Whale Watching in San Diego – A Complete Guide

There are different ways to enjoy whale watching on the shores of San Diego, California. If you are a tourist and you considered whale watching on your list, having a guide can be of great help. Below is the complete guide to Whale watching in San Diego.

Whale Watching in San Diego – A Complete Guide

By land or by sea?

whale watching San Diego California
You can watch how whales migrate from point to point of the west coast. However, there are various ways for you to enjoy this experience, either for free or with a standard rate. Dropping by at the Birch Aquarium, Cabrillo National Monument, and Torrey Pines State Reserve are some of the best spots for whale watching. They have hiking trails off the area so you can enjoy watching the whales from afar by using binoculars. However, if you want an upclose encounter with these whales, you can rent a boat or book a reservation in a cruise so you are in a more comfortable seating while watching the creatures migrate.

When should I watch the whales?

Whales migrate all year round so you do not have to worry whether you are going to see one or not. However, the kinds of these whales depend on the season as well. From May through November, you will get a glimpse of the Humpback Whales. Just a good to know information, Humpback Whales were used to be one of the leading characters in several movies like Free Willy (1993), Whale Rider (2002), In the Heart of the Sea (2015), and many more.

Around December through May, you can watch Gray Whales and Killer Whales migrating across the shores of San Diego, and from July to October, you get to see the Blue Whales. Thus, if you have a desired kind of whales to watch, this timeframe is perfect for your preference.

Whale Watching in San Diego from Different Cruises in California

whale watching in san diego
If you are on a tight budget, planning the cruise trip for your family ahead of time is the most ideal thing to do, especially if it includes whale watching. If you would check it online, there are cheap rates awaiting for you. There are different whale tours that offer an economical package for individuals who would love to experience an upclose encounter with these animals. First is the San Francisco Whale Tours.

Did you know that when you make a reservation with this tour and use the code FMSA, the tour operator will make a donation to Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association? Sounds benevolent, right?

San Francisco Bay Whale Watching on the other hand, offers a 5-hour coastal and a 6-hour Farallons tour. Thus, you might be spending all day on the tour just by watching the whales. Well, it would not be boring as long as you have a fun company and keen interest with these animals.

Although sighting guarantee is not offered, Oceanic Society Cruises still receives a lot of positive feedback from the customers. They only offer limited schedule of sailing but rest assured that they have the best-trained naturalists that will aid the passengers or the tourists once whale watching is on the go. This trip is longer than the other because it departs from San Francisco or Sausalito.

This website does not also offer a sighting guarantee, but it has been operating for more than 30 years now. California Whale Adventures is one of the most patronized whale tours in California because of its credibility and more than 30 years of experience.

Also Read: 11 Best Things To Do in San Diego

Things to Consider While Whale Watching in San Diego

whale watching experience in san diego
Whale watching is a fun experience for everyone, but it should be taken seriously and carefully. Although there are naturalists to guide you, it is much better that you have set your own precautions as well to prevent any accidents in the future.

    • Apply Sunblock – Using sunblock with SPF 45 and higher is beneficial for our skin. If you will be exposed with the heat of the sun, it is necessary that you apply this to your skin to avoid sunburn.
    • Bring Sunglasses – Protect your eyes from the direct rays of the sun. Watching whales can be a bit tiring for our eyesight, especially if we are in the vicinity for quite some time already.
    • Bring water – Keep yourself hydrated. Drinking water from time to time will keep you refreshed and alert.
    • Don’t forget your camera – It’s selfie time! It is best that you would not forget your camera (bring a waterproof case, too) so you can capture the magnificent view of whale migrations.
    • Avoid littering and never throw any food once you see the Whales – As a precaution, avoid throwing anything on the sea because it might be consumed not just by the whales, but by the other sea creatures, too. Also, throwing food at the whales may cause them to change their behaviors, so it is highly suggested to always follow the tour guide and naturalists’ instructions.

Whale watching in San Diego, California has become one of the main tourist attraction not just in the city but in the whole coast. Following a guide like this can be beneficial to everyone as a traveler.

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