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From May to December, there are so many migrating humpback whales swimming along Sydney’s shores, you might even spot one from Sydney Harbour. Maximize your chances of seeing these majestic giants with these top tips on whale watching in Sydney. 

When to Go
Sydney’s whale-watching season typically runs from May into December, when thousands of whales migrate through the area. There are two distinct watching periods: from May to August, as the whales head north to breed, and from August to December, when they head south with their calves to feed in the Antarctic.

What You’ll See
The most commonly sighted whales are humpbacks—some 20,000 of them traverse Australia’s eastern coastline during their annual migration. You can also spot minke whales, orcas, pilot whales, and southern right whales, as well as common and bottlenose dolphins around Sydney, and if you’re visiting later in the season you might even see some whale calves swimming and playing alongside their mothers. 

How to Go
To maximize your chances of seeing whales, set sail on a Sydney whale-watching cruise and explore the open Pacific Ocean with the help of a naturalist guide. Tours by speedboat or cruise boat typically set out from Sydney Harbour, Circular Quay, or Darling Harbour; last between two and four hours; and sometimes include breakfast or lunch on board.
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12 results | All Sydney Tours

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Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise Including Lunch or Breakfast

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise Including Lunch or Breakfast

star-4.5
557
Enjoy a whale-watching cruise that begins with a breakfast or barbecue lunch onboard the boat while in the calm waters of Sydney Harbour.  After breakfast or lunch, your boat glides past Sydney Head into the Pacific Ocean in search of the humpback and southern right whales that migrate along this coast from May to November. Keep an eye out for whales and dolphins as you learn about them from your naturalist guide, who provides fascinating commentary about Australian marine life during your tour.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD71.33
From
USD71.33

Sydney Whale-Watching by Speed Boat

Sydney Whale-Watching by Speed Boat

star-5
232
Experience a close encounter with humpback whales without having to leave the city on this thrilling 2-hour speedboat tour from Sydney. Hop on-board the city’s fastest commercial ship and blast off across Sydney Harbour, past iconic landmarks like Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House. Leave the city behind and speed out into the Pacific Ocean, where you’ll have chance to spot majestic whales swimming and playing in their natural environment.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD92.94
From
USD92.94

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise

star-4.5
98
Cruise the ocean waters off of Sydney to look for humpback and southern right whales as they migrate between Antarctica and the Great Barrier Reef from May to November. Your whale-watching experience starts out of Sydney Harbour and heads to the open ocean on a custom-built catamaran with large viewing windows and spacious decks that provide excellent sightlines. Often, dolphins, sea birds and other marine animals make an appearance during the nearly 2.5-hour whale-watching tour.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD64.12
From
USD64.12

Whale Watching Sailing Experience in Sydney

Whale Watching Sailing Experience in Sydney

star-5
17
Discover the joy of coming face to face with majestic humpback whales while cruising across the ocean on a sailing boat on this fun-filled tour from Sydney Harbour. Running between May and November, the annual whale migration is a sight to behold. This small-group sailing tour gives travelers the chance to cruise alongside these incredible creatures without noisy engines or megaphones, so you can enjoy an immersive and wild natural experience.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD50.43
From
USD50.43

Port Stephens Day Trip with Dolphin Watch Cruise from Sydney
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out

Port Stephens Day Trip with Dolphin Watch Cruise from Sydney

star-4.5
11
Combine three exhilarating activities into one tour on this full-day adventure from Sydney to Port Stephens. First, set sail across Nelson Bay to spot bottlenose dolphins or whales (depending on the season) swimming and playing in their natural environment. Then, head to Stockton Beach where you can choose to upgrade on a thrilling 4WD tour around the Stockton Dunes (payable direct), followed by the chance to zoom down the dunes on a sandboard. Finally, enjoy free time to swim, sunbathe and stroll along the sands.
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  • 11 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD118.88
From
USD118.88

Whale Watching Sydney - 3hr Discovery Cruise

Whale Watching Sydney - 3hr Discovery Cruise

star-4
75
Spot majestic humpback whales swimming and playing in their natural environment during this whale-watching cruise from Sydney. Sail across Sydney Harbour, past the iconic Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, to the open waters of the Pacific and get up close to the gentle giants. This seasonal tour runs between May and November, and cruises pick up from either Circular Quay or Darling Harbour.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD64.12
From
USD64.12

Sydney Opera House Official Guided Walking Tour
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Sydney Opera House Official Guided Walking Tour

star-4.5
1352
Go behind the scenes at the Sydney Opera House for a fascinating look at this Sydney icon. Your knowledgeable guide leads you through the World Heritage–listed building on a walking tour, sharing entertaining stories about the revered performance center's history and providing access to off-limits parts of the house.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD30.98
From
USD30.98

Sydney Harbour Tall Ship Afternoon Discovery Cruise
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Sydney Harbour Tall Ship Afternoon Discovery Cruise

star-4.5
164
Enjoy an afternoon sail on Sydney Harbour aboard a historic tall ship. Learn about Sydney’s maritime roots and your ship’s sailing history during a cruise that provides close views of iconic sights including Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House, and Fort Denison. Get great photo ops and soak up the spectacular scenery. You can even lend the crew a hand by steering the ship and hoisting the sails.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
From
USD49.71
From
USD49.71

Whale Watching Boat Trip in Sydney

Whale Watching Boat Trip in Sydney

star-5
42
Nature enthusiasts will love getting out of Sydney for half a day on a whale-watching boat trip directly from Darling Harbour. Look out for migrating humpback whales and learn more about the marine environment around Sydney through live on-board commentary. The small vessel allows for a close-up look at the whales.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD71.33
From
USD71.33

Whale Watching Sydney - 2hr Express Cruise

Whale Watching Sydney - 2hr Express Cruise

star-3.5
5
Get into the Sydney Harbour and look for whales on this two hour group tour, starting from Circular Quay. You’ll have onboard commentary by your captain and crew so you can learn all about the harbor and the wildlife within it. The boat itself has indoor and outdoor seating, and a licenced bar onboard, where you can purchase snacks and drinks. If you don’t see a whale, you get your money back.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD42.51
From
USD42.51

Sydney Hop-on-Hop-off Cruise and Whale Watching Cruise

Sydney Hop-on-Hop-off Cruise and Whale Watching Cruise

Get out on Sydney Harbour in two different ways with this tour package that combines a 2-day hop-on hop-off cruise pass and a whale-watching cruise. The hop-on hop-off cruise provides flexibility to visit up to 4 of the city's harbor precincts and can be used over two consecutive days. The whale-watching tour must be taken on the first day. Booking this combo tour gives you two popular tours at one convenient price and saves you the hassle of figuring out how to travel the harbor by boat.
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  • 2 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD78.53
From
USD78.53

Private Whales of Sydney Safari

Private Whales of Sydney Safari

star-5
2
Spend some time out on Sydney Harbor in search of the majestic giants of the deep during this whale-watching excursion. Board your private vessel and sail past Sydney’s iconic beaches to the watching area. Then, keep your eyes peeled for the pods of whales out in the deep blue sea as well as bottle-nosed dolphins and fur seals that call the area home.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
USD1,138.38
per group
From
USD1,138.38
per group

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What people are saying about Whale Watching in Sydney

star-5
Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise Including Lunch or Breakfast
"Simply breathtaking for view the whales as they migrated south. Staff onboard and on the dock were helpful. Food was good (make sure you take your sea sickness tablets) and we saw and tracked a number of Whales. Was a great trip from Sydney."..."
star-5
Sydney Whale-Watching by Speed Boat
"Fun boat ride, knowledgeable skipper, and saw a dozen whales. This was a great experience! I would recommend this tour to everyone."..."
star-5
Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise
"Lovely to be on the water whale watching. Informative and fun commentary. I’m keen to go again next season."..."
star-5
Whale Watching Sailing Experience in Sydney
"A great day all around. After finding four whales we followed them for quite some time. The Captain knew what pace they were travelling and was able to keep up with them even when they dived. A truly exhilarating experience."..."
star-5
Port Stephens Day Trip with Dolphin Watch Cruise from Sydney
"Good experience dolphin watching and sand boarding. Ronnie was excellent in his tour guiding. Enjoyed the tour"..."
star-5
Whale Watching Sydney - 3hr Discovery Cruise
"We were able to see a mother and her calf. Both of them breached and the calf jumped all the way out of the water. It was an amazing experience."..."
star-5
Sydney Opera House Official Guided Walking Tour
"We had an amazing time! Very informative and friendly guide and we learnt a lot about the Sydney Opera House."..."
star-5
Sydney Harbour Tall Ship Afternoon Discovery Cruise
"Experiencing what early sailors may have had on good days of sailing. Decking out in a sailor's garb with genuine plastic sword made in China."..."
star-5
Whale Watching Boat Trip in Sydney
"Great whale watching ... that's why I booked it a second time :) Value for money. I would really recommend this."..."
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Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the best Whale Watching in Sydney?
Q:
What Whale Watching in Sydney are taking additional safety precautions?
Q:
What Whale Watching in Sydney are good for avoiding crowds?
A:
These hidden gems in Sydney may have limited interaction with crowds: