Sea Shepherd: Steve Irwin docked in Williamstown

My father, like many other parents I suppose, has always taught me not to watch “nonsense” programs on TV. Personally, he is a huge fan of channels such as Discovery and National Geographic. What started off as an act to please him, soon became an addiction to programs like “Auction Hunters” and “Whale Wars” [on Animal Planet in the US].

Little did I know that when we moved to Melbourne, I would get the chance to visit one of the boats of this famous crew of crusaders. The Steve Irwin, one of the flagships of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, was docked right here in Williamstown!

The Steve Irwin

The Steve Irwin docked in Williamstown, Victoria, Australia
The MY Steve Irwin docked in Williamstown, Victoria, Australia

Free Tours on Sundays

And better yet, we found out that a group of lovely Sea Shepherd volunteers is giving free tours (!) of the Steve Irwin!
Tours are organised on Sunday afternoon, from 12 pm – 4 pm, to raise awareness and money for this noble cause.

Our Tour Guide on the Steve Irwin, Williamstown, Victoria, Australia
Our Tour Guide Jesse, talking with passion and conviction about Sea Shepherd’s noble cause.

Even if you have never heard about Sea Shepherd or have never seen an episode of “Whale Wars”, I still very much recommend going to take a look. Touring the ship is both fun and educational, making it an exciting adventure for everyone, including – or especially! – families with kids.

Sitting in the Captain seat of the Steve Irwin, Sea Shepherd, Williamstown
I got to sit in the captain’s seat of the Steve Irwin!!! (possibly even more excited than the kids in our group 😉 )

Will and I both felt very privileged and super excited to be able to come on board of this famous vessel. To get a feel for Sea Shepherd’s mission, learn about their dangerous endeavours in the midst of the Southern Ocean, and really experience what life must be like for the crew members. Imagine living on a ship for months on end, fighting for a cause you so strongly believe in that you are willing to risk your own life to save that of a whale.

Imagine living on the Steve Irwin, Sea Shepherd flagship, Williamstown, Australia
Imagine living on the Steve Irwin, for months on end, without once coming to shore…

Tours will be given until the Steve Irwin is ready to ‘set sail’ towards its next destination and whale-saving mission, planned for the end of November, beginning of December 2015. So if you haven’t checked it out yet, be sure to head to Williamstown soon!

With its beautiful harbour, pleasant beaches, and a characteristic 19th century look & feel to its town centre, Williamstown makes for an absolutely perfect day trip from Melbourne. Hop on the train, visit this world-famous vessel, and enjoy the rest of the afternoon strolling through history. And did I tell you about the amazing view on the skyline of Melbourne? 🙂

The Steve Irwin docked in Williamstown, with Marvelous Melbourne in the background
The Steve Irwin docked in Williamstown, offering a stunning view of the Melbourne skyline.

Sea Shepherd global projects

Most people have probably heard about anti-whaling campaigns. And those of you who have ever watched “Whale Wars” know about the level of commitment and selfless effort that is given by Sea Shepherd crew members to try and save the lives of whales endangered by (commercial) poachers.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is involved in many projects around the world, saving the lives and habitats of different ocean creatures.

While on board of the ship, we learned a lot more about the diversity of Sea Shepherd projects around the world. One example that stood out to me is “Operation Icefish“. A tricky operation in the icy waters around Patagonia and Antarctica to save the lives and protect the natural habitat of the tooth fish.

Oh, and did you know that the Steve Irwin is registered in Rotterdam, the Netherlands?!
Apparently, as the whaling dispute with Japan became more intense and controversial, Sea Shepherd had to find a ‘safe harbour’ in a country that wasn’t afraid to damage existing trade relations by supporting Sea Shepherd’s cause. You can imagine the society’s gratitude to our little audacious country!

Sea Shepherd flagship Steve Irwin registered in Rotterdam, Netherlands
Sea Shepherd flagship MY Steve Irwin is registered in Rotterdam, Netherlands


Have you ever heard of Sea Shepherd?
Do you watch “Whale Wars” on Animal Plante / Discovery Channel?

Do you care about the lives of whales and other endangered ocean creatures? 
For more information about projects, volunteering, or donations to this unique society, visit SeaShepherd.Org