Points of Interest in Dana Point

dana point harbor

Welcome to Dana Point, where the official city motto is “Harboring the Good Life.” Our beautiful city is known for whale watching, surf life, and the world renowned Ocean Institute. Dana Point prides itself on welcoming visitors and sharing the good life. Browse our local points of interest and highlights below.

Places to Visit

Dana Point
Welcome to Dana Point, California! The staff at Best Western Plus Marina Shores Hotel looks forward to hosting your visit and will happily assist you with any questions you have about the town.

Dana Point Chamber of Commerce
The mission of the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce is to promote business interests and protect the free enterprise system, to pursue a healthy economy and strive for a better quality of life in our community.

Dana Point Nature Interpretive Center
Spend some time at our local nature center for an educational outdoor activity.
34558 Scenic Drive
Dana Point, CA

Doheny State Beach
Doheny State Beach, a legendary surfing beach, is also known for its campground. For more information about the beach and up-to-date visitor guidelines, please visit the website:

Mission San Juan Capistrano
The Mission San Juan Capistrano is a site of historical, cultural, and religious significance. For over 200 years the mission has served as a home to many people and exists today as a source of inspiration and education. Please visit the website for hours and visitor information
26801 Ortega Highway
San Juan Capistrano, CA

Zoomars at River Street Ranch
Bring the family to Zoomars for a day of outdoor fun including mining for gold, petting zoos, pony rides, and more.
31791 Los Rios St
San Juan Capistrano, CA

dana point harbor
Harbor Activities

Dana Point Harbor offers a wide variety of venues for many activities. The harbor is the home port for over 2,200 boats, offering dry storage and in-water berthing. There is a 15-lane boat launch ramp and a non-motorized craft beach launch. The Shipyard also has a hoist. There are two yacht clubs and a sailing club based in the harbor. Also located in the harbor is a fuel dock, a bait barge, and the Harbor Patrol. The County of Orange operates a youth and group facility that provides meeting rooms, party facilities, sailing and ocean-related programs, and a Sea Scout base. The Ocean Institute has completed a major expansion and offers marine exploration. Known as the “baby beach,” the cove section of the harbor provides a beach with no waves and protected swim and water play. Throughout the harbor there are walking paths and public restrooms.

The Ocean Institute:

The Ocean Institute has completed a major expansion and offers children and adults a unique educational experience. In addition to marine exploration and education on our ever-changing ocean environment, the institute offers public programs and events. View the Ocean Institute website for information and updated events.

Yacht and Sailing Clubs:

The Dana Point Yacht Club is a private club offering facilities for banquets and meetings. Enjoy breathtaking views of the bluffs, harbor, ocean, and even Catalina Island. Contact the club for more information prior to your visit.  (949) 496-2900

Whale Watching
Whale Watching, Fishing, and Charters

The migration season for California Gray Whales is December through Early April. If you will be visiting us during this period we highly recommend booking a whale watching excursion through the Dana Point Harbor or one of these services.

Captain Dave’s Whale and Dolphin Safari

(949) 518-0310
24440 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629

Click Here to visit Captain Dave’s Whale and Dolphin Safari's website.

Dana Wharf Whale Watching and Sportfishing

(949) 496-5794
34675 Golden Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629

Click here to visit Dana Wharf Whale Watching and Sportfishing's website.

Upcoming Events

Orange County Health Department statistics indicate continued improvement in the COVID-19 numbers.   Escape to the coast for a much needed break!  Local Restaurants are seating guests and some attractions are open.  Check with each one for specific availability.  At the Marina Shores Hotel we are continuing COVID-19 protocols in an attempt to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus.  We do additional cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfection.  Our staff wears masks and practices social distancing.  Everyone at the hotel is required to wear a face covering in public spaces

Due to COVID-19 and in keeping with State and Local health directives to try to help limit the spread of the corona virus, our regular breakfast bar is not open.  Alternatively, we offer a "Grab-N-Go" pre-bagged breakfast which includes a breakfast bar, fruit, bread item, and water or juice or coffee.  Hot, wrapped breakfast burritos may also be offered.  All breakfast offerings are subject to product availability.  Guests are encouraged to take breakfast back to their rooms.  Thank your for your understanding and cooperation.

June 18-20, 2021:  Don't forget DAD!  Take dad fishing or to visit the Ocean Institute.  Maybe dinner in the harbor?  Or even a day trip to Catalina Island!

Marina Shores Hotel

Marina Shores Hotel has a number of restaurants and local fare located within walking distance. For a complete list of recommended restaurants in the area, visit the Guest Directory.