Tours and Tickets

Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists

By Five Star Whale Watching
Recommended by 92% of travelers
This number is based on the percentage of all Tripadvisor reviews for this product that have a bubble rating of 4 or higher
Watch for orca whales and other marine wildlife on a half-day whale watching cruise from Victoria, and learn about the fascinating marine ecosystem from onboard naturalist guides. Indoor and outdoor seating ensure a comfortable trip in any weather: Photographers can get clear shots from open-air decks, with plenty of room to warm up inside if it’s cool on the water.
from
$93.38
per adult
from
$93.38
per adult

Lowest price guaranteeReserve now & pay laterFree cancellation

Ages 0-99, max of 40 per group
Duration:3h
Start time: Check availability
Ticket type:Mobile
English, French

Highlights
  • See the coast of Vancouver Island from the ocean
  • Discover marine wildlife with two expert naturalists
  • Cruise in a vessel that’s designed for whale watching
  • Open top deck gives photography-friendly 360-degree views

  • 3-hour whale-watching tour from Victoria
  • 2 onboard naturalist guides
What's not included
  • Food and drinks
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • Gratuities


Departure details
  • Five Star Whale Watching, 645 Humboldt St, Victoria, BC V8W 1A6, Canada Check in: We ask all passengers to meet 30 minutes prior to their scheduled tour time. Meet us at 645 Humboldt Street on the North side of the Fairmont Empress Hotel, next to Willow Stream Spa
Return details
  • Returns to original departure point

  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
If you have questions about accessibility, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 5422WHALE

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • May be operated by a multi-lingual guide
  • Operates in all weather conditions, please dress appropriately (layers and comfortable shoes are recommended)
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 40 travelers

  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

A note from Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists
  • We have installed a Plexiglas barrier at the check in counter to protect staff & guests. No cash will be accepted to ensure staff safety. All guests will undergo a health check as laid down by WorkSafe BC and will be required to sign a waiver. For full details/restrictions, visit www.5starwhales.com
What you can expect during your visit
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Temperature checks for tour participants upon arrival
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Face masks provided for travelers
  • Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.

How much is Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists?
Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists price starts from $92.99. Discover and book Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists on Tripadvisor
What is the Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists cancellation policy?
Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists on Tripadvisor
Which company provides Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists?
Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists is hosted by Five Star Whale Watching. Read reviews, discover additonal experiences or contact Five Star Whale Watching on Tripadvisor. Discover and book Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists on Tripadvisor
How much time do I need for Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists?
On average, this experience will take approximately 3h. Discover and book Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists on Tripadvisor

If you have questions about this tour or need help making your booking, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 5422WHALE

About the operator

Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator.

steveaA9929CY
steveaA9929CY
00
Best Day Ever!
We saw more humpback whales than we have ever seen before. The crew knew right where to go and got us in viewing w
frank78686
frank78686
00
a wonderful tour
My wife and I enjoy very much for this tour. We watched two huckaback whales, a group of dolphins and big sea lion
maahanoor
maahanoor
00
Fun activity for all ages
Fun activity for every age group. Had a great day watching whales. Great service. My husband and i enjoyed it very
kgdickma
kgdickma
00
Whale watching
Alexa was very communicative prior to our trip, updating on weather and boat changes. She was also extremely knowle
bobrQ4953MH
bobrQ4953MH
00
Definitely a 5 Star Company and 5 star day on the Salish Sea
We had an incredible day observing and following nearly 20 whales, both Orcas and Humpbacks. The information and s
Ace M
Ace M
00
Excellent Company, Amazingly Knowledgeable
The company was top notch from the get go. They were very professional, kind, safe, and welcoming. The one guide (J
PALees2014
PALees2014
00
Whale watching trip
It was an excellent trip . The staff are very friendly and professional.The office staff ,Alexa and Sam greeted us
Chris L
Chris L
00
Wonderful Experience
Dave is very knowledgeable and gave us a great commentary. We saw humpbacks and loads of sea lions etc. While we d
PTAMOM2017
PTAMOM2017
00
Whales were pretty far away
While we did get to see a pod of orcas and a couple of small humpback whales, they were pretty far away. You need a
Russ S
Russ S
00
They literally went the extra mile for us
The Orcas had moved up island and after we had been travelling for a little over an hour askded everyone if we wer
Tarmacchunky
Tarmacchunky
00
Whales, sea lions, and seals- oh my!
My tour was the highlight of my trip to Victoria. The captian and mate were very knowledgeable and pleasant. Would
VacationsExplorer
VacationsExplorer
00
Excellent and Informative Tour
Staff were so friendly and provided great information Their boat was smaller than the others which was perfect to s
JoanneLunag
JoanneLunag
00
Breathtaking adventure with Five Star Whale Watching
This was my first time on a whale watching tour and seeing whales in my roughly 6 years of living in BC! It was suc
gamacatee
gamacatee
00
Best whale watching operator in Victoria!
We booked the whole vessel for an afternoon on the water with 40 members of our club. Everyone had a wonderful time
derf757
derf757
00
Awesome time!
Very enjoyable experience and competitive prices! We really enjoyed the boat staff - they made the trip awesome!
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
109 reviews
Excellent
87
Very good
14
Average
3
Poor
4
Terrible
1

Salvatore M
1 contribution
We booked this whale watching excursion outside of the Royal Caribbean package, because it was less expensive. I was concerned it would be tough to get off the ship and get downtown Victoria to meet at the requested time. It was actually very EASY! They had buses outside the ship going every 15 minutes and it was a roundtrip paid price. The staff was very pleasant the greeted us and they directed us down to the ship. The captain and nature experts were extremely knowledgeable and very engaging with everyone. We were very fortunate to see humpback whales and killer whales. This was the highlight excursion of our cruise. I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND 5 Star Whale Watching!!!!!!!!!
Written July 1, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you so much for your detailed and thoughtful review towards your experience and our crew! We are happy that you found the process of getting to our office easy and efficient as well as boarding our vessel. Thank you kindly for your acknowledgements towards our hard-working crew and Captain. We will certainly pass along your awesome review to our staff. We are so glad you had the ability to encounter two amazing Salish Sea species, humpback whales and killer whales/orcas. Thank you so much, and we would love to host you again in Victoria if you are visiting again.
Written July 6, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

sam j
3 contributions
Dec 2021
I highly recommend Five Star Whale Watching, their commitment to safety, customer service and responsible Whale Watching is second to none. My partner and I have taken tours with this company on a number of occasions and always had a wonderful time. From the pre-trip details and safety waiver (a standard practice in the Whale Watching industry) they provide, to the professional & friendly staff that great you at check in and their top notch Captains and Crew, the service and experience truly is 5 Star! They always put a large emphasis on safety and provide a thorough briefing when you check in and again before you board the vessel and when you first leave the dock. Throughout the trip the staff always have safety first and check to ensure everyone is doing well and enjoying themselves. On one trip one of our fellow guests was feeling a little squeamish and so the Captain slowed the boat and moved them to the back deck (less motion). The Crew kept checking on the fellow passenger for the rest of the trip. It is that type of dedication that is what impresses. I know they have also cancelled tours a couple of times that we had booked due to bad weather and then made sure we could book an alternative date or get our money back, again showing that they care more about safety than money, a rare trait these days. On our last trip in December we got to see Orcas and Humpbacks, it was an amazing experience!
Written March 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you Sam for such an amazing review, it is really appreciated. We look forward to you joining a tour again in the future.
Written March 12, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Peng L
Kitchener, Canada8 contributions
Very knowledgeable about the area and history…we did see some humpbacks from a distance, they are massive so neat to see…we also so California and elephant seals - nice to see them in their own habitats and not stuck in a zoo - friendly host.

We did a sunset tour..very beautiful…

Remember to bring light winter coat, hat possible gloves as it does get very cold…they have a few winter coats but that’s it…
Written August 25, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for your informative review! We are very glad to hear that you enjoyed your tour with us and had a great time encountering some wonderful Salish Sea species in their natural habitat. Thank you again! We will pass along your positive feedback to our crew.
Written August 27, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

garlictime
Alloa, UK74 contributions
Sep 2022
Great trip in a good , stable boat.
We got to see Orcas and Hump Back Whales plus sea lions etc. The driver guide was very knowledgeable and had a genuine interest and affection for the animals and their environment. I thoroughly recommend this trip but as stated in other reviews, make sure you take warm clothes as it gets pretty chilly !
Written September 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for your review and kind words. We are happy to see you enjoyed the tour. Yes we always recommend warm comfortable layers for our trip.
Written September 9, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Tin QC
Calgary, Canada318 contributions
Booked a whale watching trip for May 31st and it was so much fun! We joined a few families with kids and rode their Supercat vessel. The captain and 2 naturalist guides were very professional, explained the safety features of the boat and shared very interesting details about whales and sea animals we saw on tour.

We saw a gray whale, 2 humpback whales and seals on an islet. Would have loved to see orcas but we weren’t able to on this tour. Maybe next time.

Giving a rating of 4 because I originally booked for a sunset package but it was rebooked. Otherwise, the whole experience was fantastic! Will definitely book with them again next time we’re back in Victoria. Great job!
Written June 1, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for your review and kind words. We are glad you enjoyed the tour. We do apologize for not being able to take you on the sunset tour. Hopefully next time there will be Orcas in our area and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
Written June 2, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sightseer291835
42 contributions
Jul 2022
Excellent experience for my 8 yr granddaughter and me. Comfortable boat, interesting background information from our naturalist, and we were lucky enough to catch an "unbelievable" show (as described by the crew) by a humpback whale who spent a half-hour jumping out of the water--feeding, flopping, flipping and tail smacking. An amazing sight to see.
Written July 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for your excellent review and kind words. We are especially happy that your granddaughter enjoyed the encounter. Yes, the crew did describe this as an unbelievable encounter with the Humpback breaching at least 50 times! Thank you again for your review.
Written July 22, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Samantha G
1 contribution
Oct 2022
We are Victoria locals who bid on a voucher to go whale watching with Five Star Whale Watching at an auction. We didnt really expect much as the whales are typically quiet in October but wow were we ever spoiled. Humpbacks and Orcas were all spotted and our Naturalist, Alexa, was so knowledgeable and answered every question we had for her. Captain Andrew was also great. From the booking to the cruise everything was seamless and fantastic. I will be recommending Five Star to anyone visiting.
Written October 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for taking the time to write such a wonderful and thoughtful review. We are happy to hear you had such an amazing time during your recent tour. We will pass on your kind comments to Alexa and Andrew. Thank you again for your review and for recommending Five Star Whale Watching.
Written October 18, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

pamhD3289WG
5 contributions
Jul 2021 • Friends
We appreciated that the staff worked so hard to find the whales, and even extended our trips to do so. Staff checked in frequently to ensure we were comfortable and enjoying the experience. First time on the smaller vessel, and it was terrific!
Written July 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for your review and kind words. We are happy to hear you enjoyed your recent tour with Five Star Whale Watching and had an amazing experience. Most of the time we can find Whales within our regular 3 hour tour but when necessary we will extend the tour if Whales are a little further away than usual or found later in the tour. We will make sure we pass on your comments to our staff and thank you again for such a terrific review!
Written July 11, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

marvin3004
Los Alcazares, Spain269 contributions
Over 3 hours on the water to see 1 humpback whale fin from 500 yards.
Maybe I need to manage my expectations better, but I was hoping to see more than just a whale fin from over 500 yards.
I could not hear a word the resident “expert” said, she was pleasant, but no real substance & little knowledge, or so it seemed, but a pleasant young lady.
This was not a whale watching trip, this is a boat trip plain & simple, but again, we must be fair, you cannot “click your fingers” & magically call up the animals, I understand that, but this was a disappointing trip.
Whale was close to the USA coast, over an hour from Victoria, so not an enjoyable trip.
I expected more, but maybe I expected too much.
Sorry folks, you did your best, but not a great day.
The boat had problems initially, so sat on the boat in the marina for over 20 minutes at the start.
This after my initial trip was cancelled the day before, the boat I was originally scheduled to go on, needed maintenance.
Communication was good, but a really disappointing trip.
Written July 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
We are sorry that you feel this way regarding the tour, the sightings and your experience, however we do disagree and do not understand the poor review in its entirety. We do welcome respectful feedback, however we do feel some of your points do not come across as such. Our boat crew explained that you did encounter a humpback whale at 100 metres, which is a legal and respectful requirement for viewing this species of whale. This species is the largest we typically encounter in the Salish Sea, and is between 30-40 tonnes. Most of our guests feel humbled and grateful to see such an amazing animal, we are sorry you did not feel the same. You also encountered Bigg's orcas at between 300-400 metres this evening, which is a completely different species than the humpback whale, and equally as interesting as they are the ocean's top predator. We adhere to and take pride in following respectful whale-viewing guidelines as Victoria's 1st WCA Certified Respectful Whale-Watching Operator. We would never want to approach an animal too close or at a point that would no longer be considered respectful, and we are always happy to explain the importance of viewing distances to our guests. Our guides are extremely passionate, knowledgeable and well-versed in their subject matter. We do take your point towards our crew member as a hurtful statement, as all of our crew are extremely well-rounded and intelligent people. All of our guides bring forward a diverse set of backgrounds and knowledge including academic and practical marine biology experience, guiding experience in various environments and other unique experiences. We try to provide enough information for all guests without taking away from the experience of the live marine wildlife we encounter. In saying this, our guides are always happy to explain further details or information if a guest is more interested in a certain subject. We do apologize for the inconvenience towards the initial trip cancelation and the wait for your rebooked trip. The 20 minute engine delay was not a safety concern, but did arise unexpectedly so we appreciate your and everybody's understanding towards this. Thank you for your positive reflection into our communication, we do try to ensure our guests are caught up, informed, and aware of all details of their trip. We hope with the above points you may reconsider your perspective on our crew and the trip as a whole. With wild animals, we can never predict what their behaviours will be, and how many whales we see, this is the nature of wildlife in the dynamic Salish Sea. May we suggest in future you visit an aquarium, that might meet your expectations.
Written July 22, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Garth B
1 contribution
Sep 2021 • Couples
This was by far the best whale watching tour of the 4 we have taken..smaller boat, not at all crowded,and a humpback was playing along side the vessel. Mere feet away stayed with us for 15 minutes! Also seen orcas and maybe 100 sea lions and seals. Would only take this tour when in Victoria.
Written September 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
FiveStar W
Thank you for such an incredible review. it sounds like you had a very special day with an amazing encounter with a Humpback Whale. We practice all responsible and best practice Whale Watching guidelines but on rare occasions the Whales will decide to come close. At that time we shut down and let the Whale do what it wants to do. Thank you again for coming out with us and for such a wonderful review.
Written September 4, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Whale-Watching Cruise with Expert Naturalists