Skip to Content

Cape Cod Whale Watching Season: Everything You Need To Know

Whale watching is an exciting activity that the whole family can enjoy. Each year, thousands of people flock to Cape Cod to see these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. Whale watching isn’t always available all year round. There is a particular season for it which attracts the most visitors.

Cape Cod Whale Watching Season 1

When is Cape Cod whale watching season?

Table of Contents

The whale-watching season starts in early April and runs through late October. This is when the water is at its warmest and the whales are most active. The best time to see whales is during their feeding season, which begins in mid-May.

People have always found whale watching to be a thrilling experience. In this article, we will cover all you need to know about the whale-watching season on Cape Cod, including its history, the best whale-watching spots, and tours.

I have always been a huge fan of whale watching ever since I was introduced to it. Every experience is unique, and despite so many whale-watching tours, I have still not been tired of it. I, along with my fellow whale-watching enthusiasts, have written this article after pooling our knowledge and experiences together.

History of Whale Watching in Cape Cod

The history of whale watching in Cape Cod dates back to the 1800s when whaling was a major industry in the area. However, it wasn’t until the early 1900s that whale watching became a popular tourist activity.

The first recorded instance of whale watching in Cape Cod occurred in 1908 when naturalist Charles Townsend took a group of tourists out to see some migrating whales. Since then, whale watching has become one of the most popular things to do in Cape Cod.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of people come to Cape Cod to see the whales. The best time to see them is from April to October, when they are migrating through the area.

There are a number of reasons why whale watching is such a popular activity in Cape Cod. First of all, it’s a great way to see some of the world’s most amazing animals up close. Secondly, it’s a great way to learn about these fascinating creatures. And finally, it’s a great way to spend time with family and friends.

Whether you’re an experienced whale watcher or someone who’s never seen a whale before, Cape Cod is the perfect place to go whale watching. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and see the whales!

Which Towns Have Whale Watching Cruises?

There are several different companies that offer whale-watching tours in Cape Cod. Most of them leave from either Barnstable or Provincetown.

Barnstable is the largest town on Cape Cod and is home to several whale-watching tour companies. One of the most popular is the Hyannis Whale Watcher Cruises, which offers several different types of tours.

Provincetown is a small town at the tip of Cape Cod. It’s also one of the best places to see whales, as it’s located right on their migration path. There are several different whale-watching tour companies that operate out of Provincetown.

Some of the other towns that have whale-watching tour companies include Plymouth, Falmouth, and New Bedford.

What Type of Whales Can You See on a Whale Watching Tour?

There are several different types of whales that you can see on a whale-watching tour in Cape Cod. The most common are humpback whales, fin whales, and minke whales.

You might also see some rarer types of whales, such as blue whales, sperm whales, and pilot whales. Orca whales have also been spotted in the area, but they’re not as common.

Cape Cod Whale Watching Season 1 1

Where do Whale Watching Boats Go to See Whales?

The best place to see whales is in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. This sanctuary is located off the coast of Cape Cod and is a prime spot for whale watching.

Most whale-watching tour companies will take you to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary to see the whales. This sanctuary is home to a large population of humpback whales, as well as other types of whales.

If you’re lucky, you might even see some dolphins or seals while you’re out on tour.

What is the Best Time to Go to Cape Cod for Whale Watching?

The best time for Whale Watching at Cape Cod is from late April to early October. This is when the whales migrate through the area.

The peak months for whale watching are usually June, July, and August. During these months, you’re more likely to see a higher number of whales. In late October, the whale watching season nears its end as the whales will start migrating towards the south for warmer climates in the winter.

During the day, you can go any time to have your whale watching adventures as whales are generally quite active. However, if you are going through a boat company, you may have a limited time. Most boating companies offer whale watching tours in the morning or early afternoon, lasting up to four hours.

There are also certain factors you need to keep in mind when selecting the best time for whale watching. The offshore water conditions, such as the wind and the waves, can affect how easy it is to spot whales. You’re more likely to see whales when the water is calm.

The ideal conditions for whale watching are a sunny day with little to no wind and calm waters.

Best Cape Cod Whale Watching Tours

If you’re interested in going whale watching in Cape Cod, there are several different tour companies that you can choose from.

Hyannis Whale Watcher Cruise

This company offers several different types of whale watching tours, including a three-hour tour, a five-hour tour, and a sunset cruise. They also offer private charters for groups. 

The Cape Cod Life Magazine has also awarded the Hyannis Whale Watcher Cruises the “Best of the Cape and Islands.” The company was founded in 1980 and had been organizing daily cruises in whale watching seasons.

Seasalt Charters in Provincetown

Seasalt Charters is among the best whale-watching tour companies in Cape Cod. It was founded in 2012 and gives you various options for boating tours. You can even go out and visit the whale feeding grounds with your friends and family on a private boat. 

Other options include hiring a boat for fishing and whale watching both, or you can customize the charters to your own needs.

Dolphin Fleet in Provincetown

Dolphin Fleet was founded in 1975 and has received excellent reviews for their whale-watching tours. The company offers both three-hour and five-hour tours. You’re also likely to see some dolphins while you’re out on tour!

Cape Cod Whale Watch

Cape Cod Whale Watch is another great option for whale watching in Cape Cod. The company offers several different types of whale watching tours, including a three-hour tour, a sunset cruise, and a private charter. 

They also have a special “Whales and Wildlife” tour where you can see not only whales but also seals, dolphins, and other marine life.

Cape Tip’N Charter Fishing in Provincetown

Cape Tip’N Charter Fishing is a perfectly suitable option if you want to go whale watching in Cape Cod. The company offers both private charters and open-boat whale watching tours. You can also choose to go out on a fishing trip and see some whales while you’re at it!

Cape Tip’N Charter Fishing is also known for their excellent customer service. Customers have said that the staff is very friendly and helpful, and they’re always willing to answer any questions you have.

What Should You Expect When Going on Whale Watching Cruises?

When you go on a whale-watching tour, you can expect to see some of the most amazing creatures on Earth.

On every boat, there will be an experienced captain who will be able to take you to the best spots for whale watching.

There will also be a naturalist on board who can answer any questions that you have about the whales. You can also expect to see other marine life while you’re out on tour, such as dolphins, seals, and seabirds. If you’re lucky, you might even see a shark.

You’ll also get to enjoy the beautiful scenery of Cape Cod while you’re out on the water. 

Most importantly, though, you should expect to have an incredible time. Whale watching is an unforgettable experience that you’ll never forget. Once done, you can have a relaxing time on the beautiful beaches.

The best time to see whales is during the spring and summer when they come to the waters off of Cape Cod to feed. During this time, you’re likely to see them swimming, breaching (jumping out of the water), and even feeding.

You might even see a whale “tail-slapping,” which is when they slap their tails on the water’s surface. This behavior is thought to be used for communication or to scare away predators.

The naturalists on the boat will be able to tell you all about the different behaviors that you’re seeing. You will also notice the different water patterns whenever any whales come near.

Whales like to eat a lot of food so they can grow big and strong. They eat mostly krill (tiny shrimp-like creatures) and small fish. You might even see them eating while you’re on tour. 

During their feeding time, you will see lots of sand lance and other tiny fish trying to escape a whale. They will form a V-shape just beneath the water surface.

Another identifying marker of a whale nearby is the presence of sea birds flying near the water surface. This is because they are looking for the fish that are chased just beneath the surface by the whale.

One of the best things about whale watching is that it’s a very family-friendly activity. Kids of all ages will enjoy seeing these amazing creatures up close.

When Should You Book a Whale Watching Cape Cod Cruise?

If you’re interested in going whale watching, you should book your tour as soon as possible. This is especially true if you want to go during the peak season (April to October).

Whale-watching tours fill up quickly, so it’s important to book early.

You can usually find great deals on whale watching tours if you book them online in advance.

What Should You Wear and Bring with You for Whale Watching on Cape Cod Cruises?

When you go on a whale watching tour, there are a few things you should bring with you. First, make sure to dress for the weather. The temperature can change quickly out on the water, so it’s important to wear layers that you can easily take on and off.

It’s also a good idea to bring sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun. And don’t forget to bring your camera! You’ll want to take lots of pictures of the whales you see.

You should also bring snacks and drinks with you, as most whale watching tours last for several hours. It’s important to stay hydrated, especially in the summer months.

Most whale-watching tour companies will provide you with binoculars, but you might want to bring your own if you have a pair. This will help you get a better look at the whales.