EVERY year thousands of whales make the journey from Antarctica to the warmer waters along Australia’s east coast. From July to October it’s easy enough to hit the road in your hire car from Sydney or Brisbane and drive along our coastline to catch a glimpse of migrating Humpback whales. Here are seven places you can shoot one – with a camera, of course. We love them.
Cape Byron State Conservation Area
Where: 165km south west of Brisbane
Australia’s most easterly point, Byron Bay, is perfect for whale watching. The 3.7 km Cape Byron walking track is the conservation park’s main trail. Begin at the Cape Byron Lighthouse, where you’ll learn from volunteers about these fascinating creatures before strolling through rainforest and beaches where you’ll spot breaching humpbacks.
Port Macquarie whale watching tours
Where: 385km north east of Sydney
The abundance of marine life off Port Macquarie’s shoreline makes it ideal for migrating whales between June and October. Observe them closely in their natural environment with one of the area’s popular whale watching cruises.
Caves Beach Coastal Walk
Where: Wallarah National Park, 130km north east of Sydney
Not only does Wallarah National Park have incredible ocean and lake views, but its Cave Beach Coastal Walk has several spectacular whale watching spots. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for migrating whales as you follow the cliff line down to Quarries Head, passing beautiful beaches and caves.
Where: 400km south of Brisbane
The island’s stunning environment is one of the Coffs Coast’s best areas for whale watching. Walk to the viewing platform at the eastern end of the island and you’ll understand why other travellers have labelled it “the perfect place for bird and whale watching”.
Look at Me Now Headland
Where: Emerald Beach, 390km south of Brisbane
This relatively easy trail takes you through a significant Aboriginal site and treats you to a wonderful array of flora and fauna. From the headland, you can also clearly see the scenic South Solidarity Island and its surrounding waters, where humpback whales pass between May and November.
Point Danger Lighthouse
Where: Tweed Heads, 100km south east of Brisbane
The lighthouse, which straddles the border between NSW and Queensland, attracts thousands of visitors each year. Many say the lighthouse, which was originally built to commemorate the bicentennial of Captain Cook’s first voyage, is a “must see” when crossing the border. Meanwhile, others come to this interesting site primarily to watch whales in the distance.
Pilot Hill, Yamba
Where: 280 km south of Brisbane
The Clarence Coast is home to many vantage points and lookouts, including Pilot Hill, which is a prime spot for whale watching. With panoramic ocean views from the top, people come from all over just to watch whales during migration.