Whale watching is an incredible experience – you get the chance to be up close and personal with orcas in their natural habitat and the chances of seeing them breach and swim next to you because they actually want to is something that you will treasure forever.

Of course, this is all by chance – you can’t guarantee that you’ll see anything, it’s all luck! And for these unfortunate whale watchers, luck definitely wasn’t on their side…

A boat load of tourists went whale watching off the coast of Sydney during the animals’ annual winter migration from the south to the north and were excited to potentially see some beautiful animals.

However, just as a humpback whale breached just a couple of metres away from their boat – they completely missed it because they were ALL facing the wrong way!

Image Source: Caters

Image Source: Caters

Luckily for us, photographer, John Goodridge, managed to capture the spectacle. He told Metro:

‘They were all looking the wrong way because about eight minutes before the whale had breached on the other side of the boat and they were waiting for it to come up again.

I have been photographing whales more seriously now for about a year and you get used to the way they move and where they will come up again. It might have breached one place eight minutes ago but in that time underwater it could have swum away.’

Image Source: Caters

Image Source: Caters

Even though the unfortunate tourists didn’t quite catch a glimpse at the humpback whale that close to them, at least they did spot one earlier on in their trip.

Since the beauty was so close to the boat, they were actually extremely lucky that there wasn’t an accident since the whale was vastly larger than the vessel they were travelling in.


There are thousands of humpback whales that migrate to the Eastern Australian coastline from the cold waters of Antarctica to the tropics so we can safely assume that there will be plenty more chances at spotting the magnificent animals!