16th July 2014- The cruise this morning nearly didn't go ahead as the predicted strong winds were worrying some of the guests. However, we persuaded everyone to at least meet us in the morning and see what it's like. Lucky we did, as the morning provided us with clear skies, flat seas, and still air! We headed out on our usual Cape Recife route to try and spot some humpback whales. As we neared the point we thought a pod of dolphins was surfacing nearby. However, as we got closer we saw that it was actually a family of killer whales (orcas). With one male adult, two female adults, and two juveniles (which is where the dolphin confusion came in as their fins are quite small). As we approached they started playing in the water, doing twists and turns, with tail-slaps and upturned bellies. Eventually the adults moved away but to our delight the younger ones stayed to play around the boat. The water was stunningly clear so we could see right below us as they swam next to the boat. A little later a Cape fur seal appeared and seemingly started playing with the orcas and the boat. Popping up behind them and sticking his little flipper out of the water, almost teasingly. We soon had to leave, so we aren't sure what became of the seal, but hopefully if the adults stayed away he would have left still in tact. Click here to read more of our latest sightings and check out our photos!
Whale Watching in South Africa with Raggy Charters
Welcome to Raggy Charters in combination with the Baywatch Marine Conservation Project, offering expertly guided whale watching and African penguin watching cruises in South Africa.
Funds generated from whale watching boat cruises, African penguin boat cruises and other marine eco-tours with Raggy Charters are used to fund the Baywatch Project and the Penguin Research Fund. Raggy Charters are the only licensed boat-based whale watching permit holder in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. This permit allows us to approach cetaceans up to 50 metres (no one else may approach closer than 300 metres) and if the cetaceans wish to approach closer and are thus in control of the encounter we do not have to move away.
Raggy Charters undertakes regular beach clean-ups in the Port Elizabeth area and has started an initiative to offset our carbon footprint by planting one indigenous tree for every boat cruise we do.
Our wildlife and whale watching boat cruises possibly cover the longest distance of any ocean safari along the South African coast, lasting for 3-4 hours and covering 50km. This provides guests with a better chance of seeing the full array of marine wildlife Algoa Bay has to offer.
Port Elizabeth is a hidden gem in South Africa for whale watching, and other wildlife viewing. With seasonal visits from Southern right whales, humpback whales, and indo-pacific humpback dolphins. We have the largest breeding colony of African penguins in the world right on our doorstep. As well as our other resident species including bottlenose dolphins, common dolphins, bryde's whales, Cape gannets and more. All year round we at Raggy Charters can offer guests some great wildlife viewing experiences in our secret and undisturbed bay.
As far as we are aware we are also the oldest marine eco tour company combined with a conservation project in Africa – since 1992. We are owner run and managed and use the volunteer system to assist in our tours and projects. We specialise in taking tourists, photographers, corporate office party groups, TV crews and marine wildlife enthusiasts on ocean safaris to watch the whales, dolphins, penguins and other natural wonders of Algoa Bay.
Almost all boat cruises are personally led by knowledgeable conservationist, wildlife educator and marine safari specialist Lloyd Edwards, who comes highly recommended by the BBC as your tour guide around the Port Elizabeth coast. Read more about the BBCs work in Port Elizabeth with Lloyd Edwards.
The Safety Authority certified 28-foot and 35-foot catamaran cruisers were specially built for Eastern Cape sea conditions and are licensed to carry 10 and 20 passengers subject to a minimum of 4 passengers (if you are less we will try and fit you in with another group).
Please feel free to book via email, as they will all be personally responded to in order to suit your needs.