Orcas, dolphins, and eagles all gather along Johnstone Strait to snack on fish that converge at this narrows between Vancouver Island and a series of tightly clustered islands.
From Port McNeill, Mackay Whale Watching Ltd., 1514 Broughton Blvd. (tel. 877/663-6722 or 250/956-9865; www.whaletime.com), offers daily tours to Johnstone Strait on a 17m (56-ft.) passenger cruiser with hydrophone. A 4- to 5-hour trip costs C$105.
Seasmoke Tours/Sea Orca Expeditions (tel. 800/668-6722 in B.C., or 250/974-5225; www.seaorca.com) offers whale-watching sailing trips from Alert Bay from June to September. You can also arrange to be picked up from the Alder Bay Resort on Vancouver Island (tel. 250/956-4117; www.alderbayresort.com), convenient if you don't want to make the ferry crossing to Alert Bay. Excursions aboard a 13m (43-ft.), hydrophone-equipped sailboat include tea and scones. Five-hour tours cost C$95. Seasmoke also offers tour/lodging packages at two bungalows on Alert Bay.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.