Australian eco operator, Majestic Whale Encounters, is offering free videos of guests swimming with humpback whales and their newborn calves this August in Tonga, with whale-lovers also invited to help the company with whale research by photographing their flukes.
The offer of a free professional, whale swim video is for bookings made by April 30, 2016, on Majestic Whale Encounter’s eight-day, all-inclusive ‘New Beginnings’ whale swim tour in Tonga starting on August 23, 2016.
Every winter, scores of gentle humpbacks head north to Tonga’s warm, turquoise waters to mate and calve, with mothers teaching their newborns how to be whales and the calves curious to get to know humans.
The ‘New Beginnings’ tour from August 23, 2016, includes five days swimming with whales off Ha’apai, an island north of Nuku’alofa. Guests will also have the opportunity to snorkel in coral reefs, relax on white sandy beaches and get a taste of Tongan culture. Bush walking, kayaking, fishing, scuba diving and cycling are also available during two leisure days.
The seven-night tour is available for A$4091 per person, twin-share, including accommodation at the Sandy Beach Resort on Ha’apai, local flights, all meals, transfers and five guided days on the water with the whales.
Guests who book by April 30, 2016, will receive a free video of their week with the whales, providing a unique and lifetime memento.
Guests on the tour will also be invited to assist Majestic Whale Encounters conduct whale research by photographing humpbacks’ flukes. The images will be submitted for scientific categorisation so experts can determine how many whales return to Tonga year after year, who they are travelling with and whether they are accompanying calves.
Majestic Whale Encounters Managing Director Carmen Ellis said that by assisting with this photographic research, guests can make their Tongan holiday more meaningful and memorable. “We are now seeing the same whales returning to Tonga every year so this research will help document that with a view to studying and supporting their future in the Pacific Ocean,” Ms Ellis said. “Swimming and interacting with whales is such a beautiful and emotional experience and by assisting our study in this way, our guests are making their time with us in Tonga that extra special.”
Flights to Tonga from Australia (five hours direct) with Virgin Australia or from New Zealand with Air New Zealand and Virgin are extra.
For bookings or information, call Majestic Whale Encounters on 0405 594 253 or visit www.majesticwhaleencounters.