Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
  • 30% Off with code: WW30

Whale Watching San Clemente

The highest rated with 4,500+ five-star reviews

Quick Details

Adults Ages 13+
Seniors Ages 55+
Children Ages 3 to 12
Infant Ages 2 and under
July & August
Adults Ages 13+
Seniors Ages 55+
Children Ages 3 to 12
Infant Ages 2 and under
EPIC 4 Hour Whale Watching Adventure -
12 People Max
Per Person Ages 5+

Discover the Thrill of San Clemente Whale Watching

San Clemente, California, is a beautiful coastal city known for its stunning beaches, charming downtown area, and rich history. But did you know that it is also one of the best places in the world for whale watching?

Every year, thousands of whales migrate through the waters off the coast of San Clemente, making it a prime location for whale watching enthusiasts.

Why San Clemente is the Perfect Spot for Whale Watching

San Clemente is located along the Pacific coast, making it an ideal location for whale watching. The city is situated on a peninsula, which means that the waters off its coast are deep and close to shore, making it easier to spot whales.

Additionally, San Clemente is located along the migration route of several whale species, making it a popular spot for these majestic creatures to stop and rest during their journey. This means that you have a high chance of seeing whales during your whale-watching excursion in San Clemente.

The Annual Whale Migration

Every year, thousands of whales migrate from their feeding grounds in the cold waters of the Arctic and Antarctic to their breeding grounds in the warm waters of Mexico and Hawaii. This journey can cover thousands of miles and is one of the longest migrations of any mammal on Earth.

The migration season in San Clemente typically runs from December to April, with peak season being January and February. During this time, you can see several species of whales, including gray whales, humpback whales, and blue whales, as they make their way through the waters off the coast of San Clemente.

Whale Behavior in San Clemente

Whales are known for their impressive acrobatic displays, and San Clemente is no exception. During the migration season, you can witness these magnificent creatures breaching, tail slapping, and spy hopping as they make their way through the waters.

You may also see mother whales with their calves, as they often stop in the warm waters of San Clemente to nurse and rest before continuing their journey. This is a truly special sight to see and one that you won’t want to miss.

Dana Point: The Whale Watching Capital

Dana Point is a beautiful coastal town located about a 10-minute drive north of San Clemente. It is best known for its whale-watching activities and is considered the “Whale Watching Capital of the World.”

The Highest-Rated Whale Watching & Dolphin Tour in SoCal

Dana Wharf Whale Watching was established in 1971, marking the inception of whale watching in Orange County. As pioneers of the industry, we have now become the leading year-round whale watching facility in Southern California. If you are planning to go whale watching, Dana Wharf in Dana Point should be your ultimate destination.

Our whale and dolphin watching cruises are all led by expert marine naturalist captains, who provide informative narration about the diverse ocean life along our coast. Each trip lasts for two hours, providing ample time to explore the fascinating world that lies beneath the ocean.

About the Whale Watching & Dolphin Adventure

Come and join Dana Wharf, the first and favorite whale watching company among locals, to enjoy the thrilling sights and sounds of the magnificent ocean creatures in Dana Point. It is a landmark destination for marine life sightings, where you can witness rare glimpses of a variety of underwater wildlife and breathtaking scenic views that you will never forget.

During the whale watching season, we spot over 1,500 gray whales, and in the summer, we see blue whales. Throughout the year, we also get to see fin whales, minke whales, humpback whales, and even sharks.

Every trip with us is a unique experience, so make sure to come out often! We provide year-round whale watching tours, and we guarantee marine mammal sightings. If you don’t see a whale or dolphin during your trip, we will give you a voucher for a free tour that never expires!

You can observe different types of wildlife such as:

  • Gray whales (November – May) – These friendly whales are up to 65 feet long!
  • Blue whales (May – November) – They can grow up to 100 feet long and weigh up to 100 tons – you will not believe your eyes if you’re lucky enough to see one of these impressive marine mammals!
  • These whales visit year-round – fin whales, humpback whales, minke whales, and more.
  • Dolphins – Take memorable photos as schools of playful dolphins frolic around the boat!
  • Sea lions, pelicans, and other seafaring birds, plus possible sightings of sharks (mako, hammerhead, and great white).

Trips may be aboard our Dana Pride, the Queen of our fleet and our largest vessel; the Lot’ A Fun, our brand new state-of-the-art catamaran with incredible unobstructed 360-degree views; or our Ocean Adventure, a luxury eco-friendly catamaran with a raised EYE SPY viewing platform. We guarantee the best whale watching experience in Southern California!

Save 30% with code: WW30


Private Whale and Dolphin Watching Tours Available!

See the whales, dolphins, other sea life, and breathtaking coastal views during your private and unique experience at Dana Point. Your captain and marine life expert will be your personal narrator during your two-hour adventure.