Tours and Tickets

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise provided by Captain Cook Cruises

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise
4.5
Book in advance
from
$62.38
per adult
Not sure? You can cancel this reservation up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund.
Tour snapshot
Duration:
2h 30m
Taking Covid-19 safety measures
Group size:
80
Wheelchair accessible
Ticket type:
Mobile
Free cancellation
  • Duration:
    2h 30m
  • Taking Covid-19 safety measures
  • Group size:
    80
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Ticket type:
    Mobile
  • Free cancellation
About
See magnificent humpback and southern right whales at play on a Sydney whale-watching cruise. From Darling Harbour this open-water cruise will take you through the entrance of Sydney Harbour and into the open Pacific in search of whales. The open-air viewing decks on board the catamaran offer unobstructed views and the best opportunities for spotting and watching the whales. Getting up close to these gentle giants of the sea is an awe-inspiring experience that you don’t want to miss. With record numbers of whales due to pass along Sydney's coastline this migration season, there are sure to be plenty of sightings and great photo opportunities!
Know before you go
  • Duration: 2h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Available languages
English
What to expect
  • Meet your catamaran at Darling Harbour and step on board your state-of-the-art whale-watching vessel for a stable and comfortable ride. Choose to station yourself outdoors on the large viewing decks or inside the all-weather cabin, protected from the elements. Witness the migration that turns the Pacific Ocean waters near Sydney into a prime spot for viewing southern right and humpback whales between the months of May and November. As many as 15,000 whales swim past Sydney every year. If you’re lucky, you may see some of them breach, spout, slap their tails and fins, or even jump out of the water. Listen to live onboard commentary from a naturalist who shares fascinating information about the whales, dolphins and other animals that you might see during almost three hours on the whale-watching cruise. Bring your camera for photo ops of the marine life, and the Sydney skyline, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and the Heads.
Know before you go
  • Duration: 2h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
Available languages
English
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
What to expect
  • Meet your catamaran at Darling Harbour and step on board your state-of-the-art whale-watching vessel for a stable and comfortable ride. Choose to station yourself outdoors on the large viewing decks or inside the all-weather cabin, protected from the elements. Witness the migration that turns the Pacific Ocean waters near Sydney into a prime spot for viewing southern right and humpback whales between the months of May and November. As many as 15,000 whales swim past Sydney every year. If you’re lucky, you may see some of them breach, spout, slap their tails and fins, or even jump out of the water. Listen to live onboard commentary from a naturalist who shares fascinating information about the whales, dolphins and other animals that you might see during almost three hours on the whale-watching cruise. Bring your camera for photo ops of the marine life, and the Sydney skyline, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and the Heads.
Need help booking?
Call the number below and use the product code: 3378WHALE
Call +1 855 275 5071
Important information
Inclusions
  • Live commentary on board
Exclusions
  • Food and drinks (available to purchase)
Duration
2h 30m
Departure details
  • Darling Harbour Wharf 2, New South Wales, Australia Please check in at least 20 minutes prior to departure to collect tickets from the ticket office opposite Darling Harbour King Street Wharf No.2.
Additional information
  • Please dress appropriately and wear warm clothing. It will often feel cooler at sea
  • If you are susceptible to travel sickness, please bring the relevant medication
  • Whale Guarantee: If a whale is not sighted during your cruise, you'll be given the opportunity to cruise again for free
  • Reconfirmation Hotline - Call +61-2-8062 3623 from 7.15am on the day of your cruise to confirm the cruise is going ahead. Cruises may be cancelled subject to weather conditions.
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • Not recommended for travelers 3 years and younger
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 80 travelers
Inclusions
  • Live commentary on board
Exclusions
  • Food and drinks (available to purchase)
Departure details
  • Darling Harbour Wharf 2, New South Wales, Australia Please check in at least 20 minutes prior to departure to collect tickets from the ticket office opposite Darling Harbour King Street Wharf No.2.
Duration
2h 30m
Return details
  • Returns to original departure point
Additional information
  • Please dress appropriately and wear warm clothing. It will often feel cooler at sea
  • If you are susceptible to travel sickness, please bring the relevant medication
  • Whale Guarantee: If a whale is not sighted during your cruise, you'll be given the opportunity to cruise again for free
  • Reconfirmation Hotline - Call +61-2-8062 3623 from 7.15am on the day of your cruise to confirm the cruise is going ahead. Cruises may be cancelled subject to weather conditions.
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • Not recommended for travelers 3 years and younger
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 80 travelers
Travel safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your visit
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
What you can expect during your visit
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Contactless payment for gratuities and add-ons
Popular mentions

4.5
20 reviews
Excellent
12
Very good
4
Average
2
Poor
1
Terrible
1

Keppell
Albury, Australia1 contribution
Fantastic, Amazing and magical. These three words summed it up for us. My wife’s first experience whale watching and she loved it.
Written June 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

vickieckinder
Sydney, Australia5 contributions
Oct 2020
We went out whale watching yesterday with Captain Cook Cruises and were not disappointed. The weather was great and the whales certainly seemed to be enjoying it! We spent so much time mesmerised by these gentle giants of the ocean - such a privilege. Now is the time to go as they make their way back south. There was plenty of room for everyone to see with the current covid-restrictions and a lovely, articulate live commentary from Sarah.
Written October 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

TheAdmiralW
Sydney, Australia236 contributions
Aug 2020
From start to finish it was a great day out. Yes, there is a lot of waiting around and watching but that is to be expected in the mid-part of the season.

We did manage to see a couple of calves and even saw a mature one breach. Unfortunately, the breach was such a surprise that I do not think many of us got a picture of that but that is for another day.

Unfortunately, not many people were wearing masks despite the guides saying it was highly recommended. From my perspective I thought that they had too many people on board to enable social distancing to occur. Thankfully, there was no one sat in front of or behind me and I was wearing a face mask. It is for this reason that I say I had some reservations about the cruise.

At this time I would make sure you wear a mask and have hand sanitiser handy.

One minor issue is with the safety briefing at the beginning. I do not care who you are but when giving a safety briefing, making jokes and laughing is not the done thing. The safety briefing is a serious issue and needs to be treated with seriousness.

I will say that the 'guide' was very informative and knowledgeable.

If you have four hours to kill between May and September then I would definitely add whale watching to your agenda.
Written August 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Tamsin S
1 contribution
Jul 2020 • Solo
I can't rate the staff of this tour provider highly enough! They are dedicated, friendly and very helpful. The office staff organised a quick pickup from Circular Quay, and were engaging and knowledgeable on board. When I became seasick, the crew kept checking on me, with one member (Paul) taking time to distract me from the nausea with travel tales. Oh, and I saw some whales!
Written July 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Susanne
Arlington, VA1 contribution
Sep 2019 • Solo
Excellent and awe-inspiring excursion! We did see whales. The day we went out the sea was choppy and by the end most people were seasick. But the crew was well prepared and handled it with humor. And despite thus it was a fabulous outing, highly recommend it!
Written November 13, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kathleen S
Ashburton, Canterbury, New Zealand258 contributions
Oct 2019 • Couples
I don't like boats but love whales. Luckily the sea was kind and it wasn't too choppy. Saw a mother and a very active baby. They really put on a show with breaching splashing and diving. Awesome one of the best whale days I've had. Crew were friendly and Canadian comentator very interesting. We ordered the photos of the cruise as it was a day we don't want to forget. Thanks
Written October 23, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ailsa N
3 contributions
Oct 2019 • Couples
A really great trip and saw plenty of whales along with an interesting and light commentary. It is amazing to see whales in the flesh. 2 things to beware: one is booking via Trip Advisor which I did on my phone and was sent a link to download a ‘ticket’. Having queued for some time to get a good seat we were sent back to the ticket booth to get our ticket and so missed the best seats . What I’d been sent was really a voucher not a ticket. Why not say to take the Trip Advisor voucher to the ticket booth?

The other thing is that though the whales are amazing they are elusive so there are big gaps between sightings. So worth choosing a good day when you can enjoy the ride whether or not the whales are showing.
Written October 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Emma Bsee
Hong Kong, China44 contributions
We went on the morning cruise to whale watch and within 10 minutes of coming out of the harbour we saw whales! 1 breached as well! It was incredible! And the team on the boat were brilliant, funny and really informative about the habitat and behaviours and what we can do to help. Absolutely brilliant day out. Couldn't recommend it more! Getting a proper look at sydney harbour bridge and the opera house was an added bonus
Written September 30, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

sayer2019
Houston, TX25 contributions
Sep 2019
We saw several humpback whales going down the "whale super highway" near Sydney! The waters on the Sydney Harbor were pretty choppy and several people on the ferry were seasick throughout the cruise!! Vanessa, the marine biologist on board, was entertaining us throughout...trying to keep people from thinking about their seasickness by telling us many interesting facts about marine life! Definitely a must for nature lovers.One thing to remember though, Sydney Harbor is pretty choppy, as other reviewers also mentioned before. And we have been whale watching near Alaska and Iceland before but never experienced such choppy waters.
Written September 25, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

2 Virginia folks
3 contributions
Sep 2019
First I'd like to send a huge thanks to my coordinator. The tour was cancelled due to weather earlier and I finally got to go our last day in Sydney! A lot of coordination and very, very helpful and friendly folks. Now for the best: we had one of the best days! Our naturalist, Vanessa, was very informative and easy to talk to. We had a spectacular display from a pair of whales and great spotters aboard! Then took a side tour to see the fur seals on the cliffs. Just wow! Vanessa said it was a very rare day and one of the best for actually seeing whales. She also said it was one of her best sightings. So very cool and a great memory to take back to the states with us.
Written September 24, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 17
About the operator

Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator.

By: Captain Cook Cruises
yvwords
yvwords
00
Inadequate food for Christmas Day harbour cruise
I went on the Christmas Day lunch cruise, on the Ocean deck, which was the lowest cost area. The cruise left from K
Jenny F
Jenny F
00
SYDNEY 2000 SAIL GP
On Saturday 18 December I had booked a Sail GP Premium experience. From the time we stepped onto the boat at 2pm,
chantals1980031
chantals1980031
00
Would come again
It was a great cruise with fantastic food and customer service. The atmosphere was great as well. Loved the singer
Glenice F
Glenice F
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Great Experience
We very much enjoyed this Cruise, the food was lovely and once we got the hang of ordering drinks on our mobile pho
regulartraveller71
regulartraveller71
00
What a great experience
Our party of 6 adults chose the Top Deck Lunch Cruise as a great way to see the Harbour, Food was excellent, servi
djhol
djhol
00
Mother’s Day lunch
Our welcome was great and staff excellent . The food was outstanding . One guest was gluten free , and this was cat
judycrisp
judycrisp
00
HIGH TEA TO CELEBRATE 51 YEARS OF MARRIAGE
Husband gave me this harbour cruise as an Anniversary gift. He couldn't have chosen better. Even though it was a we
manyana2013
manyana2013
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Special Small Lunch
This was a small special birthday lunch, the Captain Cook staff went over and above to make it feel very very speci
M4verick14
M4verick14
00
Great way to spend a late afternoon
We had tickets for a 3pm departure from King Street Wharf and were right on time when we left. We had booked for bo
aldavril
aldavril
00
Fabulous long lunch
This is an amazing time. Nothing better than cruising on beautiful Sydney Harbour enjoying a gorgeous 3 course lun
John O
John O
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Australia Day Cruises
Once again Captain Cook Cruises has provided us with another memorable day on magnificent Sydney Harbour. The serv
845karls
845karls
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Best harbour cruise ever
We did the Penfolds gold dinner cruise in the private Endeavour Room with our group of 20. It was fabulous and I wo
susannelW5730HA
susannelW5730HA
00
Disappointed
My husband and I thought the cruise was at least 2.5 hours long - but we were in the middle of Dessert and arrived
elisei101
elisei101
00
A beautiful view and great service
Went on the brilliance dinner cruise with my partner last night (Friday 13th). We enjoyed lovely cocktails, a delic
S2478VFfranka
S2478VFfranka
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Room for improvement!
Lovely weather for a day on the harbour. Well organised and arrived on time. Staff friendly. Bubbly was very sweet
Frequently Asked Questions about Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise price starts from $62.42. Discover and book Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise on Tripadvisor

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise on Tripadvisor

Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise is hosted by Captain Cook Cruises. Read reviews, discover additonal experiences or contact Captain Cook Cruises on Tripadvisor. Discover and book Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise on Tripadvisor

On average, this experience will take approximately 2h 30m. Discover and book Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise on Tripadvisor