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Golden Gate Whale Cruise - San Francisco

Bring a shelter-buddy and join us for a 2.5-hour naturalist-led evening cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge to seek humpback whales! Every Wednesday from 4:30-7:00pm. Book now!
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Update: Trips running every Wednesday evening, starting August 12th – October 28th. Book now!

Recent Sightings: Saturday, July 25th, 2020: A humpback whale was seen lunge-feeding with help from a handful of California Sea Lions. This whale proceeded to roll over onto its back and expose the underside of its tail and pectoral fins! A very exciting encounter! See photos here.

Whale Sighting Likelihood: June-August 93% | September-October 87% | Based on Historical OS Data

COVID-19: Transmission reduction measures in place including county approved Site-Specific Protection Plan, limited capacity, employee trainings, face coverings, routine deep-cleanings and socially distant spacing at all times during the trip.

Departure Time: 4:30-7:00pm | Every Wednesday | August-October | Click Here to See Our Schedule & Book Now!

Trip Duration: 2.5 hours | (Looking for something more? | Check out our Farallon Wildlife Expeditions)

Trip Details: Cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge led by expert naturalists to see humpback whales, porpoises, sea lions & more. If whales aren't in and around SF Bay, we will go to common feeding hotspots north towards Bolinas Bay or south towards Ocean Beach.

Price: $240 per station pass (up to 2 whale watchers per station pass)

Stations: Our spacious 56-foot vessel has 16 two-person whale watching stations all spaced at least 6 feet apart. Each trip we will sell only 12 station passes, allowing you and a shelter-buddy to safely watch whales from your station and move to any vacant stations. Naturalists will help regulate movement. You must stay at the same station with your buddy at all times (bathroom exception).

Age Limit: 10 years or older

Departure Location: San Francisco Small Craft Harbor (3950 Scott Street | Near the Northwest corner of the Marina Green)

Parking: Free on site | For Parking Diagram & Additional Trip Details Click Here!

Any Questions?: Email chrisb@oceanicsociety.org and get a fast response!

The Whales Are Already Here!

Humpback whales arrive back in the Bay Area as early as March each year! Our 2.5-hour tours provide ample opportunity to witness feeding humpback whales with expert interpretation coming from our staff of top-notch naturalists. Oceanic Society is a conservation non-profit that pioneered whale watching in San Francisco in 1972. We measure our naturalists’ experience in decades, not years. They are simply the best available!

We Are COVID Prepared

This trip is designed with COVID safety in mind. We've taken measures that go above and beyond state and local regulations. Social distancing is present at every stage of the trip. All naturalists & boat crew have undergone COVID transmission reduction training and certification. Regular sanitization of common surfaces is ongoing during each trip and a full sanitization process occurs before every new batch of passengers.

Your Trip Supports Ocean Conservation

As we mentioned before, Oceanic Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to ocean conservation. Your participation in our whale watch helps fund our global ocean conservation programs and local programs including whale entanglement response. Moreover, we use our whale watching cruises as an opportunity to collect photographic identification data on marine mammals, which we share with a network of researchers throughout the eastern Pacific. You can see our recently photographed whales on Happywhale. Learn more about Oceanic Society here.

Photos & Videos


Our Coast Guard certified vessel, the 56-foot Salty Lady, has an observation deck, limited indoor seating, and two bathrooms. Our captains are experienced in nature cruises and committed to marine conservation.

Face covering is required. Warm, layered clothing with a waterproof outer layer is strongly recommended. Hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen are also advised.

Bring your own food and beverages; there are no concessions on board. Alcohol is discouraged, but not prohibited. Backpacks are fine, but please, no coolers due to space limitations.

No smoking is allowed on Oceanic Society cruises.

Age minimum 10; an adult must accompany children under 16. Children must wear a life jacket at all times while aboard the vessel.

Trips go rain or shine, but may be cancelled due to high winds and/or high seas. All passengers will be notified via email and text should we need to cancel.

For cancellation policy, refund and reschedule policy, and other important terms, read our detailed Terms and Conditions.

Recent Sightings

No sightings logged yet. Keep checking back!