Whale Watching and Baja California Coast Tours
Watching the whales and dolphins in Santa Barbara is, to me, just beautiful. Near the entrance to Santa Barbara Harbor dozens of whales spied the boat and did some energetic people-watching as they came and dined on the end of the pier. About ten or twenty later a larger pod, a big mega-Pod, appeared to come into view a little west of original sighting.
Suddenly the whale began to go down the wharf and into the water. Then it sped away rapidly, heading for the deeper water behind the breakwall. We watched for a while and then a jetty appeared and the whale came in head-on and began to bump the jetty. A loud bang sounded and the whale reeled back, head first, heading directly for shore. Its tail was waving as it moved quickly toward the pier.
We watched for several minutes and then the gray whale came in again fast and made a beeline for its slipway into the Pacific Ocean. A gray whale has the same basic metabolism and needs oxygen to make its way to the open waters. The warm Pacific Ocean waters are ideal for the breeding of baby gray whales. In the last decade, the world’s population of grey whales has been reduced by about 90% due to whale collisions with ships and death in the very large adult whales.
Two interesting tours that will take you to the most interesting areas near Santa Barbara are The Whale sighting excursion and the Grey whale watching tour. Both tours depart from the Santa Barbara harbor. The Whale watching tour takes several days and includes two nights at the Explorer Base camp and one night at a local hotel or campsite. This tour also includes Santa Barbara and Baja California coast hiking, kayaking, boating, wine tours and whale watching.
The other day’s boat trip takes several hours, and includes a couple of nights at a local marina, and one night at a private yacht. This excursion leaves from the downtown harbor. The Catamaran cruise is much smaller than the aforementioned tours, but also covers some less explored areas that are less accessible by car. Each of these tours includes two nights at the marina, boat tours and two nights at a local hotel or campsite.
If you are looking for whale sightings on your vacation to Baja California, you might want to consider one of these tours instead of a snorkel tour or dinner cruise early in the morning when the whales are closer to the shore. As the sun rises, you can sit on a chair in the harbor and look out at thousands of whales moving in unison as they come closer together to feed. During this time, you will be able to view whales while they are still discharging. Watching the whales is one of the best ways to learn about the marine animals you are visiting. In addition, you get the chance to observe a different aspect of the marine ecosystem by seeing whales feeding and socializing together in the wild.