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Bioluminescence Kayak

Quick Details

Adult Ages 15+

Kayak Orcas Island After Dark

Orcas Island is not known for its nightlife, but this is it! Join us on a two-hour evening kayak tour through sheltered Deer Harbor as we search for magical, twinkling bioluminescence. The San Juan Islands have significant tidal exchanges that create strong upwellings. These conditions make our water rich with nutrients, providing a diverse habitat for microorganisms. Some of the microorganisms have the ability to create their own light.

As the water is stirred by marine life and our paddle strokes, it causes a reactive glow. These microorganisms are most numerous following long, sunny days and most visible around new moons. Sightings are common but vary in intensity and are never guaranteed. To maximize the best sightings, we offer bioluminescence tours during the darkest nights of summer. These tours are very popular, so book early to experience the natural marine lights from the depths of the Salish Sea.

Shearwater provides stable two-person kayaks, all the necessary kayaking gear, dry storage bags, and professional guide service. No kayak experience is required. Our tours include about 30 minutes of gear adjustment and basic instruction. Expect about an hour and a half on the water on this tour.

Start times vary. Offered on the darkest nights of June to September. Call for details. 

Minimum age: 15 years
Maximum weight: 260 lbs /person
Maximum height: 6’4″

Meeting Location: Deer Harbor Marina. Meet outside The Barge Gift Shop, down the right hand ramp by the shop at the end of the main dock. 

Cancellations:  You want to go kayaking. We want to take you kayaking. We understand plans sometimes change. Cancellations more than 48 hours in advance of a standard, scheduled tour are fully refunded (more than 5 days in advance for groups of 5+; private and custom tours have a separate policy). Late cancellations or changes, late arrivals, and no-shows are refunded only if we are able to fill the tour.
→ Please read our Cancellations page for details. ←