Whale watching in and around Portland is at its peak over the winter period where the coastline plays host to many of the wonderful creatures. The whales vary with sightings of Humpback Whales, the occasional Orca or two but mostly Southern Right Whales.
The Southern Right Whales, which often visit Portland, Cape Nelson and Cape Bridgewater Bay in winter are easily identified by large white bumps on the top and sides of the head.
A variety of whales visit a range of areas around Portland Bay & Cape Bridgewater Bay whilst they are transiting through our Southern Ocean waters each winter.
The range consists of Humpback Whales, Southern Right Whales and the occasional Orca (Killer Whale) with the most common being the Southern Right.
The whale lookout on Wade street is located next to the old water tower which is now the World War II museum. A great location with free public binoculars to use with a view of Portland’s Harbour all the way down to parts of Dutton Way.
This point is Portland’s prime vantage point for attempting to see Whales due to being located up high and at a point where it juts out further than any other point.
Location: 2 Wade Street, Portland
Southern Right Whales have previously entered the calm deep waters of Portland Harbour and can be viewed from vantage points surrounding the harbour.
More commonly the outer edge of the harbour along the Lee Breakwater has played host to many whales including Southern Right Whales, Humpback Whales and even the occasional Orca.
This is exceptional viewing as the whales get within 30 metres when at the Lee Breakwater however if you are amongst the lucky ones to be in town when a whale enters the bay then they can get as close as bumping the dock you are viewing from.
Location: Portland Harbour, Lee Breakwater Road, Portland
There are many great spots for viewing Southern Right Whales around Bridgewater Bay, whether it be on the Great South West Walk, rambling out to the seal colony at the tip of Cape Bridgewater or meandering out to the Blowholes and Petrified Forest.
In Bridgewater Bay you can also view them from right on the beach or whilst having a coffee at the beach side cafe
Location: 1661 Bridgewater Road, Cape Bridgewater
Warrnambool, Port Fairy and Portland - three whale watching destinations. Check out carefully selected experiences along the way that have been woven together by passionate locals into this must-do winter road trip.
The whale trail at a glance, download your own PDF map to quickly see where the best whale spotting locations are - and how much there is to see and do along the way! Be sure to view the full itinerary for all of the juicy details and insider tips.
Explore everything about a region by selecting a location.
Sign up to get the latest deals, tours & events along the Great Ocean Road
Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the Great Ocean Road region the Wadawurrung, Eastern Maar & Gunditjmara. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. We recognise and respect their unique cultural heritage and the connection to their traditional lands. We commit to building genuine and lasting partnerships that recognise, embrace and support the spirit of reconciliation, working towards self-determination, equity of outcomes and an equal voice for Australia’s first people.