Whale Watching 101

February 23, 2018, 3:01 AM HST · Updated February 21, 11:53 AM
Nikki Schenfeld · 0 Comments

Sponsored Content Provided by: Maverick Helicopters

Whale watching is a popular tourist activity that gives guests the opportunity to experience nature in a new, unique way. To make the most of this adventure, we’re sharing some tips for your whale watching excursion.


Go at the right time of year
Whales change their location based on the time of year and temperature of the water. While the humpback whale population around Hawaii is growing, viewing at the wrong time of year will leave you wondering why the water seems so empty. Thousands of humpback whales make their way to Hawaii in the winter. If you’re visiting in summer, whale watching will not be possible. Before planning your trip, look for information about migration in the area to ensure you’ll be visiting during prime time.


Pick the best day
Just like there are better times of year for spotting whales, there are also better days. If the weather isn’t cooperating, you likely won’t see much activity in the water. When you arrive in Maui, be sure to check the weekly forecast. If you have a choice for your whale watching excursion, choose a day when the weather forecast doesn’t call for rain or strong wind. If you’re whale watching from a helicopter tour, your pilot will let you know if clouds are getting in the way and will work to give you the best possible views.

Know where to look
In Maui, you’re most likely to find groups of whales along the West coast. It’s possible to spot them from your lanai, the beach and other scenic vantage points during their prime migration times. Maverick’s helicopter tours will take you off the coast of Kapalua and Kaanapali, where it’s common to see whales being most active on the water’s surface.

Respect the whales and their habitat
Taking a tour and getting great pictures of whales in the wild is a fun and memorable experience during your Maui vacation. It’s also a great opportunity to learn how you can help protect the whales and their home. Start by choosing a company that follows local rules and uses responsible practices.


Want to make the most of your trip to Maui? Download Top 10 Things to Do in Maui and start planning your vacation today!

Nikki Schenfeld
Nikki joined the Maui Now team in 2016 as a writer/reporter. Originally from Chicago, she has had internships with CBS2 Chicago and Comcast SportsNet Chicago where she had the opportunity to interview some of Chicago's best athletes. She graduated from Columbia College Chicago in 2010 with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcast Journalism. She moved to Maui in 2013.


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