Top 10 land based whale watching spots

Whale and Submarine 19 August 2011

Cape Point Route spotted 2 Southern Right Whales in front of a Naval submarine this morning (19 August 2011) in False Bay.  The Southern Right Whales are starting to appear more regularly and in greater numbers. What an amazing place we live in! We just love this time of year and completely claim being a whale snob!  Watching whales on the way to work- amazing!

Watching whales from land

If you do spot a whale please call the regional Whale Spotting and General Information Line on 079 391 2105 or email: awhaleofaheritageroute@gmail.com to have your sighting recorded on the website log. The sightings are recorded not the actual number of whales as there are often more than one whale in a pod. Common whales found in our waters are Southern Right Whales, Humpback Whales and Bryde’s Whales.

Cape Point Route’s Top 10 Land based Whale Watching Sites in the Cape Peninsula

Humpback Whale Tail (D. Hurwitz0

1. Boyes Drive: gorgeous scenic, mountain pass between Muizenberg and Kalk Bay. Look out for the shark spotters – they have the best view!

Shark spotter on Boyes Drive

2. Kalk Bay: Hot tip: Walk the Muizenberg St James walkway along the coastline, then book a spa treatment at the Majestic spa – special on for August!

3. Clovelly: at the northern side of Fish Hoek Bay – either from the beach or the mountainside. Hot tip: Take the train from Muizenberg all the way to Simon’s Town!

Clovelly Beach

4. Jager’s Walk: Fish Hoek – undulating coastal path between Fish Hoek Beach and Sunny Cove.

Jaggers Walk

5. Sunny Cove: end of the walk (and where we spotted the whale and submarine today)  Fish Hoek

Sunny cove

6. Glencairn Beach: Hot tip: have a meal on the deck of the Bay Cafe of Glen or a pint in the Glen Pub to watch the whales.

Whales from my office

7. Boulders – Smitzwinkelbaai – Simon’s Town (including Froggy Pond and Murdoch Valley). Hot tip: stay in Simon’s Town for a room with a view of the bay and the whales (ask us for details!)

Whale jumping in Simon's Town

8. Cape Point Nature Reserve: Hot Tip: Eat at the Two Oceans Restaurant whilst you whale watch.

Taken from the water to show you how close the whales are to shore

9. Misty Cliffs – Kommetjie: The road above Slangkoppunt Lighthouse has awesome views and excellent whale watching spots. Or go up the lighthouse for a different view!

Kommetjie whale watching

10. Chapman’s Peak Drive: One of the most spectacular coastal roads on the planet running between Noordhoek and Hout Bay. Did you know fees for the toll road are now R31 for light vehicle?

Whale watching on Chapman's Peak Drive

This list is by no means complete and almost the entire coastline of the Cape Point Route (see map) becomes a whale watching feast.  We are coming into whale season and peak season is Sept – mid October where you are almost guaranteed to see whales if you spend some time on the cape peninsula. Be warned though you may need to be patient as you watch for the subtle blow. Wind free days make sightings easier. What to take: binoculars and your camera! Send us your pictures to our facebook page – we love whale shots!

Photo: D. Hurwitz

For a seriously incredible experience book a boat based whale watching trip which operates from Simon’s Town. It is spine tingling, jaw dropping stuff to be within metres of these massive creatures of the sea where you can see the barnacles clinging to their skin and hear the whale song. Boat based whale watching requires a special permit to ensure that the whales are viewed without being harmed so be sure to use a licenced operator. Book now so you don’t miss out! Call 021 782 9356 or click here to book.

Photo: D. Hurwitz

Check out our video last season, watching a pod of humpback whales from a boat trip to Cape Point – and that is why we are Whale Snobs!

Click here for article on identifying which whale is which!

Click here for article on whale surfacing behaviour.

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