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San Diego Dolphin Tours

a dolphin swimming in a body of water

Whether traveling to San Diego to see the sights or living nearby, there are many things to do on and off the water. Among the more popular destination activities are dolphin and whale watching. You need to understand the best times for each to get the most out of them.

Dolphin Tour

There are many options for dolphin tours in the area; several are well-established names that know the best spots to see. Booking a tour in advance ensures you have everything exactly the way you want, from the time of day to the number of people in your party. The closer to your desired departure time and date, the more likely you will have to compromise because these tours are in high demand, and spots on individual crafts are limited.

The various tour companies in the city offer private tour options and seating with other parties, depending on your budget level and the number of people in your group. Suppose you know you’re booking a large number of people like a corporate outing. In that case, you might need to arrange for multiple excursions and assign times, depending on the capabilities of your tour company. Experienced tour companies understand large group booking and have options to work with company retreats, church groups, and other large parties.

Best Time of Day To Go on a Dolphin Tour

The best time to observe marine wildlife is generally when the ocean is calmest, and in San Diego, that usually means in the morning or early afternoon. Tours that start before noon tend to see more dolphins because the rising temperatures throughout the day lead to higher winds that stir up waves. While there are good days to see dolphins in the afternoon, sightings are far more dependent on conditions and harder to predict once you get to the hottest part of the day.

Some travelers wonder if there is a peak season for dolphin watching the same way there is for whale watching, but dolphins around San Diego are not typically on a migratory path. While blue and gray whales pass through the area on their way to summer or winter destinations, the dolphins are around close to the same numbers all year.

a person standing next to a window

What To Bring

Being out on open water leads to unpredictable shifts in your comfort level. It can be hot when the boat is still, the wind is not blowing, and chilly when everything is moving, even if the day’s baseline temperature has not moved. Remember that you’ll be in the sun for multiple hours.

  • Jacket or coat
  • Towel
  • Swimwear or clothing that can get wet
  • Sunscreen
  • Bottled water

It’s also a good idea to have sunglasses; almost everyone wants to bring a camera to capture memories. Ensure you are well prepared because preparation is the key to enjoying your adventure.

What To Expect

When you book your tour, you will be given instructions that cover the basic information about when you should check in, how long boarding takes, and how long the tour should last. You can expect to be out in the sun and the weather pretty much the entire time, and if you do not book a private tour, you can also expect to share the vessel with other people who have booked the tour. You’ll be taken to top dolphin-spotting locations in the area and then returned to the departure point.

If you are already in the city, you can find excellent options for tours by simply searching for dolphin tours near me. Bookings are easy to find if you’re planning a future trip. Check out your options today.