Go Visit Hawaii’s 8th annual contest to predict the season’s 1st humpback whale sighting

Right now, humpback whales are swimming in the cool, food rich waters of Alaska fueling up for their long journey to Hawaii. Though the peak of the humpback whale season runs from January through March, a few anxious whales can’t wait that long and arrive even sooner. Who can blame them?

The first humpback whale sighting is always an exciting time in Hawaii. Hawaii residents love these winter visitors.

It’s time for our 8th annual contest to predict the first humpback whale sighting. It’s our favorite contest of the year.

Here’s how the 2017 contest will work:

  • Pick the earliest date you think the first whale sighting will be this year.  Enter your prediction in the comments for this blog post. (Sorry, but we can’t accept guesses emailed to us or comments on Facebook. If you are reading this article on email, go to this post page to enter your comment.)
  • The closest prediction without going over will win bragging rights and book of humpback whale facts.
  • You must use a valid email address so that we can contact you when/if your prediction is correct. Note that your email address will not be visible on the comment.
  • You can leave the URL/website field empty. That’s an optional field.
  • Note: if you are a first time commenter, your comment will first go into moderation. It may take us up to 12 hours to approve it.
  • In the event of a tie, we will randomly select a winner from the tied predictions.
  • We’ll use Hawaii newspapers and news stations as our sources to determine the first whale sighting of this season.
  • One entry per person will be accepted.
  • Anyone from around the world is eligible to enter. We have a two-time winner from Italy.
  • Entries will be accepted through September 15, 2017.  In the event that the first whale sighting is before September 15, valid entries will accepted through the day before the reported sighting.

For your reference, here’s a list of the first sighting in recent years.2006 – October 11
2007 – October 7
2008 – October 8
2009 – October 20
2010 – October 20
2011 — September 26
2012 — August  30
2013 — October 5
2014 — September 16
2015 — September 29
2016 – August 25

In addition to bragging rights, this year’s prize pack includes:

  • Collection of vintage Hawaii travel poster postcards
  • Sticky notes with coconut tree design
  • Humpback whale luggage tag
  • Aloha motif can koozie

What’s your prediction?

About Sheila Beal

Sheila Beal is the founder and editor of Go Visit Hawaii. You can connect with Sheila Beal on Twitter, Go Visit Hawaii on Facebook, or Instagram.


  1. September 22 2017

  2. September 19

  3. September 7

  4. September 7, 2017

  5. September 29th

  6. Sept 1, 2017

  7. October 1st!

  8. September 14

  9. August 28th

  10. September 8th

  11. Sept25,2017

  12. September 24th, 2017

  13. October 12, 2017

  14. October 13th

  15. August 21, 2017. Probably around 1016 am.

  16. October 21, 2017

  17. September 6th 2017

  18. Yuriana Wrightson

    September 12, 2017

  19. October 14, 2017. My anniversary 😍

  20. September 14th

  21. September 13, 2017

  22. Christine Campbell

    September 4, 2017

  23. September 19, 2017

  24. September 6

  25. September 27

  26. September 1 ~ My Birthday 😁

  27. Oct 3, 2017

  28. susanne patterson

    Susanne Patterson

    Sept. 3

  29. September 15th

  30. Marco & Laura Dinaro

    September 16th

  31. October 1

  32. Mahalo for all the entries! The first whales were seen on October 10th. Mahalo to Celia for have the closest guess without going over.

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