We will start at 8am and out on the water for around 6 hours for each of our 7 days on the ocean. It can take up to an hour or more to reach the deep underwater canyons were the Blue whales (and Sperm whales if they are around) feed at this time of the year. There are several of these huge canyons, just offshore in the area.

Our priorities are your safety and respect for these wondrous animals. Our boats are equipped with very quiet 4 stroke engines that can get us quickly to the right place as the whales approach and, when the time is right, we will be entering the water as unobtrusively as possible and observing these magnificent mammals swimming past us. 

We may also have opportunities to snorkel around a small island in the area. Its rich with reef-life and different species of turtles.

Please note – this is an active adventure holiday and designed for those who are reasonably fit, agile and confident swimming and snorkelling in deep water.

Daya, our passionate naturalist
An advanced open water diver, Daya is Sri Lanka’s most experienced free diving naturalist at sea. He has worked with many celebrated photographers from around the world, with over 300 whale watching tours in Sri Lanka.
He has gathered tremendous data spanning five years of watching the Super Pods of sperm whales in the eastern seas of Sri Lanka and he was featured on the most popular BBC documentary series Blue Planet II, which was narrated by Sir David Attenborough.
Daya is fluent in English, Sinhalese and Tamil has a wonderfully sharp sense of humour, and is an extremely gentle soul who enjoys his time at sea.
I had the pleasure of spending many hours with Daya, sharing our many underwater encounters on my recent visit to Sri Lanka. He is certainly a very humble man, whose eyes light up when sharing his many whale experiences and speaking of his wife and young daughter. I know you will all have the greatest respect for his great passion for all marine mammals.  Rae Gill

About Blue Whales . . .

It is difficult to imagine just how huge the blue whale (balaenoptera musculus) is until you’re up close on the surface or in the water with them. Their hearts can weight as much as a car; their tongues may exceed the weight of an elephant, and and adult has 2,500 gallons of blood circulating throughout it’s body constantly. They feed almost exclusively on krill and other plankton and an adult blue whale can consume four tons daily during their feeding season. Blue whales are the largest animals ever known to have lived on our beautiful blue planet, growing up to 100 feet long and weighing up to 180 tons or more. When born, blue whale calves are around 25 feet long and can weigh 3 tons and they can drink more than 380 litres/100 gallons of their mother’s milk every day!

Aggressive hunting in the 1900s by whalers seeking whale oil drove the blue whales to the brink of extinction and it is thought that some 360,000 were slaughtered between 1900 and the mid-1960s. Their numbers were reduced to just 1,000 or so whales by the mid 1950s. They finally came under protection under the auspices of the 1966 International Whaling Commission, but the global population has only made a minor recovery since then, with an estimated 15,000 blue whales now roaming our oceans worldwide.

Blue whales have few predators but many are injured or die each year from impacts with large ships and marine pollution is also a serious threat. It is critical that we continue to work for further conservation and protection of these gentle giants of our planet.

About Sperm whales . . . .

The sperm whale (physeter macrocephalus) is the largest of the toothed whales and can grow to be as long as 20.4m (67 ft). They also have the largest brain out of any animal known to exist. They are also known to have the largest eyes out of all of the toothed whale species.

Reaching depths of over 9,500 ft. the sperm whale is one of the deepest diving marine mammals in the world and are well-known for their diet of giant squid, which are known to grow to lengths of over 40 ft. long. Because the sperm whale often hunts for its food in pitch black waters echolocation allows them to maintain complete awareness of their surrounds using sound.
Because the sperm whale is a marine mammal it requires oxygen to breathe. These marine mammals inhale/exhale an average of 3 – 7 times per minute depending on how active they’ve been. During deep dives the sperm whale can hold its breath for up to 90 minutes!

The only known natural predator to the sperm whale is a pod of killer whales. Although these attacks are rare they have been observed in the wild. They are known to produce ambergris (whale vomit) which has been used to create perfumes and expensive high-end scents.

Sperm whales are often seen in pods in these waters due to the rich food sources found in the deep ocean canyons in the area. They are often curious about us and may use their sonar, making their ‘clicking’ sound when swimming around us. They are known to be in the area during March & April.

About the area…

Our whale-watching home base is the simple little town on the North Eastern shores of Sri Lanka – a melting pot of different cultures, with the food, clothing and daily goings on reflecting a multitude of influences, including Muslim, Portuguese, Dutch, British and Sinhalese. It is a wonderful melange of experiences and rich in history. You will find colourful temples nestled next to churches mixed amongst old colonial Dutch or British buildings and local dwellings.
It has not been ‘found’ by many yet and it’s lovely golden sand beaches, peaceful surroundings, unspoiled natural areas and easy-going friendly local folk make this slightly off-the beaten-track town a fascinating and laid back destination.

 

Before you go . . . .  you need to apply for a VISA!

Important note: You are required to have a valid passport, a Sri Lanka VISA, and round-trip air ticket on arrival in the country.
Sri Lanka now requires you to have a visa prior to arrival. You apply and pay online – you need to allow 14 days and they will email you with your visa details.
Click here to go to the Sri Lankan Government site to apply.  Make sure you leave time for your application to be processed.
We advise you to take a photo of the email with your visa details once you receive it – save to your phone so you have a copy for immigration on arrival in Colombo.

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