PLAN & FEE
It is said that long time ago, around 2,000 Humpback whales visited Okinawa. Adults are spending most of the year in the cold waters of Bering Sea, feeding on plankton and small fish. During winter months, they're migrating to warm, tropical waters in order to give birth or mate. Okinawa was one of those places. But after the war, due to heave whaling they completely disappeared from this area.|
25 years without a single whale sighting have passed and then... a miracle happened.
In 1986, one female Humpback whale came to Zamami to give birth to a calf. Entire village united to protect mom and her baby. Signalling to each other to turn of the engine because a baby is near etc. A year after, she came back again, bringing with her 14 other Whales.
Since then, thanks to everybody's effort, numbers of Humpback whales visiting these water steadily grew larger and now Zamami population has reached 600.
In 1991, in order to protect them, "Zamami's Whale Watching Association" has been established.
Along with Hawaii and Ogasawara, Zamami became a Whale Watching mecca.
In Okinawa Resort, we practice a different way of whale watching.
Our priority is the well-being of the whale, so we treat them the way we would like to be treated. Big gathering of boats and noise coming from the engines is stressing the animals, so by all means we try to avoid it. Instead, we are offering a longer tour, aspiring for experience which will be pleasant not only for customers, but for whale as well.
|Monitoring units looking for signs of whales||Cruiser, we use it when waves are too high for the smaller boat|
We offer completely unique way of Whale Watching and possibility of taking underwater pictures of the whales, thanks to windows located on both sides of our boat.
Without breaking the rule that forbids entering the water with whales, now anyone can watch Humpback submerged in the sea from the safety of the boat.
Because whales tend to stay close to the boat even for as long as an hour, it's lots of fun!
Let's protect Humpback Whales together!
Up to 3 vessels can gather around one group of whales, for the maximum time of one hour.
Any other boats should stay at least a 100 meters away and wait for they turn.
Keep a distance of at least 100 meters from a calf
Slow down the boat after reaching distance of 300 meters from the whale, and do not approach closer than 50 meters, unless whale itself decides to come closer.
If whale approaches the boat, engine should be set to neutral mode and boat left floating as it is.
Entering the water with whales is prohibited.
These rules have been set in order to assure that Zamami remains a great breeding ground for the whales.
|Fujii-san from Kobe
||[2 whales at 12 o'clock!] The Owner is shouting.|
Watchers gathered at the tip of the boat are pressing camera shutters simultaneously.
We left the port 5 hours ago, there's still no indication of going back.
In any whale watching tour, the time of the tour is already decided. Even if conditions are great, when time is over, boat has to go back to the port leaving us disappointed. Today is different.
Watch until you feel satisfied, Super Whale. Once you try, you want to join again.
|N.T.-san from Tokyo|
|I love whales and I've been travelling to meet them all over to Hawaii, Alaska, New Zeland and Australia. But Okinawa Resort's Super Whale is unique. |
There's many reasons, but it's almost as if Owner, boat and customers (watchers) heart is reaching the whale. It's not a Watching, it's more like a "let's play together" kind of experience.
Once you try, you can't stop. Super Whale Banzai!