Each winter, beginning about May, the Australian humpbacks and Southern Right Whales leave Antarctica to migrate northwards to their tropical calving grounds along the west and east coasts of Australia.
About August, they begin travelling south to their feeding grounds in the polar waters of the Antarctic, so the first whales can be seen passing Margaret River and Augusta from early spring.
The first groups to be seen heading south are usually the newly pregnant females, followed by the immature whales of both sexes, then the mature males and females. Mothers with new-born calves stay longest, and travel more slowly, enabling the calves to grow rapidly and develop a thicker layer of blubber for protecting in the cold feeding waters they soon will be visiting for the first time.
We have the opportunity to spot whales on both the Margaret River Discovery tour and the Margaret River Best of the Best Wine Tour as part of our 4WD experience into a remote section of the Cape to Cape Track. We get up high on the cliffs and can see for miles in every direction as they swim past.
If you want to do a dedicated whale tour with the experts I recommend contacting the guys at Naturaliste Charters and Legend Charters. They will get you up close and personal. Often so close you can smell whale breath!
Margaret River Discovery Tours
Sean Blocksidge is the owner operator of the Margaret River Discovery Company, an avid photographer, blogger and South West WA ambassador. In 2010 he won Western Australian Guide of the Year and his tours have been rated the #1 thing to do in Australia on the Tripadvisor website for the past two years.