Whale Watching Holiday to Ireland
Tour Title: The Whales and Dolphins of Southwest Ireland
Tour Destination: Baltimore – West Cork – Ireland
Tour Dates: September 30th to October 7th 2016
Tour Guide: Nic Slocum PhD FRGS
Whales Worldwide have teamed up with Whale Watch West Cork, Ireland’s premier whale watch operator, to create an itinerary that will allow you to experience all that Southwest Ireland has to offer. From world class whale and dolphin watching, to the stunning scenery of the Wild Atlantic Way and the amazing cuisine for which West Cork has rightly become famous. The whale watching season in Southwest Ireland is long with a number of different species being seen from April through to December. The autumn months off West Cork are some of the best for whale watching with minke whales and common dolphins being regular sightings. As we move through the autumn months towards the end of November and into December, fin and humpback whales may move inshore to feed as the herring run takes hold. Ireland is one of the few places in the world where fin whales may be seen against a land backdrop.
The whale and dolphin species we see off West Cork are moving inshore to feed and they are members of a Northeast Atlantic population of animals that moves south in the winter to calve and breed. Set amid some of the most stunning coastal scenery in the world we go looking for these leviathans of the deep. The life long zoologist and conservationist Nic Slocum is your guide. Nic has over 30 years experience of watching whales and dolphins from boats.
Our Destination and Base
Our base in the pretty but thriving little fishing village of Baltimore – the whale watching capital of West Cork. Staying in Casey’s of Baltimore, a small, family run hotel on the outskirts of the village , with views over the harbour, comfort is assured. Casey’s is within easy reach of the pier from where the whale watching catamaran Voyager departs. Steeped in history, Baltimore has many well known bars and pubs which serve excellent, locally produced food and have frequent evening music sessions. The friendliness and welcoming nature of the local people is legendary and West Cork has rightly earned the reputation as the gourmet centre of Southwest Ireland.
Other Wildlife and the Northeast Atlantic
Low human disturbance makes Southwest Ireland a wildlife haven. Protruding into the Atlantic this part of Ireland is an important feeding area for a number of pelagic seabirds. Autumn months are an ideal time to see a number of rarer gull species. Great, Corey’s and Manx shearwaters, puffins, guillemots and razorbills may be seen rafting on the calm waters around Cape Clear Island. A highlight for many bird enthusiasts at this time of year include sightings of storm and Wilson’s petrel along with those maritime pirates, the great and Arctic skuas. Otters and kingfishers may be seen in the estuaries and both species of seals, the Atlantic grey seal and the common or harbour seal, are prevalent throughout the area at this time of year.
Day 1. Arrive Cork International Airport and the adventure begins. We will meet you at the airport and transfer you to Baltimore and your lovely Irish country house hotel.
Day 2. We take a boat based tour from Baltimore Harbour east towards the Galley Head looking for whales and dolphins. The return tour is along part of the fabulously beautiful south coast of Ireland, across Rosscarbery and Baltimore Bays and around the inshore islands that make this part of Southwest Ireland so stunning.
Day 3. A day with a difference. You step back in time with a trip to Sherkin Island. You are left to explore this lovely West Cork Island before being picked up and taken back to Baltimore and your hotel.
Day 4. No visit to West Cork is complete without a trip to one of the peninsulas. The Teddy Bear’s Toes as they are known as. We head out to the most beautiful, The Sheep’s Head Peninsular. Through the pretty villages of Durrus and Kilcrohane to the very tip where we have a two hour walk and shore based whale watching escorted tour.
Day 5. Boat based whale and dolphin watching tour from Baltimore Harbour around long Island Bay and out around the iconic Fastnet Rock and Lighthouse.
Day 6. Ferry transfer to Cape Clear Island for half a day. Cape Clear is Ireland’s most southerly community and part of the Gaeltacht where the Irish language is spoken on a daily basis. There is the opportunity to take one of the many looped walks on the island and get lunch in the excellent Sea Rua’s restaurant.
Day 7. Today we go looking for whales and dolphins south of The Kedges, a prominent Rock group off the south coast.
Day 8. Your personal return transfer to Cork International Airport along the coastal route so that you can get one last look at this fabulously beautiful part of Ireland. We guarantee you will be back!
NB:This eight day holiday runs from Saturday to Saturday during October and November each year. (We also offer an inclusive four day short break running from Friday to Monday). Please note the daily itinerary may vary depending on prevailing sea conditions.
What IS included:
- All transfers to and from the airport to your hotel.
- Hotel for seven nights on a bed and breakfast basis.
- All three whale and dolphin boat based tours.
- Ferry transfers to Sherkin and Cape Clear Islands (not guided).
- Guided tour to The Sheep’s Head peninsular for land based whale watch.
What IS NOT included:
- Lunches and evening meals.
- Any tours outside the published itinerary.
- Personal purchases.
Talk to us directly…
For first-hand information on this tour please call Whales Worldwide on +353 86 120 0027. Alternatively email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to call you at your convenience and take you through the holiday itinerary in detail.
Telephone : + 353 86 120 0027
Price and origin…
The price for the eight (8) day tour is €895 per person
The price for the four (4) day is €495 per person
(Please note this holiday is priced in Euros)
The Whales and Dolphins of Southwest Ireland wildlife adventure starts and finishes in Cork, Ireland.
Your Expert Guide…
Nic Slocum PhD, FRGS
Nic Slocum has been watching whales from boats for 30 years, from humpbacks and fin whales in Ireland to southern right whales in Patagonia and Pacific gray whales in Mexico. He has been instrumental in putting together one of the most comprehensive codes of conduct for boat based human – whale interactions right down to the species level. Nic is an established authority on the threats currently faced by this unique group of marine mammals.
Nic is an experienced naturalist and wildlife guide and is best known for his escorted tours taking enthusiasts out, both in Ireland and overseas, to view and photograph whales and dolphins. Nic has maintained a lifelong passion for the conservation of our wildlife and wild places and has appeared as an expert commentator on RTE, Channel 4 and ITV and is regularly called on to comment on national radio.
A zoologist by training, Nic has published articles on conservation related issues in both regional and national newspapers. Nic Slocum divides his time between West Cork, Ireland and other iconic whale watching destinations around the world. He is the director of Whale Watch West Cork which runs boat based tours to watch and photograph whales and dolphins off the coast of Southwest Ireland.
Nic is no stranger to adventure and leading groups to remote places on earth. In 1976 he led an expedition across the Sahara Desert to Central Africa and back which earned him Fellowship of the Royal Geographical Society. Nic’s hard work ethic, and detailed knowledge of the species and the locations where they are found ensures his customers have a whale watching experience second to none.