The Swim with Humpback Whales season for Australia’s first operator to introduce the experience, Sunreef Mooloolaba, has been the best yet.
The 2016 season is Sunreef Mooloolaba’s third and what a season it was! Sunreef owner Dan Hart said the season was definitely our best yet with more than 2000 guests, many more whales and more breathtaking in-water encounters.
With approximately 24,000 whales migrating through Sunshine Coast waters, Whale sightings increased, as did the memorable encounters with these amazing mammals: escorts, juveniles, mothers and their curious calves.
Guests this season came from around the world including the US, Canada, the UK and Europe, Asia as well as the Middle East as well as many Australians taking advantage of having this very unique experience in their own back yard.
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“You can see from the great photos and videos captured on our social media just how incredible some of the encounters were.
“It’s always hard to describe such an awe-inspiring experience – nothing can describe the feeling when you are just metres away from these animals, and they look you straight in the eye – but I can tell you it’s amazing and unique every time, and something people will remember forever.”
Dan said Sunreef’s Swimming with Whales Experience was operated under a strict Code of Conduct to protect both the whales and the participants.
Dan said Sunreef provide a full briefing on what to expect and safety procedures as well as providing all required equipment.
Once a whale is sighted, the boat will be put into neutral 100m or more away from the whale, and if the conditions are determined safe by our trained crew, swimmers will be allowed into the water with a guide and a floating line attached to the boat for safety.
“Then it’s all up to the whale – it is a natural experience, and it is 100% on the whale’s own terms,” Dan said.
Dan said Sunreef wanted to thank all of the guests who joined the experience this year – it is so fantastic for our team to see your excitement and we can’t wait until the 2017 season to start doing it all again.
The 2017 season will run from 7th July to 22nd October and Sunreef are already taking bookings.
“With just 20 guests per trip and a limited season there are limited opportunities available and we are already receiving very strong bookings so we would encourage everyone to book early to avoid disappointment,” Dan said.
The trips, which are $149 per person, include wetsuit and snorkelling gear hire. It takes about 15 minutes from the Sunreef dock to get out to the beautiful waters off Mooloolaba, which are at their best during the winter months when the whales migrate. Water temperatures during this time range from 17 to 23 degrees C and visibility is regularly up to 30 metres.
Sunreef Mooloolaba, based on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, is the longest established dive centre on the Sunshine Coast (Queensland, Australia) with roots starting back in 1976. Sunreef Mooloolaba is a 5 Star PADI Training Centre, is the largest dive centre in South East Queensland and offers accredited dive courses for all levels of divers as well as local reef dives, snorkelling trips and diving on the ex-HMAS Brisbane. Sunreef also plans and guides international dive trips and travel as well as dive equipment sales and servicing.
To find out more visit www.sunreef.com.au or call 07 5444 5656.