Sunrise Whale Watch in Lahaina, Maui


WhalesDay2 (45 of 52).jpg
Incredible whale breach coming right at us!

WhalesDay2 (10 of 52).jpg
Look closely, this is the pectoral fin of the mama whale, and the tail of the baby, up in the air at the same time.

It was a wonderful week out here in Hawaii. After all the wind and rain of this past month, we finally got a week of no wind, beautiful sunshine, calm seas, clear waters, and plenty of wildlife.

One morning, I decided to offer an early, sunrise whale watch to the guests. There had been plenty of whales around and I wanted to maximize their time out here. I wasn't too surprised when every single guests signed up. We were right off of Lahaina town on Maui, which coincidentally enough, was the whaling capital of Hawaii back in the 1800's. This is where hundreds of whaling ships would overwinter, before heading up to the North pacific to hunt whales. Now it is all about whale watching as hunting whales is illegal here.

WhalesDay1 (17 of 53).jpg
Breaching baby whale!

WhalesDay1 (22 of 53).jpg
Water cascading off the 15ft wide tail of a humpback whale.

Our whale watch started right off the bat with a mother humpback whale who had a small calf. They were resting at the surface together. We noticed a whale splashing farther offshore so we turned to see the activity, however our mother and calf didn't want us to go, so they started breaching and tail slapping away. We quickly turned back around to enjoy the show.

We ended up having several active baby whales, without having to travel too far from our Lahaina anchorage. The sunrise was beautiful over the West Maui Mountains. I also dropped the hydrophone underwater so everyone could listen to the sounds of humpback whales singing. It is the underwater soundtrack here in Hawaii.

Besides mama whales with their very active babies, we did get to witness a competition pod as well. This is where the male whales fight over one female. Theoretically this leads to mating, although we have not documented this yet. The males will jockey for position, ram into each other, scrape their barnacles across the head of others, and even slash at each other with their tales. This morning I was able to photograph one of the rarest of the competitive behaviors.... an aerial collision.

WhalesDay1 (34 of 53).jpg
This baby is looking right at us.

WhalesDay1 (53 of 53).jpg
Tail slash

WhalesDay1 (48 of 53).jpg
Aerial collision caught on film!

WhalesDay2 (36 of 52).jpg
Early morning light is great for photos.

My guests enjoying a close encounter.

Posing with the hydophone. This allowed us to listen underwater to several whales singing.

Close enough for an iPhone!


WhalesDay2 (39 of 52).jpg
Again, early morning light gives you some dramatic photo opportunities.

WhalesDay1 (41 of 53).jpg
Almost completely out of the water.

WhalesDay2 (23 of 52).jpg
Lots of splashing from this whale.

WhalesDay2 (49 of 52).jpg
What a morning!

WhalesDay2 (41 of 52).jpg
The early birds certainly got the worm this day!

Hopefully this inspires you to get up early and see what you can find where you are! And if that happens to be Maui in the winter months.... get out there on the water and see some whales! It is incredible.

Check it out on here:
[//]:# (!pinmapple 20.88682 lat -156.71285 long Sunrise Whale Watch d3scr)

Dai Mar Tamarack


Congratulations, your post has been added to Pinmapple! 🎉🥳🍍

Did you know you have your own profile map?
And every post has their own map too!

Want to have your post on the map too?

  • Go to Pinmapple
  • Click the get code button
  • Click on the map where your post should be (zoom in if needed)
  • Copy and paste the generated code in your post (Hive only)
  • Congrats, your post is now on the map!


Manually curated by EwkaW from the @qurator Team. Keep up the good work!


Isn't this so wonderful?! I'm not a morning person ('cause I'm still wide awake from 2am to 7am and will sleep after) but to see these amazing whales, I'd definitely wake up! You got some lovely shots!


We were finished with the trip by 7:45 am so you could do it!


Oh that's nice! Probably I can head to bed after 😂