We reserved tickets for whale watching for July 5th, 2013. Although the reservation was quite painless on the phone, everything else pretty much disappointed us. First, we were told that boarding will begin at 1pm. It was approximately 94 deg F (heat index of 100) on the 5th and we all waited in lines from 1245-120pm. At 1pm, their boat was just entering the harbor and most of the passengers looked miserable and disappointed. One of the ladies disembarking even said aloud "Oh, I don't want to be one of these passengers on the next trip." Of course, we were just anxious to get out of the unbearable heat. Nobody from Cape Ann even bothered to let us know as to what was going on. They waited until 1:20pm to board passengers and all of us quickly got on to find some seats. The boat left the harbor at 1:30pm and because of our previous whale watching experiences with other companies, we figured we would be in the feeding grounds/sanctuary for about 3pm. At around 3:30pm, we slowed down in what we believe was a feeding area (nobody notified us of anything). We made a few circles and then went on a search until 5pm. At around 5pm, we were told that there is a whale in the area. We were certainly very disappointed as they kept us out on the water longer so that they could fulfill their "guaranteed sighting or free trip" policy. It was a very disorganized experience and actually, we did not even see the whale fully. We just saw the blowhole steam and that was it. We then turned around to come back to Gloucester harbor and returned at 730pm. After 6 hours, we were happy to be back on land but pretty disappointed that they did not offer a free trip because we were not satisfied as that one whale was not considered an actual whale watch. The Guide advised that we come back because this year the whales have become scarce - not sure how that is possible since just last month, there are postings that many whales were seen. I don't think we will be returning to Cape Ann Whale Watch. Only positive:
- A good education program where they bring models and explain different aspects of whales, their feeding grounds and interactions/associations.
We don't even have a picture to prove to friends that we went on a whale watching trip - there were no photographic moments!
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