Welcome Aboard "Dolphin Safari"

Orange County’s Legendary Whale Watching Catamaran

DolphinSafari is the boat that started it all! Our 35-foot sailing catamaran is the original pride of our fleet and remains a crew and passenger favorite. She was the first vessel in Southern California to offer year-round dolphin watching. And it was aboard this catamaran that Captain Dave filmed his award winning documentary, “Wild Dolphins & Whales of Southern California“.

DolphinSafari is available for private charters and burials at sea. Public whale watching trips are available on select dates only.

With a comfortable capacity of about 20 passengers, DolphinSafari provides an intimate dolphin and whale watching experience. Her specially designed bow with Eye-Spy Dolphin Nets is so close to the water that you feel as though you can touch the animals! You’re also close enough to hear the dolphins vocalize as they swim right under your feet. It’s almost like being in a kayak! This boat has comfortable seating in the enclosed cockpit and a restroom.

Please note: DolphinSafari is not equipped with Eye-to-Eye Underwater Viewing Pods. That feature is only available on Manute’a.

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DolphinSafari Reviews

Amazing! Best Ever!

I know whale watching is always about 90% luck–sometimes the whales just aren’t there, but this trip was the best. The weather was perfect, Captain Peter is enthusiastic and kind, and the whole trip was just wonderful. Dana Point is the place to go whale watching as there is a steep drop-off just off shore. We saw 5 or 6 blue whales (on 8/19/2012), a bunch of dolphins and a few Sun Fish. The boat was the smaller catamaran, the Dolphin Safari, which is the best boat because you are right on the water. You could look down and see animals swimming under the boat! The water was so clear, too. We saw baby dolphins swimming with the mothers! The boat takes just 20 people, so it is pretty small, but everyone gets the same view, and you never miss anything because it’s on he “other side of the boat.” The bow waves splash into the boat over the netting a little bit (which is great when the weather’s warm) and the quieter engines of the Dolphin Safari mean the animals aren’t spooked as much. I’ve done lots of whale watching is this is the best!

– ClassicCarTraveler

I have done whale watching before. This is a whole new level. We are not talking 2 hours out to hopefully see something and then two hours back. We chose the smaller catamaran, which really lets you get up close. I know it’s not always like this, but these guys are really good. It went like this… 1) Board boat 2) As soon as you leave the harbor cue the sea lions 3) Sea Lions check…now cue the blue whales 4) Blue whales check…now cue the bottle nose Dolphins. Oh and throw in Patches. The most famous dolphin on the west coast. Oh and make sure to throw in some 20+ ft high jumps. 5) Bottle nose Dolphins and Patches check…now cue about 300 common dolphin complete with aerial displays. 6) Common Dolphins check. Let’s add one last humpback whale on the way into the harbor. 7) Throw in a few more sea lions for good measure 8) Thanks for coming. Please enjoy these amazing brownies. It was an unbelievable experience for the whole family.

– whetraveler73