Category Archives: Recent SIghtings

monterey whale watching

Lunge Feeding Whales, Sea Lions

Saturday 12/3/16 We had some great looks at a large group of lunge feeding humpback whales on Saturday. The whales were dining midday out at Pajaro Canyon, alongside hundreds of California sea lions. These are late season whales in Monterey Bay. We are soon expecting to see gray whales on their annual migration between Alaska and Baja California.

Join us on board Velocity or Legacy for an unforgettable adventure on the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary – one of the top wildlife viewing locations in the world!

Santa Cruz Whale Watching trips run every weekend, and DAILY starting December 20 through January 1.

Photo: Michael Nelson

Photo: Michael Nelson


Fall-Winter Sightings

We loved having so many family groups out on the boat this week. Each day of Thanksgiving week we got some great views of 10-20 humpback whales that are active in Monterey Bay right now. These humpback whales are feeding and showing surface behaviors such as tail slaps and breaching above the water.  We’re getting to see big pods of common dolphins, otters in the kelp beds, and California sea lions. Our cover photo is from passenger Matija Vižin, taken on Tuesday 11/22 when we saw 10 humpback whales – one full breach! – Good looks, lots of flukes.

We’ve had a certain population of humpbacks staying around over winter for the last several years. As long as they are able to eat they will stay in  the area instead of participating in migration to Central America.

We’ll soon be keeping an eye out for gray whales migrating south towards their winter mating/calving waters in Baja, Mexico. Over 20,000 gray whales pass through Monterey Bay every year!

Santa Cruz Whale Watching Trips run every weekend in December, and DAILY from December 23 – New Year’s Day. Join us for adventure on the Bay!

Tickets are $48.95 for adults and $34.95 for kids age 4-13. Reservations recommended; Call 831-427-0230 or click the link to Book Online Now.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Over the last week up to 6 humpback whales have been seen spouting and feeding near Santa Cruz and the north part of Monterey Bay.  Long beak common dolphins and Risso’s dolphins are also active in the Bay right now.

Happy Thanksgiving! Here’s the whale watching schedule this week:

Tuesday 11/22 at 11am
Wednesday 11/23 at 11am
Thursday 11/24 at 10am
Friday 11/25 at 12pm
Saturday 11/26 – two trips! – 8:30am and 12:30pm
Sunday 11/27 at 12pm

Click BOOK NOW or Call 831-427-0230 ~ We look forward to having you on board!

humpback monterey bay

Dolphins and humpback whales this week

Saturday, 11/12/16
Saturday,  one lunge feeding humpback right in front of harbor,  then 200 common dolphins by the Pajaro Canyon, as well as one breaching and pectoral fin slapping humpback,  plus a few other scattered humpbacks.

Friday 11/11/16
Good looks at a group of lunge feeding humpbacks near Pajaro.

Here’s some recent video from our friend Michael Nelson ~ A glimpse of a feeding frenzy with humpback whales and California sea lions, October 2016.
Visiting Santa Cruz
Check out these fun traveler tips for an easygoing visit to Santa Cruz – This article highlights some of our favorite beaches and places to eat and drink, just a bit off the beaten path. Enjoy! Click here to read about Santa Cruz travel tips.

Thanksgiving Week
Our whale watching schedule for November and December is now up on our website. Book your family outing now! Call 831-427-0230 or click the “Book Now” button at Welcome aboard!

Humpback whales, Monterey Bay November

November Humpbacks near Santa Cruz

Sunday 11/6/16 ~ Whale Watching on ‘Legacy’
Five humpbacks, one minke whale, and 200 to 300 common dolphins west of the Soquel Canyon.

Friday, 11/4/16 ~ Whale Watching on ‘Legacy’
Group of four humpbacks over the Soquel Canyon. Pair of humpbacks one of which did a couple of tail throws, and a few scattered whales throughout the Monterey Bay. A couple of large packs of sea lions swimming with the whales.

We also continue to see a few whales near West Cliff Drive in Santa Cruz.



Look for spouts @ West Cliff and Seabright


Lunge feeding humpback whales on last Friday and Saturday trips! We also saw dolphins and rafts of sea lions in the feeding grounds of pristine Monterey Bay.

Today 11/2 we are spotting whale spouts from shore, near Seabright and West Cliff Beaches.

Lunge feeding humpback whales 10-28-16. photo: megan Petersen

Lunge feeding humpback whales 10-28-16. photo: Megan Petersen

Santa Cruz Whale Watching sea lion

Whales near shore Santa Cruz; Rare sperm whale spotted in Monterey Bay

Sunday 10/23: Again we found Humpback Whales near Santa Cruz, feeding along with rafts of California Sea Lions. (Photos courtesy Michael B Nelson)

california whale watching

Photo: Michael Nelson

Saturday, 10/22: Humpback whales close to Santa Cruz!
Friday 10/21: Whales up the coast a bit, near Davenport!
Thursday, 10/20: We spent time with 3 lunging humpback whales outside Wilder Ranch, then a cruise back down to Aptos to find a white shark near the Cement Ship, Seacliff State Beach.

MONTEREY BAY – For the first time in five years, a sperm whale has been sighted in the Monterey Bay.

Santa Cruz Whale Watching

Photo: Michael Nelson

Santa Cruz Whale Watching sea lion

California Sea Lion, Photo: Michael Nelson

Beautiful day up close with humpback whales: VIDEO

Tuesday, Sept. 27 – Mama and baby humpback playing with us today! Calf was breaching and pec slapping. Humpback whales are scattered, feeding throughout the Bay.

Monday, Sept. 26– We found whales! 7-8 humpback whales and ~100 sea lions center of Monterey Bay.