Whale Watching

We visited Maui in the middle of humpback whale-watching season.

This meant we could sit at the beach or on our balcony and spot their tails and fins and the water shooting out of their blowholes. (If you look really hard in the photo above, you can even see a whale jumping.)

But we decided we wanted to get a bit closer to the whales, so we decided to take a sunset whale-watching dinner cruise.

Based on a recommendation, I booked a reservation with the Pacific Whale Foundation, because they not only do fun things like whale-watching tours to educate people about the marine environment, but they also use the funds they raise from the tours to conduct marine research and address marine conservation issues.

Plus the tours themselves are more environmentally friendly than others you'll find in the area, because they use whale protection devices, low-emissions engines, bio-compostable products for food and beverages, and more.

So Conservative Hubby and I headed down to the dock in Lahaina for our sunset cruise. It was a small crowd that day and we got a great spot on a bench right in front of the cockpit, with unobstructed views of the ocean all around us.

A musician sat in the cockpit serenading us with traditional island music. The food we had actually turned out to be quite delicious. But the highlight of the cruise was, of course, the whales.

And boy did we hit the jackpot. Near dusk, we came upon a mother, her baby, and their escort frolicking in the water. The stayed very close to our boat for quite some time. I was amazing to watch them up close, to see their tails and fins and their backs rise out of the water.

We even got to see the mother of all whale-watching sights, something so impressive (and not that common, particularly on sunset cruises) that even the captain was excited: One of the whales did a full breach, so her entire body came out of the water and we had an up-close view of her underside.

It was amazing.

I wish I could say I got photos of the whale activities, but it was too close to dark and the whales were moving too quickly for me to catch everything on camera. I'm not well-versed with my camera enough yet to know what I should have done.

So after a few futile attempts, I just put it away and enjoyed the show with my eyes instead.

And a wonderful show it was. Conservative Hubby and I agreed that we would definitely do a whale-watching cruise again--and with the Pacific Whale Foundation too, no less.

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