• Tips for Taking Pictures While Whale Watching

    Humpback whale lobtailing

    Taking pictures while whale watching is harder than it sounds. Before you begin the whale watch, put your camera in sports or action mode, and turn off the flash. If possible, set the shutter speed to 1000-1200 and the ISO to 400 for the best range of shooting. Take pictures just before the whale peaks in its roll, which is usually right after it surfaces and blows air. If you have a DSLR, automatic focus is usually very inefficient when whale watching, as there is a uniformity of color in the water and the sky that confuses the camera’s sensors. In manual mode, however, you will have more success finding the best focus and taking several shots.

    If you are ready to go whale watching, call Captain John Whale Watching and Fishing Tours of Plymouth, MA today at (508) 746-2643. Head to our website to see today’s sightings or to buy your whale watching tickets online.

  • All about Fin Whales

    Seeing a rare and beautiful species of whale, the fin whale, is an unforgettable experience. While there are very few fin whales on Earth, Stellwagen Bank near Plymouth Harbor is one of the primary feeding grounds for the fin whale and one of the few places on the planet to see this majestic creature. To learn more about fin whales before you go whale watching, continue reading.

    Surfacing Fin Whale ( Balaenoptera physalus)


    Fin whales , also called fin-backed whales, are considered endangered by the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and “Depleted” by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wildlife Fauna and Flora (CITES) categorizes the fin whale under “Appendix I,” which is the CITES conservation status with the greatest level of protection.


    Commercial whaling was historically the biggest threat to fin whales. Modern threats include collisions with vessels, becoming tangled in fishing gear, reduced food due to overfishing, habitat destruction, and disruption from low-frequency noise.


    Found in groups as few as 2 and as large as 7 or more, fin whales weigh between 80,000 and 160,000 pounds. They and are roughly 75 to 85 feet long, making them the second-largest species of whale in the Northern Hemisphere. They have a sleek body with distinctive coloration patterns and a V-shaped head. Their back and sides are dark brownish-gray or black, while the underside is white. In the summertime, Fin whales feed on krill, squid, and small schooling fish, such as capelin, herring, and sand lance; in the winter, they fast.

    Habitat and Distribution

    Fin whales live in deep, offshore waters in every major ocean on earth, but they prefer temperate and polar latitudes to the tropics. Population trends of the fin whale are difficult to determine, but the bulk of them are near Alaska and the west coast, with a decent population in the Western North Atlantic.

    Captain John Whale Watching & Fishing Tours of Plymouth, MA has offered eco-friendly whale watching tours since 1946. If you want to go whale watching in the Cape Cod area with a sighting guaranteed, visit our website to buy whale watch tickets today. Call us at (508) 746-2643 for more information.

  • Kayakers Get a Close Encounter with Humpback Whales

    Seeing humpback whales is an experience unlike any other. Many humpback whales will come up for air around the whale watching boat. You can watch them as they work together to herd fish. If you get to see a breach—where the whale jumps out of the water—you will want to have a camera with you to capture the moment. Watch the video clip to experience a taste of the excitement of whale watching.

    Captain John Whale Watching and Fishing Tours has done whale washing off the coast of Plymouth, MA since 1946. To buy your tickets to whale watch in Cape Cod, visit us online. And if you have any questions about our whale watching and deep-sea fishing tours, call us at (508) 746-2643.

  • Why Whale Watching Is an Experience You’ll Never Forget

    Whale watching is a multi-billion dollar industry, attracting hundreds of thousands of tourists around the world annually. Ask anyone who has been whale watching and they will tell you there’s nothing quite like seeing a 40-foot sea creature leaping out of the sea. Read this article to learn more about why whale watching is an unforgettable experience.

    Humpback Whale Tail

    Bond with Your Family

    If it has been a while since your family has spent quality time together, going whale watching is a fantastic idea. Your family can enjoy searching for whales together and experience the thrill of seeing a giant whale jumping above the water. Whale watching is a stress-free activity that takes only a few hours, making it a great addition to any vacation or weekend getaway.

    Enjoy a Unique Social Experience

    The whale watching industry is growing rapidly, so it’s becoming an increasingly popular way for groups small and large to celebrate any occasion. Why not go whale watching for your birthday, anniversary, wedding, honeymoon, or workplace party?

    See Beautiful, Rare Sea Creatures

    If you’ve never been whale watching, it’s a great way to open your eyes to a new world of incomparable beauty. At Stellwagen Bank near Plymouth Harbor, you’ll be whale watching at one of the main feeding grounds for humpback whales, fin whales, dolphins, porpoises, and Minke whales.

    Learn About Whales from Our Naturalists

    The naturalists at Captain John Whale Watching will take you on an educational journey on the open water. You will learn about the unique markings and patterns found on finback and humpback whales, and how each species can be identified.

    Captain John Whale Watching of Plymouth, MA is a Whale SENSE program participant that is fully committed to responsible whale watching. To sign up for an unforgettable whale watching experience with our team, call us at (508) 746-2643. Learn more about our whale watching and fishing tours by visiting our website.