The natural beauty of these wonderful creatures is simply amazing and very intriguing. Albany since the early 1800's was known as a whaling town, until it was ceased in 1978. Discovery Bay (also known as Whale World) was the old Cheynes Whaling Station where the whales were bought to and is now a history museum.
The protected waters off Albany provide a sheltered breeding and playground for these majestic visitors. During the whale watching season from May to October, the area is visited by Humpback and Southern Right Whales, with the occasional sighting of Blue Whales and Orcas. Local whale watching charter companies can get you close to the whales whilst still respecting and protecting these gentle giants.
Humpback Whales come up from Antarctica to the south coast and then travel east to west until they round Cape Leeuwin heading north up to Broome to give birth in the warmer waters or to mate. Their journey through Albany waters have them travelling in a line from Michaelmas and Breaksea Islands on the edge of King George Sound to Bald Head and are usually spotted from mid to late August.
Southern Right Whales are a quiet but curious whale and like to shelter in bays, such as King George Sound by Middleton Beach. They too, like the Humpback Whales, travel up from Antarctica, but stay along the South Coast. They typically stand for about 10 days to mate and then return to Antarctica. They come back to the South Coast to give birth after an 11 month gestation period.
Albany has two great charter teams who can take you out on their vessels to experience these majestic creatures:
- Albany Whale Tours - hosted by John and Forrest and their team on their Catamaran. Tours depart daily from 9:30am. Call them on 0422 441 484. Visit their website for more information.
- Albany Ocean Adventures - hosted by Paul and his team. Tours depart daily from 9:30am. Call them on 0428 429 876. Visit their website for more information.
Plus, learn more about the whales and the history of whaling and Albany at Discovery Bay
Discovery Bay - Whaling Station Road, Frenchman Bay - Open daily 9am until 5pm - 9844 4021. Visit their website for more information.