Brisbane Whale Watching Cruises
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There are a couple of options for whale watching in Moreton Bay from Brisbane. You can enjoy a fabulous day on the bay with Brisbane Whale Watching or head over to Tangalooma for whale watching and optional wild dolphin feeding.
On this page, you will find more information about whale watching cruises and options from Brisbane.
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Whale Watching In Moreton Bay From Brisbane
The magnificent Moreton Bay area is a playground for returning whales and calves from the breeding grounds further north.
You can enjoy whale watching on Moreton Bay departing from a location such as Redcliffe in the northern suburbs of Brisbane (see below for more details).
A second option is to head over to Tangalooma on Moreton Island (departs Brisbane Holt Street Wharf at 7am or 10am daily) and enjoy some of the island resort facilities and then hop on a whale watching cruise departing from the resort around midday for 3 hours of whale spotting. If you have more time why not add in a dolphin adventure including the nightly dolphin feeding to make it a really amazing memory.
Self Drive Option From Gold Coast Information
If you plan to self drive to either Brisbane Whale watching (Redcliffe Jetty) or Tangalooma (Holt Street Wharf) you will need to make your way to the jetty in time for boarding.
Whilst self-drive is a great money saving option, especially for families, there are some things to consider.
Allow at least 2 hour to get to Redcliffe Jetty (in the morning the traffic can be slow on the way into Brisbane and there are roadworks north of the airport).
Allow at least 1½ hours to get to Holt Street Wharf, which is at Pinkemba, close to Brisbane Airport. It shouldn't take quite as long to get back in the afternoon or evening as the traffic is usually not so bad.
Both Options require you to use the toll ways on the Gateway Motorway. If you have hired a car, it is important to check with your hire car company to see how they handle tolls or if you need to organise payment directly with the toll company. We only have electronic tolling, so it isn't simply a case of paying cash when you use the tollway.
If you don't pay the tolls, the hire cars and toll company usually follow you up with HEFTY toll fines and administration charges! Not a great thing to come home to after your holiday! Spend you holiday dollars on more fun activities!
* If you read all the information or you get lost in it, you can always ask me directly anything I haven't covered. The easiest way is to email me through my contact form.
Moreton Bay looking to Moreton Island
Quick Facts about Brisbane Whale Watching On MV Eye Spy
Brisbane Whale Watching is a big operation!
Captain Kerry Lopez is the only female owner operator of a whale watching operation the South Pacific Rim.
MV Eye Spy is a 30m catamaran that can take a whopping 320 passengers!
It is a custom built whale watching boat with 6 viewing platforms.
It is designed with viewing in mind, so even with a full complement of passengers there should be good viewing.
Brisbane Whale Watching is located at Redcliffe a northern bayside suburb of Brisbane. The boat departs from Redcliffe Jetty which is found on Redcliffe Parade (see map below). Free parking is just 100m north of the jetty opposite Redcliffe Police Station.
Cruises depart at 10am daily during whale watching season and return between 2.30 and 3.00pm. This whale watching cruise is a longer cruise than the Gold Coast cruises which tend to be only for 2 to 3 hours.
The cruise includes morning and afternoon tea plus a buffet lunch, so expect to pay more for this cruise than the shorter versions on the Gold Coast.
If you are staying in Brisbane for a couple of days, there is a transfer service to the main hotels.
From the Gold Coast self drive is the best option, but leave plenty of time as you will have to negotiate the Gateway Bridge which gets quite busy during peak hour. I would personally leave at least 2 hours to drive from the Gold Coast to Redcliffe at this time of the day, as Redcliffe is north of Brisbane Airport.
Cruises are subject to weather conditions and it is recommended that you book a cruise early in your holiday to allow for changes. Should the cruise be cancelled due to bad weather they will try to accommodate you on the next available cruise or refund.
Booking is essential for these tours. Get in early to avoid disappointment, especially during school holidays as whale watching tours fill up quickly.
About Brisbane Whale Watching Tour Operator
Brisbane Whale Watching Cruises are one of only two operators allowed to view whales within the Moreton Bay Marine Park.
The boat MV Eye Spy was commissioned in 2002 and custom built for whale watching incorporating many whale and eco-friendly features.
Owned and operated by skipper Captain Kerry this is a very popular day trip from Brisbane.
This cruise is suited to those who prefer the bigger tours, are looking for a whole day outing or who are staying for a few days in Brisbane. The boat can cater for some visitors with disabilities and has wheel chair access.
Book your Whale Watching Tour With Captain Kerry.
Where To Find Redcliffe Jetty
The map below will help you find where they are located. If you switch to satellite view you can see MV Eye Spy on the jetty. You can zoom right in.
Free parking is found just 100m north of the jetty opposite Redcliffe Police Station.
Use the map to get specific directions from your accommodation.
Don't forget to explore this map or use the functions to get directions.
View Brisbane Whale Watching Cruises at Redcliffe Jetty in a larger map
Review Of Brisbane Whale Watching Day Cruise
I have seen nothing but good reviews of this whale watching cruise, which actually surprised me a little as I personally thought the size of the boat, or rather the number of passengers on board might be a problem.
It appears I was wrong in my assumption as most reviews rave about how approachable, knowledgeable and helpful the crew are, including Captain Kerry.
It appears that Captain Kerry and her crew are able to balance the needs of so many passengers with excellent service and a truly memorable day. Lets face it, seeing a whale upclose is memorable!
This cruise differs from the Gold Coast cruises because it is much longer. Leaving at 10am and returning between 2.30pm and 3.00pm you are on the boat for 4½ to 5 hours. Therefore if you are prone to seasickness, this might not be such a great cruise for you. They do say that their design is light and airy to help prevent that and there are natural sea sickness tablets on board (ginger most likely).
They also focus on the catering, so you are given morning and afternoon tea and there is an option for a buffet lunch. Certainly, much more focus on it being a day trip than in the Gold Coast.
If this is what you are looking for, or if you are staying in Brisbane then this whale watching cruise is definitely a good option.
Expect to pay a bit more for this tour as you are going to be on the boat for much longer and also lunch is included. Prices are approximately $135 for adults without transfers and $95 for children (4 to 14 years). There are also prices for transfers from Sunshine Coast or Brisbane Hotels. Prices can change so check below for exact prices or for those with transfers from Brisbane hotels.
Book your Whale Watching Tour with Captain Kerry on the MV Eye Spy.
If Brisbane Whale Watching is not what you are looking for, don't forget to check out tour operators in the Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast to find something to suit your needs.
Whale Watching Hints and Tips
In response to some questions I have received I have written a couple of articles giving hints and tips for a great whale watching experience.
If Brisbane Whale Watching is not what you are looking for, don't forget to check out the other tour operators in the Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast to find something to suit your needs.
Current Top Options Whale Watching In Gold Coast
Here's a selection of the best current deals at the moment for the whale watching in Gold Coast. Please check here for all whale watching options including Coolangatta option for those staying in southern Gold Coast.
Sea World Whale Watching
This cruise is ALWAYS POPULAR with a well respected cruise operator.
Morning cruise goes every day during season. Lots of parking close by and easy to get to using shuttle buses, or public transport.
Sea World Whale Watch
Great Value for Visitors
- Child (3-13)
- Family (2A 2C)
Sea World Whale Watch
Sea World Whale Watching Cruise
This popular cruise is often fully booked, so it is worth booking ahead, especially during school holidays.
Sea World Whale Watch is a popular option, because it is easily recognisable, it has a large boat and is backed by the professionalism of Sea World.
Sea World Whale Watch Cruises are available in the morning from 10am to 12.30pm and sometimes in the afternoon from 2pm to 4pm (though you will need to check for dates and availability on the links provided).
You will need to arrange transfers to get to the Sea World Cruise Terminal - which is in the car park of Sea World. You can use the standard Sea World theme park transfer for the morning cruise.
This season there are two cruises daily. The morning cruise departs around 10am returning around 12.30pm. The afternoon cruise (not always available) departs around 2pm returning around 4.30pm. All cruises are dependent upon weather conditions, which is why I always recommend you plan your itinerary for your holiday beforehand and book in your cruise early in the vacation, in case it has to be rescheduled. It would be terrible to miss out on seeing the whales.
Sea World offers the following guarantee: 'Guaranteed sightings or full refund will be provided except during the months of May and November'
Sea World Whale Watching Cruise
Child (3-13 years) $79
Family (2A+2Ch) $300
Sea World Whale Watch
Outstanding Value - no credit card or booking fees. Print your own vouchers. Mobile Vouchers Accepted.
Surfers Paradise Whale Watching
EASY ACCESS - GREAT VALUE
These cruises go from the heart of Surfers Paradise, so you don't need transfers! Departs 4 times per day - two in the morning morning, a midday and an afternoon departure.
BE QUICK. Click for more info or BOOK NOW...
Surfers Paradise Whale Watching
3½ hours inc. Canal Cruise
Great Value & Options for Visitors
- Child (0-14)
- Family (2A 2C)
Surfers Paradise Whale Watch
Surfers Paradise Whale Watching Cruises
4 Cruises Per Day For Great Flexibility
This is the only whale watching cruise that leaves from the centre of Surfers Paradise.
If you are staying in Surfers, Broadbeach, Main Beach or even Southport, you can either walk (Surfers Paradise only) or take the new G:Link or a bus to this cruise. No need to use an attraction transfer for this one!
If you need to drive, you can easily park across the road, under Circle on Cavill or Chevron Renaissance. Parking charges will apply.
There are a couple of great advantages for this whale watch including the convenience of the departure location, a bonus canal cruise to see the houses of the rich and famous from the Gold Coast before you head out to see the whales and the flexibility to choose one of 4 daily cruises to see the whales.
Cruises are just over 3 hours and depart at 8.30am, 10.30am, 12.30pm and 2.30pm daily. You need to be checked in at least 20 minutes before departure.
This whale watching company offers the following guarantee: 'Guaranteed whale sightings or free return cruise.'
All cruises are dependent upon weather conditions, which is why I always recommend you plan your itinerary for your holiday beforehand.
Book your cruise before you arrive in Gold Coast and make sure it is early in the vacation.
This is in case it has to be rescheduled due to weather conditions - it would be terrible to miss out on seeing the whales.
BE QUICK. Click for more info or BOOK NOW.
Whale Watching from Surfers Paradise
Child (0-14 years) $69
Family (2 Adults + 2 Children) $267
Outstanding Value - no credit card or booking fees. Print your own or use mobile vouchers.
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