Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Captain's Blog

When is the Best Time to See Whales in Hawaii?

a group of people in a boat on a body of water

The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. The stars come out at night, but when do the whales come out to play and eat? There are many myths about whale migration patterns that may not be true. One myth is that whales are more active at nighttime because they feed on plankton which need sunlight to grow. However, there is also data showing that whales tend to be more active during daylight hours because their other prey has less chance of escaping them when it’s dark outside. To find out for sure, let’s dive deep into the facts!

What Time Of Day Are Whales Most Active?

Whales are mostly active at night but have been known to be more active during the day during certain hours, seasons, and activities. In the summer months, whales are less active at night due to their prey being more accessible during the day.

Whales are never diurnal, but they can be crepuscular. This means they are most active during twilight hours which are both before sunrise and after sunset. They can communicate with one another without being detected by predators or prey during these twilight hours because the water will absorb the sound of the whales’ communication. It’s also easier to recognize predators or prey in the twilight hours because there is still enough light to see but it’s dark enough that shadows are detected.

Whales are more likely to be out during the day if their food source, plankton, needs sunlight to grow. Whales are less active at night in the summer months when plankton is more accessible during the day.

When to Expect Whale Sightings During Mating Season

Because whales migrate to Hawaii to mate and give birth in the winter, it’s important for us Hawaii residents to know when to expect them. Whales are less active at night because there is too much noise in the water due to ships.

During mating season, which happens in Hawaii during the winter months, humpback whales are most active throughout the day and mostly in the afternoon hours. So, if you want to see a whale in Hawaii, it’s best to visit them during the afternoon or early evening hours.

If you want to spot a whale, visit Hawaii during mating or birthing season and be sure to catch them between the hours of 2pm-8pm.

Go Whale Watching With Kauai Sea Tours!

Adventure awaits this winter during whale-watching season. At Kauai Sea Tours, we offer Kauai’s best whale watching tours during the height of whale watching season. Come see these magnificent creatures for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Kauai Whale Watching Tours

  • Posted in: