Seattle Whale Watching Tours
Go whale watching in Seattle! The metro area now has its first-ever, half-day whale watching tour! See orcas, humpback whales, and all the majestic wildlife in the San Juan Islands on our new tour out of Edmonds – just a few minutes north of Seattle.
Get a head start on whale season with our Gray Whale tours that begin March 10!
Cruising at over 40mph, the Chilkat Express will take you to the spectacular San Juan Islands in a little over an hour. This makes her the fastest whale watching boat in the Northwest. Combine that with three generations of dedication and experience connecting Seattle visitors with the great outdoors. We guarantee you’ll see whales or your next trip is free!
This extraordinary half-day trip on the Chilkat features spacious, comfortable indoor seating and large windows, wheelchair-accessible restrooms, outside viewing decks, and a great galley/cafe — which of course also serves up our signature, freshly baked “blueberry buckle” on every trip. Outside, it’s a menagerie of whales, porpoises, dolphins, seals, sea lions, otters, shorebirds and many other species of marine life, something different every trip.
Note: For confirmed trips, any cancellation 48 hours prior to departure incurs a $10 charge. Changes to confirmed reservations within 48 hours are subject to a $10 per person rescheduling fee. After 48 hours, there are no refunds available. Travelers must be checked-in no later than 45 minutes prior to sailing. Boarding closes 15 minutes before departure. Due to stringent departure requirements, late arrivals will be cancelled with no refunds.
Don’t Forget Lunch!
When making your reservation, you’ll have the option of preordering gourmet box lunches from The Cheesemonger’s Table in Edmonds (ham sandwich, turkey, or caprese). Lunch orders must be placed prior to 3pm the day before a tour. Late lunch orders cannot always be accommodated for the following day.
Are you traveling with an infant?
Children under the age of 2 can travel for free; however, if the boat is full that day, your child will be required to sit on your lap. You also have the option of purchasing a child’s rate ticket to ensure seating for your infant.
Are you visiting Seattle without a car?
No problem – Dial up an Uber or Lyft to get dropped off right at our office!
33rd Anniversary Family Run Business
Three generations of our family have helped visitors have life-changing experiences with some of the most majestic creatures on the planet. We’re blessed to live in what’s been called “the American Serengeti,” with some of the highest concentration of whales and dolphins and sea life anywhere in the world — including our totem species, the orca. Few people know these waters like we do. Our experience and dedication makes it possible for us to guarantee that you’ll see whales on your trip — or we’ll give you another trip absolutely free.
Puget Sound Express is a proud member of the Pacific Whale Watch Association (PWWA), dedicated to responsible, sustainable marine wildlife viewing and conservation in the Pacific Northwest. We’re also dedicated to reducing our footprint out there. The Chilkat Express is a hydrofoil jet boat with no propellers, making it one of the quietest in the whale watch fleet.
Want to learn more? Here’s what you can expect:
We are located 200 yards PAST Anthony’s Homeport Restaurant at Lot 9, 500 Admiral Way in Edmonds. (Map software will deposit you at Anthony’s – keep going until you see our sign at the entrance to Lot 9).
Please arrive for check-in 45 minutes prior to departure. Note that for our afternoon departure, our staff will man the kiosk once they return from the morning whale watching tour.
The Chilkat Express leaves the Edmonds Marina in beautiful downtown Edmonds, north of downtown Seattle. We’ll cross the magnificent Strait of Juan de Fuca, to the San Juan Islands, or wherever the whales happen to be that day. Along the way, the natural history and wildlife are pointed out by our trained marine naturalist.
Don’t miss a PSE exclusive – Sherri’s famous blueberry buckle – made fresh daily and available in our galley.
Usually, about ninety minutes into the cruise, we are able to see whales. Humpbacks, minkes, and of course the famous orcas! The Southern Resident orcas are actually a large extended family, or clan, comprised of three pods: J, K, and L pods. Within each pod, families form into sub-pods centered around older females, usually grandmothers or great-grandmothers. Both male and female offspring remain in close association with their mothers for life. Each Southern Resident pod uses a characteristic dialect of calls (sounds) to communicate. Certain calls are common between all three pods. The calls used by the Southern Resident community are unlike the calls used by any other community of killer whales. These calls can travel 10 miles or more under water. We also often see Transient Orcas – these are the mammal-eating killer whales that put on quite a show!
If you don’t see whales on your trip, we will give you a voucher for another trip on us. Guarantee is not valid for a specific whale species, or cash back.
Time permitting, we’ll also pass by Smith Island Wildlife Refuge, home to an array of sea lions, seals, and birds.
Three generations of our family have helped visitors spend time with orcas, humpbacks, grays, and minke whales – that experience and dedication makes it possible for us to guarantee that you’ll see whales on this trip – or we’ll give you another trip absolutely free.