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It’s Time To… Start Planning Your Land-Based Whale Watching Adventure From Pacifica, California

September 27, 2017 Destination North America No Comments Email Email

Located just 15 minutes south of San Francisco, the beautiful beach-front town of Pacifica is the perfect destination for capturing the southbound journey of migrating gray whales.

The voyage starts in October when the gray whales start swimming south from Alaska, passing the California coast from December to January when they are closest to the shore.

Pacifica sets the stage as an ideal viewing post because of the many ocean inlets and its close proximity to the route and “playground” of these magnificent creatures. Some of the best Pacifica viewing platforms are from the coastal bluffs of Mori Point, Rockaway beach trail, Linda Mar State Beach, the Pacifica Pier and Devil’s slide walking trail.

To ensure a great “whale of an encounter,” enthusiasts will want to make a weekend out of their adventure. While many of California’s coastal towns offer great platforms for whale watching, Pacifica features value-oriented accommodations and is also just a stone’s throw away from San Francisco’s attractions so visitors can round out their itinerary with more conventional outings.

Pacifica offers six lodging options in the budget to moderate price range and all are within walking distance to Pacifica’s beaches and many of the town’s whale watching venues. Four are located at Rockaway Beach. The largest with 97 guest rooms is the Best Western Plus Lighthouse Hotel, a full-service hotel situated on Rockaway Beach with spacious accommodations, beautiful ocean views, a swimming pool and the upscale Moonraker restaurant. The Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Pacifica provides very comfortable accommodations with ocean views and a complimentary hot Express Start Breakfast Bar. Offering a dash of Victorian charm is the pet-friendly Pacifica Motor Inn and adjacent to Nick’s Restaurant is theSea Breeze Motel, which is very convenient for those looking to dance the night away at Nick’s.  Situated across from Linda Mar Beach is another full service hotel called the Pacifica Beach Hotel. Under new ownership, the hotel now includes several remodeled rooms, offering spectacular ocean view rooms, Jacuzzi tubs, indoor swimming pool and the new Peruvian Restaurant, Puerto 27. Further north near Sharp Park is Americas Best Value Inn, which is a short walk from Pacifica Pier and the golf course.


America’s Best Value Inn Pacifica: (877) 784-6835/

Best Western Plus Lighthouse Hotel: (650) 355-6300/

Holiday Inn Express & Suites: (650) 355-5000/

Pacifica Beach Hotel: (650) 355-9999/

Pacifica Motor Inn: (800) 522-3772/

Sea Breeze Motel at Rockaway Beach: (650) 359-3903

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