All my animal pictures I took, the animals were entirely aware of my presence and it was always up to the animal to determine what kind of encounter it will be or not. I never took any photo from a hiding place or attracted an animal with any sort of food or anything else. To be honest, yes you always do a lot to get close to the animals mostly with the help of experienced local nature guides. It is rare that the animals simply approach you.
But my experience is, that the whales and dolphins are different in that. Cetaceans are often curious, especially the younger ones, often approaching the boats, turning to the side, and watching you. During one underwater encounter the whale touched us slightly without hurting anybody.
You might think that other wild animals do that too, but as far as I know they do this only expecting to get some food. But
whales do not. The whales watch carefully the people in the boat or the diver under water, try to catch your eye and even try to communicate with us using their social behaviour patterns, perhaps just for fun, but probably to send us a message of interest or of dislike because you have come too close to them or they feel threatened.
One of the best places in the world are the crystal clear Atlantic Waters around Newfoundland in Canada.
Whale Watching in Newfoudland
Newfoundland is one of the most interesting whale watching places on Earth. The world’s largest population of humpback whales return each year to feed on capelin (a small fish) along the coast. But you may see many other species of whales like fin whale, minke whale, orcas, dolphins and other marine life. Besides marine life there are huge icebergs to see and millions of seabirds.
There are many tour operators who offer guided whale watching tours. But it is also possible to observe the cetaceans from land with your binoculars.