Each winter the aquamarine Pacific Ocean becomes home to magnificent humpback whales.
Between December and March, Kauai’s residents and visitors are treated to an incredible show as these amazing mammals spout off and breach the waters. This is Kauai whale watching season.
These wondrous creatures migrate up to 16,000 miles to reach our tropical climate where they breed and give birth. The North Pacific population is estimated at more than 10,000, but possibly as high as 25,000, with ½ to 2/3 of them gathering around the Hawaiian islands.
When you’re on Kauai during the winter months, be sure to bring your binoculars and watch the show. While weighing as much as 45 tons, the humpbacks gracefully rise out of the Pacific, roll in spirals, and slap the surface with their fins and tails. Stand still, keep your eyes on the water and watch for a spray as they spout. Within moments of the sighting, you’re bound to see a fin, tail or maybe the whole whale jumping up in the air! It’s an awesome site that can be viewed from numerous locations around Kauai.
On the north shore, whales have been spotted off the shores anywhere from the point right outside the Hanalei Colony Resort down toward Tunnels Beach. Another good spot for whale sightings is along the bluffs of Princeville.
Come Count the Whales
Each year, the Hawaiian Island Humpback National Marine Sanctuary coordinates a whale survey where you can volunteer to count the whales. Conducted during the last Saturdays of January, February and March, more than 1850 volunteers participated in the 2010 counts. To register for the 2012 count dates (Jan. 28, Feb. 26th & March 31st) click here http://www.sanctuaryoceancount.org/If you’re going to be on Kauai (staying at the Hanalei Colony Resort or elsewhere) and are interested in participating, call (808) 246-2860 or 1-888-55WHALE, ext. 253 for more details.
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