Top 5 Whale Spotting Locations in British Columbia

If you are planning on a visit to British Columbia and wish to connect with its extensive wildlife, the coastal waters are one of the best. Those hoping to see whales, humpbacks and orcas will find its waters rich with marine species.

While you can rent a boat for this purpose, there are many tour operators who know the waters well and the patterns that whales take. They also will include informative information of the whales, their habitat and behaviors. Here is our top 5 list of locations to spot whales.

1. Tofino/Ucluelet

Best time to visit: March to October

The waters of Clayoquot Sound and Barkley Sound offer some of the most stunning views of the B.C coastline. This includes its rainforest, sandy beaches and of course, whale spotting. Those most commonly seen in this area are the grey whale, however, at times the humpback can be seen and even orcas if you are lucky. You can visit this area by car by taking a freey or by seaplane.

2. Vancouver/Richmond

Best time to visit: June to September

This area of British Columbia includes Steveston Village, Granville Island, Stanley Park, and Coal Harbour. This is where the largest number of tour operators work out of due to the volume of people wanting to book tours. You can expect to see orcas and humpbacks, as they are the ones most predominant in this part of the province.

3. Telegraph Cove

Best time to visit: Mid-June to October

The Telegraph Cove is home mostly to orcas, and it is the best place to go if orcas are high on your list. Tours will have you visiting the Broughton Archipelago and the waters of Johnstone Strait, which are protected and are home to over two hundred whales every summer. Generally, you will see humpbacks and orcas, which is ideal for those who hope to get a bit closer via a kayaking tour.

4. Victoria/Sooke

Best time to visit: May to October

Victoria’s Inner Harbour is not only scenic, it is perfect for those who want to see whales in their natural habit but do so in a more comfortable tour boat that will include washroom facilities and even snacks. Those who elect to take tours can even opt to suit up in a floatation suit and hope on a high-speed zodiac in hopes of getting a closer look at whales that call the area home.

5. Prince Rupert

Best time to visit: Mid-July to October

Prince Rupert is in the northern part of B.C and while whales are its primary target for whale watching enthusiasts, its other wildlife is nothing short of spectacular. For your money, this is the best bet as it includes migrating salmon, grizzly bears and more.

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