Visiting the Dominican Republic and not going for Samaná whale watching? Aah, seriously? You will surely repent for missing the chance later. So, without further ado, add Samaná whale watching to your must-do list in the Dominican Republic! There are other places where you can enjoy this activity in Dominican Republic. If you want to know more, check our article of essential tips!
Samana is an alluring town situated in the eastern region of the Dominican Republic. It’s well known for its dense forests of Los Haitises National Park, limestone caves, pristine beaches, and of course, WHALE WATCHING! Its Rincon Beach is rated among the ten finest beaches in the world!
Samana overlooks the striking Samana Bay, where thousands of humpback whales pay a visit in the winter season, mainly for mating. This is when you can witness and capture the whales.
Curious to explore more about Samaná whale watching? You have landed at the right place! This article boasts everything you should know about the exotic experience of Samaná whale watching. In short, it’s a detailed guide for the best Samaná whale watching escapade. What are you waiting for? Let’s dive in!
How to Get to Samaná?
You can fly to El Catey International Airport, a 30-minute drive from Samana. However, it’s not the most fun way to reach the destination. You can fly to another nearby town’s airport, like Punta Cana, Santo Domingo, and more, and then travel to Samana either by bus or y taxi.
Most tourists from Germany fly to Punta Cana Airport and then book a taxi to Samana. It takes five long hours to reach Samana from Punta Cana, but the striking vistas you witness make the journey seem shorter. You can opt to stay a day or two in Punta Cana to explore its beautiful white sand beaches.
When the Hump Back Whales Arrive at Samaná?
You can expect to enjoy the Samaná whale watching experience from January to March. You will find several dates scrolling on the internet, different dates on different tour booking sites, which is too weird. For some, the duration is from the end of December to mid-March; for some, it’s from the start of January to the end of March; and some offer the tours from mid-January to mid-April, like what?
Long story short, when booking your tour, you must choose a date between the 15th of January and the 15th of March. It’s when Samana beach is loaded with humpback whales, and you will surely get the chance to witness them.
How to Enjoy Samaná Whale Watching?
When it comes to how you want to enjoy Samaná whale watching, you can choose from several options. You can either go for Whale Lookout Post “Punta Balandra” or a boat excursion.
Whale Lookout Post “Punta Balandra”
Do you suffer sea sickness and prefer to stay on land? The Whale Lookout Post at Punta Bandra is an ideal spot for you! This post was established in 2001 by the Whale Observation Centre On Land chiefly to protect the whale sanctuary, as many residents had claimed to see whales in the area.
The post is easily accessible, take the main road to Samana, and right after the drive of 14km, you will see the Punta Blandra sign board, leading you into the town and onto the spot via a rocky road.
Typically, whale watching boat excursions, almost 1 to hours long, depart from Samana port around 9 AM. The tour package includes an entrance to the whale sanctuary and a scrumptious lunch.
Though you may find this option cost-efficient, it seems adventurous to ride on a fisherman’s boat. Beware, as this bay is well known for its harsh weather and rough waves, the boats here don’t provide any protection against wind or weather.
How Much Does Samaná Whale Watching Cost?
It entirely depends on the tour operator you are booking with. Generally speaking, the cost lies between $50 to $70 and can reach even $90 in peak tourism seasons. We suggest booking the tour months before to avoid disappointment later, as most tour operators get booked even before the arrival of the humpback whales!
What Should You Expect to See?
Samana whale watching is all about patience and luck! And if you are lucky and patient enough, you will surely get a chance to witness humpback whales leaping out of the water and presenting a mesmerizing display of acrobatic moves. Most scientists believe this feat is not only for fun; it’s their way of getting rid of that sunburnt skin after a long excursion from the south.
Besides this, you will witness mommy whales swimming around and having fun with their little ones, i.e., calves. You will get hydrophones from your guide to listen to the courting songs of male whales. However, while being amazed at listening to them, keep your eyes peeled for the surface activity.
The most exotic surface activity you can witness includes a group of around twenty male humpback whales competing for mating rights with a female. While lost in the love of that gorgeous humpback whale and to impress her, these will do everything from head lunging and blowing water to slamming each other and breaching.
While breaching, the whales will launch into the air and then crash back, presenting an impressive sight for both the other whales and the humans out there. You can also witness whales rolling in water in the horizontal posture or flippering- a lower-intensity breach. In flippering, whales raise their flippers and flap them against the water’s surface, creating a pleasant sound.
The whole Samaná whale watching experience is worth spending money and time on. You will surely get mesmerized and amazed at how beautiful the whales are and how joyful their moves are.
Thousands of humpback whales arrive in Samana every winter, and around 40000 tourists rush to Samana every year to witness the charm of these creations. Being immensely popular among tourists for whale watching, Samana has been ranked as one of the best places worldwide for humpback whale watching!
That was all about the Samaná whale watching experience, one of the finest things to do in the Dominican Republic. It won’t be wrong to say most enthusiasts visit the Dominican Republic just for Samaná whale watching and book months in advance for this exotic experience.