You can see these giants of the ocean on their journey between summer breeding grounds in the North West shelf and winter feeding grounds in the Antarctic. The best time for this is between June and November. Humpback whales are massive - they can grow up to 19 metres in length and way up to 40 tonnes.
What's it really like to swim with a Humpback Whale?
Interactions are completely on the whale's terms, so if the humpbacks behaviour and the weather allows, there will be the chance for a genuine wildlife encounter in the water with them.
When is the season?
Now, the season starts in Coral Bay from 1 July and 1 August in Exmouth, both running until 30 October, however being a natural event the migration period who conclude or extend around this end date.
The existing Whale Shark operators in Ningaloo have been operating the whale swimming tours which allows these businesses to extend the whale shark season into the humpback migration (July to November annually).
The Western Australian government announced in 2016 that in-water swimming with whale tours would be offered as a preliminary trial. The results from the inaugural season (August to November 2016) were encouraging, with 77% successful interacting rate. With regulations ever changing including the size of the whales we can now interact with, it is hoped that the in water success will increase to 85%.
2018 Humpback Interaction Tour prices for Adult* swimmers
We recommend the following tour operators (in alphabetical order) in Ningaloo:
Coral Bay Ecotours - Coral Bay - $395 AUD pp
Exmouth Diving Centre - Exmouth - $400 AUD pp
Kings Ningaloo Reef Tours - Exmouth - $405 AUD pp
Live Ningaloo - Exmouth - $550 AUD pp
Ningaloo Blue - Exmouth - $395pp
Ningaloo Discovery - Exmouth - $350 AUD pp
Ningaloo Reef Dive - Coral Bay - $355 AUD pp
Ningaloo Whaleshark Swim - Exmouth - $410pp
Ocean Eco Adventures - Exmouth - $389pp
Three Islands Whale Shark Dive - Exmouth - $325 AUD pp
Depending on the operator you choose to swim with, the tour will be packaged up differently. All operators tour prices include a spotter plane to easily find the whales.
*Adult is any person aged 13 years or older.