a beautiful sunset and a fishing boat

Best Times of the Year to go Whale Watching in Sitka, Alaska

Sitka (and all of Alaska) is well known for its great outdoor adventures. Whales are celebrated in Sitka, as they were once heavily relied upon by native tribes for survival. When you come to visit us for king salmon fishing, whale watching is one activity we encourage you to cross off your bucket list before you leave.

Sitka is a place that celebrates whales and provides perfect opportunities to spot them up close or in the distance. Even in the distance, they make for a memorable experience. You will find a variety of species on your visit, including orcas, grey whales, and humpbacks. Summer is the best time of year to get up and personal with whales as they migrate from warm waters, but you can spot them any time of the year. Each species of whale has a different migratory pattern, so if you are interested in seeing one species more than the others, read on to see their peak time of year. 

When to See Grey Whales

If you want an intimate encounter, visit us during grey whales’ migration. The gray whale is a baleen whale that has the longest annual migration of any animal and is able to travel tens of thousands of miles in a single trip. While seeing any whale will provide you with an unforgettable experience, grey whales are known to be curious and will sometimes approach boats to feed their curiosity. The best time to visit Sitka to spot a gray whale is between April and May.

When to See Humpback Whales

The humpback whale, named after the distinctive hump on its back, is a crowd favorite for many reasons. Not only are humpback whales’ massive creatures, making an encounter with one (even at a great distance) a jaw-dropping experience but when they breach, capturing that shot will be Instagram gold. They are also a favorite among locals and tourists alike because of their symphonic melodies, which can travel up to 10,000 miles.

If you want to see (and hear) a humpback whale in Sitka, Alaska, the best time to visit is between June and July but they can also be spotted up until December.

When to See Blue Whales

A humpback whale can grow to the size of a school bus, but they aren’t the biggest whale. That title belongs to the blue whale, considered the largest animal that ever lived. Capable of growing longer than 100 feet, their tongues alone are as heavy as an elephant. This gives you an idea of their impressive magnitude. If you want to cross “see a blue whale” off your bucket list, the best time to visit is between July and August.

When to See Orcas

The most popular whale is, in fact, a dolphin. Orcas are well known for their unique black and white colors, their intelligence, and unique sounds. However, they are not one of the smallest whales, but the largest dolphin. Nevertheless, we will add them to our list because they’re an (expected) crowd favorite. If you are visiting us for our Alaska salmon fishing charter, we recommend commuting to Seward for the perfect location in Alaska to spot orcas. The best time to see them is between May and June, but sightings are also becoming more common in October.

Visit Action Alaska for Whale Watching

Let our fishing charter take you on an unforgettable exploration across Sitka’s waters. When you come for king salmon fishing, stay for whale watching. Hop on our boat to discover the best whale watching locations in Sitka and experience an adventure beyond sportfishing. Contact Action Alaska at 907.738.7311 to learn more.