Whale watching on the Gold Coast

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Free and cheap ways to spot these amazing creatures

Each year, nature’s majestic whales make their migration through our coastal waters.

In May, they begin their journey to the warmer waters of their northern breeding grounds, returning south in November.

Don’t miss your chance to witness the whales frolicking off the Gold Coast.

Here’s our guide to some of the best spots for whale watching on the Gold Coast

Hike to the hilltops

  • One thing’s for sure when it comes to spotting whales from land. The higher the vantage point, the better!
  • Find a clifftop spot with an unobstructed view of the ocean.
  • The best vantage points for whale watching on the Gold Coast include:

Hit the beach

  • Of course, hitting the hills isn’t the only way to go whale watching on the Gold Coast. There’s lots of opportunities to see whales from the shoreline.
  • Some of the best beachside whale watching spots around the Gold Coast include

Get social

  • The Gold Coast based Humpbacks and High-Rises group are dedicated to researching and protecting whale activity along Queensland’s coast.
  • Follow their Facebook page for videos, photos and details of the latest sightings in Gold Coast waters.

Be app-solutely sure of where to spot them!

  • The free Whale Trails app is the perfect way to let others know when and where you’ve spotted some whales off the Gold Coast.
  • The info you log is sent to the Humpbacks & High-rises research team and helps them to look at and understand whale activity off the Queensland coast.

Be prepared

  • Wherever you choose to go whale watching, to make the most of your day follow these handy tips:
    • Wait for clear, clam weather. Rain and cloud makes whales harder to see.
    • Take some binoculars with you. If you don’t own a pair, put the word out and borrow some from a friend.
    • Keep your day cheap by packing snacks and drinks from home.
    • We know it’s not summer – but don’t forget to slip, slop, slap with the sunscreen.
    • Settle in and get comfy! Whales can hold their breath for up to 20 minutes before resurfacing, so you’ll need to be patient.