Ahoy!  Thar She Blows!

Southern California’s summer tourists may have come and gone, but this winter a different type of tourist will be traveling along the West Coast and heading to Baja during its annual migration: the majestic California Gray Whale. The whales will begin their migration in late November, but from March 5 – 6 and 12 – 13 hundreds of these 35-ton leviathans will splash through the seaside community of Dana Point, California – the West Coast’s premier location to meet and greet these incredible creatures during the
45th Annual Dana Point Festival of Whales.

The Dana Point Festival of Whales is one of Southern California’s largest seafaring celebrations and reaches out to whale admirers around the world. Dana Point is teeming with festivities every winter during this special time of year, offering something for everyone. The Festival draws over 100,000 visitors each year over these two special weekends.

Festival highlights include an opening day parade, Street Fair, art and craft shows and sales, classic car exhibits, paddling and sailing opportunities, Boating Extravaganza, sand sculpting, concerts on land and water, environmental activities, educational opportunities, interpretive crafts, kids activities, fun food, and of course, whale watching excursions on a variety of vessels or whale watching from breathtaking Dana Point Headlands Conservation Park. For those wishing to spend more than a day admiring these graceful leviathans and taking in the sights of beautiful Dana Point, a variety of accommodations are available throughout the city, many offering whale watching packages and unforgettable ocean and harbor view guest rooms. The 2016 Festival invites visitors to migrate to each and every event via FREE trolley service provided throughout the Festival venues and parking lots. Or, take our water taxi and migrate on the water!

And…you’re invited! All credentialed media representatives are encouraged to join us for a two-hour whale watching excursion any time between December 1 and March 4. Whale watching excursions must be booked five business days in advance of desired departure and are based on space availability. There are a variety of excursions to choose from, so if you’re interested in joining us and experiencing whale watching first hand, please contact me and allow me to make your reservations. I may be reached at 949-499-4499 or Please note this is a fantastic photo opp, so please consider also bringing a representative to capture the great visuals.

For more information on the Festival or to request additional media materials, please contact me at the phone number or email address above. Thank you for your interest in the Dana Point Festival of Whales!


Penny Elia
Executive Director
Dana Point Festival of Whales