Water activity

San Diego: Whale Watching Tours

4.5 / 5

32 reviews

San Diego: Whale Watching Tours

From US$ 45 per person

Get an up-close look at whales with San Diego's most experienced crew. Between December and April, approximately 20,000 gray whales migrate along the coast of San Diego.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Mobile ticketing
Use your phone or print your voucher
Duration 3.5 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
Wheelchair accessible


  • Get the chance to see gray whales as they migrate along the San Diego coast
  • Learn about the ocean's ecosystem through real-time commentary
  • Find out about the sights and creatures unique to your cruise
  • Discover the beauty of San Diego Bay on a two-story whale watching yacht
Full description
Marvel at the amazing views of San Diego Bay as you look out for sightings of marine wildlife including dolphins, sea lions, gray whales, and more. Your tour will be led by ocean experts as you get a deeper understanding of the ocean ecosystem and the sea creatures that live in it. Discover the San Diego coast on a two-story whale watching yacht, featuring 360-degree views from the main level and upper sundeck, multiple restrooms, and free guest WiFi. You will follow the whale migration path to bring you up close for the best sighting spots, which change every day. Early in the season, whales swim closer to the coast, so the maximum distance is about 3-5 miles. On their return trip, northbound whales swim further out, up to 9-12 miles off the coast. Make sure to wear layers as it can get pretty cool on the bay and don't forget to wear your sunscreen and hat while on this excursion. Bring your camera to capture all the memories you'll make on this exciting adventure.
  • Cruise on a two-story whale watching yacht with 360-degree views
  • Free guest WiFi
  • Commentary and tour led by ocean experts
    Not suitable for
    • People prone to seasickness
    Covid-19 precautions
    Safety measures in place
    • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
    • You must keep social distance while in vehicles
    • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds
    Traveler requirements
    • You are required to bring and wear a mask

    Select participants and date



    Prepare for the activity

    Meeting point

    • Please check in at the local partner's ticket booth prior to departure • Please arrive 30 minutes before scheduled departure time

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    Important information

    What to bring

    • Warm clothing
    • Sun hat
    • Camera
    • Sunscreen
    • Binoculars
    • Thermal clothing
    • Face mask or protective covering

    Not allowed

    • Smoking
    • Pets (assistance dogs allowed)

    Know before you go

    • See whales or you'll get to go out again for free on your next trip
    • Children 3 and under ride for free
    • If you are prone to seasickness, consider medication in advance
    •  A snack bar is not available onboard
    • The vessel and interior main deck are wheelchair accessible but the exterior top deck and restrooms are not
    Customer reviews

    Overall rating

    4.5 /5

    based on 32 reviews

    Review summary

    • Guide
    • Transportation
    • Value for money

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    My sister got sea sick and she got scared because the boat ride was a little rough in the middle of the trip. Because we were in the first floor of the boat and one of the crew members saw my sister and said that we should move to the second floor and it was much better. We saw a huge pod of dolphins it was majestic how the dolphins were jumping through the water. Thank you for the awesome experience!

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    April 17, 2021

    Had a great time with the family. The staff and captain were great. Unfortunately we were not able to spot any whales on the trip, but did come across a school of dolphins. But enjoyed the cruise and the staff were very informative. Also they backed up their promise to issue a free ticket for another whale watching experience because they were unable to come across any whales. Awesome! Will definitely be using them again.

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    April 3, 2021

    It was a beautiful day on the water the first time we went out (we didn't see any whales, so they offered a rain check to all those on board, which we used two days later). Even though we didn't see whales the first time out, it was a nice time on the water. You will see pelicans and other water birds, as well as helicopters, planes, freighters, sailboats, etc. There's lots to see and enjoy while on the boat. The second time out, which was even better weather-wise, we did see some whales, but they were really too far away to get any good pictures. Still a beautiful day on the water, with a great crew that is very knowledgeable about all marine life, and they are happy to answer questions. It was a great time, and we will definitely book another trip on this boat when we are in town again. Thanks to the crew, they made it a memorable and beautiful experience.

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    March 8, 2020

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    Product ID: 208806