It’s an unexpected sight, but on top of the beautiful beaches, luxury resorts and activities, the Caribbean is also a meeting place for humpback whales making their way to warmer waters during the winter months. Here, you can head out on the water aboard a charter for an up-close view of these gentle giants and their calves, sometimes you are even able to swim alongside them. Mid-January to mid-March is considered peak season for whale watching in the Caribbean, with frequent sightings of humpback whales and dolphins. If you’re visiting during this time, the songs of the giant whales and the up-close encounters will add a magical touch to your next beach vacation.
When is the Best Time for Whale Watching?
Humpback whales will generally feed all summer, in feeding grounds like the Gulf of Maine, Greenland, Iceland and Norway. When the winter comes along, it’s time for them to mate, and the need for warmer climates draws many of them to the Caribbean. Here, you can hear them sing (this is how the males attract their mates), see them splash around and watch them raise their calves from January till March. If you’re visiting outside of these times, there are plenty of other animal encounters to experience in the Caribbean.
Where is the Best Place to Watch the Whales?
You can’t go just anywhere in the Caribbean for whale watching, but there are plenty of options. The Dominican Republic, Grenada, Northwest Puerto Rico and Turks and Caicos—specifically Salt Cay—have the best options for humpback whale watching on your beach vacation.
How Do I See Them?
If you find that you’re staying in one of these places during the winter, and whale watching is something you’re interested in (but not your main reason for traveling) you may want to go the casual route—simply find a spot on the beach and watch from shore. Expect to see some whale tails splashing in the distance. If whale watching is a top priority, however, excursions like the private charter with Crystal Seas Adventures in Grand Turk and Salt Cay will put you in the center of the action, so you can see the whales play right before your eyes. It’s a dazzling thing to behold, and even more dazzling when the tour guides encourage you to jump in with the whales and swim along with them. It’s a fun, and moving experience for anyone who loves these incredible creatures.
Tags: Turks & Caicos