I had always wanted to Swim with Whales especially after my 70+ year old friend Donna went off to Tonga on her own to do this and came back transformed! I thought wow, if she can do it, I’m going to do it (being one who seeks to accomplish my bucket list). Luckily for me (in a way), I didn’t get around to booking Tonga, but I did have this amazing experience swimming with Humpback Whales right here in Hervey Bay, Australia’s Whale Watching Capital.
After some time cruising the bay and watching the mammoth Humpback Whales come alongside us to play, slap and blow (I swear the real tour is the whales are watching us), it was time to get in a wetsuit, grab a snorkel, mask and life jacket, and jump in the coolish water. In no time at all the Humpbacks were around me, diving past within a few arms length and making me feel so small and insignificant compared to their giant graceful presence. I never felt scared whilst in the water with them, in fact I loved the invigorating yet peaceful feeling being one with nature and just wanted more and more.
Hervey Bay is the only place on Australia’s east coast where thousands of Humpback Whales take a break during their annual migration and stay up to two weeks in the calm, warm waters of Platypus Bay in the lee of K’gari (Fraser Island). A large number of Whales in this relatively small area results in extraordinary Whale Watching from mid-July to late October. The Humpback Whales tend to swim towards the idling cruise boats to show off their moves which provides you with a much closer and personal experience compared to other locations where boats have to travel further out into rougher seas to catch the whales swimming past on their migration route.
Hervey Bay has a fleet of about 10 vessels (15 or so different tours) that operate from the Hervey Bay Marina providing amazing experiences for more than 50,000 passengers each year. Many people return each season to watch or swim with the Whales in Hervey Bay describing their experience as truly spiritual. Hervey Bay was declared the first Whale Heritage Site in the world in 2019 and is recognised globally as a premier whale watching destination.
If you want one of the best experiences of your life, book into a Hervey Bay Whale Watching Cruise from July to October and maybe take the plunge to Swim with the Whales! Happy Hervey xx