Archive for the ‘whale watching’ Category

The best way to experience sea life up close in Hawaii is to book an ocean excursion with Dolphin Journeys.  During the months of January thru mid April, this is the best way to experience hump back whales and dolphins along the Kona Coast.   The whales are snowbirds of the ocean, spending their winters in Hawaii mating, giving birth, and enjoying the calm warm water.   This is an “on” the boat watching trip from 1:30-4:30 pm daily.   You’ll enjoy learning more about these magnificent gentle giants of the sea. Snacks and refreshments included. Available Jan. – mid April, or when the whales head north to Alaska. The Dolphin TLC takes just 6 guests, so this is a very intimate excursion.   Private Charter/Parties welcome.

Baleen whales – mysticetes, include whales such as the humpback, gray and blue whales. Their primary distinguishing characteristic is the fact that all adults lack teeth, which have been replaced by a series of baleen plates on either side of their jaw. Baleen, also known as “whalebone” is not really bone, but is made of keratin, the same protein substance as our own hair and nails, and the horns of cattle. Some species have over 400 baleen plates; each less than 1/5 of an inch thick. The plates are fringed with hairs along their inner edges and descend like curtains in two rows from the upper jaw. It may help to remember the two different types of whales by knowing that the scientific name for baleen whales, mysticetes, comes from the Greek word “mystax,” which means moustache! The humpback whales migrate home to Hawaii each December and are here for the winter. They will head back north the end of March/April.

Porpoises belong to the family Phocoenidae. They are generally smaller and a more robust species. The primary physical difference between a dolphin and a porpoise is the shape of the teeth. Porpoise have a spade flat tooth like humans. (dolphins teeth are a round point tooth). Most Porpoise are about 5-7 feet in length. Porpoises have less of a distinct beak, or rostrum. Their foreheads slope almost uniformly to the tip of their snout, and their teeth are spade-like in shape. The family Phocoenidae is rather small, and consists of only six members. There are no porpoises found in Hawaiian waters.

Dolphin Journeys focuses on the Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins, Pacific Spotted Dolphins and in the winter season, Humpback Whales.
Most cetaceans are gregarious and love to share their joy.  They have been interacting with humans around the Big Island for about 20 years.  The Island of Hawaii (Big Island) has a perfect oceanographic floor for the dolphins.  They like shallow, sandy bottom bays to play, teach their young and sleep in by day.  The Kona Coast with the very narrow continental shelf provides the unique co-habitation of human coastal life and marine mammals living and working in the same environment. The water along Kona is clean as an ocean can be and provides a beautiful home for the dolphins.  Humans have had a small impact on the water of West Hawaii.  The primary industry is fishing and that has been the only threat to the dolphins.

Dolphin Journeys is the Original Company to take people to meet and encounter the dolphins as their primary activity. Started in 1996, Capt. Nancy & her crew have been leading people to the joy and amazing experiences of open water encounters with dolphins, manta rays and whale watching. We strive to offer the most safe, educational and deeply rich experience. We understand your precious vacation dollars deserve to be spent for the very best.

Here are some of the things we provide that are not usually found with other operators:

Safety Swimmer in the water for every 6 people.

If you are feeling uneasy, new to snorkeling or unsure about the ocean, our ‘Pod leader’ is in the water with you to help you. We will assist your child, assure them, and help them to see the dolphins. Our swim support are certified CPR, First Aid and part of Coast Guard Drug Testing program.

Neoprene vests to keep sun off your back, keep your body warm and offer a bit of floatation.

Wet Suites for the kids to keep them warm and comfortable.

High quality masks & fins in variety of styles to fit each person’s unique face and foot shape.

Educational component on our trips is rich in information. Dolphin Journeys is a Specialty Company with 20 years with the Hawaiian Dolphins. Our Staff are College Graduates and have been educated in Marine Mammal & Manta Ray data and the personal connection between our marine species & humans. Our staff are all enrolled in the Coast Guard Drug Program and are skilled in water safety, CPR & First Aid.

Specialty items on board for your comfort;

Our boat, the Dolphin TLC, is a 26’ SkipJack Cabin Cruiser. It has shade on back deck. A cabin to keep items safe and dry, and a Head with sink. She rides easily through the water with 6000 lbs in her keel for stabilization. Swim step on back deck – no transom to crawl over. Heavy duty ladder with 4 steps below the surface of the water for ease to get on the boat from the water.

Hot fresh water shower on the deck to rinse off the salt – “It Feels Oh So Good”! Shampoo & Cream Rinse available to get the tangles out of your hair at the end of the day.

Drinking water is served in special blue bottles, so the PVC from the plastic does not melt into your water from sitting in the sun.

Full lunch is served:

  • includes fresh fruit – 99% time Pineapple
  • Special chips with no artificial anything, no sugar. They are taro or sweet potatoes that are locally grown and manufactured. The have 3 ingredients, taro/sweet potato + Coconut oil + salt.
  • You can choose from a sandwich, wrap or salad.
  • Gluten free, sugar free and vegan diets are easily accommodated
  • Selection of Hawaiian juices, sodas, green tea (with & without sugar) and plenty of water.

Comfort items for sea sickness:

  • Ginger chews capsules
  • Sea Bands
  • Homeopathic relief essential oil

Extra towels & sun screen: When the day is done and you have had your last swim, we have a dry plush towel to offer you if your towel is damp. If you forget your sunscreen – no worries we have premium sun screen to help keep you safe from the warm Hawaiian sunshine.

We Offer Special Trips to guests who may want an unusual trip…. Let us know your heart’s desire and we will do our best to make it happen. These are Private Charter trips.

Afternoon Reef & Manta Ray swim is an equally fabulous trip – with all the amenities except for lunch. We serve snacks and drinks on that trip.

Evening Manta Ray Snorkels have the same quality of care. We do not serve dinner, but will have snacks, cold and warm drinks on board.

Information for this post taken from Dolphin Journeys website at www.dolphinjourneys.com.  To book a tour, call 808-329-3030 or book online at their website.