Sightings Every Day

San Diego Whale Watching Season Off to a Great Start

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HORNBLOWER’S WHALE WATCHING ADVENTURES GIVE PASSENGERS THE THRILL OF A LIFETIME  — GUARANTEED

Starting December 14th, Whale Watching Tours Depart Twice Daily From Downtown San Diego

San Diego, California (Dec. 13, 2014) – Starting December 14th, Hornblower Cruises & Events will once again offer San Diego visitors and residents the epic experience of getting up close and personal with some of the most magnificent creatures on earth – guaranteed.  For nearly 25 years, Hornblower’s Captains have introduced thousands of passengers to the wonder and excitement of whale watching.  There is no better, safer and drier way to witness the whale migration as thousands of grays, finbacks and humpbacks migrate off the coast.  As Hornblower’s yacht heads out to the Pacific, passengers will also enjoy 360-views of the San Diego skyline, as well as sightings of sea lions, dolphins and sea birds.  Throw in the fresh salty air and the feeling of freedom that comes with gliding across the ocean — and passengers will make memories to last a lifetime.

Highlights include:

Interaction with Trained Docents from theNat (San Diego Natural History Museum): To make Hornblower’s cruise truly educational, volunteer naturalists from theNat provide ongoing commentary for spotting spouts, flukes, and massive whale tails, as well as information about whale behaviors.

A Comfortable (and Dry) Experience:  Unlike traditional small boat whale watching trips (where foul weather gear is a   necessary accessory), Hornblower provides the ability to view these beautiful creatures from large yachts, which provide unparalleled stability through the ocean waves. With top-level outdoor sundecks rising 30 ft. above the water and climate-controlled indoor levels, Hornblower yachts ensure optimal comfort and panoramic views for everyone.

Whale Sighting Guarantee:  If a whale is not sighted during a cruise, passengers will receive a pass good for a choice to return for another Whale Watching Cruise or a tour of the harbor instead.  Hornblower guarantees that every passenger will experience the exhilaration of seeing a whale break the surface of the water for the first time.

Food Service and Full Bar:  Passengers can purchase delicious snacks and lunch, complimented by a full bar service.

Reservations are now being accepted:

Times:  With two 3½hour cruises offered daily starting at 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., everyone can find the perfect day for their adventure. Cruises leave from the San Diego Navy Pier at 970 N. Harbor Drive.

Tickets:  Weekend (Saturday and Sunday) costs are $44 for adults, $22 for children ages 4 to 12 and $42 for seniors and the military.  Weekday costs are $39 for adults, $19.50 for children ages 4 to 12 and $37 for seniors and the military.  Tax, service charge and landing fees are additional.  Children under 3 are free.  Discounts for groups of 20 or more and Hornblower Whale Club Card season passes are also available.  For more information and to make reservations, please visit http://www.hornblower.com/port/overview/sd+whalewatching or call 800-ON-THE-BAY

.San Diego Whale Watching Infographic

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Hornblower Cruises & Events has been the leading charter yacht and public dining cruise operator headquartered in California for over 32 years. The company operates over 70 vessels, including the three largest dining yachts on the West Coast, and has ports in San Francisco, Berkeley, Sacramento, Long Beach, Newport Beach, Marina del Rey, San Diego, and New York City. Two Hornblower subsidiary businesses, Alcatraz Cruises and Statue Cruises, are National Park Service ferry concessioners to Alcatraz Island and the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, respectively. In 2014, Hornblower began operating the third subsidiary, Hornblower Niagara Cruises, out of Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. For more information visit: www.hornblower.com/pressroom

 

 

 

 

Gray Whale Report for the 2014-15 Season

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Whale Watching Report for December 14- Present-

Gray Whale Season on Hornblower Cruises & Events, San Diego, CA 
Date Morning Cruise Afternoon Cruise Notes
12/14/2014 Cruise Cancelled Cruise Cancelled High Storm Swells

 

12/15/2014 Cruise Cancelled 2 Gray Whales & Dolphins Spotted! Narration given by Captain Rich, and three naturalists on board giving presentations and narrating as well. The morning trip we saw 5 gray whales total and 20 pacific white sided dolphins. The afternoon trip, we saw 8 gray whales and 30 plus white sided dolphins. Beautiful weather with really good views of some nice sized gray whales!
12/16/2014 Cruise Cancelled Cruise Cancelled  

High Storm Swells

12/17/2014  

Cruise Cancelled

3 Gray Whales & 15 Common Dolphins Spotted!  

 

The Afternoon cruise was a bit chilly, but worth the trip.  Passengers spotted 3 gray whales and 15 common dolphins. Good views!

 

 

12/18/2014 2 Gray Whales & 30+ Common Dolphins Spotted! 3 Gray Whales & 80 Common Dolphins Spotted!  

The seas were calm and the weather was warm. In the morning cruise, there were 2 gray whales we spotted, plus a pod of common dolphins.

 

In the afternoon trip, we saw 3 gray whales and were very interactive with us! We also encountered a huge pod of common dolphins. Gorgeous weather, and an overall wonderful experience!

 

12/19/2014 2 Gray Whales Spotted!  

Glad to see two gray whales! The storm passed by in the morning but there was still a lot of swells and wind.   We still spotted the two grays headed toward the Los Coronados islands.  There were passengers from Texas, Arizona and two groups from Europe who still had a great time.

 

12/20/2014 4 Gray Whales Spotted! 4 Gray Whales & 20 Common Dolphins Spotted!  

On the morning cruise we had wonderful calm seas.  We saw 4 gray whales, and we saw some flukes.  But the big surprise, we saw two breaches!!

 

On the afternoon cruise we left shore with passengers ready to see some whales. And we did not disappoint.  Just past Point Loma we saw about 20 common dolphins which got everyone excited.  Then about 5 miles out, we saw quite a show.  We saw a total of 4 gray whales heading south.  3 whales stayed very close to us.  And they truly entertained us with their flukes!  They kept diving and showing their flukes over and over again.  Everybody got great photos and had great smiles on their faces.  It was a great day on the water!

 

12/21/2014 1 Whale Spotted! This morning’s cruise saw us get up close and personal with a juvenile whale. We spotted him/her off the kelp beds and followed him south for about 1.5 hours. He fluked many times and was very comfortable with our boat and another whale watching boat. Seas were calm with 3′ swells. Very relaxing cruise. Not much else aside from sea birds; cormorants, pelicans and sea gulls. Lots of sea lions.

Thar be Whales! Gray Whale Watching Season is off to stormy start!

With the Southern California storms mostly behind us along with the unusual swells, we are off on the start of another exciting Gray Whale Watching season. Captain Richard Goben, Port Captain is San Diego for Hornblower Cruises & Events called in Monday, Dec. 15 with the Whale Report.

“Good news, we have spotted gray whales today along with a pod of white sided dolphins, for a successful first cruise of the season!” Goben reported.

Whale watching is mid December through the end of April. Hornblower reported two of the most successful whale watching seasons in history for the past two years and are anticipating another outstanding year. Two cruises are offered daily in San Diego with convenient boarding in the heart of downtown San Diego at 970 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego, Ca 92101. Reservations are recommended especially during the weekends on whale watching as a very popular San Diego attraction.