Gulf of the Farallone National Marine Sanctuaries Logo

Welcome to Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary


We protect the wildlife and habitats of one of the most diverse and bountiful marine environments in the world, an area of 1,282 square miles off the northern and central California coast. Located just a few miles from San Francisco, the waters within Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary are part of a nationally significant marine ecosystem. Encompassing a diversity of highly productive marine habitats, the sanctuary supports an abundance of life, including many threatened or endangered species. Discover more about the sanctuary by diving into this website, reading "What's New" below, or support us by joining the Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association (FMSA).

What's New

Sanctuary Office logo

Introduced Species Regulation

Feb 2015

NOAA published the final rule on Feb 19, 2015 to modify regulations on the introduction of introduced species into the Gulf of the Farallones and Monterey Bay national marine sanctuaries. Read the Final Rule.

Advisory Council Meeting

Public Advisory Council Meeting - Feb 25, 2015

Feb 2015

A public meeting of the Sanctuary Advisory Council will be held at the Point Reyes National Seashore. View Agenda

Advisory Council Meeting

Apply for Sanctuary Advisory Council - Open Recruitment

Feb 2015

The Sanctuary Advisory Council is looking for community-at-large San Francisco/San Mateo (primary); conservation (primary and alternate); and maritime activities/ commercial (primary and alternate). Applications are due March 31, 2015. Apply Today!

picture of Sonoma coastline

Proposed Sanctuary Expansion

Dec 2014

NOAA considered the comments received during the public comment period in order to revise the final management plans and EIS for the proposal to expand Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank sanctuaries. Read the final documents.

Tanker vessel Lyman Stewart stranded at Lands End

New Rocky Reef Video

Oct 2014

View this five minute video that reveals the offshore rocky reefs of the sanctuary: Rittenburg Bank, Cochrane Bank and the Farallon Escarpment. Watch video.

whale surfacing with boat in the distance

"Whale Alert" iPad, iPhone app available

Sep 2014

Mariners and the public on the U.S. West Coast can now use an iPad and iPhone to help decrease the risk of injury or death to whales from ship strikes. Visit Whale Alert to get the free app.

Maria Brown

Sanctuary Superintendent Report

Aug 2014

Superintendent Brown reports on sanctuary expansion, Volunteer of the Year, education programs, and more. Read the complete report (PDF)

Sanctuary Office logo

NOAA Re-establishes Sanctuary Nomination Process

Jun 2014

For the first time in two decades, NOAA invites communities across the nation to nominate their most treasured places in our marine and Great Lakes waters for consideration as national marine sanctuaries. Visit nomination website or read information flyer (PDF)

Girl holding a sign

Thank You Ocean

The ocean takes care of us; let's return the favor. Visit Thank You Ocean.

FMSA logo

Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association

The Farallones Marine Sanctuary Association (FMSA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to protect Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary habitats and wildlife through the development of a diverse community of informed and active ocean stewards. Learn More

Last Updated on: Thu, February 19, 2015