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Dana Point Harbor

Dana Point Harbor
Category: Shopping, Shopping, Art & Culture, Health & Wellness, Whale Watching Tours, Things To Do, Things To Do
Neighborhood: Dana Point Harbor

Dana Point Harbor

Dana Point Harbor (sometimes known as Dana Point Pier) has been attracting mariners and visitors alike since the 1800s. The town is named after Richard Henry Dana who visited this area in 1835 aboard the trading ship Pilgrim and declared the cliff-lined cove ‘the only romantic spot in California.’ The Harbor’s name comes from this adventure-seeking sailor and also for San Juan Point, which locals refer to as the Headlands, a landmark for both sailors and migrating whales.

Dana Point Harbor boasts a rich maritime history and while it was quite the adventure for 19th-century travelers to reach area shores, it is now easily accessible for sailors and visitors. The adventures now lie in the many land and water activities that are available within the two marinas and their environs. Dana Point Harbor is considered a small-boat harbor and provides both permanent and guest slips for more than 2,500 boats.

Dana Point Harbor Activities

The Ocean Institute at Dana Point Harbor

Journey to the sea with Ocean Institute scientists as they introduce you to the local marine wildlife, including an astounding variety of fish, microscopic plankton, and the animals that live in sediment retrieved from the ocean floor. With programs designed to maximize immersion, spark curiosity, and inspire a deep commitment to learning, the Ocean Institute is fun for the whole family! Encounter a sprightly pod of dolphins or witness the majesty of a traveling whale from the deck of the R/V Sea Explorer. Discover the amazing and sometimes bizarre life that lives just beneath the waves!

Ocean Activities in Dana Point Harbor

Known as the Whale Watching Capital of the World, Dana Point Harbor is hard to beat when it comes to experiencing ocean life on another level. Try shore fishing with your rod from the warm beach sand, or charter a boat for ½, ¾, or a full day to experience fishing on the open ocean. With world-class sport fishing and plenty of well-established and highly-rated fishing and whale watching charters to choose from, your time on the water in Dana Point Harbor is sure to be unforgettable.

Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching

Growing from its roots as Orange County’s first whale watching company in Orange County in 1971, Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale watching has become one of the premier Sportfishing and Whale watching charters in Dana Point Harbor. With decades of experience, the crew at Dana Wharf knows all the best spots to take you on your ocean adventures to ensure you catch some awe-inspiring views and all the fish you could possibly want.

AllWater Fishing Charters, Dana Point Harbor

With an incredibly diverse selection of boats ranging from 20’ to 65’, AllWater Fishing Charters offers all of the features you want with the selection you need to make your day on the water perfect. The team at AllWater Fishing Charters prides themselves on their meticulous attention to detail, clean and tidy vessels, and features the most up-to-date electronic systems on their boats. Give their friendly and helpful team a call to set up your next offshore adventure!

Dana Point Sportfishing

Led by a team of local captains who were born and raised in Dana Point Harbor, the crew at Dana Point Sportfishing knows the waters around Dana Point Harbor like the back of their hand. What started as a deep passion for sportfishing in the waters they grew up in has grown into a successful business that helps locals and tourists alike to experience the thrills of sportfishing. While we can’t guarantee that you’ll catch all the fish you’re looking for; we can guarantee that you’ll have a great time doing so.

Sekas Sportfishing

Having been trained by two of the most respected pros in the industry, Tom Patierno of “Limitless Sportfishing”, and Rick Doesburg of “Fury Sportfishing”, Christian knows what it takes to have a successful fishing charter and how to have a good time doing it. Operating their 26’ Anderson “Lex Sea” out of Dana Wharf with some of the freshest bait from their friends at Everingham Bait Company, the crew is ready to book your next Sportfishing adventure.

Harbor Boat Rentals

Grab your family or a couple of friends and spend the day exploring the waters around Dana Point Harbor in your own personal fishing or whale watching boat. Harbor Boat Rentals offers ideal boats for fishing, cruising, and whale watching that are meticulously maintained for cleanliness and safety. For larger groups of up to six, consider chartering their gorgeous, professionally staffed 40’ Cabo Yachts Flybridge Sportfisher “Ohana”.

Riviera Yacht Charters

Offering a wide range of adventures and operating a Coast Guard-approved vessel that can take 30 passengers or 20 scuba divers, Riviera Charters brings you all the exciting options you could possibly want for a day out on the water. Specializing in trips for scuba diving, spearfishing, lobster fishing, private charters, and more, Riviera Yacht Charters is a one-of-a-kind stop in Dana Point Harbor.

Shopping in Dana Point Harbor

Golden Galleon Boutique

For a unique and eclectic shopping experience, Golden Galleon Boutique is located at the heart of Dana Point Harbor.It offers a wide assortment of diverse souvenirs ranging from jewelry, hats and scarves, to glassware, candles, and stationery. Whether you’re looking for a unique gift for someone else or something fun for yourself, you’ll likely find it at Golden Galleon Boutique.

Sun Country Coastal, Dana Point

Specializing in Prestige Yachts, Riviera Yachts, Boston Whaler, and Sea Ray Boat lines, Sun Country Coastal in Dana Point Harbor has an enormous display of aquatic vessels for purchase. With both new and used vessels to choose from, 33 years of experience in boating and customer care, and an expertly trained staff, the team at Sun Country Costal are happy to help you find the perfect watercraft to suit your needs.

Killer Dana Surf Shop

From the second you step foot into Killer Dana Surf Shop and your toes hit the sand on the floor, the smell of fresh wax will greet your nose and you’ll know you’re in an authentic Southern California surf shop. Locally owned and operated since 1991, Killer Dana Surf Shop has been making waves in Dana Point Harbor since the glory days of surf. If you stop by, chances are you’ll see a wetsuit hanging to dry from some recent rips. The crew at Killer Dana Surf Shop is happy to help you get outfitted for your first time on a board or point you in the right direction to what you need if you’ve got more experience under your board. For surfers of all ages and skill levels, Killer Dana Surf Shop has the tools, crew, and gear you need to properly cut loose and hang 10.

Art Sea

Art Sea is a local shop specializing in unique art, stunning sculptures, intricate glasswork, beautiful jewelry, and more. With tons of one-of-a-kind pieces to choose from, Art Sea is an incredible stop for those looking for gifts, souvenirs, decor, and more.

Dana Point Harbor Restaurants

Harbor Grill at Dana Point

Located in the heart of beautiful Dana Point Marina, the award-winning Harbor Grill Restaurant has enjoyed a reputation for the freshness and variety of its seafood and the warmth of its atmosphere. The Harbor Grill Restaurant has become a favorite with locals and a popular destination for visitors who are made to feel like regulars on their first visit. Whether enjoying the cozy dining room or the colorful garden terrace, the view of harbor sails encourages a leisurely meal while a pianist adds the perfect background music each evening.

Chart House

On a clear day, the view from Chart House at Dana Point extends 50 miles down the Southern California Coast all the way to La Jolla.Chart House is seated atop the majestic bluffs overlooking the Dana Point Harbor and the pristine azure waters of the Pacific Ocean. Simply put, Chart House is one of the most romantic restaurants in Dana Point, year-round.

Wind and Sea Restaurant

Bearing a name apropos for a waterfront restaurant surrounded by water on three sides, the restaurant serves up fresh fish and warm hospitality with a backdrop of… you guessed it: wind and sea. An abundance of outdoor seating puts guests in the perfect spot to soak in panoramic harbor views and nosh on a wide variety of delicious seafood fare. Blessed with 180-degree views of the Dana Point Harbor, Wind & Sea affords landlubbers unparalleled al fresco dining on the Pacific.

Harpoon Henry’s Seafood

Located in the heart of Dana Point Harbor for over four decades, Harpoon Henry’s Seafood Restaurant is a staple dining experience for locals in Dana Point. With unbeatable waterfront views of the Harbor, and a menu featuring fresh seafood and delectable entrees like filet mignon sliders and locally sourced California Halibut, it’s no wonder Harpoon Henry’s Seafood has been a local favorite for over 44 years. Kick back on the shaded outdoor patio with one of their famous house-made Mai-Tais and casually watch the sunset over Dana Point Harbor while deciding which of the many delicious entrees to choose from.

El Torito

Founded in 1954 in Encino, California, El Torito has been a pioneer in the California full service Mexican casual dining restaurant segment. El Torito’s menu features regional specialties created by its own executive chef, Pepe Lopez, including sizzling fajitas, hand-made tamales, enchiladas, and tacos as well as traditional Mexican combination platters. Located in the middle of Dana Point Harbor with incredible waterfront views, El Torito offers a wide selection of upscale margaritas, anda complete list of beers and cocktails.

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern

Jimmy’s Famous American Taverns are a family-owned group of eateries serving high-quality, classic American fare. Determined to be a “great bar with great food,” Jimmy’s focuses on delivering freshly-prepared comfort food as well as a modern bar program complete with seasonal craft cocktails, local brews, and a robust selection of rare and top-shelf whiskeys. With five locations across Southern California (San Diego, Dana Point, Brea, Santa Monica Woodland Hills), Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern is the classic neighborhood gathering place for warm hospitality and great food and drink — providing a relaxed, welcoming dining experience for locals and out-of-towners alike.


For delicious craft cocktails, fresh-caught oysters, and stunning seafood entrees that will make your mouth water, there is only one Glasspar. Located at the intersection of Golden Lantern and Dana Point Harbor Drive, Glasspar is extremely easy to get to and features a location that overlooks the harbor and highlights the natural scenic features of the bay. Thoughtfully sourced, respectfully prepared, and creatively presented food, wine, and cocktails in a high-energy, bustling atmosphere, Glasspar will easily be your next favorite spot in Dana Point Harbor.

Proud Mary’s

Proud Mary’s welcomes you to its stunning oceanfront location, featuring delectable entrees, an elegant yet laid-back ambiance, and unbeatable views.Proud Mary’s features an outdoor patio with a spacious dining area; an interior room with breathtaking harbor views; and a breakfast and lunch menu with gourmet salads, prime beef, fish plates, and small desserts. Proud Mary’s also offers a special banquet menu and is open for birthdays, weddings, and other special events!

Turk’s Restaurant

Opened in 1984 by a bodybuilder, movie star, surfer, and local legend simply known as Turk, his legacy and passion for his restaurant would turn Turk’s into a longtime local favorite. Offering a breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu, Turk’s features American classics, fresh and hearty seafood, and delicious cocktails in a nostalgic atmosphere that highlights Turk’s glory days and pays homage to the restaurant’s long-standing family tradition. Located in the heart of Dana Point Harbor, the only thing competing with the delicious food being served is the stunning oceanfront view from your table.

Staying in Dana Point Harbor

A visit to Dana Point Harbor wouldn’t be complete without having somewhere to go for a little R&R after a long day of adventure. These hotels and resorts are a great place to rest your head in Dana Point and have some spectacular views to elevate your experience.

Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa

Enhance your experience in Dana Point Harbor at this 4-star coastal-chic luxury resort and spa, nestled on a bluff with world-class views and amenities. Following a day of sights, shopping, and adventure in Dana Point Harbor, retreat back to the warm embrace of Laguna Cliffs to enjoy exclusive pampering, lounge by one of the two heated outdoor pools overlooking the Pacific Ocean or relax in your newly renovated guest room. However you choose to spend your time in Dana Point Harbor, don’t forget to treat yourself to plenty of rest and relaxation at Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa.

Dana Point Marina Inn

Offering affordable accommodations in a convenient location with incredible views, Dana Point Marina Inn is the perfect place for those looking to stay in close proximity to the many exciting events and adventures in Dana Point Harbor. Dana Point Marina Inn features pet-friendly rooms, private balconies overlooking the outdoor heated pool and harbor, a hot tub, hot breakfast every morning, and much more. Located in the heart of Dana Point Harbor, and a stone’s throw away from the beach, this conveniently located hotel provides everything you need and more to stay well rested, and well connected to the Harbor.

DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Hotel Doheny Beach 

Located just one mile from Dana Point Harbor, DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Hotel Doheny Beach offers gorgeous ocean views, pet-friendly rooms, and a stunning rooftop lounge overlooking Doheny State Beach. This beautiful 3-star hotel provides all the amenities you could want, with the convenience of being located at the heart of Dana Point.

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