Dolphin and Seal Eco Adventure Cruise

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Dolphin and Seal Eco Adventure Cruise

See entertaining unique local wildlife on our boutique 1.5-hour sightseeing cruise for up to 12 guests.

The cruise travels by the glorious coast of the Mornington Peninsula. Guests explore sandy cliffs, immaculate holiday homes and pristine beaches. The coastline is part of the Point Nepean National Park and Port Phillip Bay. It is home to a variety of wildlife including seals, dolphins, occasional migrating whales and abundant seabirds well known to exceed 70 different species.

At any time of year you’re likely to see the display of gannets diving as they feed, fur seals playing on the surface, crested terns in sharp flight, nesting cormorants, or a pod of bottlenose dolphins jump, ride the waves and frolic about.

Every trip will teach you something new. The 1.5-hour Dolphin and Seal Eco Adventure Cruise gives you a personalised view into the beauty and richness of Port Phillip Bay. Everyone enjoys the stable ride and freedom felt on board our small and robust tour vessel. Open air seating provides all-round view and a feeling of connectedness with the marine environment.

Book now or call/SMS for last minute availability.

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*Images courtesy of our guest, John Howell – john@karfi.net

  • Guests will have the opportunity to spot dolphins, however sightings can not be guaranteed as they are wild animals
  • On-water boat tour, suitable for families and adventurers
  • Limited to up to 12 guests, you’ll enjoy an uninterrupted cruise on the bay
  • The tour departs from Sorrento, VIC
  • Private tours available
  • Our professional guides are passionate locals about our history and wildlife on the Mornington Peninsula
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Duration

1.5 Hours depending on season and logistics

Suitable for

Ages 5 and up. Some restrictions may apply at times

Expect to see

Seals, gannets, migratory birds, dolphins, whales (winter) and diverse wildlife

Departures

11:15am and 2:15pm All Year
*9:15am Extra service (December – March)

HOW TO BOOK

Use the button below and BOOK ONLINE anytime up until 12 hours before the tour departure.
Call/SMS for last minute availability

Book Now

Prices

Adults: $85
Children: $65
Children (5-14) must be accompanied by an adult

Style of Tour

Scenic Cruise: Above water tour, wear appropriate clothing, it is often significantly cooler at sea than on land

Dolphin and Seal Eco Adventure Cruise

More about the Adventure

Touring southern Port Phillip Bay, you’ll see several unique features that are unequalled. Cruising by the Ticonderoga Bay Dolphin Sanctuary tales of history will unfold. The cliffs leading to Point Nepean and the original defence forts precinct built to guard the entrance to Port Phillip Bay, known as The Rip. The Rip is where the waters of the bay meet the seas of Bass Strait. Here you’ll cross the very first point our earliest settlers would have seen after their months long ship’s journey.

During the summer months, the migratory shearwater birds congregate en masse at the waters at the heads, thousands upon thousands of birds rafting together on the surface.

Australian Fur Seals, once hunted excessively for their pelts, are now fully protected and enjoy resting on Chinaman’s Hat, a man-made haul out platform in the bay. Here the seals get out of the water and rest after days of fishing. Seeing them up close you will be mesmerised by their presence, agility and adore their features.

From around June through to August (winter), along the southern coast of Victoria, our waters are home to the migration passages of whales. Sightings of Humpback, Southern Right and Killer whales (Orca) are increasing year on year. Visits into Port Phillip Bay are becoming more frequent and it’s possible to gain some amazing sightings.

Any other day seals, seabirds including gannets, pelicans, shy albatross or white-faced storm petrels may greet you out on or above the water.

Passing by protected marine parks and one of only 64 Ramsar wetlands in Australia, you’ll enjoy 360 degree views from our open vessel. Through sharing and developing understanding, we hope to aid protection and conservation of our significant nature and wildlife.

 

Make your way to Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula to meet your local guide and your rigid inflatable boat (RIB). Sorrento is around a 1.5hr drive from Melbourne.

Meeting at the Sorrento Pier at least 20 minutes before departure (allow more time in summer, as much as 30 minutes or more), you’ll be greeted by your Guide and introduced to fellow guests.

Hop on board and listen to a short briefing on what to expect during the scenic ecotour; it may be a lively ride.

Departing Sorrento, we’ll quickly gather pace and zoom our way by Millionaire’s Walk and Point King towards the Chinaman’s Hat, a man-made seal haul-out platform. Passing the wreck of the SS Wauchope (1877-1900), a steamship that sailed between Melbourne, King Island and Launceston, you’ll see the remains of the boiler protruding from the water. Passing by Point King, where Lieutenant Murray declared in March 1802 the ceremony of possession of this fine area by the European Settlers.

Be prepared for a lively ride as you begin to venture into the bay. Port Phillip Bay is certainly underestimated for it’s rich natural wonders and marine life. On the return journey towards port, when you pass by Chinaman’s Hat it’s a grand opportunity to get close to the Australian Fur Seals, where you can watch them play and bark on their haul-out platform. Some may even pop their heads out of the water near your boat.

During the voyage we may see the resident Bottlenose Dolphins and if they’re not fishing they may even come to play. During the winter months we’ll explore the broader waters for whale sightings including Humpback, Southern Right and Killer whales (Orca).

Make sure you dress warmly – warm jackets, scarves, beanies and gloves are recommended in Autumn and Spring, sometimes even in summer. And remember your camera!

Session Length

• Excursions are available almost all year round

• Excursions are 90 minutes in duration

• It is recommended that you book at least one week in advance of your preferred date

• Please arrive 20 minutes prior to your scheduled departure.

 Weather

• Tours are weather dependent. In the event of rain or inclement weather your experience may be cancelled and you will be contacted by the experience provider

• If your experience is cancelled you will be rescheduled by the provider

• Please dress appropriately, the tour operates in open water

• The vessel motion may cause discomfort to those who are affected by motion sickness

Dress Code

• Warm layers are recommended as the temperature can vary throughout the day and drop in the evening

• As the vessel is open, you are recommended to wear clothing that may get wet, including shoes

• Sun Hat or Beanie

• Sunglasses

• Wind / Spray Jacket

• Safety equipment including life jackets will be supplied by the operator

What to Bring

• Only a very small bag, waterproof is better

• Re-useable water bottle

• Snacks, energy drinks

• Hand Towel

• Camera / Go Pro

• Seasickness remedies

 

Getting There

 

By Car

From Melbourne you’ll need to drive around 90 minutes south to Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsula (allow 2 hours in summer, sometimes longer). Once you’re in Sorrento, you should park near the ferry terminal. Make your way to the Sorrento Pier (at the end of the Esplanade).

By Ferry

From Queenscliff, catch the Sorrento-Queenscliff ferry towards Sorrento and once arrived, make your way to the Sorrento Pier (at the end of the Esplanade).

On Foot

Walk to the main Sorrento ferry pier and look for our vessel, Kavorca,

Sorrento Pier address:

Esplanade, Sorrento VIC 3943

*On Google Maps make your way to the pin-drop for WaterMaarq

 

The excursion includes:

• 90-minute scenic wildlife tour aboard a rigid inflatable boat

• Personalised experience for maximum 12 guests

• Local professional guide and expert commentary

• Insights into the local historical and environmental significance

• Safety briefings

• Opportunity to see migrating seasonal wildlife including Shy Albatross, Humpback Whales and Common Dolphins

Sightseers can see Australian Gannets, Shearwaters, Seals and the rich interior within the Bay, including glimpses of Ramsar wetland site, Mud Island. Discover the bay from a local’s perspective.

 

Activities

 

  • Purpose built high speed eco vessel
  • Jockey style comfort seating
  • Full open vessel for unobstructed views
  • Guided activities
  • Qualified and experienced guides
  • Amazing photo opportunities
  • Tailored experience for small groups of 12 guests

Other Inclusions:

• Parks Victoria use fees

 

Not Included:

 

  • Accommodation Pick-up / Drop Offs
  • Meals
  • In-water activities, this is a scenic tour only
  • Toilet facilities are not always available aboard the vessel, please prepare accordingly

 

 

CANCELLATION:

· If cancelled within 7 days of the scheduled starting date of the booking, a 50% cancellation fee will required by the company or individual

· If within 24 hours of the scheduled starting date of the booking, a 100% cancellation fee will be required by the company or individual. A cancellation fee will be based on the full cost of the booking at time of purchase

· Refunds are not available for bookings made via tour agents or third party tour booking providers.

 

Important Things You Should Know

• Children must be accompanied by an adult

• Children must be at least 5 years old to join the tour

• Please note that the minimum height overrules the age for safety reason

• Minimum height: 1.00 m

• Maximum weight: 110 kg

• It is highly recommended that you wear warm clothing and clothing that you don’t mind getting wet, including shoes

• Confirmation will be received at time of booking

• Subject to favorable weather conditions. If canceled due to poor weather, you will be given the option of an alternative date or full refund

• Minimum numbers apply. There is a possibility of cancellation after confirmation if there are not enough passengers to meet requirements. In the event of this occurring, you will be offered an alternative or full refund

Medical Conditions

• Not recommended for participants with heart complaints or other serious medical conditions

• Not recommended for participants with back problems

• Not recommended for pregnant women

Accessibility

Not suitable.

 

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Boutique luxurious accommodation in Sorrento, VIC