San Diego is the perfect vacation destination for whales in the Puget Sound, as this natural bays situated south of the Golden Gate Bridge are home to a population of whales, dolphins and porpoises. San Diego is also renowned as the world’s first natural year-round tourist spot, and it has been a popular spot for sailing, snorkeling and other water activities since the late 19th century. There are a number of whale watching tours of the different marine life in the area that can be arranged by experienced cruisers. The sightseeing tours typically take two or three days to cover several areas of the Pacific Ocean and take travelers to many of the most famous whale watching destinations in the world.
One of the most popular tours of whales in the Puget Sound takes visitors to the Whalesback Wharf. Named after an early lighthouse in the area that helped make the Golden Gate Bridge possible, this historic landmark offers a walking path along the facade of the original structure and a reading platform where tourists can get a look at the daily log in numbers. During the summer, the whales in the area can be seen basking in the sun on the shoreline. In winter, the whales head towards the Bering Sea and head off to warmer climes; to do so, they must travel up the passageway into Washington state.
In addition to seeing whales in the Puget Sound, other species can also be seen during a Washington or Alaska orca network tour. This includes the killer whales in the Sound, the harbour porpoises, the northern elephant seal and the elusive sailing whale. Other species of whales may be taken on a cruise aboard a vessel operating out of the ports of Vancouver and Olympia. Many of these tours operate with the support of the National Whale Watch Association. A variety of activities are available to travelers on an orca network tour, including snorkeling, swimming with the whales or riding the tall ship.
Visitors who take a Washington or Alaska orca whale watching tour can arrive at Seattle’s Pier on the Aurora Bridge. The bridge is one of the most highly rated tourist locations in the world and was ranked as one of the most beautiful places in the world by National Geographic Traveler. In addition to the whale viewing tour, guests of the Puget Sound can explore the natural setting along the water, spend some time shopping or dine at one of the city’s many five star restaurants. An evening market at the Pier is a popular attraction during the busy summer months. The last two Fridays of each month, the whales play music as they feed in the bay just before sunset.
For those who wish to spot whales in the Puget Sound, an evening trip out to Snohomish is well worth the trip. Visitors often report that it takes them almost an hour to see whales when they are sightseeing around the bay. A great place to spot whales is in the Hainan Bay, but it is not advised that whales be caught here. Many state and federal laws prohibit catching wild animals except for endangered species.
No matter where you intend to go in the Puget Sound, it is essential to be aware of whale watching safety. For example, it is illegal to interfere with a whales migration. It is also illegal to disturb a whales feeding or breeding colonies. Any violation of the law will have severe consequences.