Times of the Islands Winter 2019/20


Presents the "soul of the Turks & Caicos Islands" with in-depth features about local people, culture, history, environment, businesses, resorts, restaurants and activities.

What to bring on a whale watching trip:

This Humpback whale calf is typically playful and curious around


Wide brimmed hat

Polarized sunglasses

High SPF Sun cream and lip balm

A camera with telephoto lens

Spare memory card

Your smartphone

Underwater housing for your phone


Motion sickness medication is mandatory (follow the


Your own prescription snorkel mask if you normally

wear glasses

A dry bag

A wind- and waterproof jacket

A spare t-shirt and a warm sweater

Shrimp for the whales (just joking)

An open mind and positive attitude

the whales dive and then return to the surface on several occasions, sometimes raising their heads clear from the

sea in harmony, like synchronised swimmers—it’s a truly magical display.

When a whale raises its head from the water, it is called a spyhop. You might go to see them but sometimes they

decide to have a peek at you too, raising their head up and peering into the boat.

Aside from visual displays, the Humpback is also famous for its distinct and haunting song. A single whale may

sing for several hours at a time and the structure of the song is just as complex as a language. The singing is one

dimension to this animal that should not be missed on a day out. Choose a tour operator who employs the use of a

hydrophone, an underwater microphone that can detect the whales singing, so you can hear it out loud on the boat.

Have your phone handy and you can grab a unique new ring tone, the live song of a whale.

Of course the ultimate thrill is slipping quietly into the water beside the whales to observe them in the water

while snorkelling. This can only be conducted when the whales allow it. An experienced operator can interpret

whale behaviour and know when the time is right, or not. Humpbacks might be big but they are very gentle,

timid in disposition and easily spooked, so an extremely sensitive approach is necessary for interactive success.

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