Ever watched Free Willy – the movie (Michael Jackson’s famous song is in) and was impressed with the Whales? Or, watched Jurassic Park or Godzilla and got amazed by the size of these creatures? Well, I’m sure we all did. What if I told you that you can actually see the Largest animal on earth right here in Sri Lanka? YES! Larger than the dinosaurs and much gigantic.The Blue Whale, goes by the scientific name of Balaenoptera musculus could be spotted over in Sri Lanka, especially around the areas of Mirissa (an area close to Matara – Southern part) or Trincomalee (North-Eastern part of the country).

when?

Whale watching, the commonly referred term used for this expedition is very popular among the locals and the tourists during specific months of the year.

Area Best months for sightings
Mirissa/Galle/Kirinda November to April
Trincomalee March – April

only whales? #DOLphins?

Dolphin sighting are more frequent
Dolphin sighting are more frequent

Ok, the priority is given to the whales because they are an endangered species and of course, the largest animal on earth. However, another sighting which is amusing are the Dolphins.

tell me about this Mirissa?

Alright, the Mirissa harbor is a small fishing harbor with lots of fishing boats and then the Boats for the passengers to get going on the Whale and Dolphin watching expeditions. You have to arrive to the harbor area by 06.00 a.m. to get on board your boat, enjoy the coffee or tea which they serve you and to put on your safety jacket. It’s really nice to see the harbor early in the morning with lots of fishing boats and catamarans all ready to pump the engines to go fishing.

At around 06.30 a.m., all the boats slowly start moving into the ocean. Just enjoy the ride guys. The sea-water seems very clean after around 20 minutes and you get to pass this beautiful resort on the cliff right off the Mirissa harbor.

Malima-Weligambay-mirissa
Malima Weligama Bay resort
Boats-in-the-ocean
Boats sailing away from land

The boat ride goes on until about 09.00 a.m. and for this time, you can enjoy the sandwiches and the refreshments provided by the crew. Oh, don’t eat much and full up because after a while, most people on board are gonna start to throw-up.

First comes the Dolphins, like lots. Swimming by the boats and making beautiful jumps up the water, these dolphins make you fall in love with them very soon.

For almost 01 hour you can enjoy dolphin sightings and it’s really fun trying to spot them. The boat captain tries his best to make the best views.

Then at around 09.00 a.m. comes your opportunity to one of the best moments of your life! It’s actually crossing-out a Bucket list item off your life-goals I guess. You get to see the Blue Whales blowing off from a distance. With the GPS on the boat, the captain tries to sail towards the areas where the recent whale sightings were recorded and make more chances.

The Blue Whales and the Sperm Whales are a great sight! Surprisingly, all the boats kinda rush into the locations and you get a little angry towards some boatmen because they just do anything to have a single sight of the whales without even taking chances.

The whales come up, do the blowing through the spouts and remain for like 10-15 seconds and then go underwater again. Again after about 7-8 minutes they come up to the same and repeat.

Now, all you have to do is head back to land. You saw the largest animals on earth and make sure to get some great photographs. This takes a lot of effort because the boat keeps on rocking side to side and with the tiredness, you tend to vomit too.

Most people are lying flat on their backs as it’s a way to stop the throwing-up and in my boat, a couple never actually got the chance to see any whales. They were totally off.

The boat operated by the Sri Lankan Navy seems to be a larger vessel but the truth is that with it’s larger engines and noise, dolphins and whales seem to move away.

You return to the Mirissa harbor by 11.30 a.m. and with loads of great memories and awesome pictures 🙂 You can enjoy the King-Coconut given after you safely deck.

Me (left) with Ryan
Me (left) with Ryan

Whale and Dolphin Watching at Mirissa a.k.a. Seeing the largest animal on earth is a great activity to do once in Sri Lanka. I hope you will have the chance someday.

 

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February 20, 2016

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