Boat Tours are staffed by knowledgeable marine educators engaging in responsible viewing practices, research, and conservation.
Whale Watching Tours
Whale watching tour tickets are on sale now! Tours begin December 22.
This incredible 2-2.5 hour winter season tour brings you as close as possible to commonly observed species like acrobatic humpback whales and bottlenose dolphins, as well as an immense variety of seabirds and waterfowl. Whale sightings are not guaranteed and all tours are weather-dependent. A portion of all ticket sales supports our education, research, and conservation initiatives.
Gift a Whale Watching Tour to a Friend!
We offer gift cards for our tours so you can give a friend or loved one memories that will last a lifetime.
Whale Watching Tour Schedule
Daily | 10:00am, 2:00pm
No trips December 24 or 25.
Wednesday, Thursday & Friday | 2:00pm
Saturday & Sunday | 10:00am, 2:00pm
January 15, February 19 | 2:00pm
- All ages welcome.
- Guest capacity is 80.
- Restrooms are available on the Explorer, as well as refreshments for purchase. Interior seating is available in our climate-controlled cabin.
- The Explorer is accessible for manual wheelchairs. The captain and crew can assist anyone needing to transfer from a motorized to a manual wheelchair for the tour.
- Please leave backpacks or large bags locked in your car.
- Alcohol and large coolers are not permitted aboard the boat.
- Discounts for Atlantic Explorer tours are available for groups of 15 and more.
- Tickets must be purchased in advance through online-only ticketing.
- Tickets are non-refundable unless the tour is canceled by the captain.
- Passengers should report to the Aquarium Boat Dock (near the outdoor Seal Exhibit) at least 30 minutes prior to their scheduled tour.
Whale Watching Tour Rates
Group Tour Rates
|Charter - 50 Participants||$1,500|
No child rate available for group tours.
Dolphin Watching Boat Tours
Dolphin watching has concluded for 2023. Check back in spring for info on the 2024 season! Our excursions offer an unforgettable journey in search of Virginia's most common and charismatic marine mammal: the bottlenose dolphin. If you are ready to find adventure, make memories, and inhale the fresh air, then come let the salty ocean mist kiss your cheeks and the offshore breezes fill your lungs. Learn from our knowledgeable educators about our other Virginia coastal animals like majestic seabirds, curious sea turtles, and unique fish species. Find details on each tour option below! Dolphin sightings are not guaranteed and all tours are weather-dependent. A portion of all ticket sales supports our education, research, and conservation initiatives.
Make your next boat tour unique and even more exciting with a Boat Quest. Click on the titles below to select your quest! These can be printed out and brought with you on your tour.
Fish on the Fly
Fishing birds? See if you can spot these feathered fishers during your boat tour.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you still have a question, be sure to visit our FAQ page for more information on Boat Tours.