Responsible Whale Watching

We strictly follow the Pacific Whale Watch Association guidelines. We keep our distance from the whales (200 meters from all non-Southern Resident Killer Whales), practice parallel viewing at slow speeds, alert recreational vessels when whales are in the area, and leave when there are too many boats. All members of the PWWA have entered into a Sustainable Whale Watch Agreement with the government of Canada. It allows companies to view non-Southern Resident killer whales from 200 meters in exchange for not viewing Southern Resident Killer Whales in Canadian waters, as they are listed as endangered.

Our captains have a WDFW Commercial Whale Watching License and receive PWWA guidelines training every year. We also chose to run our tours with two 30ft vessels to provide a more intimate experience and reduce underwater noise impact on wildlife. 

1% for the planet

Studies have shown that the most significant factor endangering the Southern Resident Killer Whales is their lack of food. Southern Resident Killer Whales are known to prey nearly exclusively on South Coast Chinook Salmon during much of the year.

Unfortunately, with the Chinook Salmon stock in decline, our resident orca population has also declined. Salmon is also a great resource and plays a big part in the Coastal First Nations’ cultural identity and spirituality. As it’s essential for us to save both species, Sidney Whale Watching donates 1% of all our sales to support the Pacific Salmon Foundation.

Conservation fee

We charge a $2 conservation fee to support whale conservation in the Salish Sea. 100% of the fees are forwarded directly to the Center for Whale Research, Save our Wild Salmon, the Whale Museum, Sooke Chinook, and Humpback Whale Research.

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