Monterey Bay Whale Watching Center

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84 Fisherman's Wharf, Monterey, CA, USA

Monterey Bay Whale Watching Center Reviews

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836 reviews
Your absolute best chance of seeing Whales and Dolphins Apr 17, 2012
Located in a dark red building out near the end of the old pier, this is one of several Whale Watching tour businesses in Monterey. But this business is located here in Monterey for an amazing reason. Just out of the bay is one of the deepest and longest undersea valleys in the world. That makes it just about the best place in the world for whales to find food. Also, many different kinds of dolphins love to play and live in this area for the same reason.

This business hires marine biologists who narrate the entire trip, making it not only educational but very enjoyable. And the captains are all very experienced, most with 20 years here in the Monterey Bay. Even the deck hands do what they can to make the trip as enjoyable as possible. Each day all of the sightings are photographed, identified and located on their mapping to assist in watching any movement of the whales, dolphins and birds. All of the data is then posted to their internet site,

They have a winter schedule and a summer schedule and we visited at the beginning of the summer schedule. That meant arriving about 8:30 am for a 9 am departure and we would be out until 1 or two pm. That is a much longer trip than the other tour companies. Most are only out for two or three hours. They also offer a shorter afternoon tour in the summer but if you see the results, you can see that it is usually much less active.

On our tour trip we saw about 100 Risso’s Dolphins after only about 15 minutes out although not too many of the 40 passengers got good pictures of them, then another hour or so we saw several humpback whales blowing and were able to follow them for quite a while. They claimed we only saw three but I think there were more. We were also able to see one grey whale for a little while. Then we began our return towards the bay. Shortly after starting back in the water around the boat came alive with the playful jumping and wake surfing of what they said was 1,000 Pacific White-sided Dolphins who stayed with us as we slowed and played around with us for quite some time. And even when the captain declared we had to get home and began to speed away, the dolphins tried to keep up which brought smiles to everyone.

Was the tour/trip worth the money? Absolutely yes! Every bit of it was handled with care, and safety, and helped make everyone on board enjoy.
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Hummingbird says:
This was a wonderful tour for us! :)
Posted on: Jun 23, 2012
Vioweil says:
great review, Roger!
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012
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