Whale watching cruises on the Gold Coast have been booked out this weekend, with Migaloo, the white humpback, expected to pass the tourist strip as the herds make their annual migration north.
After being spotted at Coffs Harbour several days ago, Sea World calculates Migaloo will arrive in waters off the Gold Coast on Saturday or Sunday.
David Robertson, general manager of Sea World Whale Watch, says no one knows how fast the big whale is swimming.
"It all depends on his mood and whether he's with a mate, or courting," he told AAP.
"If he's making a beeline straight for the Barrier Reef he could be travelling at six to eight knots but if he's playing or mucking around he could slow down to four knots."
The last sighting of Migaloo off the Gold Coast was on July 1, 2009.
"He might go out very wide, he might come past at night. It's just the luck of the draw," Mr Robertson said.
"And of course there is another white whale which is thought to be Migaloo's offspring out there too. It was filmed at Airlie Beach last year heading south and it's a juvenile, probably one or two years old."
As many as 17,000 humpbacks are thought to be making their way up the east coast of Australia this year to the warm breeding grounds of the Great Barrier Reef, with the population increasing at about 10 per cent each year."It's like a schoolies week for whales. Everyone goes a little bit crazy and it's all the teenagers who are leaping out of the water and putting on a great show."
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