Top Ten Places to Encounter Whales

Western Hemisphere: California Coast, Between Big Sur and Fort Bragg

The current gray whale population numbers 21,000. An impressive 94 percent of that number pass within a mile of the Point Reyes in the first two weeks of January. Standing on a bluff in the cold, you can see gray spouts out at sea. Californians make their own seasonal migration to greet them, and call out their support. But you have whale watching opportunities all year long along the coast. In the spring through fall, humpbacks, blue whales, minkes, right whales, and orcas swim these waters.

You can book a whale watching trip in many coastal communities. The Oceanic Society in San Francisco and Monterey Bay Whale Watch offer excellent excursions.

Just the Facts

What you might see there: Grays, blues, humpbacks, orcas, rights

Viewing options: Shoreline, boat

Published: 28 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 20 Nov 2012
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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