So you’re thinking about going on a whale watching adventure with us at Eagle Wing Tours. We’d be thrilled to have you join us! But first, you have a decision to make—which of our boats is the best choice for you?
This is a question we get asked a lot. We have four high-performance vessels for you to choose from. They all offer a different experience, but they all do the same kind of tour. It’s important to us—and you—that you pick the boat that matches your expectations for speed, room to move around, and exposure to the elements.
In this blog we’ll give you some information on each one to help you make an informed decision. We want you to have an outrageous amount of fun out there—on the vessel that suits you best!
Safety and comfort first!
Above all else, be assured that ALL of our vessels are Transport Canada safety-approved. And all of them are staffed by fully certified and experienced captains and crew. Your safety and comfort are our top priority—always.
On all of our vessels you’ll get personalized, science-based interpretation of what you’re seeing from our knowledgeable naturalists and captains, in a fun and informal style. That’s the Eagle Wing way. After all, you’ve chosen a company that has won an international award for leadership in marine education!
We have two boat styles!
We have two different boat styles for you to choose from: open and semi-covered. Each one offers something a little different.
The open scarab boats—Goldwing and Serengeti—are like sports cars. They’re a great choice if you want a full-on fresh air adventure. They sit lower in the water, they’re a little faster, they’ll give you that “wind in your hair” experience. New hairdo guaranteed. You might even get a saltwater facial, no extra charge! That’s right. It’s the spa experience—with whales!
Compared to zodiacs (also known as rigid hull inflatables), our scarab-style boats offer a smoother, more comfortable ride and are easier on sensitive backs and necks. And because our scarabs are equipped with life jackets, life rafts and life rings, you don’t have to wear full floater suits. We do provide splash pants and cruiser jackets if you feel you don’t have enough layers with you.
Goldwing is our regularly scheduled open-air vessel. Serengeti is only available for charters (see below).
Or would you prefer a slightly slower pace and a bit of shelter from the cool marine air? Our semi-covered catamarans, 4 Ever Wild and Wild 4 Whales, give you the best of both worlds—comfort and the thrilling ride our company is known for. Each vessel has a heated indoor cabin, as well as plenty of viewing space on the outer decks.
Let’s take a closer look at the vessels…
Open air — Goldwing
If you’re looking for the ultimate fresh air experience, then this 18-metre (60 ft.) scarab-style monohull is a great choice! Goldwing will get you places fast and in comfort! It carries up to 26 guests plus the captain and one crew/naturalist. Enjoy comfy padded seating as we travel to the wildlife. When we make our wildlife stops, the viewing platform at the back is a great place to soak in the incredible scenery and take photos. There’s a small washroom in the forward section!
Semi-covered — 4 Ever Wild
This 17-metre (57 ft.) luxury catamaran is the “limousine” of our fleet and our most fuel-efficient! It offers you a smooth, stable ride and a 50/50 split between outdoor viewing space (bow and stern) and a fully enclosed heated cabin! 4 Ever Wild is staffed by a captain and up to three crew/nauralists. Guest numbers are capped at 50 so there’s plenty of room for everyone, inside and out!
Inside the cabin you’ll find plush leather seating, custom wood trim, storage space for your bags, and two marine washrooms. There are two flat screen TVs that provide real-time information on your route and the wildlife throughout the tour. There are also colouring books, toys and a mini-library to keep young whale watchers entertained between sightings. This vessel is a great choice for family adventures and guests of all ages!
Semi-covered — Wild 4 Whales
At 18 metres (60 ft.), Wild 4 Whales is custom-built for whale watching and is best described as a cross between 4 Ever Wild and our open boats. This catamaran offers that “wind in your hair” experience with lots of deck space and plenty of comfortable, open-air seating on the bow and stern. There’s more seating in a glass-panelled, heated cabin that is enclosed on three sides.
Wild 4 Whales carries up to 56 guests plus the captain and up to three crew/naturalists. It has two marine washrooms on the rear deck. The ride is fast, smooth and stable. With a 60/40 split between outdoor and indoor space, this vessel is ideal for anyone wanting a mainly outdoor adventure experience, with the option of a warm cabin with a stunning 360-degree view!
Open air — Serengeti
This 11.5 m (38 ft.) scarab-style monohull is the greyhound of our fleet and is used for private charters. It can carry 12 people plus the captain, who is also your naturalist. There’s comfy padded seating and a cozy washroom in the forward section. If you’re looking for an intimate “wind in your hair” charter experience, Serengeti is your choice!
Accessible to everyone!
Our tours are accessible to everyone of every ability and background. If you’re a guest with mobility limitations or require a disability adaptation or accommodation, we’ll do everything in our power to help you safely and comfortably enjoy your adventure with us!
While all four of our vessels are accessible, the two semi-covered catamarans—especially Wild 4 Whales—have a number of features to meet the needs of people with limited mobiity. Learn more
Travelling with kids?
While there’s no age limit on our open boats, we always recommend our semi-covered catamarans as the better option when travelling with children. These vessels offer the best of both worlds—that exhilarating fresh air experience on the outer decks, or the comfort and warmth of a covered cabin while travelling to and from the wildlife. Learn more tips on whale watching with kids
All vessels are whale wise!
Please be aware that no type of boat can get closer to the wildlife than another. All vessels on the water—from paddleboards to kayaks to recreational and commercial whale watching boats—must follow the same viewing guidelines and laws. As a member of the Pacific Whale Watch Association, Eagle Wing Tours practices and promotes responsible whale and wildlife viewing!
A few other things to mention
No matter what boat you choose, remember that it’s a lot cooler on the water than it is in town. Layers are the key. Learn more about what to wear and bring for your marine adventure with us!
Don’t have warm gear with you? On both types of vessel, we offer extra gear to help keep you warm—stylish cruiser suits on the open boats, and windbreaker jackets on the catamarans. Hats gloves, sunglasses and sunscreen are available as well!
Please be aware that we’ll do our best to accommodate your choice of vessel, but we reserve the right to consolidate tours and vessels if we don’t get minimum numbers. If this happens, we’ll communicate with you in advance and kindly ask for your understanding.
Now, are you ready to make your choice? You can book online or call us toll-free at 1-800-708-9488 or 250-384-8008 for locals. We’re looking forward to seeing you!
Published July 29, 2022