[NoteBook] Whale Watching from Six-Fours – France
The geography of France is really interesting as our country has 2 coastlines: On the West coast, the powerful and beautiful Atlantic Ocean, offers gorgeous surfing spots around the Basque Coast. In the South East, the Mediterranean Sea and it’s colourful diving spots, is also home to several marine mammals such as Fin Whales, Sperm Whales, Long-Finned Pilot Whales, very rarely Cuvier’s beaked whales, Common Dolphins, Striped Dolphins, and Risso’s Dolphins (that I already met in The Azores). All these species are protected by the Pelagos Sanctuary, a triangle shaped zone between France, Sardinia and Italy.
The meeting spot for my whale watching tour is at Six-Fours-Les-Plages harbour.
Today, the weather conditions are close to perfection: A clear sky, not even the slightest breeze, and an « oily sea » as French sailors would say (meaning glassy sea).
After the check-in, our guide introduces his RIB boat to us, which he is really proud of, and is now doing a presentation about the species we might spot during our tour.
After 45min of research, he finally spots a dorsal fin, glinting under the sun rays… Is it a Sperm Whale? No, this is a Fin Whale, and more precisely, Fin Whales! The mom is resting as her calf (approx. 2 years old) explores the area! How lucky we are to meet the 2nd biggest species of whales in the entire world here, only a few kilometres away from home! During 30 minutes*, we will observe these giants and enjoy their company.
We will spend the rest of the trip looking for more marine mammals but without any success. From time to time, we car hear a « Plop » around the boat: These are tunas jumping out of the water. They are so fast that we can barely see them!
This is the end of this whale watching trip, but before returning to land, the skipper wants to show us what his boat is capable of, and starts spinning, faster and faster in the harbour. How cool! Sea you soon beautiful whales!
*Whale watching in the sanctuary is highly regulated to protect all marine mammals living in this area. To know more about these regulations, you can read the « Code of good conduct » on the sanctuary’s website.
⚓︎ Whale Watching in France
Ahoy Sailors & Mermaids! I am finally going on whale watching tour in my birth country, from Six-Fours-Les-Plages in France, after so many adventures at sea in different countries! Only a few people know that we can actually see whales in French waters. So spread the word and keep reading!
2 Fin Whales
Date : 31st August 2019
Location : Sanary-Sur-Mer, France