Kauai Whale Watching Directory

Whales, Dolphins, Tours, and Lookout Points

Whales in Hawaii

In early fall the North Pacific humpback whales begin their yearly migration from the Gulf of Alaska. The whales will split three ways. Some will travel to the South East of Japan, another group will migrate to Northern Mexico, and the third group (almost 2/3rds) will travel towards the South Pacific and around Hawaii. The journey takes around 4 to 8 weeks depending mostly on the maturity of the whale. The young whales arrive first, followed by the adult males, and finally the females follow with their calves. The Journey over all will take the whales over 3500 miles. A Humpback can travel at 5 mph but commonly averages around 1 mph because they like to stop along the way and socialize.

Why the Humpbacks migrate to and from Hawaii

Whales travel to cold waters for feeding; they go to warmer waters to give birth. In the Alaskan winters krill are abundant because the water is rich with their natural food source, but have trouble sustaining in the warm Hawaiian ocean. This is the cause for the whale's epic annual journey. A humpback can eat more than 200 pounds of krill a day. There are several great whale watching locations and look out points. You can take a guided boat tour if you want to get up close. Below is a list of great tours, or check the map for some good look out points like the historic Kilauea Lighthouse.

Spinner Dolphins (nai'a)

My personal favorite dolphin on Kauai is the Spinner Dolphin. Sadly these fantastic performers are under threat due to tourism growth and tuna fishing. While whales can be exciting to watch breach, a school or Spinner Dolphins will take turns leaping high into the air while twisting rapidly in circles. It is truly a spectacular phenomenon. Spinner Dolphins can often be seen from the high cliffs on the first mile of the Kalawao Trail.

NaPali Riders Ocean Zodiak Tour This zodiac adventure explores the Napali Coast and magnificent coral reefs. Snorkeling and searching for whales and dolphins. (808) 742-6331
Blue Ocean Adventures Sportfishing, whale watching, snorkeling.  
Captain Andy's Sailing Departs from Port Allen and Poipu on the Spirit of Kaua'i -- a 55-foot custom-designed, luxury catamaran. (800) 335-6833
Catamaran Kahanu Sightseeing and snorkeling tours. (808) 335-3572
Jurassic Island Voyagers View ancient Polynesian shrines and village sites. (808) 826-7269
Liko Kaua'i Cruises Learn About the Hawaiian culture as you travel along the Na Pali Coast. (808) 338-0333
Na Pali Explorer Snorkeling along the south shore on a 48-foot adventure craft, departs 8:30am daily. (808) 338-9999
S.S. Thunder Zip along the water in the only 38-foot Fountain racing boat on the island - Lihu'e Airport, Main Terminal.  
Na Pali Adventures Hanalei charters of the Na pali coast.  

Watching From the Land

Kiluea Lighthouse Watch wales Kauai's famous cliff-side lighthouse originally built in 1913 and is now a historical landmark. Tours and telescopes are also available! (808) 828-0384
Please feel free to contact us if you would like to become a part of our network.