TOUR: Whale Watching Tour, open Zodiac-style
Operator: Seabreeze Adventures
Duration: 3.5 hours (or potentially more)
Accessible from: Pick up from most Vancouver hotels, with tour departing from Steveston Harbor, around 25 minutes drive from downtown.
Details: The opportunity to see orcas up close is a must do whilst in Vancouver. Whale watching can be done across a variety of vessels but this tour offers passengers a more adventurous experience, with an open zodiac-style boat with only 12 passengers. Upon arrival at Steveston Harbor you are set up with the mandatory safety and wet weather gear and introduced to your zodiac guide, a naturalist whale expert.
The first hour or so is all speed as you skim across the Strait of Georgia in search of these elusive mammals. Between March and October each year you can see humpback, minke and killer whales (orcas) as they migrate along the coast. Seeing these wonderous creatures up close — especially when in a large pod together — is something to remember.
On this tour we saw sea lions, seals, bald eagles and a ‘super pod’ of orcas, which we followed for around 45 mins.
The journey back to Steveston is again fast, with some quick turns to really bring the sea right up close.
The tours include water and light snacks, and we would recommend bringing a jacket. Each tour has a guarantee to see whales, and if you don’t spot any, then they offer the chance to return and try again another day for free.