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Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour

Experience Our World-Famous Underwater Viewing Pods

Quick Details

Calendar Dates: Tours run 7 days a week

Checkmark Underwater Viewing Pods

Info Additional information:

  • Never crowded
  • Year-round whales, dolphins, sea lions, sharks, birds and more!
  • We are an official Dana Point whale watching company.

“…this tour offers the best whale watching in the world…”

Capt. Dave’s Dana Point Whale Watching

Manute’a (pronounced mah-noo-tay-ah) is our high-tech, high-speed catamaran sailboat offering the world’s most unique dolphin and whale watching experience.

Passenger watching dolphins from underwater viewing pod on Manute'a

Passenger watching common dolphins from an underwater viewing pod on Manute’a

Manute’a features Capt. Dave’s exclusive Eye-to-Eye Underwater Viewing Pods. The two “pods” give you the extraordinary experience of feeling what it’s like to swim with dolphins and whales, underwater, without getting wet!

This vessel also features three Eye-Spy Dolphin Tram Nets on the bow for an up-close and immersive Dana Point whale watching adventure, a micro dolphin and whale museum, and live narration from expert marine naturalists for a whale watching experience that is both fun and educational. Never crowded, Manute’a carries up to 49 happy passengers with plenty of elbow room and comfortable seating for all. Manute’a is the primary vessel used for our daily Dana Point whale watching trips.

And Mrs. Capt. Dave’s legendary, delicious Triple Fudge Brownies are served complimentary!

What do our guests say?

I’ve been to Disneyland, Sea World, Universal Studios – all for much more money. I ALWAYS GET MORE THAN MY MONIES WORTH. I’ve brought friends, family members, colleagues from work, Rotarians, etc. Each time I knew every would enjoy themselves – and they have. I’ve seen my stoic girlfriend break out in giggles the first time she saw a dolphin. I’ve seen my 30+ year old son who is “too cool” to be impressed with anything anymore, grab my hand and point to several blue whales with great excitement.

I could write volumes about my experiences on Capt. Dave’s Dolphin Safari. The adjectives I would use are: GREAT, WONDERFUL, SPIRITUAL, INVITING, INFORMATIVE, PEACEFUL, ADVENTUROUS, FUN, FRIENDLY, and who can forget the great brownies at the end of the trip? – 5 star TripAdvisor review from Basia C.

TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence and Hall of Fame 2019


Wildlife We’re Seeing

Autumn is a ‘fintastic’ time for dolphin and whale watching! The summer crowds are gone, but the whales are not! Dana Point is the World’s Dolphin and Whale Watching Capital® and blessed to have moderate weather all year long.

Blue whales, the largest known animal on earth, can be seen throughout September and October. Reaching lengths of up to 100 feet, blue whales are a truly magnificent sight to behold. And Dana Point Harbor, with it’s quick access to the open ocean where blue whales roam, is the perfect spot for you to get up-close and personal with these gentle giants of the sea.

blue whale illustration

Blue Whale

Throughout the autumn months you have the chance of viewing playful humpback whales, large and friendly fin whales, and curious minke whales, too.

Humpback Whale Illustration

Humpback Whale

You also have the possibility of seeing orcas (killer whales) throughout the year. They can appear at any time, without warning, so have your camera ready! Or you might have a rare encounter with pilot whales, false killer whales, or even sperm whales. Other special sightings include basking sharks, the second largest shark in the world, and huge elephant seals. Recent rare sightings have included Bryde’s whales and sei whales.

Orca (killer whale) illustration


Hold on to your safari hats because we’re not done yet! Several species of wild dolphins are seen throughout the year, some in pods that can number up to 10,000. Imagine nothing but dolphins in every direction as far as the eye can see! And that’s not all. Over 50 species of pelagic birds, sea lions, seals, and sharks, including the great white, mako, hammerhead, thresher, and more could be encountered.

Bottlenose Dolphin copyright _Vasyl Helevachuk-Dreamstime


Cetacean Declaration – Sightings Guarantee

Sightings Guarantee Capt Dave'sYou might be wondering, “what if I don’t see anything”? Although we locate whales or dolphins on over 95% of our trips, there are rare occasions when we don’t see any marine mammals. And in that unlikely event – zero whales or dolphins – you can return for FREE within one year from the date of the trip.

Join us for the adventure of a lifetime! Book your dolphin and whale watching Dana Point tour now!