San Diego

San Diego Whale Watching Tour

Badge of ExcellenceSan Diego, United States

From USD 65.00

Select Date and Travellers

Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 2 to 3 hours (approx.)
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Encounter some of Earth's most magnificent creatures on a 3-hour whale-watching cruise in San Diego. The voyage departs right from Mission Bay, so you’ll be out into the open ocean and looking for animals in just 10 short minutes. Marine biologists onboard help you spot whales and dolphins and learn about their life in the deep blue sea.
  • Venture out into the open ocean on a San Diego whale-watching cruise
  • See whales, dolphins, and other marine life in their natural environment
  • Boat captain and onboard biologists know the best places to look for wildlife
  • Cruise across scenic Mission Bay with a convenient departure point

What's Included

  • Marine biologists are on the microphone explaining exactly what to expect.

    Meeting And Pickup

    Meeting point

    • 1617 Quivira Rd
      1617 Quivira Rd, San Diego, CA 92109, USA

      Our Ticket / check-in booth is a small grey booth with a blue awning between H2O rentals and the Fish & Chips shop facing the marina. [Click this link for our exact check in location](

    End point

    This activity ends back at the meeting point.

    What To Expect

    Ocean Beach (Pass By)

    Additional Info

    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Stroller accessible
    • Service animals allowed
    • Near public transportation
    • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
    • Most travellers can participate
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 100 travellers

    Cancellation Policy

    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s cancelled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travellers. If it’s cancelled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    Traveller Photos

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    859 reviews
    Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
    Reviews by Viator travellers.
    Showing 1-10 of 859 reviews
    Whale watching
    Tyrone_L, Mar 2023
    A wonderful excursion to be on. Didn't see any action until it was time to go back but it was an excellent trip to see.
    Great trip!
    Lynette_V, Mar 2023
    The crew was very attentive to everyone to make sure they were doing ok and not feeling sea sickness. As someone who is prone to it, it was very appreciated. (I took Dramamine 2 hours prior and was fine) They also explain where the best locations on the boat are if you are prone to getting sick. The description says 2-3 hours. We were in a mega-pod of dolphins (Amazing!) & spotted one Humpback whale. We watched the whale for quite awhile, but headed back while we could still see it. I feel we could’ve maybe stayed another 20 min more as we reached the dock around the 2 hour 15 min mark. Other than that, no complaints. Highly recommend.
    Excellent Excursion
    Kristi_R, Mar 2023
    So many dolphins! And a humpback whale. The staff was very friendly and knowledgeable. It was a great experience!
    Dolphins are cool!
    Thomas_B, Mar 2023
    We followed a humpback whale and saw it surface 4 or 5 times which was really cool. The best part though was going through a pod of 250 common dolphins. The 250 was the guides estimate, I would have put it at 500….they were everywhere! The crew/guides did an excellent job and were very informative. We also cleaned up a pod of Mylar balloons.
    An Amazing Whale Watching Experience
    Larry_C, Mar 2023
    The crew did a great job quickly locating whales (we saw three different groups) and a mega pod of dolphins. We saw our first whales shortly after the 3 mile away from shore announcement and continued to see whales and dolphins throughout. It was an amazing experience.
    Lindsay_C, Mar 2023
    Absolutely amazing!!! The crew was so nice and friendly and even walked around asking if we’d like her to take a family photo. We were lucky enough to see a dolphin stampede which was breathtaking. We also saw three humpback whales. Money well spent! We plan on doing this again the next time we are in San Diego!
    Water experience
    Patrick_R, Mar 2023
    Enjoyed see the 2 species of Dolphins. Also, the crew was attentive and knowledgeable. Thank you for a wonderful experience.
    Whale watch tour
    Ruben_D, Mar 2023
    No whales during the whole round trip of aproximately 70 to 80 minutes, staff was very friendly, few sick people during the ride ... it was average ok for the price,
    Worth it
    Stefani_D, Mar 2023
    It was good. Nice staff, felt safe. Didn’t see any whales so we’ll have to try again another time when it’s not foggy.
    Fun bucket list item achieved!
    Lynn_K, Mar 2023
    Super fun- had several amenities on board (for fees, of course)- including the fuzzy blankie pictured. And the option to buy pics taken by the guide who was with us- also pictured. We saw 4 different pods on this trip!
    Very nice trip
    Gregg_S, Mar 2023
    We did get to see one Fin Whale...he surfaced several times. We also got onto several pods of Dolphins including one Mega Pod that we estimated had over 1000 Dolphins.
    Amazing family tour
    Jamie_T, Feb 2023
    My family and I had a amazing trip. I would highly recommend doing this tour. We saw dolphins and whales. It was outstanding.
    Amazing Experience
    Melanie_Q, Feb 2023
    Amazing Trip ! Will do again Lots of dolphins and saw a few whales .Went on my birthday and weather was fantastic as well !
    Great once on the water
    Beth_E, Jan 2023
    We saw a grey whale and dolphins. The boarding process could be a lot more efficient so that people don’t have to spend 20 mins plus in the hot sun. They could also use some dedicated parking.
    Great tour
    Erica_S, Jan 2023
    We were surrounded by dolphins! The experience was great. We also saw a couple gray whales, including a mom and a baby.
    Wonderful memories!
    Martha_L, Jan 2023
    First time on the Pacific Ocean, we will always remember the huge pod of dolphins dancing along the boat! Bonus when we thought the trip was winding down and not one, but two whale’s waved their tails at us! 🥰
    Whale cruise
    April_B, Jan 2023
    Fantastic experience! The views were so amazing. We saw sea lions, lots of dolphins and two whales. I definitely recommend this experience.
    Awesome venture
    Lolita_C, Dec 2022
    Seeing the whales and Dolphins particularly the group Dolphins those were awesome. I will definitely will do this activity on my next visit to San Diego
    Dolphins up close
    Tammy_C, Dec 2022
    We saw pacific dolphins that followed right beside the boat. So cool. They were so close it was awesome
    Family Holiday whale watching Trip
    Kim_D, Dec 2022
    We saw dolphins and a few humpback whales. It was a very cold day and it would have been nice if lap blankets had been made available. The overall experience was great and the staff was very welcoming.