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“Sea otters and Seals”

Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve
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Monterey and Carmel Helicopter Tour from Watsonville
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Owner description: A wildlife reserve that offers visitors walking trails and kayak tours through salt marshes and tidal flats.
Level Contributor
1,620 reviews
1,090 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1,306 helpful votes
“Sea otters and Seals”
Reviewed May 3, 2013

We used our own kayaks, but wish we had taken the tour as we may have missed an opportunity to see more sea life. As it was, we saw seals and sea otters, lots of birds. The day was not a clear blue sky so that may have been an issue. Overall, it was good exercise and we did see some critters. But my advice is to go with a guide the first time it more than pays for itself. watch the tide as it can be a chose if the wind comes up against you.

Visited April 2013
Thank James H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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204 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
El Sobrante, California
Level Contributor
253 reviews
98 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“"See Otters" 99.9 % of the time”
Reviewed April 30, 2013

I don't know how many years I spent driving up and down Hwy 1 looking for Sea Otters...never to catch a glimpse, until... we found Moss Landing and Elkhorn Slough. Don't go on the commercial side of town to see them. Go on the State Park side - north of the bridge. Either the state park beach side or the parking lot boat launch side. You always see otters; sometimes rafting, swimming, eating, playing, or even up on the beach! Bring you own boat, or rent a kayak/paddle board on site. Observe the rules...don't get too close. there's always a bunch of sea lions up on the dock or swimming around. Lots of birds and harbor seals to watch. I've got my best videos of Sea Otters eating clams and crabs at this location....from a kayak and right from shore. if you kayak or board...work with the tides...not against.

Visited September 2012
Thank yvonne p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aptos, California
Level Contributor
19 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“I love kayaking here.”
Reviewed April 28, 2013

There is so much wildlife to see here. Sea lions, seals, otters, jellys, herons, egrets, and so many more amazing creatures are commonly seen. I have kayaked here many times with my daughter and other family members and have found it best to go with a good tour. It is important to know the tide schedule as kayaking against the current is tiring. I have also done the pontoon adventure which is informative and a lot of fun for smaller kids and older individuals. If you drive inland you can go to the visitor center and hike the trails. We have seen leopard sharks and bat rays in the water while walking around the Elkhorn Slough loop.

Visited March 2013
2 Thank TangiesMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great place!”
Reviewed April 20, 2013

Great place! Lots of wildlife, nice people. Trails. Family outing. Nice weather. Sea Otters so cute.

Visited April 2013
Thank M459
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carmel, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“The magic estuary”
Reviewed April 15, 2013

This must be the best place to watch California Sea Otters. When I was here I counted 54 animals, all clustered in several rafts, hanging out together for company. A good birding spot as well.

Visited August 2012
Thank Monica H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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