Hornblower San Diego Harbor Cruise in San Diego, CA

Hornblower Cruises & Events970 N. Harbor Drive San Diego, CA 92101
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Overview

Featuring live, professionally narrated tours of more than 50 landmarks in the San Diego Bay area, San Diego Harbor Cruises offers entertainment for the whole family. Each cruise covers more than 13 miles of the Big Bay, passing Seaport Village, Point Loma and other points of interest. Guests can choose from seven daily departures, and enjoy a snack and beverage bar, an onboard exhibit, and more.

Good To Know

from Ashley, one of our San Diego Travel Experts
  • Sails rain or shine with U.S. Coast Guard approval.
  • Wear a light jacket.
  • Casual attire required.
  • Cover more than 13 miles of gorgeous San Diego Bay.
  • View Point Loma, Cabrillo National Monument and more.

Description

from San Diego Harbor Cruise
Enjoy the best sightseeing on San Diego Bay—with a professionally narrated tour of more than 50 storied landmarks. We’ll cover over 13 miles on the Big Bay, passing by Seaport Village, Shelter Island, ship-building and dry-docking facilities, Coronado Island, Point Loma, and Cabrillo National Monument, among many others. As we sail, we’ll see delightful marine animals and majestic sea birds, and we’ll talk about what local environmental efforts are doing to protect them. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to capture all the sights in photos and video, and our fully stocked snack bar is always open.

1 and 2 hour Harbor Cruises with 7 departures daily!

One Hour South and One Hour North Bay Cruise & Sea Lion Adventure:
• 13-mile tour of the north or south bay.
• More than 20 landmarks, historic sites and environmental interest points

Two Hour Full Bay Cruise:
• Includes all the sights of the North and South Bay Cruises!
• More than 50 landmarks, historic sites and environmental interest points
• 25-mile tour of the North and South Bay

All Cruises Include:
• Onboard experts providing a live, professional narration
• Comfortable indoor and outdoor seating with climate controlled indoor viewing and spacious outer decks
• Snack bar including full bar with adult beverages
• Souvenir boarding photos available for purchase
• Onboard exhibit featuring environmental and green facts and features on San Diego Bay, as well as local marine wildlife.

DAILY CRUISE SCHEDULE:
(Sea lions sightings are not guaranteed but are most often seen on the North Bay Route.)
1-hour tours: 10:00 am, 11:15 am, 12:30 pm, 1:45 pm, 3 pm, 4:15 pm, *5:30 pm
2-hour tours: 10:00 am, 11:15 am, 12:30 pm, 1:45 pm, 3:00 pm, *4:15 pm

*Summer only.
North Bay Routes in bold

Please arrive 30 minutes prior to tour time.
Harbor Cruises board at San Diego Navy Float 970 N. Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA

Reserve San Diego Customer Reviews

4 Reviews
James and Janet Chrzanowski
CRYSTAL LAKE, IL
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Very Pleasant and Relaxing - After Much Confusion..."
February, 2018 NEW
Cruise very pleasant in itself but boarding was confusing bordering on chaotic for first timers. No signage stating that two different cruises were leaving from the same dock...Further, no mention was made by ticket office/advertising/dockside personnel that the same boat was actually used for both the one hour and two hour cruise with the boat returning to the dock after an hour to pick up passengers for either: a one hour cruise, or another full two hour cruise...

Narrators were (switched after one hour leg) very informative...On board beverages were fairly priced and white tablecloths were a surprise.

Definitely five stars if the confusion hadn't existed...
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Tip: Generally covered above, I believe...

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Reserve San Diego Customer
Denver, CO
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Pleasant experience"
October, 2015
Pleasant experience, informative n the views was beautiful. The ride was smooth.
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Tip: Buy ur tickets a head of time. Know where to park

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Ilse van Ewijk
Los Angeles, CA
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"Magnificent views of San Diego!"
October, 2015
My mom visiting from Belgium, my husband and I took the 2-hour Hornblower cruise of the San Diego bays during a weekend trip. The boat itself was spacious and could accommodate a lot of people even though the numbers aboard at the time I went were low. The captain gave detailed information about all the different bays and areas. The bar aboard provided drinks and snacks at reasonable prices too. When I compared everything to other tour boats, I could not have been happier not to be crammed like a sardeen on a touristy boat. Would definitely recommend the Hornblower to everyone out there!
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Tip: Sealions Baycruise SanDiego

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stasia doom
Las Vegas, NV
1 Review
Verified Traveler
"harbor cruise"
February, 2015
reservations, price and boarding were good. However, staff on the cruise were rude and unfriendly.
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Tip: No staff will be nice to you once you board.

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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dermatopathonline
San Diego, California
"We saw the whales."
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed February 14, 2018 NEW
I did this excursion and we did not sea any whale. I was totally disappointed. Then, they gave me a voucher for a second go, which I did the following day. I dont know what exactly changed (the day was sunny the second day, the captain seemed to know very well what to look for...). The thing is that we say plenty of whales. It was very exciting and I will never forget this day. My advice: if you are one of the unlucky ones, consider to give it a second try.
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Mary Dot J
Bethany Beach, Delaware
"1 hour cruise- they also offer 2 hour cruises"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed February 13, 2018 NEW
We had the perfect day for this adventure. Sunny with pretty clouds. Mid 60s. Light breeze. The narrator was good, pointed out everything well, with a little humor added in. Very pleasant experience. They have senior/military, and child discounts.
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Charlie4577
Gurnee, Illinois
"Whale Watching Made Simple"
TripAdvisor user rating 4 out of 5
Reviewed February 12, 2018 NEW
Hornblower was recommended by our hotel. It is conveniently located on Harbor Drive near all the excitement of San Diego. We saw a whale or two, and the ship offers drinks and simple food to keep you occupied while looking for the gentle giants.
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R0mader
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
"Whale Watching"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed February 10, 2018 NEW
Horn blower delivered! Great day on the water watching the whales play. A bucket list experience. The people who worked on your ship were great.
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FFlyer42
Sanibel Island, Florida
"Well Worth the Money"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed February 10, 2018 NEW
In a two day stay in San Diego, my wife and I decided to take Hornblower's 4.5 hour morning whale watching cruise. What made this cruise stand out from many others we've taken over the years were two things: the presence on board of friendly and very informative docents from the local whale museum, and one of the best on board commentaries that we've ever experienced. The commentator sounded not only sincerely interested but infectiously enthusiastic about what he was doing. And locating and shadowing a female gray whale and her calf for almost a half-hour was a real bonus.
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San Diego Harbor Cruise is located at Hornblower Cruises & Events970 N. Harbor Drive San Diego, CA 92101
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Frequently Asked Questions about San Diego Harbor Cruise

Do I get to choose the south or north cruise for my One Hour Harbor Cruise?
You can be selective on which time you select. Currently, the North Cruise departs at 10:00 am, 12:30 pm and 3:00 pm. The North cruise covers the California Sea Lions, Nuclear Submarine Base, Star of India, Point Loma Lighthouse, America's Cup Harbor, North Island Naval Air Station and the Cabrillo National Monument. The South Cruise departs at 11:15 am, 1:45 pm and 4:15 pm and cover Midway Aircraft, Naval Destroyers & Frigates, Convention Center, Ship Building Facilities, Naval Station San Diego, Coronado Island and travel under the Coronado Bay Bridge.

Note: Times for each direction subject to change.

Does the Two Hour Harbor Cruise cover both the North and South Routes?
Yes, you will get to see both the North and South.

If one or more people in my party are not able to make it or we miss the cruise departure time will we receive a refund?
No. Once payment is received cruises are non-refundable. With a 48-hour or better notice, we will be happy to reschedule your cruise date or issue a gift certificate for the amount paid. Cruises are non- refundable and non-transferable within 48 hours of your cruise. We do not compensate for no-shows or late arrivals.

Is gratuity included?
A service charge is collected at the time of reservation, related to the cruise and the service included in the ticket. If you wish to purchase additional beverages or food enhancements onboard, we recommend you leave a gratuity onboard based on the quality of service provided to you by your server.

What happens if it rains or snow?
Hornblower sails rain or shine. In the case of severe weather conditions or upon the direction of the U.S. Coast Guard, we will remain dockside, but provide the full dining service.

Are there any age restrictions on your cruises?
There are no age restrictions for most of our cruises. All minors require adult supervision. Please call with questions about any of our special event cruises, as minors are not restricted, but the cruise may not be appropriate for all age groups.

Do you offer any children discounts?
Children under 4 are complimentary.

What is the dress attire for the cruises?
Casual attire, such as shorts and t-shirts are appropriate. We recommend bringing along a light jacket or wrap as it may get breezy on board, especially for those cruises that occur out on the open ocean.

What time do I board the ship?
Boarding time is usually 30 minutes prior to departure for all cruises. Please check your boarding time when making your reservation.

Is smoking allowed?
Smoking is allowed on the outside decks only with the exception of Harbor Tours and Whale Watching Cruises. Please dispose of all refuse in proper receptacles. Do not throw anything into the water. Please help us keep our harbors clean.

Can we meet the Captain and visit the pilot house?
Yes. Guests are welcome to come and meet the Captain and the First Officer. However, for safety and security reasons, we ask that you check with our staff onboard before visiting the pilot house. We want to ensure that all passengers and crew are kept safe and that the captain is not distracted while performing essential duties.

Are you regulated by the U.S. Coast Guard?
Our vessels are all subject to inspections by the U.S. Coast Guards and our crew are all properly licensed. We also follow Marsec security guidelines. Should the Marsec security level be elevated, we may opt to increase security measures onboard our vessels to insure everyone’s safety. The U.S. Coast Guard requires all passengers over 18 years of age to have valid photo identification. Please make sure to have your photo ID available at boarding.

Are life preservers on board?
Each vessel is 100% Coast Guard certified with life preservers and all required lifesaving equipment, including child life vests.

Is the ship handicapped accessible?
Hornblower does have accessible yachts in the fleet. However, not all yachts and decks are accessible. Please call 888-467-6256 to ensure handicap accessibility for the date you are planning to cruise.

Will I get seasick?
The vast majority of our guests experience no discomfort at all as we do not leave the calm waters of the harbor. If you tend to have a problem with motion sickness, you may experience seasickness. If you are sailing on one of our whale watching cruises, we do go out into the open ocean and as a result, the chance of getting seasick increases. For these cruises, we recommend that if you are prone to motion sickness that you take advantage of a number of preventative measures that are available to you.

Where are you located?
In San Diego, we have three main locations.  Please check your confirmation to determine which is the correct location for your event. 

  • Our main ticket booth is located at 970 N. Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
  • Our secondary ticket booth is located at Grape Street Pier at 1800 N. Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101
  • Our offices and event space are located at The Abbey at 2825 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92103
Does Hornblower validate parking?
We do not validate for parking.  Hornblower San Diego shares a parking lot with the USS Midway. Parking fees are typically $8 for 4hrs and $12 for 12hrs.