Top Ten Places to Encounter Whales

Western Hemisphere: British Columbia, Canada

This is the best place in the world to see orcas, the Mr. and Miss Personalities of the cetacean world. Both sides of Vancouver Island afford primo opportunities. On the west coast, Tofino is a quaint town with an embedded orca-watching culture. On the island's east side, head for Campbell River, where you can either take a boat out into the Strait of Georgia, or just watch them from the shore.

Up the coast, Telegraph Cove is one of the most popular destinations in the world for orca watching and is located only a few miles from the Robson Bight Ecological Preserve, Canada's only killer whale sanctuary. Although you are not allowed to enter the sanctuary by land or water, orcas are active throughout the area. Humpback whales have recently been seen here, along with large schools of Pacific white-sided dolphins. There's more than whales in this maze of coastal byways: Keep your eyes peeled for eagles, seal lions, and much, much more.

Just the Facts

What you might see there: Orcas, humpbacks, grays

Viewing options: Boat, shoreline


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