In late March 2019, up to 20,000 migrating gray whales will start their northbound voyage back to Alaska. Visitors and locals will have a special opportunity to spot them as they pass the Oregon Coast. Even though the peak travel time is in March, migrating whales can be spotted off our coast well into the summer months.
A family trip to the Oregon Coast during Whale Watching Week is the perfect way to spend Spring Break. Hundreds of Whale Watching Spoken Here® volunteers will be available from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. at 26 whale-watching locations along on the coast the week of March 23rd - 31st, 2019. These trained volunteers will help visitors spot the migrating whales and other marine life along our coast and learn more about them.
It’s estimated that 18,000-plus gray whales now live in the eastern north Pacific area. An average of six (6) whales per hour migrate past the Oregon coast during the peak northbound migration, but that return trip is spread over four months. About 200 of these whales drop off the migration route and feed along the Oregon coast all summer.
Though the Oregon Coast offers many spectacular viewing spots, Shore Acres State Park, located 15 miles southwest of Coos Bay, is perhaps one of our favorites. Use this map to help plan your next whale watching trip. When you go, be sure to bring your binoculars and dress in layers! We also recommend visiting the kid-friendly marine exhibits at Charleston Marine Life Center, part of the OIMB - The Oregon Institute of Marine Biology or hike the trails at South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve along with many other family-friendly activities along the Oregon Coast.