Whale watching

Whale migration along the southern coastline of Phillip Island has commenced. 

Update 25th June 2015

The whale migration season has begun and, with sea conditions currently ideal, record numbers of Humpback whales have recently been spotted off Phillip Island, with sightings set to continue throughout the winter school holidays. Daily sightings of at least one pod of Humpback whales have been reported over the past week, with a total of 26 whales spotted at various locations off Phillip Island and nearby Inverloch and Kilcunda.

The annual great whale migration, is the best time to witness Humpback and Southern Right Whales as they travel the coastline of Victoria!

You can check the latest sightings on this map, or check with the Visitor Information Centre at Newhaven.

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Would you know how to tell the difference between the whales? Humpback whales have the characteristic white ventral (under) side, long flippers, a small dorsal (back) fin and a rounded blow. Southern Right whales, on the other hand, are generally black in colour, lack a dorsal fin, have rounded flippers, and have a V-shaped blow. Did you know that the blow was originally called ‘spout’ as people thought they blew out water? The blow appears like water because the warm air is released from the whales’ lungs at high pressure and condenses in the cold air.

For a chance to see and learn more about these majestic creatures, join Wildlife Coast Cruises on their Winter Whale Cruises.
Bring a pair of binoculars and a warm jacket, and see if you can spot a whale or two.

Phillip Island Helicopters provides scenic flights across the Island and are always on the lookout for migrating whales.

The Winter Whale Cruise runs on Saturdays and Sundays, departing Cowes at 9.30am and returning at 1.30pm. As well as searching for the great whales, whale watchers will have a very high chance of seeing playful dolphins and will also visit Seal Rocks to enjoy the spectacle of thousands of fur seals frolicking, gaze at beautiful sea birds like the Shy Albatross with its awe inspiring 2.5 metre wingspan and take in the spectacular coastal scenery of Phillip Island including The Nobbies, Pyramid Rock and Cape Woolamai. The cruise includes morning tea and a hearty lunch of soup and sandwiches.

Nature enthusiasts visiting Phillip Island these school holidays will also enjoy:

Wildlife Encounters

Thrill seeking nature lovers can now sign up for the new Wild Oceans EcoBoat Adventure Tour which weaves its way beyond the island’s shores on a high speed tour of the rugged coastline. Adventurers can expect encounters with Australia’s largest fur seal colony at Seal Rocks along with spectacular views of the Summerland Peninsula’s cliffs and the explosive blowhole at The Nobbies. From June through to September, nature lovers will also have the added possibility of a breathtaking close encounter with migrating humpback whales. The Wild Oceans EcoBoat Adventure Tours run for 60 and 90 minutes and prices start at $85 per adult.