A Whale of a Season: Whale Watching in Oceanside - Visit Oceanside


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17 January 2013
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It is that time of the year again! An incredible migration is moving past Oceanside right now. Each season, beginning in December and running through April, upwards of 20,000 gray whales make a 10,000 mile round-trip journey from Alaska to the warm lagoons of Baja California, where the females give birth to their calves.  It is the longest known distance any mammal migrates on an annual basis and is truly an extraordinary spectacle to see. With our coastline directly in the gray whale migration path, Oceanside is an ideal destination to see this spectacle of gentle giants.


Hornblower Cruises

There are many great spots along our coast to experience whale watching including Helgren’s Sportfishing in Oceanside Harbor.  These vessels have modern gallery facilities offering hot and cold beverages and sandwiches.  During the 2 hour Whale Watching trip, you will receive narration given by the Captain.  Call to reserve your spot and experience the ocean from a different point of view.

Helgren’s Sportfishing
315 Harbor Drive South
Oceanside, CA 92054
(760) 722-2133


If you are heading towards Downtown San Diego, the Hornblower Cruises & Events offers a variety of whale watching excursions everyday! Tour operators have extensive knowledge of the whales and their migration habits and will happily share this information during the tour. Patrons are even guaranteed a whale sighting. If some type of whale is not sighted on your whale watching cruise, you will receive a pass good for another Whale Watching Cruise or Harbor Cruise from Hornblower San Diego. Reservations are now open for the season’s family friendly harbor excursions.


We are already having a record Whale Watching season, with one one group seeing 47 whales on one outing! Here are some impressive Whale Watching stats just from this month [January] alone!


Morning Trip

Afternoon Trip


43 Gray whales, 1 breach & 3500+ Pacific White Sided dolphins, 250 Common dolphins7 Gray whales, 500+ Common dolphins


AM trip saw a group of six Gray whales, lots of tail flukes even body rolls. 50 common dolphinsaw spouts everywhere! Got close to 5 Gray whales about 20 Pacific White Sided dolphin.  Lots of tail flukes and 3 breaches from a distance


Several pairs of Gray whales, 500+ Common dolphins, 1 Mola-Mola16 Grays, we were in a pod of 8-9 whales in mating/courtship mode! 3500+ Common dolphins, 250+ Pacific White Sided dolphins


6 Gray whales, 300+ Pacific White Sided dolphins, 80+ Common dolphins, 1 Mola-Mola27 Gray whales, 1500+ Common dolphins, 50+ Pacific White Sided dolphins, 1 large Mola-Mola!


6 Gray whales, 500+ Common dolphins, 6 tail flukes and 3 breaches15-20 Gray whales, 500 dolphins. Lots of tail flukes!


12 Gray whales, great views, tail flukes! 50 Common dolphins12 Gray whales, 2 breaches! 50 Rizzo’s dolphins, a spectacular day!


6 Gray whales, lots of tail flukes5 Gray whales


Hornblower Cruises & Events
970 N Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 686-8715
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