Spend the day with Discovery Sea Kayaks paddling the most iconic wildlife route from San Juan Island. With the entirety of the time spent along the west side of San Juan, best known for encountering Whales, Seals, Eagles, and a variety of other marine wildlife.
Along the way, we make a beach stop for lunch and restroom breaks. You can also take a short hike to the Lime Kiln Lighthouse.
The Full Day Kayak Tour allows for more time exploring the west side than our other kayaking tours and maximizes wildlife viewing opportunities.
Our Full Day Kayak Tours are popular for our small group sizes that provide a more personal experience and our selected paddle route that provides stunning views and wildlife encounters.
Is the date you want sold out or not listed? Complete the Kayak Tour Request Form and we will get back to you if we are able to accommodate your request.
Current Discounts: Groups of 4 or more qualify for a discounted rate. Text us for a promo code. Promo Codes can only be applied at the time of reservation.
Click photos to view our San Juan Island Full Day Kayak Tour gallery.
San Juan Island Full Day Kayak Tour Testimonial
We had an amazing morning trip with Discovery Sea Kayaks. The gear was high quality and in great condition. The guide was knowledgeable, professional, and very personable. As someone who has sea kayaked many times before, I was very impressed with this outfitter. I strongly recommend this company to first-timers or experienced paddlers!
Route & Itinerary
The Full Day Kayak Tour routes are set to maximize the opportunity to encounter a diverse range of wildlife. Both the west side and east side tours have the potential for whale encounters. Note we do not encounter whales every day, but our routes offer the best potential on San Juan Island.
The West Side Route
We operate the majority of our kayak tours on the west side of San Juan Island. This route has a lot of history when it comes to whale encounters. Over the many years we have been leading kayak tours, the west side has been one of the best locations to encounter wildlife and more specifically, Southern Resident Killer Whales. The past few seasons Southern Resident Killer whales have been traveling further searching for food and at times are not present along the west side of San Juan Island. Along the route, we will pass the iconic Lime Kiln Lighthouse and get expansive views of the Olympic and Cascade Mountain Ranges.
The East Side Route
The east side of San Juan Island is scattered with offshore rock piles that attract numerous harbor seals. With a large number of seals along the east side, Bigg’s Killer Whale sightings are becoming more common. Along this route, we will explore the shoreline of small islands with curious eagles keeping watch and near the water’s edge look for bright purple sea stars. In the distance enjoy views of Mount Baker and the Cascade Mountain Range.
Please note this itinerary is a rough outline of the day’s travel. We can encounter delays that will affect our departure and arrival time back at the shop.
Check-in: 10:45 AM at our shop, 260 Spring St. Friday Harbor, Wa.
Departure: 11:00 AM
At the Beach: Organize and carry kayaks. Safety Orientation.
On the Water: Explore for roughly 2 to 3 miles then stop for lunch.
Back on the Water: After lunch, we continue our exploration until we arrive back to launch beach.
Back at the Beach: Organize and reload kayaks.
Head for Town: We plan for arrival back at our office around 5:00 PM
Trips may experience delays due to orca encounters. Because of regulations in place to protect our local orca whales our movements can be restricted when whales are in the area. Please keep in mind this can affect our return time back to town. We will always do our best to get everyone back in a timely manner.
Wildlife & Weather
San Juan Island is home to a wide variety of amazing wildlife:
Southern Resident Killer Whales: Salmon eating whales commonly seen June through mid-October.
Transient Killer Whales: Marine mammal-eating whales may be seen throughout the year.
Baleen Whales: Humpback Whales and Minke Whales.
Porpoise: Harbor and Dalls porpoise are encounter year round.
Seals and Sea Lions: Harbor Seals, California Sea Lions, and Stellar Sea Lions
River Otters: More elusive but seen any time of year. Most sightings are early morning or late afternoon.
Bald Eagles: San Juan Island hosts a healthy population of Bald Eagles with many nesting sites.
Every day is different and we can encounter other species of whales, seals, porpoise, and birds not listed above.
Early Season: Spring weather on San Juan is typically cool with daytime temperatures ranging from the low 50’s F to the mid 60’s F. Expect partly cloudy skies with light breezes to windy conditions.
Summer Season: San Juan Island can have some of the most pleasant summer weather. With half the annual rainfall of the Seattle area, San Juan is typically dry all summer. Temperatures range from upper 60’s F to the mid 80’s F. Skies are usually blue and clear, great for evening star gazing.
Late Season: Fall can be one of the best times to visit San Juan Island. The days become cooler, ranging from the low 50’s F to the mid 60’s F. Winds can be light to moderate depending on the current weather systems.
More Tour Related Info
San Juan Island
Sea Kayaking Tours of the San Juan Islands
The San Juan Islands are a small chain of islands in the Salish Sea. The area is a world renowned kayak tour destination in Washington State.
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