Winter whale watching in Auckland

Did you know that in Auckland there are resident species of whales and dolphins which can be seen year-round including during the winter months?

Think of whale watching and you may think that it is only possible in the warmer months of the year - think again!

Yes, the weather is of course, colder but this actually has many advantages. In Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf Marine Park whales and dolphins come to feed thanks to the waters being full of food. Whilst feeding occurs year round, these whales and dolphins need to feed more so in the colder months than in the warmer ones to be able to maintain their blubber (fat) layer that keeps them warm. This makes for fantastic observation of some incredible feeding displays by both the whales and dolphins.

Common dolphin pods will come together to form large groups, often superpods, of up to several thousand animals. All travelling together in the same direction, surrounded by dolphins you feel as though you are a part of the pod.

Winter is also straddled by the migratory periods of other whale species that travel long distances between the colder, polar waters and the warmer, tropical waters. This increases the chances of seeing whales such as humpbacks, sei, minke, southern right and blue whales as they pass to and fro Auckland’s east coast.

Nearer the end of winter, seal pups will wean from their mothers and make their way to the ocean to learn how to survive as an adult seal. They can often be seen bobbing around and resting at the surface.

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your hat and coat and explore Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf Marine Park this Winter!

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