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Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure

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Kailua-Kona, United States
Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure

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Number of travelers
0 Adults1 Adult2 Adults3 Adults4 Adults5 Adults6 Adults7 Adults8 Adults9 Adults10 Adults11 Adults12 Adults13 Adults14 Adults15 Adults0 Children1 Child2 Children3 Children4 Children5 Children6 Children7 Children8 Children9 Children10 Children
Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon3 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English
Good for avoiding crowds

Overview

Winter is the most exciting time to be out on the water in Hawaii, as it’s the time of year when thousands of migrating humpback whales visit the islands. On this exciting Big Island whale watching tour, experience the thrill of traveling aboard a high-speed raft, and then seeing a whale swimming just in front of the boat. Though the boat will obey the federal laws and not approach within 100 feet (30 meters), it isn’t uncommon for the whale to decide to swim up under the boat!
  • Whale watching adventure off the coast of Hawaii
  • Travel along Kona coast with spectacular views
  • Look out for spinner dolphins, green sea turtles, manta rays and humpback whales
  • Explore the geology of Hawaii through lava tubes and sea caves
Saved to wishlist!
Rafting expedition
Beverages (sodas, fruit juices and bottled water) and snacks
Local taxes
Gratuities
Hotel pickup and drop off

Departure Point

74-425 Kealakehe Pkwy, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA

Return Details

Returns to original departure point
This Kona whale watch departs from the slips of Honokohau Marina, which is just north of Kailua-Kona in the direction of Waikoloa. As you scour the coastline in search of a spout, your captain will discuss everything from Hawaiian history to the island’s unique geology, all while scanning the cobalt horizon for signs of a breach or a splash. 

In winter, humpback whales travel here to these waters to mate and give birth to their young. The captain also serves as a naturalist and has a wealth of info on the whales, and also carries a hydrophone on board so you can hear the haunting and eerie song of whales singing underwater. In addition to pods of humpback whales, there’s also the chance you could see turtles, dolphins, manta rays or other marine life, and the Kona coast is also home to some lesser-known species of whales.

Depending on where the whales are spotted, you’ll also have the chance to see coastal sea caves and small, volcanic lava tubes, and hear some tales about how the island is still continuing to grow. 

Since the boat only holds up to 16 passengers you’re guaranteed a personalized experience. Although the smaller Zodiac raft can be bouncy, and isn’t recommended for anyone pregnant or with back or neck problems, it's able to cut through the water without the stomach-churning rock. Many say it navigates the waters of the Kona coast better than any other style of boat.
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • Minimum age is 4 years
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 16 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Captain Zodiac
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure.
Q:
What is the policy on sanitization during Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure?
A:The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
See all safety measures taken by Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure?
A:The policies on social distancing are:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
See all safety measures taken by Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure.
Q:
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure?
A:The policies on staff health & safety are:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
See all safety measures taken by Zodiac Raft Whale Watching Adventure.

Traveler Photos

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Traveler Tips


  • "With that said, prepare to have your body beat up, the water is so rough making the ride painful and not fun." See review
  • "Being on the raft was fun and allowed for a small group so you never had to worry about anyone in your way of seeing the sights." See review

Reviews

5.0
star-5
126 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 126 reviews
star-5
Stellar experience- multiple whales
Deblina_B
, Jan 2022
Exceptional tour! A stellar experience viewing multiple whales. Captain Rick and Devante made sure that we have an experience of a lifetime along with the jokes and hilarity. Could not have recommended this trip more. Definitely try them as they REALLY know where the whales are at and most importantly, how to respect their presence.
star-5
Do the zodiac!
Jeanette_V
, Jan 2022
The small-group Zodiac experience is the ONLY way to whale watch. Captain Rick and First Mate DaVante were awesome tour guides. We had an incredible adventure.
star-5
So much fun!!
Kristen_C
, Jan 2022
We had a wonderful time!! Ashley was our captain and she was so knowledgeable and fun to talk to! We saw a manta ray, dolphins and several whales!! I would highly recommend this trip, and we will request Ashley as our guide on all future excursions!!!
star-5
The boat ride was my favorite
Rebecca_L
, Dec 2021
The boat ride out and back was so exciting and fun. We did see a young male several times. The captain was extremely knowledgeable and made it very enjoyable
star-5
Memorable for a lifetime!
colleen_t
, Dec 2021
Ashley was our Captain and Chad was her assistant. They were SO nice and they got us into Some amazing whale and dolphin watching. Ashley was a wealth of Information about the islands geography as well as the ocean animals. It was an epic adventure we will never forget!
star-4
Amazing crew!
Myhli_H
, Dec 2021
The crew was amazing! The whales, not so. We saw about four whales from a distance. But the crew went above and beyond to try to find whales, we were even out in the water for an extra hour! But it just wasn't our day. Go on a day the whales are out and this may be the best whale tour you will ever experience as you are so close to the water. Will definitely have to try Zodiac again!
icon Response from Host , Jan 2022
Sorry to hear the Whales weren't up for putting on a show or even coming closer it sounds. They can have a mind of their own on days. It seems your crew put in the extra time to make the trip worth it. Hope to have you out again!
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Highly recommend!
Natalia_S
, Dec 2021
It was more that just a whale watching tour. Besides a whale we saw dolphins, tiger sharks and a turtle! Loved our captain. He was funny and very knowledgeable. Highly recommend this tour!
icon Response from Host , Dec 2021
Sounds like a very full and well rounded whale watching tour. We hope you had a great rest of your vacation. We will look forward to seeing you again.
star-5
Great Fun!
Dianne_B
, Mar 2021
I loved seeing the dolphins. The mother and baby whale. JC (boat captain) was excellent and made the trip fun and informative
icon Response from Host , Mar 2021
Glad Captain JC was able to share a great whale watching tour with you! Come back again.
star-5
Absolutely worth it.
Mazie_B
, Mar 2021
Absolutely fantastic and fun. The boat ride was a blast, the crew genuinely nice and informative, and the whales and dolphins were amazing!!!
icon Response from Host , Mar 2021
We are happy that you are happy!! Come see us again for any whale watching or snorkel tour!
star-5
Our guide was very...
Ken_H
, Mar 2021
Our guide was very knowledgeable and fun. Although we saw a limited number of whales, it was a fun excursion.
icon Response from Host , Mar 2021
Glad you enjoyed the whale watching tour and the boat ride. Hope to have you again!

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