After a several months on the water, under a host of diverse sea conditions, we are stoked that the latest addition to our fleet and now our flagship vessel, Odysseus, has outperformed our expectations of safety and manoeuvrability and we have been privileged to take hundreds of clients out into our rich marine environment – for the adventure of a lifetime!
After months of customizing Odysseus, we’re very proud of the final product, the design of which is perfectly suited for navigating the iconic passage through the Knysna Heads and the dynamic Indian Ocean beyond. Not only does it handle like a boss, it also looks dope. The vessel’s amazing artwork was done by local artist Iain Hanton and brought together seamlessly by our talented in-house graphic designer, Jorika Brink.
Odysseus is fitted with two powerful Honda BF250 4 stroke motors, the specs of which are in line with our company’s environmental ethos. We stand by Honda’s philosophy that “watercraft should not pollute the waters they ply”. Marine life can be sensitive to engine noise and vibration, so the type of engine we use is a very important consideration for Ocean Odyssey. These engines are known to be one of the smoothest and quietest on the ocean.
Odysseus has certification for 25 passengers and two crew and the comfy “cinema style” seating is ideal for the extraordinary above the surface “shows” put on by our migratory whales, resident dolphins and other varied marine life! And wow, what a show it has been this season.
We have seen a lot more southern right whales this year, particularly mother and calf pairs. This noted increase was confirmed after the 39th annual aerial survey carried out by the Whale Unit of the University of Pretoria’s Mammal Research Institute. The survey was taken between Nature’s Valley and Muizenberg and all encountered whale and dolphin species were recorded, with a special focus on southern right whales. In total, 1,072 females and calves (536 pairs) of southern right whales were recorded as well as 34 adult whales without a calf (so-called ‘unaccompanied adults’), bringing the total to 1,106 southern right whales between Nature’s Valley and Muizenberg. These numbers mark an all-time record of southern right whale calves recorded along the South African coast which is very exciting indeed. Scientists are seeing a 6,5% increase in southern right whale population along our South African coastline, thanks to the international protection of the species since 1935.
Every year the number of humpback whale activity is also on the increase and this year we were witness to incredible above water antics by these much loved angels of the sea. Along with an abundance of whale life, we regularly get to see three different dolphin species, Cape fur seals, sharks, sunfish, and much more.
Apart from a few stragglers, most of our migratory whales have now left our Knysna waters and are heading back to their feeding grounds thousands of miles south. But the sunny days and warm ocean temperatures bring an abundance of bait fish which in turn lure massive pods of common and bottlenose dolphins as well as Brydes whales – our one resident whale species. So there is always lots to see for all the holiday revelers.
So what are you waiting for? Step on board Odysseus and allow us to introduce you the marine wonders of our Knysna coastline.