Whale Watching in Colombia
Thousands of humpback whales begin to arrive during the months of May and June, spreading along the 1,300 kilometers of the Pacific coast during their stay in Colombia, until the end of November. July, August, September, and October therefore become the ideal months for whale watching. Every year, close to 100,000 tourists visit the region, choosing destinations such as the National Natural Parks of Gorgona, Uramba Bahía Málaga, and Utría, to spot the up to 5-meter long calves and the huge adult cetaceans of up to 18 meters long.
Enjoying the privilege of watching these whales develop in their natural habitat or taking part in some educational activities is among the highlights of a trip to the Galapagos. The following tips help to ensure a safe trip and keep yourself from being surprised by the mammals on the beach or in the water: The parrotfish has been called a “star of the abyss,” alongside other marine life such as whale sharks and tuna, because of their beautiful colours and unorthodox swimming style. During their eight-month-long stay at sea, the tropical tropical fish use their highly flexible dorsal fins and tails to stay afloat. After having fooled many people during their calving season, now it is also possible to observe and photograph them in their natural habitat in the open ocean. Humpback whales regularly come within sight of small ship propellers, causing them to become caught up in large groups and thus causing them to occasionally come within hitting distance of passing vessels. To avoid any danger, observe the whales from a safe distance and do not intermix with them. Protect participants from long lines and nets that can strangle whales. Lastly, this “expat affair” non-profit organization has also made sure to highlight the positive aspects of being a homemaker abroad: “The cause of empowerment is for all women and all those who want to incorporate the highest quality of life and be as happy as their Filipino sisters.” There have been many historical events and spectacular discoveries that would change our outlook and greatly affect us as a people, but there may be no other event that would be so pivotal for the evolution of life on earth as the formation of the Galapagos Islands.
The extreme variety and abundance of marine life attracts a diverse spectrum of visitors; those interested in marine biology, natural history of these territories, or simply those who like to ‘surf’ with the animals, listen to whales, and take pictures of them. During the weeks of May and June, humpback whales after returning from their wintering grounds in Mexico, Ecuador, Bolivia, or Peru, arrive in Colombia and breed, giving birth to several calves. Surrounded by schools of other plentiful marine mammals, including blue whales, male dolphins, and Orcinus orca, the young whales also dive in groups, where they remain until they are around six meters long, during this time, hunting for food with their keen hearing and impressive echolocation.
The second generation of whales, arriving in January and February, leave their pods in Colombia as it migrates far and wide. The arrival of the first humpback, on the 24th of May 2018, coincides with the annual Iñupiat Finland Festival, starting a month previously. In attendance is the then prime minister of Finland, Alexander Stubb, who at that time also had a walk in the snow on Mount Kilimanjaro with his government colleague, Timo Soini, to observe the natural awe that this giant animal inspires. While strolling on foot through the dense forest, they observed one calf breaching into the water, accompanied by a thousand of its close relatives. The animals swim up to 300 meters underwater, breaching again as a group, dispersing as a large school, before forming a barrier to separate them from their pods. They are far from predators. Conservationists count that, during the last winter, the population of humpbacks has increased by almost 600%, cruising along the North American coast, spending months at sea. While their numbers dwindle during the spring and summer, they are restored in the fall when the weather cools, and feeding grounds dry up. You can still see humpbacks off the coast of Colombia in late summer, mostly around the north of the country and in lobster and sea pipe of western Santa Catalina. To experience firsthand the magnificent life of the mighty whales, spend the months of May and June at sea or in the water, year-round. Watch the number of visitors increase in October, November, December, January, and February. It’s unmissable.