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Whale Report

Saturday 3rd August 2019

15 Whales

Byron Bay




Today there was plenty of action out off the coast of Ballina and Byron Bay. We enjoyed breaching, comp groups, muggings & tail slapping on our Byron Bay Whale Watching Cruises at 8:00am & 11:00am. Conditions are looking good this week, so be sure to book aboard our Byron Bay Whale Watching Cruise.

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+61 407 522 422 Why Choose Us


Find answers to our frequently asked questions

Will I get Seasick?

Our vessels greatly reduce the chance of sea sickness as our low profile does not rock aggressively compared to other whale watching vessels. There will be constant motion depending on the sea conditions. Be sure to eat at least a light meal. Let our team know in advance so we can arrange to seat you towards the back of the vessel. Consider taking precautions if you know you are sensitive.

What precautions should I take if I know I am sensitive to Seasickness?

• Take over the counter medication Kwells (less drowsy),  Travacalm or Promethazine an hour before the trip, ginger tablets can also be helpful to prevent and treat motion sickness.

• Try wearing an anti-nausea band. Some people like “Sea Bands.” They are bracelets with dots that purportedly touch acupressure points on your wrist. They have never been proven effective, but some people swear by them.

• Wear a patch. Scopolamine, a drug that reduces the activity of nerve fibers in your inner ear, is hands down the most successful commercial seasickness medication on the market. You get a steady dose by wearing a medicated patch like the Transderm Scop patch behind your ear. Just be mindful of following directions and watching for side effects like dry mouth and blurred vision.

• Be clean and sober. Even a mild hangover can easily degenerate into seasickness, besides increasing various diving risks. Likewise, fatigue predisposes you to seasickness.

• Eat something. Opinions vary on this one, but most people feel better with a little bland food on their stomachs. Bread, bagels, pancakes, etc. are better than eggs and bacon. Coffee and orange juice are acidic and may irritate your stomach. Eat a little, not a lot.

• Relax. Anxiety contributes to seasickness. Those who are frightened by the ocean and the movement of the boat, or anxious about the diving later in the day, are more likely to become seasick.

• Plan ahead. All of these techniques work best if you apply them before you need them — to prevent getting motion sick in the first place. So take precautions early.

• Tell your captain that you’re sensitive at the start of the trip, and give updates if you start to feel queasy. Usually he or she can adjust the motion of the boat to help you feel better or allow you to move to the rear of the vessel where you will be less affected.

• Watch for symptoms. Early signs include chills, headache and frequent burping. Now is the time to go on deck, or move to the lee rail if you’re already there.

• Look towards land and occupy your mind with the exciting view.

If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call.

When is Byron Bay’s whale watching season?

The Byron Bay whale watching season starts in June. The first migrating Humpback Whales are normally sighted towards the end of May, but we don’t start whale watching until there are enough whales around to ensure that you will have plenty to see. Byron Bay’s whale watching season ends at the end of October/ early November.

Which trip is better? Morning vs afternoon

Every day is different in regards to weather, wind and ocean conditions. For Whale Watching cruises, we often suggest the earlier cruise as it is common for the wind to slightly pick up as the day goes on, although this may not always be the case. If you are unsure and want an update of the current conditions, don’t hesitate to give us a call.

Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?

Yes, with limited tickets per trip, tours can sell out (but are never crowded). Book as far in advance as you can to guarantee your desired day and time.
You can make last minute bookings, but please call us on 0407522422 as we may need to arrange your refreshments for certain tours in advance.

Are your adventures good for all ages?

We love providing fun for the whole family, although we do have some restrictions for the younger members. On our ocean trip’s we allow children 5-11yrs. On our River Cruise, we allow children 3-11yrs. These are all at the Childs rate and no children under these age requirements are permitted on the cruise. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Everyone must wear life jackets assigned by the Captain at all times and follow Captain’s instructions.

Can I book a private charter?

Yes! We do offer private charters. Our vessels can seat up to 20 passengers on our ‘Out Of The Blue’ vessel and up to 25 passengers on our ‘Into The Blue’ vessel. Both vessels can also be booked to go out together depending on the tour requested and date. To enquire further, please email or call us on 0407 522 422 to reserve your exclusive charter. Please keep in mind that to secure your desired date and time, it is recommended to book as far in advance as possible.

Do you guarantee that I will see a whale?

Whales are wild animals, so there are no guarantees that we will see them. However, our captain and marine biologist have lots of experience and knowledge about the area, so chances are high during migrating season (June-November). We have 100% success rate. If you do not see a whale on your Whale Watching cruise (June-November), we will always invite you back for a FREE trip to try again.

How are your vessels different to others in the area?

We operate the largest purpose-built vessels in the Ballina & Byron area, comfortably seating up to 20 passengers on our ‘Out Of The Blue’ vessel and up to 25 passengers on our ‘Into The Blue’ vessel. Our cruises are also unique in the way of areas explored, being the only vessels that provide a tour along the coast between Ballina and Byron Bay.

What should I wear and bring?

We recommend you show up to the boat with an extra layer of clothing just in case you get a little wet or cold. During winter, it is recommended to bring something warm to wear under the spray and wind resistant jackets we provide. It is typically cooler on the water than on land and temperatures may change throughout your adventure. We also recommend sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat (even on overcast days), a water bottle and a camera to capture the time of you life!

Are the vessels wheelchair accessible?

Unfortunately the nature of our cruises and our vessels are not suitable for wheelchair users. The wharf we depart from is wheelchair and walker accessible. However, we do not have the capacity to store wheelchairs aboard the vessel. Please let us know if you have any special requirements or assistance and we will do our best to accommodate.

What happens if it rains?

The tour runs in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but we may cancel the activity up to the start time in the event of severe or unsafe weather or ocean conditions. If we cancel the cruise, ticket holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability), convert their tickets to Gift Vouchers for use in the future, or receive a full refund. Please keep in mind that redeemed Gift Cards are non-refundable and can only be moved to another day or gifted to another person to use.

Will I get wet?

There is a possibility of getting wet on our ocean cruises when it’s windy and choppy since our vessel is open and low to the water. We provide high quality jackets that fit over your warm layers and provide wind and water protection. The captain will endeavour to keep you as dry as possible, but in some conditions spray is inevitable.

How close do we get?

We follow the federal whale watching guidelines that apply to all boats, including kayaks: stopping the boat at least 300 ft (91 m) away from the whales, not pursuing or blocking them, and driving slowly when we are near them. We allow the whales or dolphins to approach us if they choose. We pride ourselves on our safe and responsible whale sightings.

Are food and drinks served on the trip?

Small GF refreshments and drinks are provided on River Cruise Private Charters only. We also have a cooler on board that can accommodate light snacks and beverages (available for Private Charters only). There are restaurants nearby to the boarding wharf. We do not recommend bringing full carry-out meals or picnics on board, unless you have booked a private charter.

Do you have bottled water for purchase?

We provide reusable water bottles for the trip, unless you would like to bring your own. We consciously do not offer single-use plastic water bottles. As ocean ambassadors, we support alternatives to “disposable” plastics because we’ve seen the destructive effects it has on the sea life we love. We might even stop to pick up some plastic trash or a deflated helium balloon during your trip, and celebrate saving the life of a sea turtle or whale that will not eat that one piece of plastic by accident.

What should I NOT bring?

Fine leather that could be damaged by salt, high-heeled shoes or loose sandals, skirts, full meals, crumbly or messy snacks, any glassware.

Is it better to depart from Ballina or Brunswick Heads

Due to Byron Bay itself not having a jetty or Marina to allow passengers to board vessels, we offer the option to depart on our Whale Watching Cruise from your choice of Ballina or Brunswick Heads. The only difference between our two departures is that occasionally it can be calmer on a southerly wind out of Brunswick Heads compared to Ballina. Both Cruises are exactly the same in terms of experience.

What type of boat is this?

Our boats are RIBs, or Rigid-hull Inflatable Boats, with a hard, aluminium hull surrounded by inflated pontoons for extra stability. RIBs are popular for whale-watching in many parts of the world. Ours is the first 20 seater vessel offering ocean adventures in the Byron and Ballina Region. Our vessel is purpose-built to the highest standards of safety and reliability making it perfect for our Whale Watching & Ocean Adventure Cruises.

Are life jackets on board?

Yes, everyone is required to wear the provided life jackets on board.  There are enough for each passenger. All children must wear a life vest at all times.

How fast do you go?

Our captain may give you a taste of the boats manoeuvrability and speed at their discretion and far away from whales, but our primary focus on our ocean and river cruises is the experience of closeness to nature. We always operate within safe parameters for the sea’s changing conditions and with utmost respect for the marine life.

Will the boat be going full speed the entire trip? Should I be scared?

We never go the full speed that the boat is capable of, and we only go as fast as our passengers are comfortable. The main advantage of being on our boat is that we are able to move faster to see more wildlife and scenery in shorter amounts of time. If at any point during our cruises you are uncomfortable let the captain know and we will slow down to make sure that everyone is having fun!

What if the trip gets cancelled due to bad weather?

If we deem sea or bar conditions to be dangerous or extremely unpleasant for our customers, we will cancel our cruises. To avoid inconvenience, we will endeavour to give you as much notice as possible by studying forecasts and observing sea conditions. However, forecasts can be inaccurate and sea conditions can change unexpectedly. If you have any doubt about the conditions or if you are travelling a long distance to get to us, please give us a call on the day before departure. Please note that light rain and overcast skies will not affect your whale watching trip or Ocean Adventure Cruise. In the event that we cancel a cruise, you will have the option to move your booking to another day (subject to availability) or receive a full refund (Please note that redeemed Gift Card’s are non-refundable, only transferrable to another day or person).

What is an ocean adventure?

This is an adventure based trip that explores the natural scenery and marine life. On our Ocean Adventure tours we share local knowledge and our marine biologist will provide an interpretive talk regarding the wildlife, surroundings & history of the area.

What is your COVID-19 response?

We will be commencing our Whale Watching Cruises May 22nd. As a responsible tour operator, we are committed to providing our guests with unforgettable nature-based tours in Ballina, Brunswick Heads and Byron Bay. COVID-19 restrictions have eased across New South Wales and Australia, but we must not be complacent. As such, Out Of The Blue Adventures has taken a number of additional measures to keep our experiences as safe and as comfortable as possible for our guests.

Whale Report

Whale watching season is in full swing with plenty of whales around!


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