We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great Experience”
Review of Whale Samana

Whale Samana
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: A unique opportunity to observe humpback whales in their natural calving and mating grounds here in Samana Bay, Dominican Republic. Listen to the male humpback's solitary courting song and witness incredible displays of flippering, tail lobbing and breaching by the most active species of whale in the Atlantic. On board, a Marine Mammal Specialist narrating and answering questions. An experience of a lifetime, not to be missed! Dates January 15th to March 25th Departure Samana: From January 15th to January 31st; depart daily at 10:00AM from the main town dock and picks up passengers on Cayo Levantado 30 minutes later on the public dock, by reservation only. February 01st to February 06th departure; 9:00AM with pick up Cayo Levantado at 9:30AM 07th of February to the 07th of March; two trips daily at 9:00AM and 1:30 PM with pick ups on Cayo Levantado 30 minutes later. 08th of March until the 14th of March; departure 9:00AM Cayo Levantado 9:30AM 15th of March until the 25th of March; one departure daily at 10:00AM with pick up on Cayo Levantado at 10:30 each morning, On board Pura Mia, 55' Custom Whale Watch vessel VHF Radio, approved life jackets and rain gear Capacity 65 persons, with lots of space to move around We comply with the Samana Bay whale watch regulations Services Sound system with underwater hydrophone Two modern bathrooms with running water Souvenirs/snack bar /educational material Marine Mammal specialist Scientific data collection on every trip Narration in two languages and interpreters available on board. Includes Soft drinks, water, crackers, and mints Booklet "Whales of Samana" (spanish, english, german or french) Dramamine tablets
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities
Reviewed March 30, 2013

We drove from Santo Domingo to Las Terrenas and Samana specifically for whale watching and we were not disappointed. Well-run operation with knowledgeable staff; would highly recommend. We saw two groups of whales, mom and calf, and mom, calf, and escort. Great views of all and one whale swam under the boat. Even if there had not been any whales, it would have been a nice outing on a boat with specatcular scenery.

2  Thank patricia_illinois
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (271)
There are newer reviews for Whale Samana
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year

178 - 182 of 271 reviews

Reviewed March 24, 2013

We were travelling around Samana peninsular during the whale watching season so took the opportunity to go on a whale watching trip with whale Samana.
The experience was amazing, we saw 3 groups of whales coming really close to the boat. It is incredible to see these animals up close.
Kim and her staff made the trip incredibly informative and pleasurable. The guides on the boat were very knowledgeable and happy to answer all questions. They were respectful to the animals allowing us to enjoy the experience and learn new things and them to exist in their natural environment.

2  Thank chear_up
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2013

What a life experience: to see 2 adult and baby humpbacks come right up to - and then under the boat. They are such gentle giants - I can't believe anyone would hunt whales (damn Japan and Greenland). The PhD biologist on board was so excited about the whales going under the boat.

We've been whale watching several times in Atlantic Canada. This trip was better than anything we've experienced. Kim is so knowledgeable and we learned a ton about whales. She's been doing this for 30 years and encourages a respectful whale watching industry in the area. It was a beautiful day and see saw 2 groups of whales: female and her calf, and then up close, a female, calf, and male adult.

You're on a good sized boat with 2 levels so there was lots of space the day we went. The narration was in English and French. And you get a booklet that explains alot about the humpback whales.

Be cautious about using the locals from the dock - you're in a tiny boat and I don't know how ethical they are in terms of chasing and hassling whales.

I had to contact them several times about getting a reservation, but I'm glad I persisted. I will remember this for many, many years. If you're going whale watching in Samana, be sure to go with Kim. Take your camera! These are magnificent creatures to see and observe.

3  Thank wloo_andrew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 14, 2013

This many reviews can not be wrong, Whale Samana is a great outfit, and you will see whales with them. I like that they promote responsible viewing, not driving over them in a motorboat (like I saw someone else do) or charging full speed in the direction of a breaching whale to get far too close to them. You'll get close enough for some good pictures, and you'll see your fill, they don't short your time even if you are lucky enough to not even get out of the harbor before they appear-they'll still venture out for more sightings. One word of advice...take the dramamine. I was fine until about 30 minutes before we turned to head back, and it started to hit me, being out there in the choppy water, sitting still in the boat, yeah, it got to me, and I took mine at this first sign but I should have been smarter not to even take the chance.
One final word to the wise, if you take a morning tour, side on the right side of the boat (facing the bow), as this is the way the captain will turn every time in order for the pictures not to have glare. Otherwise, you will be left out a bit. Our boat had not problem with people up and about the whole time though, this isn't assigned seating!
Oh, one more thing...we had messed up and misjudged the time change from our flights, and actually missed the outing on our scheduled date, so they were kind enough to let us on for the following day with no hassle (we felt pretty bad, and a bit stupid already).

3  Thank DanStac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 12, 2013

We signed up for a tour before we left for our trip from the website. They responded back right away and we had our tour paid up by paypal.
We chose a morning tour so we can lounge at the beach in the afternoon and because we heard that the water might not be as rough in the morning (not sure if that is true or not).
The boat (Pura Mia) arrived on time at the public dock at Cayo Levantado where we were staying. The boat was large enough to accommodate all of the passengers comfortably.
It had an upper and lower deck. We had little kids with us and opted for the lower deck to get some shade.
On the way to find the whales we received a lot of information that was also translated in french and spanish. We learned a lot of things about the whales and the rules about viewing them.
Kim and her crew were extremely professional and seemed very knowledgeable. She would point which direction to look at and because of the spacious boat we could move around a bit for a better viewing position.
We saw many of whales and what an awesome sight they were!
Our friend that joined us on the tour felt sick after a while. The crew was very nice providing her with bags and tissues and water.
They do have dramamine for those that are interested in taking it early on.
On the way back they handed out saltines to everyone.
We had a fantastic day out with Kim and would highly recommend this tour!

Thank l00ly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Whale Samana also viewed

Santa Barbara de Samana, Samana Province
Santa Barbara de Samana, Samana Province
Santa Barbara de Samana, Samana Province
Las Terrenas, Samana Province

Been to Whale Samana? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing