• Travel,  Whale Watching

    Sydney highlights

    We’ve hit 3 weeks since my Sydney trip so I’m getting a wriggle on and finally posting about it!

    The first day was reasonably uneventful (other than a dropped phone and partially cracked screen 🤦🏻‍♀️) so moving along…

    Whale watching

    Hornby Lighthouse, South Head

    Day 2 was my first day of whale watching in Sydney. I booked on the morning trip with Go Whale Watching, leaving from Darling Harbour. (I chose Go Whale Watching on recommendation from a few instagrammers.)

    One of the most random – but awesome! – parts of the trip was running into Peter and Jodie from Blue Dolphin Marine Tours! They were on the same whale watching tour, so we had an excellent chat on the way out of the harbour and as we were looking for whales. (I am SO looking forward to my trip with them in August! But I digress…)

    Tail up

    Getting out past the Sydney Heads is a LOT more bumpy than any boat ride I’ve had so far (with the possible exception of Tasmania), but once we were on the open water it was a lot easier to remain fairly steady on our feet.

    And I’ve gotta say… the view from outside the heads and looking back at Sydney and the coastline is magnificent! You can totally understand why Cook sailed straight past the Heads. With the way the land is, you’d never guess that there’s a MASSIVE harbour behind all those cliffs.

  • Travel,  Whale Watching

    Blink and you miss it – 2019, that is!

    Wow, where on earth is 2019 disappearing to? I swear it really is a year of ‘blink and you miss it’. After my last couple of posts (posted from Sydney) I got back home and promptly came down with the Head Cold From Hell. 😷 (Yes, it deserves capitalisation…) I basically quarantined myself at home so I didn’t infect any of my coworkers. What a great welcome back from leave! (Not.)

    Anyway, I’m finally on the road to recovery and it hit me today… it’s just over 6 weeks until I’m headed to Hervey Bay for whale watching!! I was 😁 at the thought but also 😬 because guess who hadn’t booked a single freaking thing for her trip? 🤦🏻‍♀️ Yes, that would be this doofus.

    Thankfully I have now started to get organised and booked my accommodation (through AirBNB) plus a couple of whale watch tours. I’ll be to be in Hervey Bay for 6 days/5 nights and with limited time I’m having to be choosy about what I can and can’t do. I really really REALLY want to do at least one whale swim though, so I’m being preferential to providers that provide that or who I know are really good tour operators.

    Still making final decisions but it looks like I’ll be going with:

    And while all this is going on, I’m still trying to nail down my Canada itinerary for late September-mid October! 😱

    I love travel but the planning really does my head in sometimes. 😅

  • Whale Watching

    Whale watch, 26 July 2018

    I wanted to write up a few of my previous whale watch trips to share, the ones that really stick in my mind. One such trip was last year for my birthday.

    I’d just the day before picked up a new camera lens and was looking forward to taking it out for a spin.

    I headed down to Sea World Whale Watch on the Gold Coast for their morning tour and we headed out towards the Gold Coast Seaway at 10am.

    The conditions were stunningly calm – flat as a tack, total glass out and barely a breath of wind. It made searching for ‘the blow’ a lot easier. (‘The blow’ looks like a puff of smoke above the water and occurs when the whales surface to breathe. The ‘smoke’ is actually their exhalation of air.)

    First encounter

    We hadn’t been looking all that long when we spotted a blow not too far in the distance; it looked to be a single adult humpback. It was only as we got closer that we realised SHE had a calf with her!

    And it was a NEWBORN! 😍

    Taking into account the pale colour of the calf as well as how ‘rubbery’ the calf’s skin looked (and the dorsal fin was still ‘floppy’) we were guessing that the calf was, at most, about a week old but probably younger. So really quite new.

    We turned off the engines and sat in the water a couple of hundred metres away to see what the mother would do – they tend to be quite protective of their calves, particularly when they’re so young as this one was. We never want to harass these animals – it’s their turf and all interaction is on their terms. To our surprise – and great delight! – the mother didn’t seem all that nervous. She started actively nudging her calf toward our boat.