Gift Certificates

Any Dollar amount!

For any Stagnaro Trip

Call (831) 427-0230

Gift certificate doesn't guarantee a spot on a specific trip. Reservations required

Archives: Recent Sightings

Winter Solstice brings friendly humpback whales, lively dolphins, and ocean birds

Grays while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Wednesday, 12/21/16: A beautiful winter day on the Monterey Bay! We had multiple pairs of humpbacks, one of which came in for a close inspection of the boat! We were also treated to a large group of pacific white sided dolphins, bow riding and frolicking in the waves. On the way home we encountered some of our earlier humpbacks feeding near the surface. Birders enjoyed looks at a black footed albatross, many species of shearwater, and northern fulmars.

Dolphins while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Pacific White-sided Dolphins. Monterey Bay, Dec. 21, 2016. Photo: Michael Nelson

Grays while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Albatross, Monterey Bay, CA Dec 21, 2016 | Photo: Michael Nelson

This entry was posted on December 22, 2016 by jennyo.


Orca Sighting on Sunday Dec 18, 2016

Orca while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

3 killer whales (Orca) out by the Soquel Canyon and 2 humpbacks in the Pajaro Canyon.

Orca while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Photo: Michael Nelson

This entry was posted on December 19, 2016 by jennyo.


Lunge Feeding Whales, Sea Lions

Lunge Feeding Whales while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Saturday 12/3/16 We had some great looks at a large group of lunge feeding humpback whales on Saturday. The whales were dining midday out at Pajaro Canyon, alongside hundreds of California sea lions. These are late season whales in Monterey Bay. We are soon expecting to see gray whales on their annual migration between Alaska and Baja California.

Join us on board Velocity or Legacy for an unforgettable adventure on the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary – one of the top wildlife viewing locations in the world!

Santa Cruz Whale Watching trips run every weekend, and DAILY starting December 20 through January 1.

Whale while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Whale while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

2 Photos by: Michael Nelson

This entry was posted on December 6, 2016 by jennyo.


Humpback while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Fall - Winter Sightings

We loved having so many family groups out on the boat this week. Each day of Thanksgiving week we got some great views of 10-20 humpback whales that are active in Monterey Bay right now. These humpback whales are feeding and showing surface behaviors such as tail slaps and breaching above the water. We’re getting to see big pods of common dolphins, otters in the kelp beds, and California sea lions. Our cover photo is from passenger Matija Vižin, taken on Tuesday 11/22 when we saw 10 humpback whales – one full breach! – Good looks, lots of flukes.

We’ve had a certain population of humpbacks staying around over winter for the last several years. As long as they are able to eat they will stay in the area instead of participating in migration to Central America.

We’ll soon be keeping an eye out for gray whales migrating south towards their winter mating/calving waters in Baja, Mexico. Over 20,000 gray whales pass through Monterey Bay every year!

Santa Cruz Whale Watching Trips run every weekend in December, and DAILY from December 23 – New Year’s Day. Join us for adventure on the Bay!

Tickets are $48.95 for adults and $34.95 for kids age 4-13.

Reservations recommended!

Book your trip today! Book online now or call (831) 427-0230

This entry was posted on November 27, 2016 by jennyo.


Happy Thanksgiving

Humpback while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Over the last week up to 6 humpback whales have been seen spouting and feeding near Santa Cruz and the north part of Monterey Bay. Long beak common dolphins and Risso's dolphins are also active in the Bay right now.

Happy Thanksgiving! Here's the whale watching schedule this week:

Tuesday 11/22 at 11am
Wednesday 11/23 at 11am
Thursday 11/24 at 10am
Friday 11/25 at 12pm
Saturday 11/26 – two trips! – 8:30am and 12:30pm
Sunday 11/27 at 12pm

Book your trip today! Book online now or call (831) 427-0230

This entry was posted on November 21, 2016 by jennyo.


Dolphins and Humpback Whales This Week

Huge Tail while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Saturday 11/12/16

Saturday, one lunge feeding humpback right in front of harbor, then 200 common dolphins by the Pajaro Canyon, as well as one breaching and pectoral fin slapping humpback, plus a few other scattered humpbacks.

Friday 11/11/16

Good looks at a group of lunge feeding humpbacks near Pajaro.

Here's some recent video from our friend Michael Nelson ~ A glimpse of a feeding frenzy with humpback whales and California sea lions, October 2016.

Visiting Santa Cruz

Check out these fun traveler tips for an easygoing visit to Santa Cruz – This article highlights some of our favorite beaches and places to eat and drink, just a bit off the beaten path. Enjoy! Click here to read about Santa Cruz travel tips.

Thanksgiving Week

Our whale watching schedule for November and December is now up on our website. Book your family outing now! Call 831-427-0230 or click the “Book Now” button at santacruzwhalewatching.com. Welcome aboard!

This entry was posted on November 14, 2016 by jennyo


November Humpbacks near Santa Cruz

Humpback spout while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Sunday 11/6/16 ~ Whale Watching on ‘Legacy’

Five humpbacks, one minke whale, and 200 to 300 common dolphins west of the Soquel Canyon.

Friday, 11/4/16 ~ Whale Watching on ‘Legacy’

Group of four humpbacks over the Soquel Canyon. Pair of humpbacks one of which did a couple of tail throws, and a few scattered whales throughout the Monterey Bay. A couple of large packs of sea lions swimming with the whales.

We also continue to see a few whales near West Cliff Drive in Santa Cruz.

Legacy used while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

This entry was posted on November 5, 2016 by jennyo


Look for spouts @ West Cliff and Seabright

spouts while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

10/28 - 11/2

Lunge feeding humpback whales on last Friday and Saturday trips! We also saw dolphins and rafts of sea lions in the feeding grounds of pristine Monterey Bay.

Today 11/2 we are spotting whale spouts from shore, near Seabright and West Cliff Beaches.

Lunge Feeding while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Lunge feeding humpback whales 10-28-16. photo: Megan Petersen

This entry was posted on November 2, 2016 by jennyo.


Whales near shore Santa Cruz; Rare Sperm Whale spotted in Monterey Bay

Sperm Whale while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Sunday 10/23: Again we found Humpback Whales near Santa Cruz, feeding along with rafts of California Sea Lions. (Photos courtesy Michael B Nelson)

Saturday, 10/22: Humpback whales close to Santa Cruz!

Friday 10/21: Whales up the coast a bit, near Davenport!

Thursday, 10/20: We spent time with 3 lunging humpback whales outside Wilder Ranch, then a cruise back down to Aptos to find a white shark near the Cement Ship, Seacliff State Beach.

MONTEREY BAY – For the first time in five years, a sperm whale has been sighted in the Monterey Bay.

Sperm Whale while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Photo: Michael Nelson

Sea Lions while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

California Sea Lion, Photo: Michael Nelson

This entry was posted on October 25, 2016 by jennyo.


October Humpbacks Feeding, Dolphins

Bottlenose Dolphins while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Tuesday 10/18/16: Our trip today on Legacy, we found 10 humpback whales and 100 Pacific white sided dolphins!

This entry was posted on October 18, 2016 by jennyo

Book your trip today! Book online now or call (831) 427-0230


Beautiful day up close with humpback whales: VIDEO

Tuesday, Sept. 27 – Mama and baby humpback playing with us today! Calf was breaching and pec slapping. Humpback whales are scattered, feeding throughout the Bay.

Monday, Sept. 26– We found whales! 7-8 humpback whales and ~100 sea lions center of Monterey Bay.

This entry was posted on September 30, 2016 by jennyo.


Welcome to Autumn in Monterey Bay

Pacific White sided dolphin while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

Sunday 9/25 on Velocity– 12 Humpback Whales, 500 Common Dolphin, 100 Pacific White-sided Dolphin

Saturday 9/24 on Legacy– We found 6 Humpback Whales, lunge feeding, plus 12 Risso’s Dolphins

Lagacy used while Whale Watching in Monterey Bay California with Stagnaro Charters

This entry was posted on September 26, 2016 by jennyo

Book your trip today! Book online now or call (831) 427-0230