At the start i despaired of actually seeing anything because although there were sightings along the route, I didn't seem to be able to focus in time to see the head or tail before it was below the waves! Fortunately, Captain Sarah just keeps going - they stay in touch with fishing vessels etc to get a course for sightings - and we did see several more. This time I too could thoroughly enjoy the surfacings & blows of these large mammals! I wish I had used the zoom function on my camera, though! At the start of the trip we had to stow our backpacks etc down below, but once underway, we were free to go down (the head (toilet) is down below) and retrieve snacks etc from our baggage. You can go down & request a hot drink once underway. We were served a very tasty & welcome fish chowder on the way back - they do provide hunks of crusty bread for dipping, but it wouldn't hurt to have an extra roll or bagel of your own! Everyone joins in with calling out sightings & we ended up seeing quite a few minke & humpbacks plus huge sunfish. There are laws that prevent the boats from coming to close to the whales, so if you aren't interested in taking pictures, a pair of binoculars would enhance the experience for you. I would definitely do this again!
One thing to note, when we left in the late morning, it was still high enough tide that we walked DOWN the gangplank from the carpark area to the dock but on our return at low tide in mid-afternoon the gangplank was really at a steep angle & we were climbing up. I did notice an elderly lady waiting until the end with her grand-daughter & I expect this climb might have been difficult. If anyone has difficulty with inclines, it might be a good idea to check with them first & see if any trips occur when the tide is opposite ie so that you are going down when starting out & more level upon return.
On this same note - the toilet as I noted is down below so this is not for anyone who cannot climb backwards down the ladder unless you can hold your bladder for about 5 hours.
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