After watching a news segment about a San Francisco Whale Watching tour that spotted a pod of 14 killer whales I knew what my plans would consist of for the next weekend. I set out Valentine’s Day weekend determined to encounter a few orcas for myself on the Monterey Bay. After researching local tours and reading rave reviews I chose to go with Monterey Bay Whale Watching on Fisherman’s Wharf.

Monterey Bay Whale Watching

I arrived for the 1:30pm tour with my Valentine in tow. As expected, we were not alone. The boat, close to being sold out, carried about 50 other passengers but there was still plenty of room to roam around. Within the first 10 minutes on the boat we spotted our first gray whale and we hadn’t even ventured past Lover’s Point! I have been on several whale watching excursions and have seen whales before, but seeing the massive creatures up close never gets old.

Whale tail

As we continued to cruise along we ran across 2 pods of dolphins, each containing well over 30 dolphins. Once we were out of the Bay we continued to see clusters of 3-4 gray whales almost every 20 minutes. Each cluster put on a show of spouts and a finale with tales waving in the air.

Dolphins playing on Monterey Bay

Even though I didn’t get to see any orcas it was amazing to be out on the open sea in the sunny, 67 degree weather. I would definitely recommend this tour for all locals and visitors to the Monterey area. For more information on whale watching in Monterey Bay see SeeMonterey's guide to whale watching.