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“Outstanding Blue Whale watching crew”
Review of Raja & the Whales

Raja & the Whales
Ranked #1 of 56 Tours in Mirissa
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: We are a local family, providing environmental and sustainable whale watching in Mirissa, Sri Lanka since 2008. We are very keen on protecting the whales and also have been doing research about them for many years now. We are very proud that we are recommended in the new Sri Lankan lonely planet and by so many users of tripadvisor. For bookings please send us an email (anytime), give us a call (between 2 pm and 8 pm) or visit our office in Mirissa Harbour (2 pm to 6 pm). Our price is 6000 LKR for adults and 3000 LKR for kids. Small kids (<6 years) are free of charge. A refund of 50% is given if we do not see any whales on the day of your trip. Please help to protect the whales!
London
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Outstanding Blue Whale watching crew”
Reviewed January 7, 2013

Raja and his crew are obviously the whale watching experts in Mirissa. Nothing is guaranteed, but their expertise suggests that if any whales are to be found on the date that you go, they are the crew that will find them. On my trip at one point we had 5 Blue whales insight surfacing around us. with two executing a perfect syncro tail dive! The welfare of the Whales is their priority. Cost is more than the other outfits but so is the quality of the trip. Interestingly the day before my trip i went to the harbour to check out the other boats and the two other captains I spoke to could only tell me about the food they provided, and nothing about whales (or even what the weather was forecasted for the next day).

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank vikingspartacus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Geelong, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“BEWARE OF SEA SICKNESS!”
Reviewed January 7, 2013

There were six of us who decided to go on this tour with Raja and the Whales. I had experienced motion sickness before as a child, not as an adult. Within the first hour, I had succummed to sea sickness and felt terrible for the rest of the journey. The sea was so rough that we had to sick on the upper deck, and you had to hang on even when sitting cross legged on the deck. Picture being in a washing machine, feeling sea sick and getting sun stroke for eight and a half hours. Unsure when you will be going back to the shore, despite peoples request for the captain of the boat to turn back.

This is an excellent tour - actually, full on sea voage - for anyone who will not experience sea sickness and would stay out all day for a glimpse of the blue whale. Raja's persistance paid off, we saw three. I was just in such a state that I had no interest at that time! I suffered in silence as there were people who desperately wanted to see the whales. However others asked to turn back and were told "I am the captain, I say when we turn back". Raja's lack of sympathy really wasnt comforting to someone who was dehydrating in the sun after not being able to keep water down.

In a nutshell, if you are prepared for a sea voyage and are desperate to see a blue whale, this is the tour for you. If there is any chance at all that you get sea sickness, please do what I should have done....spend the day wandering the streets of Galle Fort and do a lovely spot of shopping!!

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank Heidi D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong, China
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Everybody wins...”
Reviewed January 6, 2013

When you go out with Raja and the whales (RATW), your first feeling is social responsibility and good fun. IF you are looking for a boat that hounds the whales and a crew lacking in depth of knowledge of the ocean- then dont join Raja. If you are looking for a crew that respects the oceans and its inhabitants AND provides you with a great 'whaling' experience, look no further than RATW. The bonus is also to hand over your DLSR to one of his crew and you are guaranteed the best photos of your trip! As a bonus we saw whale shark heading back to port which Raja put us in place to view- a real first for me!

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
Thank Michael T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rome, Italy
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“very positive and responsable approach to whale watching!”
Reviewed January 5, 2013

the whale watching trip with "Raja and the Whales" was really amazing, seeing these beautiful whales, dolphins and turtles in their natural environment. it was so positive also because it was done from a "safer" distance in order not to cause the whales grief but still close enough for us to enjoy these majestic creatures. the other operators unfortunately seem to have fewer morals and chased the whales with their customers being really noisy. that was not pleasant to see and a real shame!!

the "Raja and the Whales" crew were fun, friendly, informative and attentive. the crew were very kind and helpful to the customers that had a bit of sea sickness which were mainly children. they looked after them so that their parents could be free to stand up and go to the sides of the boat and therefore they did not miss out on the whole experience.

i think it is really great that this tour company also gets involved in education and Raja, from what i have heard, is the only company that has any experience in studying/researching the whales which is probably why he is as concerned as he is with setting safety guidelines and following them so that you can enjoy the whales but without causing them stress,or forcing them to find new breeding grounds etc. it is a more sustainable and ethical approach.

i am really happy i chose morals instead of the "cheaper option" tour that will do whatever it takes just to get extra profits. if this is what you are looking go elsewhere.

great job guys!! I would definitely recommend Raja and the whales to all family and friends and not consider going with anyone else!!

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank live2travelnot2work
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sofia, Grad Sofiya, Bulgaria
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Very lazy staff, rip off”
Reviewed January 5, 2013

The crew is hardly moving to do something even if you request nicely several times. Do not speak understandable English very hard to understand them. After seing some whales in 30 min they cut the trip short while all other boats continued cruising. We were told there will be food and drinks therefore the price of 70 $ but there was a cup of tea and one sandwich only.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank KDA980
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rajaandthewhales, Guest Relations Manager at Raja & the Whales, responded to this review, January 22, 2013
Hello KDA980,
I am sorry but I really doubt that you went with our boat. We are NEVER returning back to the harbor before the other boats do but even staying there longer than all the other boats so we can show you the whales in peace without being disturbed. furthermore, we ALWAYS (every single trip with no exception) have a full breakfast for our guests including a fresh fruit platter, omelette or fried eggs (freshly prepared by our chef on the boat), bread and tea or coffee. we NEVER give only a sandwich to our guests. we would really appreciate if you send us some pictures of your trip where we can see the boat you've been going with so we can identify the one who should really receive your review. kind regards, raja & the whales
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