While whale-watching, most people are lucky if they catch a fleeting glimpse of a whale off in the distance. But a group of tourists off the shores of Southern California got much, much more than that.

During a whale-watching expedition last week, a massive 80-foot-long blue whale approached a tour boat head on, then turned aside at the last moment, coming eye-to-eye with a group of tourists. Whoa! Easy, big fella.

According to the captain of the tour boat, the whale appeared to be lunge-feeding at the surface, and this accounted for their spectacular view of the amazing mammal. Experience a blue whale up close below.

[YouTube]