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Shapes, Sizes and Species of Whales

From Humpback whales to Belugas and everything in between, it’s sometimes tough to keep track of these majestic ocean creatures. We’re breaking down some of the more common whale species you might be lucky enough to spot:

  • Sperm Whale
    Boasting a uniquely angled blow and single blowhole on the left side of their body, these grand toothed whales are easily identified at sea. The magnificent Sperm Whale is also one of the deepest diving mammals in the world, with the ability to dive nearly 3 kilometers deep while holding their breath for up to two hours.
  • Beluga Whale
    “Baby Beluga in the deep blue sea” is a beloved whale for a reason! These marine mammals wear a distinctive, bright white coat and are known as the more vocal of the species. In fact, they can often be heard “singing” from well above the ocean waters!
  • Fin Whale
    The majestic Fin Whale is one of the largest marine animals in existence (second to the enormous Blue Whale). At their most impressive, Fin Whales can measure up to 27 meters long and weigh up to a whopping 120 tons! Mostly residing in the Gulf of California and the Mediterranean, this whale species rarely breaches like Humpbacks. They’re also remarkably fast, and feed mostly on plankton and large schools of fish.
  • Tube Whale
    Also known as the North Atlantic Right Whale, the affectionately named Tube Whale is now regarded as one of the most endangered of the great whales, with a population of fewer than 500. Bearing a giant head that accounts for nearly one quarter of its body length, the Tube Whale is also easily identified by the distinct growths near the top of its head and lip.
  • Humpback Whale
    Of course, no list of whale species would be complete without our personal favorite, the Humpback whale! Also known as Kohola in Hawaiian, these remarkable marine mammals range in size from 40 to 50 feet and weigh up to 45 tons. Every winter, these marine mammals venture from Alaska’s cold waters to Hawaii’s warm ocean, where they breed and nurse their young.

Every winter and spring, we’re fortunate enough to spot Humpback whales aboard the Star of Honolulu! To take part in your own whale watch adventure, call (808) 983-STAR (7827) or visit