St John's

Newfoundland Puffin and Whale Watch Cruise

Badge of ExcellenceBay Bulls, Canada

From $74.48

Select Date and Travelers

Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
Recommendations
  • 1 hour 30 minutes (approx.)
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English

Overview

Marvel at marine wildlife up-close on this cruise through the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve. The reserve is home to over 2.5 million seabirds and one of the largest populations of whales in the North Atlantic. Aboard a spacious catamaran with ample viewing areas, admire icebergs and watch for puffins, whales, razor-billed auks, black legged kittiwakes, and more (wildlife attractions vary with the time of year). Hear live commentary from crew and naturalists on board about Newfoundland’s heritage as you travel to Iceberg Alley.
  • Marine-wildlife watching catamaran cruise in the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
  • Travel to Iceberg Alley, strewn with melting icebergs of various shapes
  • See a wide variety of seabirds, including Atlantic puffins
  • Spot whales during the summer
  • Learn about the wildlife and geology from crew and naturalists on board
  • Choose from multiple departure times to suit your schedule

What's Included

  • All tours hosted by an experienced, local guide
  • All safety equipment is provided as per requirements set forth by Transport Canada Marine Safety
  • Passengers are provided a pre-departure safety briefing
  • Free parking available on site
  • Vessel is washroom equipped
  • Alcoholic drinks (available to purchase)
  • Gratuities
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off

Meeting And Pickup

Meeting point

  • Gatherall's Puffin & Whale Watch
    90 Northside Rd, Bay Bulls, NL A0A 1C0, Canada

    Directions from St. John's (approx 30 minutes by car). Take south on Route 2 from downtown. Exit Route 3 South and continue towards Bay Bulls (note Route 3 becomes Route 10). Exit left from Route 10 on to St. John's Lane. Turn left on to Northside Road and proceed to Gatherall's Dock.

End point

This activity ends back at the meeting point.

What To Expect

This cruise departs from a private dock in Bay Bulls, about 25 minutes from downtown St. John's, Newfoundland.

 

At the dock, step aboard a catamaran equipped with a spacious viewing platform. The catamaran can accommodate up to 100 people on its outside decks, and its interior cabin can fit all passengers comfortably in the event of inclement weather. This is the only tour vessel in Newfoundland with such capacity.

 

Your captain navigates the boat to the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve, located at the end of Iceberg Alley. Icebergs drift along the coast from Greenland each spring and summer, and by the time they reach the reserve, they have been sculpted by the seas, sun, waves and shoreline to create incredible shapes.

 

On board, crew and naturalists share insight into the 2.5 million seabirds and the large populations of whales that call the reserve home. Peak whale watching takes place from mid-June through mid-August. (Your crew will do its best to make sure you see whales, but sightings are not guaranteed.) The guides and crew are equipped with wireless microphones and are happy to answer your questions or repeat information as you like.

 

The boat will stop along sheltered areas of the islands that comprise the Reserve. Snap photos of nesting sites and watch seabirds in their natural habitat. Some species you may see include Atlantic puffins, common murres, black guillemots, northern gannets, greater shearwaters and northern fulmars.

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Participants are advised to regard all instruction provided by the vessel crew
  • Direction/guidance is provided to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all passengers
  • Depending on vessel movement/sea conditions, passengers may be advised by the crew to refrain from standing or to remain seated during certain portions of the cruise
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately
  • Whales and or icebergs cannot be guaranteed on any given cruise.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 100 travelers

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Traveler Photos

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Traveler Tips


We used this tour outfit off of a cruise ship and it went like clockwork as far as pick-up and drop-off which is always nice.
Reviews
5.0
442 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
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Showing 1-10 of 442 reviews
Amazing experience
Wendy_M, Aug 2022
The crew was fantastic and the entire experience was perfect. It was a highlight of our bucket list trip to beautiful NFLD.
Response from Host, Aug 2022
Hi Wendy Wonderful to hear that it was an amazing experience and was among the highlights of your Newfoundland holiday. Thanks so much for allowing Gatherall's to be a part of your 2022 travel experiences! Wishing you many more wonderful adventures.
Fantastic Tour
Donna_G, Jul 2022
The tour was amazing! So much fun, we saw 2 whales, bald eagles and thousands of puffins! The staff told funny stories and sang sea shanties. We saw a couple get screeched in. Even though it was cold and rainy we were totally entertained! A prefect morning!
Response from Host, Aug 2022
Hi Donna So very wonderful to hear that you had a FANTASTIC time with the Gatherall's crew! Even in spite of the cold rain we're so glad to have been able to share our enthusiasm and warmth to bring a smile to your face. We always like to remind guest that the conditions can and do change even during the tour so its always best to dress in layers :). Can't wait to welcome you all back on board! Cheers. Mike
Witless Bay Whale Watching Adventure!
Amy_C, Jul 2022
The crew was funny, friendly and informative. I felt very safe on this boat ride. I’d do it again in a heartbeat beat.
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Amy So very glad to hear that you had such a great time with the Gatherall family & crew! Thanks for noting your appreciation for our attention to safety - we want everyone to have a great time but we recognize that the great majority of our guests have had little exposure to being on the ocean and need a little extra help moving about. Wishing you many more wonderful adventures in your travels. Cheers. Mike
Best tour in Newfoundland
Ron_P, Jul 2022
Lots of Newfoundland humour mixed with knowledgeable detailed information on whales and sea birds seen on the tour. Saw multiple whales and thousands of puffins. Obviously best to go in season.
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Ron :) Glad to hear that you enjoyed your time with Gatherall's! Great reminder to fellow travelers that everything has a season and to take a moment to learn about the best times for different wildlife and attractions. We cannot control if / when / where / what whales do but only offer our guidance as to the normal seasonal variations and remind guests that even in high season whales can seeming appear and disappear. Sometime we have to remind travelers that Its a big ocean in which they're free to roam - it's not an aquarium and they're not chipped / tagged so our crew works hard to locate them if / when they are in range. Wishing you many more incredible wildlife encounters in your travels. Cheers. Mike
A fun time and knowledgeable staff
Olivia_R, Jul 2022
The commentary was very good, staff was super knowledgeable and did their best to stay on track with the whale sitings. The ride was good, a little choppy here and there but it’s the ocean haha. Over all a very nice experience!
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Olivia Thanks so much for sharing your experience. We'd love to know what would make it even better for you! Obviously we cannot control the weather, seas or if / when whales appear but are happy to tweak things within our control to make the experience even better. Thanks for making Gatherall's a part of your 2022 summer experiences!
well worth the money the...
Tim_L, Jul 2022
well worth the money the crew were awesome!! We saw one whale that stayed right at the boat!! The island of birds was crazy how many are there
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Tim Thank for making Gatherall's a part of your 2022 summer experiences and for taking a moment to share your recommendation! So very glad to hear that you enjoyed the interpretation and entertainment provided by our crew and were so enthralled by the incredible sight of the nesting seabirds! Looking forward to welcoming you back on board next time you visit. Cheers. Mike
It was a great...
Yianrong_C, Jul 2022
It was a great experience. Our guide made it more fun with his sense of humor and beautiful singing. Thank you for the crew
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Yianron Thanks for joining the Gatherall's crew for tour! Wonderful to hear that yu had a great experience with us and we look forward to welcoming you back on board! Cheers. Mike
Great Puffin Tour!
sweeneyart, Jul 2022
The largest number of Puffins and whales in one area. The captain did a great job following the whales.
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Folks :) so very glad that we were able to provide you with your fill of puffins & whales! Our puffins typically remain in large numbers through till atleast mid September while our peak whale seasons runs mid-June through to mid-August (sometimes earlier & sometimes later). Wishing you many more fabulous experiences in yur travels. Cheers. Mike
Whales frolicking, wonderful staff, singing and beautiful views
Michele_W, Jul 2022
Everyone was great at Gatheralls - and we were all lucky to come across breaching whales having fun to our delight. It was wonderful.
Response from Host, Jul 2022
Hi Michele So wonderful to learn that you were able to encounter a breeching whale during your tour with Gatherall's! Thanks for the shout out to our great staff too - it means a lot to us to know that guests appreciate all of their efforts. Hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back on board the next time you visit. Cheers. Mike
Great boat tour!
Renee_D, Jun 2022
Great boat ride w fun staff and crew. Saw beautiful birds & a whale as well! 90 minutes is the perfect amount of time.
Response from Host, Jun 2022
Hi Renee Glad you enjoyed it so very much and we're so happy that you had a whale of an experience with Gatherall's. Can't wait to welcome you back on board! Cheers. Mike
Whale of a Time!
James_R, Aug 2021
We were surrounded by 5 whales for half and hour and was amazing! The Mass of Puffins and other seabirds was incredible what a great experience! It reminded us of Galapagos! Great experience and crew highly recommended!
Response from Host, Aug 2021
Hi James What an amazing adventure - glad to hear you had a whale of a time! On behalf of all the crew & staff thanks so much for joining us this summer and hope to see you back on board next time you visit. Cheers. Mike
very pleasant
peter_l, Aug 2019
saw several whales, including two breaches. bird islands were great as well. very unexpected to see all of this. fun hosts
An excursion for the books!
rangerohl, Aug 2019
We used this tour outfit off of a cruise ship and it went like clockwork as far as pick-up and drop-off which is always nice. Very fun, knowlegeable commentators aboard the nicely appointed boat. We saw 5 humpback, 3 fin whales up close and personal along with 3 dolphin. The trip to Bird Island and 2.5 million puffin, common murre and assorted gulls along with several raptors was wonderful. Take this trip for an experience dtos remember!
The Best Whale Watch/Puffin Tour!
Craig_C, Jul 2019
Ticketing process and crew was friendly, quick, and efficient. Boat crew was both knowledgeable and entertaining. We saw a good number of whales (one of them was VERY close to us), Puffins, an iceberg, and the music on board was great. We even got to sing! A great experience that we highly recommend.
great trip, whe have seen whales, puffins and iceberg! The crew did a very great and friendly job
Sandra_K, Jul 2019
The boat was clean, the staff very polite and gave us many informations. Also the Transfer to the boat has been in a well climated new van. I can recomand this trip to everybody!
Tour on time, great commentary, fun...
Erin F, Aug 2018
Tour on time, great commentary, fun and interactive staff! Loved hearing about the puffins and other birds, along with bits about Newfoundland. Highly recommend!
What an awesome cruise !!! Saw whales...
Paulette S, Jul 2016
What an awesome cruise !!! Saw whales up close and lots of puffins.