Whale Watching and Excursions to the Channel Islands National Park Safe and Open!
Island Packers, family owned and founded in 1968, is the official concessionaire for boat transportation to the Channel Islands National Parks.
A winter Whale Watch is a perfect way to gather with family and friends to view Pacific Gray whales migrating through the Santa Barbara Channel from their feeding grounds in Alaska to their breeding grounds in Baja. Pacific Gray Whales are normally sighted in the National Marine Sanctuary near Anacapa and Santa Cruz Island starting late December and extending through middle of April. This mammoth migration of over 20,000 whales and 6,000 miles twice a year remains a major attraction in Southern California.
Sightings of the southern migration began in December for Pacific Gray Whales, and we also saw Humpback Whales, Fin whales, and occasionally Orcas. Common Dolphin are enjoyed year-round, delighting passengers as they frolic with the boat, and ride the bow and stern waves. For our most recent sightings visit www.islandpackers.com or find us on Twitter.
The half-day Winter Whale Watch Cruise provides stunning views of the Ventura coastline or the Channel Islands; depending on where the whales may be sighted.
Winter Whale Watch excursions are available now thru mid-April from Ventura and/ or Channel Islands Harbor departing at 9:30 a.m. and/or 1:30 p.m. Rates for half-day trips are $40 for adults, $36 for seniors, and $29 for children 3-12. Children 2 years old and younger ride free.
All-day trips with landings to Anacapa and Santa Cruz Island are also available year-round. On Santa Cruz, both Scorpion Anchorage and Prisoner’s Harbor are now open. All-day trips run from $ 62.00 to $ 84.00 per adult. Camping is NOT available on the Channel Islands at this time but will resume soon.
What makes whale watching a great activity:
• Affordable family fun – half day excursions start at $40 for adults; $29 for kids
• Flexible – winter trips depart twice a day, almost daily (weather permitting) until mid-April
• Educational – crew aboard the whale watching cruises have many years of experience sighting whales on the waters of the Santa Barbara Channel and will narrate and inform guests about all the varieties or marine mammals seen on your cruise
• Get in touch with nature – it is not just whales that make the area so special; you may also see sea birds, sea lions, and the coastline of the offshore islands while onboard
• Safety protocols keeping visitors to the Channel Islands safe and comfortable include:
Passenger loads limited to under 50% capacity to better facilitate social distancing
Island Packer employees are health screened before every shift
Eating and drinking permitted outside cabin area
Passengers will be given a health inquiry before being allowed access to office or boats and everyone required to wear face covering on board vessels
Office and boat crew wear appropriate PPE when in contact with the public
Office and vessels will be sanitized during stops and between runs
Call for more information 805-642-1393 Book online www.Islandpackers.com