Vancouver Island offers some of the best whale watching opportunities in British Columbia. Our Campbell River whale watching tours cruise deep into the narrow channels and inlets of the Discovery Island Archipelago and Desolation Sound in search of the biggest and most exciting marine wildlife.
Wildlife we see in Campbell River
- Humpback whales
- Bigg’s (transient) killer whales
- Pacific white-sided dolphins
- Steller sea lions
- California sea lions
- Bald eagles
- Harbor seals
- Porpoises (Harbour & Dall’s)
- Black bears
- Grizzly bears
- Colourful sea birds
Pick your favourite Campbell River Whale Watching tour
See why Campbell River is quickly becoming known as a whale watching hotspot on Vancouver Island! This is our most popular family-friendly tour, and takes place on our fun and stable zodiacs. Cruise throughout the Salish Sea and Desolation Sound in search of the biggest and most exciting marine mammals that call this region home. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to stop for breaks at interesting and historical sites in this beautiful area.
Covered Vessel Tour
Cruise deep into the current-swept channels and inlets of the Discovery Islands Archipelago. This tour takes place aboard our covered vessels which have a comfortable indoor seating area and spacious outdoor viewing deck. This tour covers a vast area where we often encounter humpback whales, killer whales, bears, sea lions, seals, dolphins, and a range of colourful sea birds. Join us for this incredible once-in-a-lifetime tour!
Welcome Aboard Big Animal Encounters
Based in Campbell River on beautiful Vancouver Island. We’re a passionate and professional team of wildlife enthusiasts – and we can’t wait to welcome you aboard for the whale watching tour of a lifetime!
Click below to learn more about us and meet our crew.
Would you rather have your own private boat tour?
You’re the admiral we explore Desolation Sound under the towering scenic mountains and current-swept bays. Hire a vessel and crew for the day, and bring your friends and family along for a Campbell River whale watching tour they will not soon forget! Zodiacs and covered vessels available.
Custom and personalized private boat tours for:
- Birthday parties
- Corporate events
- And more!
HOW TO VIEW THE FAMOUS “EAGLE SHOW” THIS YEAR
Be surrounded by hundreds of swooping bald eagles and bubbling tidal rapids. On specific tidal currents near Stuart Island, BC, hundreds of bald eagles migrate to feed on hake fish in the tidal currents. Book our 7 Hour Big Animal Encounter Tour on the special dates posted and witness this incredible natural phenomenon!
What an amazing day!We did the 4 Hour and 7 Hour whale watching trips. We saw orcas, dolphins, porpoise, eagles, seals, and humpbacks. The snacks and hot chocolate were great and the sandwiches were amazing. Jason and Jenn knew the area so well and made the experience amazing. They were so nice and knowledgeable and knew where to go to find everything. I give them my highest recommendation! Thank you so much!!!!
A trip worth taking!I would highly recommend Big Animal Encounters. Bill and all the team there do an excellent job. The boat was in great condition, so was the gear which we were given to wear when onboard. Our skipper ‘Elvis’ was really pleasant and gave a great tour and did his best to ensure we saw as much as possible during the 4hr tour. Overall a great experience. I will definitely be returning for a longer trip next time!!
What Have We Been Seeing? 2023’s Spring Tours
Our 2023 wildlife season has been off to a great start. Our first tour was May 17th and we’ve been out almost every day since.
How To See The Famous “Eagle Show” in 2023
Here’s everything you need to know if you’d like to view the famous Eagle Show near Campbell River, BC. Between May to July in the
Dolphins and Porpoises of Campbell River
Dolphins and porpoises are part of the toothed whale family Odontocete. There are a number of dolphin and porpoise species in British Columbia’s waters, with