Kayak With Whales


Kayak with whales at Vancouver Island base camp

Located in the heart of the wildlife rich waters of Johnstone Strait, off the northeastern corner of Vancouver island, this basecamp kayaking adventure offers the world's best location to get up close with both killer whales and humpback whales. Awake to a humpback whale’s blow only steps from your basecamp, before grabbing your paddle to kayak with a pod of orcas as bald eagles circle above awaiting their next meal. Explore a variety of kayaking routes, suitable for all skill levels, on this four day wildlife adventure at the base camp located on a remote island covered in old growth forest. Guests are treated too comfortable raised tents with wooden beds located in the forest with ocean views. Killer whales and humpback whales regularay pass the camp, often whilst guests are enjoying the mornings first cup of organic coffee or over a dinner of locally caught salmon around the campfire. The mighty mammals are not the only wildlife to be seen in this diverse geographical area. The nearby waters are also home to harbour seals, porpoises, Minke whales and dolphins. This whale watching kayaking adventure will provide life long memories and a truly unique experience.




Day 1:

Arrive into the small port town of Port McNeill this evening and check into your hotel. Your kayaking adventure begins with a pre-trip meeting with your guides in the town, who will provide you with an overview for the trip, distribute dry bags to pack your belongings and discuss the adventure that awaits. This kayaking adventure is perfect for adventurous travellers with little to no experience. Guests have the choice of either single or double fibreglass kayaks, accompanied with lightweight paddles. Waterproof kayaking jackets, personal flotation devices and neoprene kayaking mitts are provided to keep you warm and dry while kayaking.

Day 2:

Awake this morning eager with anticipation of the wildlife viewing that awaits. Meet with your guides and the group early this morning where you will load your equipment onto the water taxi. We can arrange luggage storage for anything you do not want to take on the kayaking trip. Spend around 60 minutes on the water taxi on route to the base camp. Upon arrival your guides will provide a site orientation, plus a kayak and safety briefing, before heading out into the ocean for your first short kayak trip. This first trip allows you to grow accustomed to your kayak, the wilderness setting and get to know your fellow travellers. The afternoon is spent out on the water viewing the diverse wildlife surrounding Vancouver Island and kayaking with the group.

Lunches are usually spent on a secluded beach, returning late each afternoon to the comforts of the base camp. Your hosts are proud of a local, fresh and varied menu that includes an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables, seafood and freshly baked treats.

Staying at: Kayaking Base Camp, BC

Day's 3-4:

The base camp is perfectly situated for exploring the surrounding ocean, offering new experiences and journeys on a daily basis. Your expert guides will lead the adventures, interpreting the natural history of the region, the whales and other wildlife of British Columbia’s coast. It is hard to miss a killer whale’s six foot dorsal fin as it passes your kayak, but your guides also help spot the less obvious sea stars, urchins and anemones in the shallows, educating you about the other whales, seals, porpoises, and dolphins that frequent these waters.

Located on the travel routes of the killer and humpback whales, the basecamp is the perfect spot to sit back with a freshly made organic coffee to watch for the staggering mammals pass by. Grab a pair of binoculars to get a closer look at bald eagles, seabirds and seals that habit the surrounding islands. When killer whales are encountered on the water, your guides will often drop a hydrophone into the water so that you can listen to their vocalizations. No two days kayaking are the same, with your guides planning each day according to weather conditions, wildlife viewing opportunities, and guest interests.

Each day will provide a unique experience, whether that be waking to the sound of a humpback whales blow, kayaking with friendly dolphins or viewing a pod of orcas pass by whilst you enjoy your evening meal.

Day 5:

Your final day begins with a hearty, camp breakfast before heading out for one last paddle with the mighty mammals. An alternative version of this trip is available, where the final day is spent travelling by flat boat boat through Knight Inlet to Glendale Cove to view grizzly bears from the estuary and river.

Enjoy a late lunch, reminiscing about the previous days and breathing in this fabulous location one last time. Transfer to Port McNeill, arriving in the late afternoon. We strongly suggest guests spend a further night in Port McNeill, enjoy a hot shower, and slowly transition out of vacation mode. Guests and guides often get together for a no-host farewell dinner at a local restaurant.

Get in touch with the Magnetic North Travel team for more information about this amazing kayaking trip, which can be tailored for adults or families travelling with children alike. This holiday can be enjoyed as a stand alone trip, as part of a self drive of Vancouver Islands or as part of a grand Canadian adventure.


£1095 per person (based on two people travelling) excluding flights

£1195.00 GBP roughly converts to: 1,374 EUR | 1,565 USD

We accept payment in GBP, USD, EUR and NOK. You will receive a final trip quotation in the currency of your choice. Prices on the website and currency conversions are indicative only.


Price Includes

  • One night at Port McNeill hotel

  • Three nights stay at basecamp

  • Three breakfasts, four lunches and three dinners

  • All Kayaking equipment

  • Transport from Port McNeill


All our trips include:

  • 24/7 emergency line and concierge service

  • Personalised travel documents

  • Exclusive access to our client travel app where you'll find your travel documents, destination guides, maps, practical tips, Arctic Library and pre-trip inspiration  

Price Excludes

  • Optional activities

  • Flights

  • Meals not stated

  • Gratuity

Additional Info


This trip has fixed departure dates

Many of trips can be tailored to your requirements and departure dates. Please get in touch with us for a tailored quotation and details of availability for your preferred travel dates. All trips and departures are subject to availability.


Port Hardy (YZT)

Winter Spring Summer Autumn
3 nights

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