Beluga whale safari

Spotting belugas from the floe edge, your guide magically whips out Arctic snorkelling gear and you scramble to get changed as quickly and quietly as possible. You slowly lower yourself into the wild Arctic waters ignoring the butterflies in your stomach as you admire the playfully elegant creatures gliding through the water. They begin to come closer, intrigued by your presence and you start to realise what all the fuss is about when it comes to swimming with whales.

We are experienced in creating whale watching holidays and highly skilled in getting you to the right place at the right time to experience the beluga whales, having scoured for the best areas and guides. Beluga whale watching will usually be on one of our polar bear safari holidays and can include a variety of other activities as well. The opportunities are nearly endless and there is something available for everyone, whether you are an experienced diver, novice snorkeller, or prefer to admire these beautiful creatures from afar.

Snorkelling with belugas is just one of the ways in which you can experience these wonderful animals. Watch from your expedition ship, or even from a small plane as they swim in unison close to the ocean surface, watch from the shore, or from a dinghy.

Expert view: Jessica tiffin

Belugas have the uncanny ability to almost replicate recognisable emotions, seeing them in the wild waters is often an unexpected highlight of an Arctic adventure.

My favourite trip to see beluga whales is our birds, bears and belugas safari - you can see polar bears on it too.

the beluga whale

These small, toothed whales are known for their unique colouring, along with their distinct shape, including a rather prominent forehead, making them easily recognisable. One of two species in the family Monodontidae, alongside the narwhal, they are social animals, hanging out in pods of different sizes, ranging from two to twenty five. Pods often join together to migrate, creating spectacular amounts of white whales all in one place, reaching number of up to 10,000. Enemies of the beluga include hunters, polar bears and orcas. 

Born brown, their skin gradually lightens as they age, reaching the famous pure white colour at about seven years of age. Calves are born at a size of about 4-5 feet, and will swim instinctively to the surface within 10 seconds to take their first breath. Belugas are relatively slow in the water, usually swimming at a leisurely pace of two to six miles per hour. 

Beluga songs are used to communicate with other belugas and help them to locate prey, breathing holes in ice sheets, and to navigate deep, dark water. The melon (the round area seen at the top of their head) of the beluga, thought to be used in echolocation, actually changes shape during these vocalisations, seemingly at will.

Belugas are very vocal, making a range of sounds including clicks, whistles, and chatter, that can often be heard above the water.

Why book with us

We are destination specialists

Our team of specialists have extensive on-the-ground knowledge and have all lived, guided or explored in great detail the destinations that they sell. They will design your journey around you, at the right place at the right time.

We are wildlife specialists

As a leading specialist operator we have excellent partnerships with naturalists and conservationists. We know our wildlife and do what we can to preserve its natural habitat.

We really care about our destinations

At Natural World Safaris we frequently monitor the social, economic and environmental impact of our travel operations to ensure we are at the forefront of a sustainable and ethical tourism industry. 


Our whale safari experts know everything there is to know about seeing them in the wild. Get in touch to find out more and start designing your journey.

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