No trip is complete without whale watching in Maui. With the quiet and tranquil waters of west and south Maui, the whales can be easier to view. Still there are a few tips that will help you spot them faster, so to help get you started we’ve put together some tips for whale watching in Maui.
Know the whale watching seasons
Year, after year, these beautiful mammals meet in the Hawaiian waters and shorelines for their annual winter migration.
Chances are good you’ll see whales year-round, but there are certain times of the year when sightings are most prevalent. First whale sightings can be seen every October and November, with the main whale season beginning in December and running through March – February being the peak month.
While the first whale sightings differ every year, the earliest reported has been in September. Early-season sightings are best seen while out on the water for snorkeling or sailing. During peak season they are easily seen from shore.
Get out on the water
One of the best ways to see these majestic creatures is to get out where they are. All the tour companies operate with safety for the viewers and the whales at top of mind. Some of your tour guides will even be able to recognize specific whales and explain some of the behaviors the whales display. Be sure to bring any antiemetics, such as Dramamine, if you’re more apt to sea sickness. Though many whale watching tour companies in Maui operate with smaller boats to mitigate the rocking motion.
Grab some binoculars
Grab a pair of binoculars to see the whales up close. While you are almost guaranteed to see them from the shore during peak season, scouting them out with binoculars offers an even greater chance to spot one from a far.
Don’t miss your chance to see the whales because you were blinded by the sun’s glare reflecting off the ocean!
Bring your camera
Sure, you don’t have to have fancy gear to take a great picture but if it is your budget, a camera with a 300mm or larger will be your best bet for capturing one of these beauties. If you are using your phone, be sure to have some space saved for the photos and videos and remember to not zoom in and crop later to avoid a grainy, out-of-focus photo.
Wear warm clothing
When whale watching in Maui, dressing appropriately with warm clothing is highly recommended. This is especially important if you’re going out on a tour. The wind coming off the ocean can be much cooler, so dress in warm layers. Opt for wicking material it will keep you warm and dry from the sea spray.
Scan the water slowly from left to right and look for spouts or blows or misty sprays. That can help you isolate an area that has a whale that may breach or fluke. Once you do find one, you’ll probably see it again in about five minutes as the whale makes his way through the water at 5 m.p.h.
Stay at Kahana Sunset
With our ocean-front condos at Kahana Sunset you don’t have to go far to enjoy whale watching in Maui. From the comfort of your Kahana condo rental, you can observe these beautiful creatures as they play through the surf, making their way to familiar territory.