O'Brien's Whale and Bird Tours

O'Brien's Whale and Bird Tours

Boat Tours • Dolphin & Whale Watching • Nature & Wildlife Tours
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9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Voted Best Boat Tour by Newfoundlanders! O'Brien's Whale and Bird Tours is a family owned and operated business that has been offering Award Winning Boat Tours for over 30 years, in Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador (just 30 minutes from St. John's). Cruise with us to the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve, home to the largest Atlantic Puffin colony in North America (1/2 a million) and millions of other seabirds. Enjoy a spectacular performance by Humpback Whales as they frolic, breach and pectoral fin slap right before your very eyes. A show not to be missed! Breathe in the fresh ocean air as you sail past 10,000 year old icebergs. Come for the whales, countless seabirds and Newfoundland charm. Come to experience our rugged coastline and enjoy the famous O'Brien's hospitality. Ride in comfort during this two hour tour aboard our new custom built passenger vessels. The boat features a fully enclosed heated cabin with panoramic viewing, canteen, bar and restrooms. Ample rail space (upper and lower deck) providing picture perfect views for everyone! Wheelchair accessible. Daily departures May through September. Visit our website for tour times and rates. We also offer a Coastal Adventure Tour: For the more adventurous hop aboard the Kingfisher for a more intimate experience of the ocean, while getting a whale's eye view of our ruggedly beautiful coastline. Enjoy the fresh ocean air as you sail alongside breathtaking sea stacks, caves and cascading waterfalls. When conditions permit, explore the unique natural phenomenon known locally as the Spout, a natural wave-powered geyser. In season you could see Bald Eagles and Humpback Whales. Experience nature so close you can almost reach out and touch it!
Bay Bulls, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
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Awards
Travellers' Choice
2022

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O'Brien's Whale and Bird Tours
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Travellers talk about
(180 reviews)
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

5.0
1,511 reviews
Excellent
1,367
Very good
114
Average
22
Poor
6
Terrible
2

skierpro
Toronto, Canada50 contributions
Sep. 2022
Such an amazing experience! We went on the last tour of the season and we didn't how lucky we'd be. The weather was cooperative so the captain managed to give us some pretty unforgettable adventures exploring the beautiful coastline of Newfoundland. The guide and all the staff are so incredibly entertaining and fantastic! We even managed to experience a rare sighting of a leatherback sea turtle. Amazing experience- highly recommended.
Written October 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Barbara H
1 contribution
Sep. 2022
My husband and I took the O'Brien Tour and enjoyed it thoroughly. Although we did not see any whales, as it was too late in the season, we did see some incredible rock formations that just took our breath away. The crew were friendly and full of fun. They really made the trip. We got "screeched in". It was such a good time!
Written September 29, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Alex S
1 contribution
Sep. 2022
Although I can appreciate the effort put in by the Tour Guide despite choppy waters. We were unable to see absolutely any of the items listed on the website:

“Enjoy the fresh ocean air as you sail alongside breathtaking sea stacks, caves, and cascading waterfalls. When conditions permit, explore the unique natural phenomenon known locally as the Spout, a natural wave-powered geyser.”

Due to the conditions, we were taken around the two big rock formations which is part of the basic boat tour priced at only $70 vs. the $110 per head charged for Kingfisher tour that we had signed up for. If the company is unable to provide the experience of the more expensive tour, it is unfair to charge the additional cost. I understand a full refund would be unjustifiable as they still took us out, but at the least should offer some consideration if they are unable to follow through on their marketed attractions entirely.

Don’t waste your money on the more expensive tour. Basic one will give you the same experience & is probably better since you can easily take photos on a larger boat.
Written September 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Tracey
Guelph, Canada2 contributions
Sep. 2022 • Couples
The boat tour we took with O'Brien's was exceptional. Even though we went near the end of the seaaon and didn't see any whales or puffins, we really enjoyed the geological tour!! Very informative and learned lots. The Stagg are very knowledgeable and love to hear a good time, always singing and making jokes. We did get to see some jelly fish which was really neat. I would highly recommend this tour!
Written September 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi Tracey, Great shots! So glad to hear you enjoyed your time with us, thank you very much for joining us! :)
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Siv W
Southern Norway, Norway14 contributions
Sep. 2022
I was visiting Canada for the first time, from Norway, travelling with my mum and sister. We knew we were a little late for actually whalewatching, but that didnt matter. We saw 2 finns and that was exciting to try to chase the whales🤗 it was great seeing the beautifull coastline, and learn about the puffins. The crew had lots of knowledge about the variety of birds, nice singing and good piloting the boat. And, as always I love chatting with strangers, and had fun talking with some lovely ladies from Ottawa.
Our pick up driver was a hoot, trying to teach us newfie expressions🤭
All in all a great tour, highly recommend. Fresh sea air is always a good thing🥰
Written September 25, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi, So happy to hear you enjoyed your experience on board with us as well as the shuttle ride to and from your hotel! On behalf of our entire crew - thank you! :)
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

NAandGA
Dorset, Canada7 contributions
Sep. 2022
We knew booking a tour in September would negate seeing icebergs and puffins, but the tour definitely was not a disappointment. The rock formations along the coast were spectacular.
Captain Joe O'Brien is an excellent seaman and his knowledge on the geology of the area was impressive. Host Cam O'Brien kept us laughing and entertained with his stories and talented singing.
In all, a wonderful experience.
Written September 24, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi, Thank you for your review, we appreciate the feedback! Despite being a little late in the season, we are delighted to hear you enjoyed your time with Captain Joe, Con and the rest of our crew!
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Laura N
1 contribution
Sep. 2022
It was fun and the service from the pickup driver all all the way through the whole tour were great, so friendly and helpful and the scenery is beautiful.
Written September 21, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi Laura, We are delighted to hear you enjoyed your time on board with us. Thank you for joining us. :)
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

emceestet
Toronto, On52 contributions
Sep. 2022
What a great tour! The perfect mix of information, entertainment and gorgeous views. Highly recommend!
Written September 15, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi! Great shots, thank you for sharing with us! We greatly appreciate the kind words. :)
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Diane M
Whitby, Canada54 contributions
Sep. 2022 • Friends
I enjoyed being on the ocean and learning about the different birds and their behaviours. It helped to to watch them and understand what they were doing. The hosts were informative, entertaining and fun. It felt like a Newfoundland experience even some ‘screeching’ was involved. My friend and I are in our 50’s and we enjoyed the experience on the ocean. It is rough in the open water so wearing a windbreaker coats with a hood and windbreaker pants kept us warm in September. We also had binoculars which helped. Hold onto your phones etc. because it would be easy to lose items. Drinking is difficult in the open water area. We brought a lunch to eat by the pier which worked out well however there was a restaurant there and the gift shop had a large variety of tourist items that were well priced and high quality. All of the staff were friendly and helpful.
Written September 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi Diane, Thank you for your feedback - we look forward to hearing from our guests! We are delighted to hear you enjoyed your time on board with us! :)
Written November 4, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

cody M
1 contribution
Sep. 2022 • Couples
Visiting from Ottawa, ON this was a fun experience to do something I eould not normally get to do! Amazing crew! Great time!
Written September 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hi Cody, So glad to hear you had a great time on board, on behalf of our entire crew - thank you!
Written September 19, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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O'BRIEN'S WHALE AND BIRD TOURS (Bay Bulls) - 2022 What to Know BEFORE You Go