Dolphin & Seal Sailing Cruise
From meeting pelicans to viewing playful seals and, if luck permits, leaping dolphins and shy turtles - all this and more on our daily morning educational dolphin and seal sailing cruises.
We set sail between 08h45 and 09h00 (check-in 08h30) every morning from our Jetty at the Walvis Bay Waterfront for a marine educational sailing excursion in the bay area in search of the Marine Big 5: Whales, Dolphins, Mola, Leatherback turtle and seals. While serving hot coffee and tea, our initial route takes us past oyster farms as we approach Pelican Point with its landmark lighthouse and 60,000 resident Cape Fur Seals.
We round the point and head into the open sea. In season (July to November), larger mammals such as the Southern Right Whale and Humpback Whales are often spotted, while other whale species, such as the Gray whale and the Pygmy Right whale have made appearances.
The waters around Walvis Bay is home to three different types of dolphins. Of these the common bottlenose dolphin is most common. Heaviside’s dolphins are much smaller but very social dolphins all along the Namibian coast. They are very fast swimmers and very active, social animals that often occur in groups of 10 or sometimes more. Watching these dolphins jump and cartwheel is a spectacle that brings pure joy. The dusky dolphin is another of the species with superior aerial skills and guests are often entertained by their skillful aerial performances.
Sunfish, or mola as they are also known, are easily one of the oddest-looking fish anyone could lay eyes on. This bony fish that resembles a fish head with a tail can grow very large and weigh up to 1,000 kilograms. It’s peculiar looks and sheer size makes the mola one of our most popular sightings.
The leatherback sea turtle is the largest of all living turtles and is characterized by the absence of body shell. Instead its carapace is covered by skin and flesh. Leatherback sea turtles are known for the long distances they cover to get to their breeding grounds and trips of 1,000 or more kilometers are not uncommon.
The unconventional Mola or Sunfish is a highlight for many of our guests and we have had occasional sightings of equally impressive Leatherback Turtles. Accompanying us throughout are a variety of seabirds, such as the Kelp Gull, Hartlaub’s Gull, Pelicans and Cape Cormorant. These birds often use our catamarans to hitch a ride or do some tourist sightings of their own!
We hoist the sails of our four sailing catamarans whenever possible, switch off the engines and let our guests experience true sailing. Guests can even help in putting up the sails and rigging the ropes.
Our journey from Pelican Point through the larger bay area we pass some of the more interesting ships and oil rigs that visit the bay. We take the opportunity to serve lunch. Our guests get to enjoy our local world-class fresh local oysters paired with sparkling wine, and a variety of savoury snacks and dessert pastries. In addition, we also serve local beer and soft drinks.
We return to the Waterfront at around 12h30.