San Diego Harbor

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San Diego Harbor: Our most recommended tours and activities

San Diego: Harbor Sightseeing Cruise

1. San Diego: Harbor Sightseeing Cruise

See the sights of San Diego Bay on a fully-narrated cruise. Pass by Seaport Village, Shelter Island, Coronado Island, Point Loma, and Cabrillo National Monument, among other notable points of interest, while taking in beautiful skyline views. Choose between a 1-hour cruise of either the North or South Harbor, or book the 2-hour cruise, which includes both. San Diego’s North Harbor cruise takes you past historic ships in the Maritime Museum, Harbor Island, North Island Naval Air Station, and Shelter Island. The South Harbor route includes sightings of the Coronado Bridge, the U.S.S. Midway Aircraft Carrier, the U.S. Navy Surface Fleet, and the Naval Amphibious Base Coronado. As you sail, keep a lookout for wildlife such as blue herons, sea lions, and pelicans Listen as your professional crew provides commentary about the rich local and military history, points of interest, and facts about San Diego Bay. This sightseeing cruise also showcases local environmental conservation efforts through video clips and onboard displays.

San Diego: Dinner Cruise

2. San Diego: Dinner Cruise

Enjoy a dinner cruise which combines culinary excellence – think crisp salads, braised ribs and oven-roasted salmon entrees, and luscious desserts – with unforgettable scenery and ambient music.  This Nightly Dinner cruise is famous around the world and is compared to the dinner cruises in New York and in Paris. San Diego’s dinner cruise combines breathtaking city views, great food, and drinks.  Stroll the spacious decks, watch the sunset before dinner. Dinner is buffet-style with an elaborate wine list, upgrades and additions, and vegetarian option. After dinner, listen to relaxing music, as you enjoy your dessert and coffee. Photos are taken at beginning of the cruise, can be purchased at the end! You’ll be thrilled to know that your dining experience does not have cruise-style seating, you’ll have privacy at your table and not be seated with strangers.

90-Minute San Diego SEAL Tour

3. 90-Minute San Diego SEAL Tour

Splash into San Diego’s most unique sightseeing tour. See the best of San Diego on land and in the water. Take a seat on the San Diego SEAL tour, an adventure that takes you through the most interesting sights in the city before heading out into the harbor of San Diego. Your 90-minute fully-narrated tour will wind through picturesque San Diego streets before splashing into the water for a cruise of San Diego Bay. On land, you will pass the Embarcadero and San Diego International Airport. You will learn about the importance of the military in San Diego and other San Diego icons as you travel along the scenic coast. Once you splash into the Big Bay, you will glide by Navy ships, tugboats and fishing vessels throughout the harbor as you listen to stories of early sailors. Experience the history and ecological wonders of San Diego in the comfort and security of a virtually unsinkable Hydra-Terra. Driven by our experienced captains, these amphibious vehicles are specially designed and built to navigate on both sea and land. Each one is Coast Guard approved and meets all passenger vehicle and department of transportation requirements to ensure safety and comfort for all. Both tour bus and boat, the San Diego SEAL journeys through San Diego by land and sea. Our unique amphibious vehicles are Coast Guard approved, ensuring you a safe, one of a kind experience. Relax and enjoy amazing views during the best sightseeing adventure in San Diego.

Sights & Sips 2-hour Sunset Cruise on San Diego Bay

4. Sights & Sips 2-hour Sunset Cruise on San Diego Bay

Come aboard the only floating happy hour in San Diego. The Sights & Sips Sunset Cruise on San Diego Bay includes complimentary appetizers, a no-host bar featuring refreshing drink specials and a perfectly timed sunset every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer. Get ready to enjoy the sights and sounds of the magnificent San Diego Bay. The bay boasts some of America's most historic warships such as the USS Ronald Reagan and the USS Midway as well as playing host to the scenic sights of the Coronado Bay Bridge and Seaport Village. Take part in a cruise experience where the celebration begins the moment you come on-board. Start with cocktails on deck, then relax as our gracious crew transports you to a world of ease and luxury. You and your guests will feel pampered, privileged, relaxed and refreshed. Quench your happy hour thirst aboard the Sights & Sips Sunset Cruise.

Champagne Brunch Cruise in San Diego

5. Champagne Brunch Cruise in San Diego

Sample a variety of breakfast and dinner dishes with fantastic views, and then head to the outdoor deck for fresh sea air and a narrated bay cruise. San Diego’s most popular and unique Sunday Champagne Brunch features views that change with the courses. This brunch is complete with bountiful selection of breakfast and lunch entrees, carving stations, salad and dessert bar, and free flowing champagne. Lovely light music and sightseeing completes your entertainment! You’ll be thrilled to know that Hornblower Cruises doesn’t participate in cruise style seating, you’ll have privacy at your table and not be seated with strangers! SAMPLE BUFFET MENU Accompaniments Basket of Fresh Croissants & Cinnamon Rolls with Strawberry Jam, Whipped Honey Butter and Seasonal Fruit Seasonal Salad Chef's Selection Seasonal Green Salad Entrees Seafood Selection Shrimp Cocktail w/ Lemon Wedge & Cocktail Sauce | Grilled Brown Sugar, Soy & Ginger Salmon Duet Entree (Select One Egg Course and one Carving Board Course below)  - All Entrees served with Roasted Red Creamer Potatoes with Colorful Roasted Peppers Poached Egg on Buttermilk Biscuit with Spinach Supreme and Hollandaise | Fluffy Omelet with Ham & Cheese or Spinach & Artichoke topped with Salsa Fresca  Duet Entree (Select One Egg Course above and one Carving Board Course) - All Entrees served with Roasted Red Creamer Potatoes with Colorful Roasted Peppers Carved New York Strip with Pico de Gallo | Herb Roasted Turkey Breast with Cranberry Mango Chutney Breakfast Upon Request Hickory Smoked Bacon | French Toast with Maple Syrup & fresh Berries | Chef's Selection Vegan Menu Available Dessert Dessert Trio New York Style Cheesecake | Chef's Chocolate Creation | Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce

San Diego: Harbor Cruise

6. San Diego: Harbor Cruise

See San Diego's best sights. Learn about the city and enjoy a cruise on the bay. Depending on the option booked, this tour takes you under the Coronado Bridge, past military ships, waterfront landmarks, and marine life for a look at San Diego's scenic beauty and fascinating history. This tour’s luxury ships offer three levels with comfortable indoor and outdoor seating, 360-degree views, and an on-board snack bar serving snacks, soda, beer, wine and cocktails (available for purchase). This is a great way to experience San Diego from the water.

San Diego: Classic Yacht Sailing Experience

7. San Diego: Classic Yacht Sailing Experience

Immerse yourself in the lap of luxury as you set sail on a Liberty sailboat from the Sunset Resort Marina, and take a golden opportunity to spot stunning wildlife such as sea lions and dolphins. Choose from a daytime or sunset version of the tour that best suites your needs. Take a journey back to the early twentieth century on board this handsome boat, modeled on a 1914 'Friendship Sloop'. Get hands-on as you try out steering the boat yourself during the 2.5 hour tour! Admire the San Diego skyline shimmering away on the horizon, as you cruise alongside grand ships like the USS Midway and the USS Carl Vinson. Sit back and absorb the views while enjoying complimentary snacks and drinks, and get your camera ready to snap the twinkling lights of San Diego, from the Maritime Museum to the Old Point Loma Lighthouse.

San Diego: Private Sun Cruiser Duffy Boat Rental

8. San Diego: Private Sun Cruiser Duffy Boat Rental

Be the captain of your own private Duffy boat for the afternoon as you cruise along the smooth waters of San Diego's beautiful Mission Bay. Bring your family along for a spectacular day on the water. Enjoy your own music, food, and drinks to make your experience extra special. You may encounter some local wildlife, such as sea lions, migratory birds, and maybe even dolphins. At 21 feet with room for up to 10 guests, the Sun Cruisers are the best choice for your Mission Bay outing. Everyone can come along, with no boating license required to operate this eco-friendly water cruiser. Duffy Boats are as easy as driving a golf cart and go 5-6 mph. Glide through the calm waters of Mission Bay at your own pace. Each Sun Cruiser comes equipped with pillows, tables and a built-in ice cooler for any snacks or beverages you bring along. There are enclosures to protect in the case of unpredicted rain, and a sound system with Bluetooth that you can connect to your device.

San Diego: Go City All-Inclusive Pass with 55+ Attractions

9. San Diego: Go City All-Inclusive Pass with 55+ Attractions

The San Diego All-Inclusive Pass is an all-access city pass offering the ultimate in convenience and savings for visitors to the area. Simply choose between a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 7-day pass and save up to 45% compared to the cost of buying separate attraction tickets. With one single pass, you can enjoy dozens of popular attractions and fun things to do in San Diego. Visit the San Diego Zoo, LEGOLAND, The U.S.S. Midway, take a sightseeing harbor cruise, rent a bike, stand-up paddleboard or kayak, and much more. With a total of over 55 attractions and tours included with your pass, there is something for everyone and you can visit as many attractions as you like per day. The San Diego All-Inclusive Pass also comes with a digital guide including helpful attraction information including how to get there and opening times. Activities, attractions, and tours included on the San Diego All-Inclusive Pass: Theme Parks and Zoos • San Diego Zoo • SeaWorld San Diego • San Diego Zoo Safari Park • Belmont Park • Knott's Berry Farm • LEGOLAND California • Sesame Place (coming soon) Outdoors • San Diego Speedboat Adventures • La Jolla: 90-min Tandem Kayak Rental • La Jolla: Full-Day Snorkel Adventure • La Jolla: All-Day Bike Rental • La Jolla: Surfboard Rental • La Jolla: Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP) Rental • San Diego Harbor: 2-hr SUP • San Diego Harbor: 2-hr Kayak Rental • Coronado: 90-min Tandem Kayak Rental • Coronado: SUP Board Rental • Coronado: Full-Day Bike Rental • San Diego Pier Fishing Tours and Cruises • 1-hr San Diego Harbor Cruise by Hornblower Cruises • Whale Watching by Hornblower Cruises • Whale Watch & Dolphin Tour - Beautiful Newport Beach • San Diego Hiking Tour • San Diego Sightseeing Walking Tour • Catalina Flyer (ferry to Catalina Island) • One Way Coronado Ferry • Petco Park Tours - home of the San Diego Padres • GoCar San Diego 30-min tour • Dolby Theater Guided Tour Museums and Places of Interest • USS Midway Aircraft Carrier Museum • Japanese Friendship Garden • San Diego Air and Space Museum • San Diego Natural History Museum • The Fleet Science Center with IMAX • Birch Aquarium at Scripps • Museum of Us • San Diego Automotive Museum • San Diego Model Railroad Museum • San Diego Museum of Art • The New Children's Museum • The Whaley House Museum • Coronado Museum of History and Art • Museum of Photographic Arts • Museum of Contemporary Art (Downtown) • San Diego Art Institute • The Gaslamp Museum at the Davis-Horton House • Mingei International Museum • The Plunge San Diego • Living Coast Discovery Center • Museum of Making Music • Hollywood Museum • Richard Nixon Library • UTC Ice Sports Center • South Coast Shop & Dine Package

San Diego: Whale and Dolphin Watching Cruise

10. San Diego: Whale and Dolphin Watching Cruise

San Diego is one of the best locations to watch whales year-round. Gray Whales migrate winter-spring from feeding grounds in Alaskan waters to calving lagoons in Baja California and back. In summer, the legendary Blue Whales, the largest animals on Earth, commonly feed off-shore of the San Diego coast. You may also spot Fin, Blue, Humpback, and Minke whales during the summer whale watching season. Additionally, you'll often see pods of Dolphins including Risso’s, Common, Pacific White-Sided, and Bottlenose Dolphins. Your captain will also highlight other wildlife such as Sea Lions, various fish like Mola Mola (Sunfish), and a variety of marine birds such as Herons, Terns, Pelicans, and Gulls.  View these extraordinary mammals in the wild on this spectacular cruise. The expert crew will help you locate these creatures and additional marine wildlife, such as dolphins and sea lions. Learn about marine life and local environmental efforts from professional captains and whalers who work at the San Diego Natural History Museum. You may even spot a whale calf traveling with its mother as they return from the Arctic. This is a fantastic and exhilarating journey for all age groups. Guaranteed whale or dolphin sighting. If you don't sight some type of whale or dolphin during the cruise, you'll be issued a pass that's good for another San Diego whale watching or harbor cruise. San Diego is quickly becoming one of the world’s best whale watching locations. The city is home to whales, dolphins, and sea birds, and features one of the world's most beautiful coastlines.  Enjoy live educational narration from captains and trained naturalists employed by the Natural History Museum.  Watch blue whales and dolphins in comfort on a large, fast, and stable boat!

Other Sightseeing Options in San Diego Harbor

Want to discover all there is to do in San Diego Harbor? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about San Diego Harbor

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 1,432 reviews

We found this all-inclusive pass to be very beneficial. It worked seamlessly at all of the attractions we visited. For us, the best part was that we didn’t feel pressured to spend all day at one particular location. We brought the family to one place that ended up not being great for us, and we were able to leave and go to Sea world for just a few hours before they closed which wasn’t in our original plans for the week. That ended up being our favorite attraction of the trip!

So easy to use and loads of choices. Just make sure you download the app for your qr codes to enter your venues. Used ours for san diego zoo, sea world and knotts berry farm. 100% recommend. Great value for money considering knotts berry farm wanted $99 per person on the gate.

We had the best day! Captain Phillip is knowledgeable, friendly and made us welcome and I can feel nervous on water hit he made me feel safe. Would highly recommend. Doesn’t feel as touristy as other boat rides.

Our grandson had a fabulous time! And we learned so much about San Diego. Our guide was awesome

It was a nice, calm cruise around the bay. Food, drinks and music.