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A whale of a time

Nothing quite prepares you for coming face to face with a humpback whale. The experience really is life changing. There are few wildlife encounters that allow you to get this up close and personal, while maintaining a respect for the animal and their environment.

Only through a licensed operator can you experience this. Swimmers must remain calm, keep a distance of three meters from the whales and only six swimmers are allowed to enter the water at once. This ensures a peaceful way to interact with the whales with minimum impact.

North of Tonga’s main island of Tongatapu, the calm warm waters of Ha’apai offer refuge for the migrating humpback whales from the Antarctic to breed, birth and socialise. Finding the whales and watching them from the surface is exhilarating to start with, however it is when you dive beneath the surface that the magic happens.

Whale songs echo through the waters and their playful curiosity brings them within meters, making it an experience that fills you with emotions as deep as the ocean.

Published in Virgin Australia inflight magazine – July Issue