Posted by: Taj Cape Town | Posted in Activities,Cape Town | on: June 15, 2017

Have a Whale of a Time in Cape Town

The Western Cape is known around the world for its incredibly beautiful scenery, thriving nightlife, uniquely cosmopolitan African culture… and its whales! The oceans off the coast in the Western Cape are teaming with diverse marine life which lends its self to all manner of nature oriented adventures. Those with a fondness for the warmer blooded ocean dwellers are in for a special treat – year-round whale and dolphin watching.

The South African Ocean Ecosystem

Be it the southern right whale, the humpback whale, gargantuan dolphin pods or even Cape Fur seals, there is no shortage of exciting sea mammals to be spotted. In fact, for those with an experienced whale-spotting eye, there are at least 37 different species of whales and dolphins to be spotted. In addition, wildlife lovers can see a plethora of unique coastal birdlife, including penguins.

A Southern Right Display

While other sea mammals can be seen year-round, it’s the Southern Right whale that is famed for yearly migration from June to November. They travel from Antarctica to our warmer climates to engage in mating, calving and fun filled acrobatic displays.

The Southern Right Whale Trail

For the Southern Right whale, peak calving season occurs during the months of July and August, with them generally rearing their calves over the course of September and October. Although not the norm, the playful giants have even been seen rearing their young as far north as Kwazulu Natal. Still, their favourite breeding spots are in the sheltered bays which span the coast of the Western Cape, making for incredible land viewing.

Other Whale Species

From May to December whale watchers can observe the migration of Humpback whales from Hermanus to iSimangaliso (formerly St Lucia wetlands). Orcas and Bryde’s whale however, can be seen all year round on the odd occasion.

Close-by Whale Watching

Right on the other side of the mountain lies the cosy spot known as False Bay. This stretch of coastline is prime whale viewing territory. From a higher viewing point, whales can be seen breaching, blowing, spy hopping and lob tailing. Just an hour’s drive from Cape Town city centre, the best viewing spots in False Bay are on Chapman’s Peak, Boyes Drive and Clarence Drive. Those who have a generous dose of adventure running through their veins may choose to rather opt for a spot of sea kayaking, just to get up close and personal with the whales.

Of course, whether you choose to admire whales from afar or up close, you will still need to rest after a long day of whale watching. Where better to do just that than at the five-star hotel, Taj Cape Town at 1 Wale Street? If you haven’t already had your fill of whales, the artisanal cocktail – Whale’s Bones, comes highly recommended. The blend of Don Julio Reposado, Aperol and medium cream Sherry is served with a smile at The Twankey Bar. To book accommodation, phone +27 (0) 21 819 2000 or email


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