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This Is Northern New South Wales

Kings of the Sea

After falling in love Whales, these beautiful creatures that pass by our shores every Winter, I felt like I just had to get to know them a little better, so I headed to Tonga.

Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) have migrated back to the waters of the Kingdom of Tonga, and in early September I undertook my own migration North to jump in the ocean and spend some time with these gentle giants.

The objective of this trip was to observe, learn about and photograph Southern Hemisphere Humpback Whales during their winter breeding and calving season in the waters surrounding the Vava’u island group.

The past couple of weeks have been crazy-hectic. In the best possible way, of course.

So much has happened that it’s impossible to relate everything, but in short…there were lots of whales, more whales, and even more whales. And then more. Plus more. It is difficult to explain the power of such an experience – humbling, awe inspiring and overwhelming are just three phrases which spring immediately to mind. In the short time these magnificent creatures welcomed me into their world, I gained a deeper appreciation for their intelligence and gentle nature.

I’ve decided to let the pictures do the talking and have selected a series of some of my favourite images from the past two weeks, in the hope that you can also enjoy their beauty.

This trip was by far the best photographic assignment I have ever experienced, and the interaction offered by these beautiful creatures far exceeded any expectations that I had when I set off on the journey.

Words and Images by Craig Parry