La Jolla

La Jolla Sea Caves Kayak Tour

San Diego, United States

From US$47.00

Price varies by group size

Select Date and Travelers

Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 1 hour 30 minutes (approx.)
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Enjoy the sublime coastal scenery as you spot abundant marine life during this kayaking trip in La Jolla’s sea caves and ecological reserve. Paddle along with your expert naturalist guide as you observe the numerous species of birds, dolphins, sea lions and even orcas that inhabit the area. Also, kayak among the lush kelp beds that grow in the reserve and, if conditions permit, explore inside the sea caves that dot the area’s rocky coastline. This La Jolla caves trip includes all necessary equipment, a life jacket, guide, and optional wetsuit rental.
  • La Jolla caves kayak tour
  • Paddle to the La Jolla sea caves
  • Watch for the abundant wildlife including numerous types of sea birds and usually sea lions, seals, and sometimes dolphin
  • Kayak into the fascinating kelp beds of the La Jolla Ecological Reserve

What's Included

  • Kayaks (single or tandems) and Paddle
  • Life jacket
  • Professional guide
  • Wet suit rentals are offered during fall, winter and spring
  • Gratuities
  • Food and drink

Meeting And Pickup

Meeting point

  • 2222 Avenida De La Playa
    2222 Avenida De La Playa, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA

    yellow awning outside our door

End point

This activity ends back at the meeting point.

What To Expect

Explore the sublime scenery and wealth of wildlife near La Jolla during this sea kayaking trip to explore the area’s beautiful coastline and sea caves. Whether you’re a nature lover or simply looking to add a little adventure to your trip in San Diego, this excursion is a great option for kayaking novices and experts alike.

Select from a morning or afternoon departure and leave from Avenida de la Playa in La Jolla. Meet your guide for the trip and start with a short introduction to proper paddling technique and safety instructions. Then bring your boat down to the beach at La Jolla Shores to begin your ride.

Paddle along the shores of the area’s beautiful rocky coastline, heading towards the La Jolla Sea Caves. As you proceed, keep your eyes peeled for any number of marine species that populate this stretch of coastline. Most trips spot a variety of sea birds along with sea lions and seals. If you’re particularly lucky, you may also see dolphins or even orcas splashing nearby.

During your kayaking experience, pass through some of the area’s unique rock formations, journey through the sprawling forests of kelp and get a chance to explore the area’s sea caves (pending current conditions and your guide’s decision). Finish your ride with an exhilarating kayak “surf ride,” following the waves as they push you back into shore.

Please note: participants should be prepared to get wet during the ride. Entrance into the caves is not guaranteed, as it depends on the ability level of group participants, current ocean conditions and the discretion of your guide. The operator recommends participants be at least six years or older and be able to swim.

Hike Bike Kayak Adventures

2 hours Admission Ticket Free

La Jolla Shores Park

Admission Ticket Free

La Jolla Caves

Admission Ticket Free

La Jolla Kayak

Admission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 1 day of travel. In this case confirmation will be received as soon as possible, subject to availability
  • PLEASE BE IN THE KAYAK SHOP 1 HOUR BEFORE TOUR START TIME, Allow time for parking and gear set up
  • Expect to get wet, please wear appropriate clothes such as a bathing suit and shoes that can get wet (tennis shoes, 'river shoes' or flip flops)
  • Hats, sun screen and towels are strongly advised
  • Please do not bring valuables and things that cannot get wet
  • There is a weight limit of 250 pounds per single kayak and 450 pounds per double kayak
  • For safety reasons, the tour operator does not guarantee going into the caves on tours. Entrance to caves is based on ocean conditions, safety, and participants ability as determined by guide.
  • Minimum age is 6 years for a double kayak and 16 years for a single kayak
  • All participants must be able to swim
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • Near public transportation
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 20 travelers

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

Traveler Photos

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Featured review
Great trip! Would love to do it again. Tour guides Spencer and Shaun were awesome!! They gave us an enthusiastic history of the ecological reserve while guiding us though a fun kayaking experience. Check-in was easy and all gear was provided. You just show up and have fun! I plan on going back to see the caves when the tide allows, the guides know when it's best and always keep our safety in mind.


763 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 763 reviews
Dylan and Darby were...
Terrence_M, May 2023
Dylan and Darby were amazing tour guides! Super friendly and great storytellers. Definitely one of the highlights of my San Diego trip. 10/10 recommend this experience.
Too many people on the tours- You don’t really go in the caves.
Michael_L, May 2023
Tour was not that great . Did enjoy the sea animals. Too expensive for the very limiting paddling. Guides were fine No directions to we’re to meet. Said to get there 45 minutes early/ guide was later so there wasA lot of waiting-
Worth it, fun time
Lynn_F, May 2023
This was a lot of fun. I will say you only go in to one cave as I was expecting something different. Our guides Brody and Sabrina made the trip a lot of fun with their fun facts and information about the area. We really enjoyed the excursion not being from this area.
Must do in La Jolla
Elizabeth_O, May 2023
Wonderful tour! Our guides, Brodie and Lily, were so informative about the marine life and history of the area. They made us feel very safe going in and out of the caves. So refreshing to be around young people who are enthusiastic about working and take pride in their jobs. Thank you - this was such a fun adventure!
Great excursion
Erica_C, May 2023
Jonas and Ana were great!! We loved the kayaking ! Certainly recommend as a fun thing to do! Worth it !
Exciting, fun experience
Mallory_R, May 2023
My husband and I would do this again & again! We loved the tour so much. We have kayaked often but never on the ocean so it was a new experience. We laughed so much as we worked as a team in a tandem against the waves. The tour guides Jack & Tyler were so kind and made it very entertaining! 10/10
Ocean kayaking adventure
Tim_V, May 2023
I was able to visit my son who is in the Marines and stationed in Yuma Arizona, we took a day to visit San Diego and we decided to do the kayak tour. Tyler was a great guide for us , he told us a lot of information about the area and answered all of our questions. We even had a dolphin jump in front of our kayaks which was pretty cool.
Molly_G, May 2023
What an amazing adventure. The ocean is unforgiving but was an adventure getting out to the caves. Thank you!
The tour was great a...
Andy_E, May 2023
The tour was great a great experience me and my girlfriend had a ton of fun during the tour. Great for people wanting to kayak for their first time
Best experience…don’t hesitate
Annie_W, Apr 2023
A truly wonderful experience. I don’t think this is a beginner kayak excursion (distance & normal currents makes it a challenge), but I loved every moment.
Quincy and Jesse were...
Ann_B, Apr 2023
Quincy and Jesse were amazing guides! We had so much fun doing the kayak tour and left so happy we decided to do it. Definitely recommend!
Would do it again.
Elle_W, Apr 2023
Olivia and Magnus made this experience for us. Loved the Sea Lions too. Would have been great if the address was updated though. Wet suits were an extra $15. But the price overall was the best. Our kids 11&9 were slow to learn but we made it.
Ocean start great but then Nothing spectacular
AW_A, Apr 2023
We booked a kayaking activity not something just to float around until the time was up. Epected to kayak into caves not by someone in the water towing your kayak. Should be advertised as very amature.
Sea sick but a great time
Sam_K, Apr 2023
Great kayaking experience. We were able to go into the cove. The water was way colder than normal but that's uncontrollable. A better changing area with towels would of been helpful because we really did get wet! Our guide was awesome. Did get sea sick but overall good experience.
"Sharks, Dolphins, Sea Lions, Oh My!"
Tyler_Z, Apr 2023
A great start to my bachelor party weekend!! We were all pretty hungover but the cold water and sun were refreshing and welcoming. The guides were super nice and informative about wildlife and the region. We swam above 20 sharks and within 10 feet of a pod of dolphins, as well as the sea lions near the caves. My only recommendation...sunscreen on your legs. The kayak is not close-legged. Also, if your phone is waterproof and can float, BRING IT. That was my only regret.
Great experience
Tracy_F, Apr 2023
A great outing for our family of 6. Easy checkin and gear distribution Guides were fun and informative. Felt very safe. Going into the cave was cool and so was seeing the sea lions on the rocks.
Great tour
Ashleigh_K, Mar 2023
Very cool experience. Kayaking was a lot of fun and the guides were very knowledgeable. We didn’t get into the caves because the waves were too high, but we did get to see the sea lions. FYI: when they say you will get wet, I was thinking the normal amount of wet you get when kayaking. No, they mean you will fall in the water. Be prepared for that and dress appropriately. They have wet suits available to rent too.
Great Fun!!
LeAndra_W, Mar 2023
Ian was a great tour guide! We got the full experience and then some. We saw all types of sea friends, from sea pups to tiger sharks. Loved every bit of the tour.
Amazing tour with a great guide!
Lea_J, Mar 2023
Such an amazing tour! Brody was the very best tour guide and even took pictures for us and texted them at the end. It was a beautiful afternoon and I would highly recommend!!
Worth every second
Allison_C, Mar 2023
Ian and Sabrina were amazing tour guides!! They made sure we got the full experience of going into the caves, which felt a bit dangerous and fun!

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