11 Best Ways To See Whales In Alaska

by | Feb 8, 2023

Are you looking for an unforgettable experience? If so, you should consider traveling to Alaska to catch a glimpse of the majestic whales that call its waters home. From watching orcas breach in Glacier Bay National Park to kayaking with humpbacks near Kodiak Island, there are countless ways to observe these gentle giants in their natural habitat. Here are 11 of the best ways to see whales in Alaska.

The first way is to join a whale-watching boat tour. Many companies offer guided tours that can get you up close and personal with some of the world’s most beautiful creatures. You’ll have the chance to observe humpbacks, minks, and even grey or blue whales as they make their way through Alaska’s waters.

Another popular option is heading out on a kayak adventure. Paddling out into the open ocean gives you a unique perspective of these animals that few people ever get the chance to experience. Plus, it’s a great way to explore some of Alaska’s breathtaking coastline and take in some stunning views along the way. With 11 different ways to see whales in Alaska, there’s sure to be something for everyone!

## 1. Whale Watching Tours

One of the best ways to see whales in Alaska is to take a whale watching tour. These tours allow you to get up close and personal with some of the most majestic creatures on Earth. They provide an unparalleled opportunity for anyone who loves wildlife and wants to experience it in its natural habitat.

Most whale watching tours are lead by experienced staff members who know where to look for whales, how to spot them from far away, and how to identify different species. You can also learn about the behaviors of different types of whales while out on the tour. The crew is there to ensure your safety as well, so you don’t have to worry about getting too close or putting yourself in any danger.

On top of that, some whale watching tours offer additional activities such as kayaking, birdwatching, and even fishing. This gives you a chance to explore Alaska’s beautiful coastlines and unique ecosystems while still having the chance to spot some whales along the way. Whether it’s a day trip or a longer excursion, taking a whale watching tour is sure to be an unforgettable experience that you won’t soon forget!

Whale watching tours are one of the best ways to see whales in Alaska without disrupting their natural environment or putting yourself at risk. With knowledgeable guides and plenty of activities available, you’ll be able to take full advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your whale watching tour today!

## 2. Charter Boats

Charter boats provide an excellent way to see whales in Alaska. With a charter boat, you’ll get both the knowledge and experience of a qualified captain, as well as the freedom to explore areas that whale watching tours don’t go. You’ll be able to customize your trip for your interests and preferences, allowing you to spend more time focusing on areas where you’re likely to spot whales.

The cost of chartering a boat will depend on the number of people in your party, how long you plan to stay out on the water, and what type of vessel you choose. However, regardless of cost, these trips can be tailored specifically to what you want to do and see while out at sea. Whether it’s spending an hour or an entire day whale watching in Alaska’s waters, charters offer flexibility that larger tour groups don’t have.

You can also take advantage of an experienced captain’s insights into the best places and times for spotting whales in Alaska. They have extensive local knowledge and know when certain areas are most active with marine life activity. And with their guidance, you won’t miss a thing! Plus, if there is any technical issue during your journey, they’ll be able to help quickly resolve it so that you can get back on track with your whale watching adventure.

So whether it’s just a few hours or an entire day spent out on the water searching for whales in Alaska’s deep blue seas, charter boats are a great option for enjoying this unforgettable experience.

## 3. Whale Watching By Kayak

Kayaking is an excellent way to get closer to the whales in Alaska while experiencing the majestic beauty of nature. It’s a truly thrilling experience and one of the best ways to have a chance at seeing whales up close. Although there are risks associated with kayaking due to the unpredictable nature of wildlife, it’s worth considering if you’re looking for a unique whale watching adventure.

When out on the water, you can use a hand-held hydrophone to listen for whale calls and songs. This can be used as a great way to locate them without having to paddle too far from shore. Additionally, many tour companies offer guided kayak trips that are likely to take you much closer than swimming or using another type of vessel.

The bonus of kayaking is that you’ll be able to spot other wildlife along the way. It’s common for people to see otters, seals, sea lions, bald eagles and more during their trip! Not only will this expand your knowledge about Alaskan wildlife but it also gives you many opportunities for some incredible photographs.

So if you’re adventurous enough and want an unforgettable experience with whales in Alaska, then consider going out on a kayak! You may just be rewarded with some amazing memories that will stay with you forever.

## 4. Whale Watching From Cruise Ships

Cruise ships provide an amazing way to see whales in Alaska. They offer a comfortable and safe way to get close to these majestic creatures. Plus, the views from a cruise ship are incomparable. From the deck of a ship you can take in stunning landscapes, such as glaciers or towering mountains, while keeping your eyes peeled for whale sightings.

Onboard naturalists and experienced crew members can ensure that you spot whales in their natural habitat. You might even be able to sail right up beside them and have the opportunity to view them up close. Cruise ships often have hydrophones which allow passengers to hear whales singing underwater – a truly special experience!

Many whale watching cruises also offer other activities, such as kayaking or hiking, so you can do some exploring too. With all these features combined, cruising is an excellent way to experience the beauty of Alaska’s wildlife and its diverse ecosystems.

A cruise ship will give you hours of fun, comfort and breathtaking views – all with the added bonus of possibly getting an unforgettable glimpse of some magnificent whales!

## 5. Whale Watching From Ferries

For those looking to see whales in Alaska, whale watching from ferries is an ideal option. It’s a great way to observe these majestic creatures from a distance, as well as get an up-close view of their behavior in the wild. Plus, it’s a much more affordable activity than taking a cruise.

Before you hop on the ferry, research your destination and find out which areas offer the best chance for seeing whales. Also make sure you bring the right gear–binoculars and cameras are essential for getting great photos of your sightings.

As with any type of wildlife viewing, be sure to respect the animals’ space and not disturb them. Don’t approach them or try to touch or feed them, as this could disrupt their natural behavior. Instead, just enjoy observing them from afar and marvel at their beauty and grace in their natural habitat.

Whale watching from ferries is one of the most enjoyable ways to witness these incredible creatures in action–so don’t miss out on this unique opportunity!

## 6. Whale Watching From Shore

Taking in the beauty of Alaska’s coastline is an experience unto itself, but when you add whales to the mix, it becomes something truly special. One of the best ways to see whales in Alaska is to watch them from shore.

From a beach or a trail, visitors can gaze out into the ocean and keep their eyes peeled for sightings of these majestic creatures. It’s important to bring binoculars if you plan on whale watching from shore so that you can spot them better – and don’t forget to bring a camera too! Depending on where you are located in Alaska, there may be several different species of whales that can be seen during your visit, such as humpback whales, killer whales, belugas, and dolphins.

Whales often migrate through Alaskan waters at certain times of year. If your timing is right, you might even catch some breaching or spy-hopping activity from the shoreline. To maximize your chances of spotting these wild creatures, it’s recommended that you do your research in advance and check out reports from local wildlife experts about where and when they have most recently been seen near your location.

Whale watching from shore offers incredible opportunities for wildlife viewing without having to leave land. The sights and sounds along the coast will stay with you forever – so make sure to take advantage of this unique chance while visiting beautiful Alaska!

## 7. Whale Watching From Airplanes

When looking for the best ways to see whales in Alaska, whale watching from airplanes is an attractive option. As long as the weather permits, this activity allows you to get a bird’s eye view of some of the largest mammals in the world. You’ll be able to watch them swimming and breaching from a comfortable seat in a light aircraft or helicopter.

What’s more, you can take advantage of specific whale-watching tours that provide passengers with additional information about these majestic creatures. These tours are usually conducted by experienced pilots who are familiar with the local area and can help you spot pods of whales in their natural habitat. Additionally, they may also provide binoculars so that you can get an even closer look at the whales during your flight.

As an added bonus, there’s no need to worry about getting seasick while whale watching from airplanes. It’s also much easier to take photos and videos while up in the air than it is while onboard a boat or ship. So if you’re looking for a unique way to experience Alaskan wildlife, consider taking a whale-watching tour by plane!

## 8. Whale Watching From Helicopters

Whale watching from helicopters offers an exciting and unique way to see whales in Alaska. With the freedom of the skies, you can get up close and personal with these majestic creatures, giving you a bird’s eye view of their behaviour and habitats. Helicopters offer more mobility than boats, allowing you to spot whales faster and travel farther out into the ocean.

Safety is also a major factor when whale watching by helicopter. Experienced pilots will ensure that all safety protocols are followed to ensure a comfortable flight for everyone on board. Plus, with fewer people onboard, there’s less disruption in the environment which allows you to observe the whales more closely.

The thrill of seeing whales from above is unmatched – it’s quite an experience! You can take photos or videos that will last a lifetime. Plus, witnessing how these creatures interact with each other and their environment is truly remarkable. So if you’re looking for an unforgettable way to see whales in Alaska, don’t miss out on whale watching from helicopters!

## 9. Whale Watching From Boating Vacations

One of the best ways to see whales in Alaska is to take a whale watching tour, and one of the best ways to do that is on a boating vacation. Boating vacations are ideal for getting up close and personal with these majestic creatures, as you can get closer to them than you would from any other vantage point. Plus, it’s an exciting way to explore the coastline of Alaska and its diverse wildlife.

When you go on a boating vacation in Alaska, look for tours that will take you out into open water. This gives you the chance to observe whales at their natural habitat and learn about them firsthand. You may even be able to spot some breaching or feeding activity! Keep an eye out for humpback whales, orcas, belugas, and minke whales – all of which can be found swimming off Alaska’s coasts.

If you’re looking for something more immersive than just observing from afar, then why not try kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding? These activities are great fun and will give you an even better view of the whales around you. Be sure to wear protective clothing when setting out on your whale watching adventure – after all, safety first!

Whale watching is a truly amazing experience that shouldn’t be missed if visiting Alaska. So why not book yourself onto a boating vacation today? Who knows what wonderful sights you’ll discover while out at sea?

## 10. Whale Watching In Alaska’s Marine Parks

Exploring Alaska’s marine parks is an excellent way to see whales in their natural habitat. With a variety of coastal and inland parks to explore, visitors can find ample opportunities for whale watching. In addition to the majestic sight of the whales themselves, these parks also offer stunning landscapes and plentiful wildlife.

No matter what kind of whale watching experience you’re looking for, there’s something for everyone in Alaska’s marine parks. Whether you’re interested in close-up boat tours or simply wish to observe from shore, there are plenty of options available. Many parks are open year-round and offer numerous activities for both land and water-based exploration.

The best way to ensure a successful whale watching experience is with proper research and preparation. Familiarizing yourself with the area’s regulations and whale behavior can help you get the most out of your trip. Additionally, be sure to bring along all necessary supplies – including sunscreen, binoculars, food, and water – as well as appropriate clothing for various weather conditions.

With its large variety of marine parks and diverse wildlife, Alaska is one of the best places on Earth to witness whales in their natural habitat. Whether you’re looking for a casual shore sighting or an up-close encounter on a tour boat, exploring Alaska’s marine parks promises an unforgettable experience that should not be missed.

## 11. Whale Watching From Local Guide Services

When it comes to whale watching in Alaska, those looking for an up-close experience may want to consider local guide services. For example, the Alaska Wildlife and Marine Adventures offer a five-hour private charter that takes you out on the waters of Kachemak Bay near Homer. They guarantee sighting whales while out on the sea, as well as other wildlife such as eagles and sea lions.

The benefit of going with a professional guide is they know where to find the best spots for whale watching. An experienced captain can take you right up close to where whales are located, so you get an excellent view of them in their natural habitat. Plus, the guides often have information about the types of whales you’re likely to see and when they migrate, so you can plan your trip accordingly.

Using local guide services also adds convenience since everything from boat rental to meals can be included in one package. This means all you have to do is show up at the dock and enjoy your excursion—no need to worry about booking or organizing different activities or components of your journey. It’s a great way to maximize your time and ensure that your whale-watching expedition is both safe and successful.

Ultimately, these services provide an unbeatable opportunity for those looking for a unique experience with nature on their Alaskan vacation. With knowledgeable guides who will take you right where the whales are, it’s easy to make sure that your time spent out on the water will be memorable, educational, and fun!

## Frequently Asked Questions

### Are There Age Limits For Whale Watching Activities?

When it comes to whale watching in Alaska, one of the most important questions to ask is whether there are age limits involved. Generally, these excursions are considered safe for all ages, and children are welcome on board. In fact, many tour operators may even offer discounts for kids. That said, every tour company has their own policies when it comes to age restrictions, so it’s important to do your research ahead of time.

For those looking to bring a young child along on an excursion, there are some safety precautions that need to be taken into account. There should always be an adult present who can keep track of the child throughout the trip and make sure they’re wearing appropriate clothing for the weather conditions. It’s also important to ensure that all passengers know basic safety protocols such as staying away from the sides of the boat and never touching marine wildlife.

Overall, whale watching activities in Alaska can be enjoyed by everyone in the family – as long as everyone follows safety instructions and checks what age restrictions may apply before booking a tour. So if you’re looking for a great way to explore Alaska’s amazing wildlife without having any worries about age limits, then whale watching could be just what you’re searching for!

### How Much Does Whale Watching Typically Cost?

When planning a whale watching trip to Alaska, it’s important to consider the cost. How much does whale watching typically cost? This depends on a variety of factors, such as the type of tour you select and how many people are in your party.

Fortunately, there are whale watching tours available for all budgets. If you’re looking for something more affordable, a boat tour may be the best option. These typically cost around $50 per person and last anywhere from one to three hours. For those who want a more luxurious experience, there are also private charter tours that can range from $300-$700 or more.

No matter what type of tour you decide upon, it’s important to do your research and make sure you’re getting the best price possible. Check online reviews and compare different packages before booking so you know exactly what is included in your tour. With careful planning and research, it’s possible to find an enjoyable whale watching experience that fits within your budget.

Whale watching can be an incredible way to experience the majestic wildlife of Alaska, but it’s important to make sure you’re getting the most out of your money. Be sure to do your research and compare prices before committing to any tour package. That way, you can get the best deal while still having an unforgettable adventure!

### Are There Any Safety Guidelines To Follow While Whale Watching?

When it comes to whale watching in Alaska, safety should be top priority. There are several guidelines and regulations that visitors should follow in order to ensure their own safety as well as the safety of the whales. It’s important to remember that these majestic creatures are wild animals and need to be treated with respect.

First and foremost, visitors should maintain a safe distance from the whales while observing them. Allowing the whales their personal space is essential for their wellbeing, so it’s best not to approach them too closely. Authorities typically recommend staying at least 100 yards away while whale watching. In some areas, vessels may not be permitted to get any closer than 200 yards away.

It’s also important to keep noise levels down when whale watching in Alaska. Excessive sound can be disruptive for both humans and whales and may cause stress or even injury if it gets too loud. This means avoiding loud music or shouting if possible, and using caution when operating any motorized vessels such as boats or jet skis that could produce a high decibel level.

As long as visitors adhere to these basic guidelines for safely viewing whales in Alaska, they can look forward to an unforgettable experience that will provide lifelong memories of the beauty of nature and its inhabitants.

### What Is The Best Time Of Year To Go Whale Watching In Alaska?

When it comes to whale watching in Alaska, one of the most important factors to consider is when to go. Different times of year offer different opportunities for viewing different types of whales, so it’s worth researching the best time to visit for your particular interests.

The best season for whale watching in Alaska depends on a few factors. If you’re interested in seeing humpback whales, then spring and summer are the ideal times of year. During these months, the whales migrate through Alaskan waters on their way north to feed and breed before returning south in late summer and early fall.

Orca whales can be seen year-round in Alaska, but they are more plentiful during winter months when they come into coastal areas seeking their favorite food – salmon. Blue whales also migrate through Alaskan waters during the summer months, although they tend to remain further offshore and therefore may be harder to spot.

No matter what type of whale you’re hoping to see, there are plenty of experienced tour operators who can help you make sure you get the most out of your whale watching experience. From providing tips on where and when to look for them, to suggesting which kinds of gear will help you stay comfortable while spotting them from shore or on a boat, these guides can help ensure you have an unforgettable adventure!

### Are There Any Whale Watching Experiences Suitable For Children?

Are there any whale watching experiences suitable for children? Whale watching in Alaska is a great way to catch a glimpse of these majestic creatures in the wild and it can be an especially exciting experience for kids. But how do you know if a whale watching trip is appropriate for young ones?

Most Alaska whale watching tours are designed with families in mind, offering commentary throughout the tour that is both educational and entertaining. Depending on their age, some tour operators may also provide activities such as coloring books or puzzles to keep kids occupied during the journey. Additionally, most boats have a lower deck that’s comfortable and away from the wind – making it an ideal spot for kids to rest if they get tired.

It’s important to remember that while seeing whales can be thrilling, there are no guarantees when out on the water. Even if you go out on a reputable excursion with experienced guides, sometimes the whales just don’t show up. That said, you can increase your chances of spotting them by going during peak season which typically runs from May through September. This is when whales migrate closer to shore and come into view more often.

So whether you’re traveling alone or with your family in tow, Alaska offers whale watchers plenty of options for an unforgettable experience – just make sure to take all necessary precautions before heading out!

## Conclusion

To conclude, whale watching in Alaska is an amazing experience that everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy. It’s important to be aware of all safety guidelines and age limits for each whale watching activity so you can have a safe and enjoyable experience. The best time to go whale watching in Alaska is during the spring and summer months when the weather is more predictable and whales are most active. With so many great options available, there is sure to be a whale watching adventure that fits your needs, whether you’re looking for something suitable for children or simply want to explore on your own. No matter what you choose, it’s sure to be an unforgettable experience that will leave you with memories that last a lifetime!

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