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Oceanic Society Farallon Islands Whale Watching

Features Animals
San Francisco, CA
+1 415-256-9604
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Review Highlights
Much better than a commercialized tour!

We went on a first Friday cruise, so our trip was only scheduled to be 3 hours long. We loved it... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Emma C
Should have been cancelled!

This was a very disappointing trip. I had booked it several months in advance and was looking... read more

Reviewed 3 June 2018
Mary1552
,
London, United Kingdom
via mobile
Read all 35 reviews
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Oceanic Society is a non-profit marine conservation organization founded in San Francisco in 1969. Our San Francisco whale watch programs began in 1972, and have given thousands of people the opportunity to see and learn about the Bay Area's spectacular marine wildlife, including several species of whales, dolphins, seabirds, and much more. We are the only non-profit whale watch operator in the Bay Area, and our trips are used to collect marine research and support local conservation efforts.
  • Excellent68%
  • Very good17%
  • Average5%
  • Poor5%
  • Terrible5%
Travellers talk about
“common murres” (4 reviews)
“rough seas” (4 reviews)
LOCATION
San Francisco, CA
Marina District
CONTACT
Website
+1 415-256-9604
Write a ReviewReviews (35)
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All reviews
"common murres"
in 4 reviews
"rough seas"
in 4 reviews
"continental shelf"
in 3 reviews
"blue footed booby"
in 2 reviews
"unusual birds"
in 2 reviews
"small craft"
in 2 reviews
"marine biologist"
in 2 reviews
"fellow passengers"
in 2 reviews
"clear days"
in 2 reviews
"great trip"
in 3 reviews
"sea lions"
in 11 reviews
"an adventure"
in 2 reviews
"golden gate"
in 3 reviews
"day trip"
in 2 reviews
"seasick"
in 10 reviews
"humpbacks"
in 10 reviews
"sightings"
in 3 reviews
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1 - 10 of 35 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

We went on a first Friday cruise, so our trip was only scheduled to be 3 hours long. We loved it! Despite not seeing any whales, we had a great trip around the bay. The crew was obviously passionate about wildlife and the bay area,...More

Thank Emma C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2018 via mobile

This was a very disappointing trip. I had booked it several months in advance and was looking forward to it being the highlight of our trip from UK. Obviously the weather is unpredictable but seeing the conditions even before we started filled us with alarm....More

Thank Mary1552
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2018

Waters were choppy but whales had been spotted so we left the docks hopeful! We had the opportunity to see a few whales (no photos because we just weren't fast enough). We also really enjoyed the Farallon Island where it was breeding season for sea...More

Thank MaryDfromChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OceanicSociety, VP of Outreach at Oceanic Society Farallon Islands Whale Watching, responded to this reviewResponded 4 June 2018

Thanks so much for your review! We're very glad to hear that you enjoyed your trip with us, and we appreciate your support!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 May 2018

I've been wanting to do this tour for years and finally got a chance yesterday. Unfortunately you have to book so far in advance that the weather conditions are a bit of a gamble, and in this case we lost. Looks like one of my...More

1  Thank Victor O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2018

On a day with Small Craft Advisory and winds up to 30 mph, almost 40 people boarded the Salty Lady for a harrowing trip out to the Farallon Islands to search for birds and whales. Well, after over 2.5 hours getting out there with waves...More

1  Thank photo822
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OceanicSociety, California Programs Coordinator at Oceanic Society Farallon Islands Whale Watching, responded to this reviewResponded 21 May 2018

Thank you for your feedback. We’re sorry to hear that the weather conditions negatively affected your experience on our trip. Wind and waves are always a factor on these open-ocean excursions but we, and the other whale watch organizations in San Francisco, determined the conditions...More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2017 via mobile

The weather cooperated and we made it out to the Farallons and past to the continental shelf. Many aquatic birds including Tuft Puffins (my favorite) and a Blue Footed Booby. We found a whale freeway past the Farallons and viewed approx 45 Humpbacks and 25...More

5  Thank Alfred B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2017 via mobile

A seriously great trip to go on whist visiting San Francisco! These guys are awesome, very knowledgable, friendly and helpful. The boat is great and comfortable. We saw loads and learnt even more. As far as the Farallon islands are concerned what an amazing place!...More

3  Thank Delajojo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2017

On clear days, I can see the Farallons from my house. Ten years ago my neighbor told me about her wonderful Oceanic Society Farallon Island trip, and I’ve always wanted to go but until recently was afraid of getting seasick. I usually don’t use the...More

4  Thank pilikiax2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OceanicSociety, Director of Outreach at Oceanic Society Farallon Islands Whale Watching, responded to this reviewResponded 14 July 2017

Thanks so much for your positive review. Indeed, the marine conditions between San Francisco and the islands can vary dramatically from trip to trip. We hope that our descriptions and reminder email prepared you for your journey and that others see this note as well....More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2016 via mobile

Absolute one off. Had the chance to go out early morning part tourist trip part scientific research. Seven hours at sea, thoroughly enjoyed and so knowledgeable really amazing

4  Thank GrahamP113
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 September 2016

At one point we didn't know which way to look because there were whales in every direction. The naturalist said that we had an amazing day so maybe it's not always this good but I have been whale watching 5 or 6 times in different...More

4  Thank Craig A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nearby
Marina District
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world’s fair. That ample space has given way to a
jogger’s paradise at the northern edge of the city.
...More
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
dgfifties1
8 August 2017|
Answer
Response from OceanicSociety | Property representative |
Hi! While there is never a guarantee with nature, there is a high likelihood of seeing whales throughout October and into November. On our website you can find sightings reports from previous seasons that will give you a... More
0
Votes
eagertolearnca
16 March 2017|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from OceanicSociety1969 | Property representative |
The odds of seeing whales in June are high. Though there are no guarantees with nature, we see whales on virtually every trip. On one trip last June (the 25th) we saw 54 humpbacks and a gray whale. June is also a great time... More
1
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