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pen ink well goldA note from Dom  ... Focus on Whales

The sheer immensity of these animals creates a palpitating heartbeat.   Their intriguing behavior patterns, the eerie sound of their singing, the outrageous photo ops   ...  & the fact that most of the trips are for divers & non-divers alike  ...  translated to aquatic opportunities not to be missed !

Humpback Whales of the Silver Bank

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Humpbacks in the Caribbean  ... liveaboard options
Silver Bank, Dominican Republic ....  end of January to end of March every year

There are multiple hot-spots around the globe for observing humpback whales but we have carefully chosen operations where you can easily & safely swim with them .... and just as importantly, where the animals are protected and respected.  Read about the Silver Bank in the Caribbean by clicking the button below .... and about Tonga and Socorro in the following articles on this page.


Resounding popularity

This fabulous destination for swimming with humpbacks lies in a Marine Sanctuary in a region which is called the Silver Bank - an area 1680 square kilometers (about 650 square miles), located north of the Dominican Republic and approximately the same distance from the Turks & Caicos Islands.

The Silver Bank provides a safe wintering haven, from January until April, for a vast majority of the North Atlantic Humpback Whale population who gather here from January through April by the thousands to court, mate, calve, and rear their young.   The banks offer safety and protection to females and their calves until the young are strong enough to make the trip back to the North Eastern U.S. coast.

We work with three operators: Aquatic Adventures, Conscious Breath Adventures and Aggressor offering trips January through March on Sun Dancer II, Turks & Caicos Explorer II & Turks and Caicos Aggressor II.

Also, there are spaces available through 2020 on Aggressor Underwater Photography School weeks.  You can see the schedule on our Aggressor Photo Expeditions page.

Continue reading for quick overviews of the programs and see trips with available spaces here.

Then, certainly, don't hesitate to contact us for additional details or to book.


Belize Aggressor IV

Departures from January through March or early April
See trips with available spaces in 2019 & beyond
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Another group we highly recommend for these encounters is Conscious Breath Adventures. Their trips are on the lovely & spacious Belize Aggressor IV.  Not only do these trips receive rave reviews, Gene is a force to be reckoned with in the world of whale conservation.

In any of the encounters here in the Silver Bank, participants may use mask, snorkel and fins; but no SCUBA or rebreather equipment of any type is allowed.   Because it is snorkeling-only, the experience of swimming with the humpback whales is open to participants of all skill levels.   By entering the water quietly and floating peacefully as a group, the participants minimize any disturbance to the whales and then allow the whale to choose to approach or not.

It is an encounter in their environment, on their terms.  You may never have more supreme moments in the water ....

Your home away from home on this adventure will be the Belize Aggressor IV. At 138 feet (42m) in length, with a beam of 26 feet (8m) she is the largest vessel to travel to the Silver Bank.

Daily excursions to encounter the humpback whales are conducted aboard our two purpose-built whale boats, Pec & Fluke.   They are each 25′ (7.5m) fiberglass boats, with a wide 9′ (2.75m) beam that offers a stable ride to the guests.    Built for open water, each boat has an unsinkable, foam flotation filled hull and twin four stroke outboard engines. Having twin engines adds safety and dependability, and because they are four stroke, they are quiet and have low emissions.

Belize Aggressor IV details


Turks & Caicos Aggressor II

The lovely Turks and Caicos Aggressor II is always an excellent choice for swimming with humpback whales at the Silver Bank.

Departures from January through March or early April
See trips with available spaces in 2019 & beyond
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The Turks & Caicos Aggressor II has two 17 ft. long by 7 ft. wide, aluminum V-hull boats with 18 " pontoons that hold 11 people in each one. They are fitted with a dive ladder for easy exiting, a full-length bimini top for sun protection, 2 50 hp 4-stroke Yamaha engines for extra safety and a VHF radio.

Inflatables (with bimini tops) are launched several times daily and are solely used to bring you closer to the whales.   Inflatable runs last one and a half to three hours depending on the proximity of whale activity and time of day.

During your week with the whales you will have the opportunity to observe then at close range .... both from above-the-water viewings and "soft" in-water encounters.

You'll see them spin and play, hear their haunting songs resonating through the water and sense the power and grace of some of the most intelligent mammals on earth - it’s a life-changing experience!

All whale charters depart from Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.

Turks & Caicos Aggressor II details


Turks & Caicos Explorer II

Departures from January through March or early April
See trips with available spaces in 2019 & beyond
Search in Turks & Caicos

In January of each year, the Turks & Caicos Explorer II begins its trek following humpback whales migrating south, and spends the following 11 weeks (through the end of March) on the Silver Banks, 80 miles to the north of Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.

You can join Humpback Whale expert Tom Conlin of Aquatic Adventures for one of his unique "Whales of the Silver Bank" expeditions.  He's been working with these whales for more than 25 years.

Snorkelers have the rare opportunity, not watch from a crowded tour boat, but actually enter the water and swim with majestic humpback whales while they fulfill an instinctual migrating ritual before the inquisitive eyes of visiting snorkelers. It's incredible!

These special itineraries offer up to 18 lucky guests the opportunity to spend a week both topside and in the water (snorkel only), experiencing the majesty of these incredible creatures.  And, Tom loves transmitting the knowledge he's gained over all of these years, so you'll benefit from both his hard work and his passion.

The M/V Turks & Caicos Explorer II is a 124 ft. vessel with a 22 ft. beam that sleeps 20 passengers. Comfortable, spacious and luxurious, the liveaboard adds the final touch to an extraordinary adventure.

Due to Tom Conlin's popularity, these trips fill exceedingly quickly each year. If you're interested, don't hesitate!

Turks & Caicos Explorer II details

LOOKING FOR PHOTO TIPS ?

Consider one of our Photo Expeditions ....
special trips with professional photographers to help and guide you to improve your photo quality ....

RS Photographer Shooting Kicking