Visitors Book & Reviews

Been on our boat we would appreciate it if our visitors could leave us a small whale watching review on the experience and service received form Ivanhoe Sea Safaris

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Surprised

★★★★★
Used these guys after much recommendation from TA users. Surprised that there weren't too many reviews. Got in touch with them through their website and they were extremely helpful and very quick in answering my queries. Booked it by email and paid them when we got there. They do 2 to 3 trips a day but it is weather dependent. The boat is a reasonable size with toilet on board. We saw numerous whales on our trip. The boat goes near the whales but not close enough to touch and the whales approach the boat rather than the boat chasing which i guess must be good for whales. Overall can thoroughly recommend these guys if you want to do whale watching in Gansbaai.
- Dselvan

Fully recommend the trip

★★★★★
Fully recommend the trip, once in a life time experience! Amazing gentle giants..... Top marks to the crew for looking after us so well.
- Mark Combrinkt

This is what we had come to see

★★★★★
I can’t promise you that we’ll actually see them,” Jason said. We nodded our understanding and climbed aboard the motorboat, cameras tucked safely in a rug-sack. Just in case. We had been out with Jason and his boat Ivanhoe several times before in Gansbaai, South Africa. As we launched from the pier, we reminisced about a previous trip to Dyer Island where we witnessed a shark leap out of the shallows and snatch an unsuspecting seal sunning on the rocks. It was a sight to behold, but this time we weren’t here for the sharks. The wind was calm but picked up once we motored out of the harbor and headed northwest along the coast towards Hermanus. Jason had his camera handy as the pilot slowed Ivanhoe down and turned the motor off. Then we all looked out across the sea and waited. Nothing. But Jason and his team do this almost everyday and knew what to do next. The pilot started up the motor and we cruised a bit further along the coast. And that's when we saw them — a small pod of whales that had come to calve and mate. This is what we had come to see.
- Armand Dijcks

Brilliant whales

★★★★☆
fantastic crue would recommend
- James Norris

tremendous close up encounters

★★★★★
We have been visiting the Cape to celebrate my wife's 60th birthday, at a time of illness. Her great desire was to see and be close to the whales. Michelle, Jason and team were fantastic in ensuring that this happened. We went out two days running, and each experience was very different, as was the weather. Everything was professional, and really friendly, and the crew went to great lengths to help my wife on and off the boat, and to ensure that with limited mobility the boat was positioned for her to see the whales. The enthusiasm of the team and personal interest added immensely to such a memorable experience. We had tremendous close up encounters with inquisitive southern rights, which swam around and under us, from every direction. Our first trip gave us the experience of a group of five, while an individual came closer and was the more inquisitive on our second day. The photos we obtained are stunning, and those on the Ivanhoe Facebook page are a bonus. One of the best, if not the best, wildlife encounters in 30 years in Africa. Did you know that whales have bad breath, and that the oily spray from the blowhole can really mess up your lens! Thank you guys, and I would not hesitate to recommend your operation to anybody - excellent value all around. Peter & Jutta
- Peter Jackson

super crew

★★★★★
We were the only two guests on our tour (11-13.30 clock). Get super crew, information about the whales and maintained respect for the animals. We saw a lot of whales from up close. A highlight of our holiday in South Africa
- Sandra V

Ivanhoe are great

★★★★★
This is an experienced team who know exactly what they are doing, are obviously concerned about the well being of the great sea creatures we are going to see, and make the whole whale watching experience really worthwhile... This reviewer has been on the Ivanhoe boat for the 4th time now and will definitely be coming back for more. The trip starts at 11:00 am from Gaansbai and lasts about 3 hours in Walkers Bay. If you're lucky you will also see Great White Sharks. You can whale watch from the shoreline... but it's not until your are in the water next to them that you really appreciate the experience.
- derekandsabine

the staff friendly

★★★★★
a nice excursion from the port of gansbaai to see the whales. austral winter of the sea in this area is frequented by thousands of southern right whales. it is the southern right whale a whale from 15 to 18 meters long and weighing up to 50/60 tons. are peaceful animals and onlookers who often approach boats. and so it was in our caso.ne have seen many, and some almost "touch". a wonderful experience. Ivanohe the boat is sufficiently spacious and comfortable, the staff friendly. definitely recommend this team
- Stefano

enjoyable experiences

★★★★★
My wife and I went out on Ivanhoe with our 4 children between 7 and 3. We had close interactions with several groups of whales and a school of dolphins. It was wonderful to hear and see these creatures in their own waters. The ship is comfortable and was operated by the owner and an equally able partner. Ivanhoe is a family-run business so friendly, personal service is no problem. They are very conscientious of the weather and will reschedule based on sea conditions. Even though rescheduling can be disappointing, it shows their commitment to safety and good experience for customers. They also went out their way to find and reserve a shark diving trip at last minute. Ivanhoe and shark diving at Gansbaai were at the top of our long list of enjoyable experiences in the Western Cape.
- SeanB

I would recommend the trip

★★★★★
We went with our 2 children (2 and 5), on a sunny calm day, the team is so friendly , its a family business and our daughter was with their daughter piloting the boat with the Captain daddy. We saw a lot of whales and dolphins, it was like going on holiday! we also had snacks and water and lollipops for the kiddies. I would recommend the trip and thanks Michelle et her team for such a great experience
- Indiasophia

professional yet sensitive approach

★★★★★
We were a little sceptical as to what we might encounter but were at once highly impressed with the professional yet sensitive approach of the boat crew to the many whales we did encounter The boat is well equipped and made possible some "to die for" sightings All the team including the land based crew who took our booking added immeasurably to the pleasure of this, albeit not inexpensive, trip. Very highly recommend this family run business operating out of Gansbaai harbour Really worth every rand!!!
- GreenSEssex

beautifull experience

★★★★★
We had a beautifull experience with this safari. Luckily the sea was calm with light swell. A very capable crew tells the guests all about the whales and approaches them with respect. We saw almost 10 whales on our two hour plus trip and got a group of dolphins as nice extra. Woww effect when you hear a whale breathing out so close. Tip for a nice place to stay is 'on the rocks' b&b just around the corner with a breath taking sea view and friendly hosts.
- Dick H

close encounters

★★★★★
We chose Ivanhoe because of their smaller group sizes. We have been on many whale watches and our priority was a small group tour that didn’t crowd the boat. Michele was great with answering our questions when we first contacted Ivanhoe. She kept us updated with weather conditions and was helpful with rescheduling our tour due to bad weather. Our tour had a small group of people and the boat was very comfortable for everyone. The sea was fairly calm so it was easy to hear the whales spouting. Their exhalation is really amazing when they are close to the boat. We saw several mother/calf pairs including a calf that breached several times. Ivanhoe offered us exactly what we were hoping for - an intimate small group experience with close encounters of the Southern Right Whales.
- BuffeloSunshine

second whale watching experience

★★★★★
This was our second whale watching experience this month and there was truly NO comparison. We had a miserable time on the overcrowded boat with Southern Right Charters but Ivanhoe provided us with an experience that we will remember positively our whole lives. From the moment I contacted Michelle, I knew we were going to have a good experience. Michelle was friendly and professional and gave us ample notice when our Saturday trip was going to be cancelled due to weather and worked with us to reschedule on Sunday. Their boat holds 40 people including the crew but our skipper, Jason, said they never take more than 25 adults out at a time. This makes for such a pleasurable experience. People aren't climbing over each other trying to get a look at the whales. You can EASILY move from side to side or front to back of the boat to get a perfect view of the magnificent creatures. Another thing that really impressed me about Ivanhoe was that when the whales had satisfied their curiosity and moved on, Jason said "okay, folks. we don't chase our whales...we like to leave them in a good mood so let's go find some others." I loved that they respected the whales whilst still giving us a wonderful experience. The other gentleman on the crew (I feel bad that I didn't get his name) made us feel welcome and offered us water throughout the trip. To me, it really seemed as if each person associated with Ivanhoe actually loved what they were doing as opposed to just looking at is as a "job." Make the trip to Gansbaai instead of Hermanus and have access to places only Ivanhoe is able to go. It is SO worth it!
- Azhootie

Mr

★★★☆☆
Amazing
- Ali

6 days ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 09 January 2022Yesterday was an epic day out on the Atlantic, with our ocean friend showing off the splendor of our temperate seas. We started off our tour by heading towards the caves of De Kelders noticing thousands of terns heading out to sea.Terns are a major indicator that they may be fish moving through the bay, so we watched as they fluttered by and took note of which direction, they were flying to follow them a little later on. We stopped at the drip kelders, Duiwelsgat and Klipgat cave before moving into deeper waters in search of the birds we’d left earlier in the day. We found an army of Cape Fur Seals cruising though the bay, all in search of a meal. We then spotted what we were hoping to see, a flock of terns circling above some disturbed water.On approach, we were delighted to discover a mega pod of Common Dolphins feeding. Initially, we caught up with some of the scouts before catching up with the main pod! They travelled with us for a bit before carrying on in their bid to herd the fish. The pod started out super scattered but eventually all joined together to form a beautiful cohesive form. We loved travelling with this group and spotting all the little babies in between the lightning-fast adults!We also had a variety of seabirds joining in on the feast, with Sooty Shearwaters, Arctic Skuas and a variety of Tern species all trying their best to feed in amongst the dolphins. live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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1 week ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Big 5 Sea Safari Weekly Trips and Combo SpecialsNext Trip according to current forecast!Sunday 9th-Jan – 10am and 1pmMonday 10th-Jan – CLOSED High Westerly WindsTuesday 11th-Jan – CLOSED High Westerly WindsWednesday 12th-Jan – 10am ONLY unless forecast improvesThursday/Friday CLOSED Bad WeatherOpen again on Sunday the 15th-Jan2hr - Big 5 Sea Safari - SA SpecialAdults R600Children 6-12 R300Infants FreeSpecies we are targeting are: - Bryde's Whale, Dolphin, Seal, Penguin and Marine Bird-life.https://whaleviewing.co.za/online-bookings/For an awesome combo-special we have teamed up with Afrikanos for a Nile Crocodile Experience!Enjoy a 2hr Big 5 Sea Safari, 45Min Guided Croc Tour, a thin based Pizza to die for, and a locally produced beer.2hr - Big 5 Sea Safari 10am or 1pm – Croc Combo SA Special45Min Guided Croc TourPizzaDrinkAdults R800Children 6-12 R400Infants Freehttps://whaleviewing.co.za/big-5-sea-safari-and-croc-tour-combo/#Afrikanos #whalewatching #seals #wildlife #Gansbaai #hermanus ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 04 January 2022We had the most amazing time out on the Atlantic today, spotting A Brydes Whale, African Penguins, Cape Fur Seals and a mega pod of Common Dolphins!We started off our trip cruising through the bay in search of wildlife, catching up with a Brydes Whale in the middle of the bay. This loner was slowly travelling along in search of food and we got to see the whale come up several times before we decided to see what else the ocean had in store.Next up, we found 3 very relaxed little African Penguins who gave us some great views before we moved on towards Danger Point. Lots of white water gave way the presence of over 1000 Common Dolphins making their way through the bay, much to our delight!We then spent the rest of our tour in awe of these ocean wanderers as they leaped out in the water in search of lunch.Follow this link to live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 03 January 2022Yesterday, we did our first two tours for the year! We are lucky to have a couple of Brydes Whales about in the bay at the moment, and spotted these mysterious creatures on both tours. We also got to see some African Penguins after a long absence from our tours! The Cape Cormorants were feeding all throughout our time at sea and some Swift Terns dotted the sky as we travelled along. We also had an exciting sight where we found a Cape Fur Seal with a tag on its flipper, number 003 tagged at the Two Oceans Aquarium! Follow this link to live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 31 December 2021We spent Old Years Eve in the best possible way, cruising around Walker Bay in search of all of our favorite sea creatures! We were lucky enough to have a pod of Common Dolphins sticking around in the bay, and we caught up with them on both of our tours. We started off the first tour of the day with a sighting of the Trans Aghulhas Boat race, the toughest inflatable boat race in the world! The pencil ducks sped past us on their way to Hermanus as we made our way to the caves of De Kelders. After stopping at the caves, we set out into the deep where we had a look our for any signs of life, eventually spotting some Terns flittering about in the distance.The Terns gave away the presence of our beautiful Common Dolphins, who were enjoying a New Years feast below. We watched in the state of awe that this species always inspires, as they went about their hunt. Teeny tiny babies popped up next to their moms as other dolphins jumped and chased each other about, making for an awesome sight. We then spent some time at our Cape Fur Seal colony before heading back to the harbour.On the second tour we set out intent on finding the Commons once more and were rewarded when we spotted a smaller group which had broken away from the larger pod. We travelled with them as they led the way back to the bigger aggregation, and we enjoyed every moment spent with these incredible creatures. Follow this link to live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 30 DecemberWe had two trips yesterday, with a massive baitball blessing us with some incredible sights.Our first tour of the day launched at 1pm and saw us heading into slightly deeper waters to steer clear of the swell that was hanging around after some westerly wind. We started the trip of with a sighting of a Seal eating an Octopus, and then did some travelling about to see what was happening in our bay. We then spotted some Terns and decided to approach, as this is the best way to find other sea life! we were rewarded, with a ton of Cape Fur Seals, hundreds of Terns, an Arctic Skua and some Cape Cormorants all feeding in unison! We got one or two quick views of a Brydes Whale, but it was the mega pod of Common Dolphins that really stole the show.We were lucky enough to find these dolphins on trip 2 too! We had many extremely excited guests on board, which only added to the splendor and extreme joy of the moment! We watched and watched as the dolphins hunted and traveled with us. We spotted babies and a couple of different bird species as the young, budding biologists on board soaked up every movement and every fact that we happily offered out. A Giant Petrel flew by, an Arctic Skua chased our terns, with Commons, Sandwich and the Swifter of this family all littering the sky and providing the soundtrack for the dolphins feast. We then stopped by our Cape Fur Seal colony where we got to see one of our naughty little pups climbing out the water, something he should be nowhere near at his young age!Follow this link to live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Ivanhoe Sea Safaris
Trip Diary – 28 DecemberWe had 3 incredible trips on Tuesday, spotting dolphins on all 3 of our tours! We started off the day cruising along the caves before heading into the deep where we spotted a stunning pod of Common Dolphins close to Danger Point. The pod was on the move, travelling fast and leaping out in synchronization, much to the delight of all onboard. Common Dolphins have the ability to leave one completely starstruck and judging by the reactions on board, they really lived up to this reputation during this incredible sighting. We then set off to watch our seal colony before heading back towards the harbour. We were also lucky to spot 2 Ocean Sunfish on this tour, with some brilliant views of the second strange looking bony fish on the way back.The second tour of the day showed off the ocean at her best. We travelled throughout the entire bay before stopping at our seal colony to have a look out for our pups, with the deep water yielding no signs of life. As we were hanging out with our seals, one of our eagle eyed clients spotted a pod of Bottlenose Dolphins, who gave us an awesome show as they travelled along with us and did a couple of full body breaches. We spotted these dolphins at the very last minute, really bringing home the fact that when out at sea, nothing is ever guaranteed, but nothing is impossible either. We managed to catch up with the same group of dolphins on trip 3, with one particularly animal doing several summersaults for us, a rare an wonderful sight that captured all of our hearts. We then went on to our seal colony where we spotted 2 of our seal pups who had been in hiding on the earlier tours before spotting not one, not 2 but 5 Brydes Whales in the middle of the bay. Follow this link to live track some of our Southern Right Whales as they head back to the feeding grounds: https://www.mammalresearchinstitute.science/whale-unit...082 926 7977 (Send us a WhatsApp to book your tour :))info@whaleviewing.co.zawww.whaleviewing.co.zaFollow us on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ivanhoeseasafaris/Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Here: https://bit.ly/3lZVrrl ... See MoreSee Less
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