• Location: Friday Harbor, Washington
  • Duration: 4 hours (approx.)
From USD $ 103.97 View price calendar

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Get up close with the orca whales off the San Juan Islands near Seattle on this 4-hour whale-watching cruise. San Juan Island is where the southern resident killer whales live about six months out of the year, from mid-April to October. It’s also considered the best place to view orca whales.


  • Seattle whale watching
  • Experience the best killer whale watching area, off San Juan Island, near Seattle
  • Whales have been viewed on over 90% of the tours
  • You will be guaranteed see marine mammals

What You Can Expect

Whale Watching from Friday Harbor

Whale Watching from Friday Harbor

For the best whale-watching in Seattle, enjoy the beauty of San Juan Island on a whale-watching cruise from Friday Harbor, a quaint town on the island. San Juan Island is considered the best place to view orca whales because of the large salmon population, which is their primary food source. Salmon travel up and down the west coast of the island and some of the outlying areas, so it makes it a perfect place to see orca whale activity.

Climb on board the fast, new 55-foot MV Sea Lion, complete with a heated cabin, with windows, that seats up to 24 travelers. Add the walk-around deck and 40 or fewer guests can fit comfortably on this vessel.

While it’s not guaranteed that killer whales will be seen on this tour, there is more than a 90 percent chance. Plus, there is an even greater chance of seeing minke, humpback and gray whales. Seeing marine mammals, well, that’s a sure thing.

Want a more intimate tour? Join the special small-group tour, with a maximum capacity of 12 people.

Note: The schedule for the ferry to San Juan Island changes seasonally and has specific departure times. Please ask about the latest Washington State Ferry schedule to ensure you arrive with enough time to make your way to the tour departure point.


Customer Reviews

David L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2017

To start this trip, my wife and I took a Seaplane from Seattle. The day was perfect for it. Clear, visibility was so good, Mt Baker was in sight the entire flight. Went to San Juan Safaris, checked in, the employees were wonderful. The boat wa s the Sea Lion of course. The best part of the sightseeing is that there were so many whales. The guides talked about the different species and pointed out their characteristics as the Orcca's moved through the water. A Wonderful day. The return ride offered rock islands full of sea lions. Porpoise's were plentiful during the ride home. Absolutely a wonderful day.

Lana O

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

Best whale watching trip ever. Saw about 10 whales from j pod. Nice boat. Fun day

kimberly v

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Professional staff on board. Great day on the water. Bring a warm jacket!

Charles M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Smooth booking process and the tour company delivered on whale watching! I would recommend to a friend. Thank you!

Dawn F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

This was an excellent tour. The tour guides were very knowledgeable and we got to see all kinds of sea life including seals, sea lions, and whales.

Steve S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

We had a very good time

Deepa B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

The guides were great. We saw lots of Whales and other Sea creatures. Highly Recommend!

Lisa G U

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

We followed a family of orcas for about an hour! The guides were great! We noticed the other whale watching boats would sit back and follow ours!

Rebecca J

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

Although this was a long drive and ferry ride from where we were staying, it was more than worth it!! The staff was so easy to deal with and sent a very thorough set of information about getting to the island. The sightings were awesome and the entire day was something our family will never forget!

Michele K

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2014

Tour was all we expected. Saw Orcas and Humpbacks. Everyone was friendly and informative. Thanks for a great adventure!!

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