The Bay of Samaná is one of the world’s most important meeting grounds for one of the planet’s largest whales. Each year, from January to April, thousands of humpback whales travel from the icy waters of the North Atlantic to the warm waters off the coast of Samaná, on the northeast corner of the Dominican Republic.
During those specific months the north coast waters of the Dominican Republic become the playing ground of these large mammals.
Annually more than 40,000 tourists travel to the region to personally witness these marine mammals during their visit to the bay and surrounding waters. Samaná Bay is one of the meeting points of the planet’s biggest whales. During the months of January to April thousands of humpback whales travel from the icy waters of the North Atlantic to the coast of Samaná. The enormous female whales (known as cows) seek the warm, calm waters of the Caribbean to have their calves. At the same time the males (also known as bulls) mate with the receptive cows that participate in the annual pilgrimage.
The Bay of Samaná is one of the world’s most important places where the humpback whales come together. This is why the north coast waters off Samaná Bay have become a “Marine Mammal Sanctuary”, a protected area established in 1986. It is one of the Dominican Republic’s most visited protected areas, with more than 40,000 tourists visiting the region during the annual pilgrimage. Most of the tours carried out in the region are limited to whale-watching vessels, which mainly operate from the city of Samaná.
Tours are carried out daily during the whale-watching season. Tours can also be contracted from Puerto Plata, the north coast’s most important city. Interested parties can go on tours that last several days and that will take the visitors straight out to the mating grounds. The experience of seeing these giant mammals jump or see how they raise their giant tails from the water is truly impressive. Another poignant experience is watching a cow as she watches over her precious calve.