Whale and dolphin watching

The warmth of the sun, the sea breeze and the sway of the waves make you feel totally relaxed. Suddenly, the boat stops, everybody pulls out their cameras and peers over the side of the boat with anticipation. You follow suit and soon realise that there are small distant specks breaching the surface, which take the shape of imposing sea creatures as they draw closer. The whales and dolphins swim freely and peacefully in the water with no specific direction, allowing you to share with them an unrivalled sensation: feeling free in the ocean.

Download whale and dolphin watching leaflet

The south-west coast of the Island is the perfect place for whale and dolphin watching. Tenerife is home to a number of companies which specialise in organising trips to see these animals in their natural, free habitat. Boats set off from the ports of Los Cristianos, Puerto Colón and Los Gigantes, and there is bound to be an option to suit your needs in terms of timing and prices.

Two-hour whale and dolphin watching trip
If you just want to see these magnificent mammals, without the extras, you can choose a short outing on a small, fast boat.

Three-hour whale and dolphin watching trip
If you're looking for something more, the two-to-three-hour option generally includes a meal on board and calls at a bay for a quick dip. The boats are of medium size, enabling you to move around more freely.

Boat trip for up to five hours
The complete ocean experience is provided by the larger boats. Here, the activity lasts about five hours. In addition to whale and dolphin watching, the outing includes a journey past the most symbolic points of this coastal area of the Island, a few stops for a swim and, of course, a replenishing meal before arriving back at the harbour.

Behaviour to look out for

As wild animals, their behaviour is not entirely predictable, making each outing a unique experience. Their behaviour depends on various factors such as the species, time of day, conditions at sea, available food... Nevertheless, these mammals are extremely active and you may well see them blowing bubbles, playing, surfing, floating, flicking their tail fins and even spying on visitors with a curious eye.

There are a great many companies dedicated to organising whale and dolphin watching trips, which means there are outings to suit all requirements.

The options include two-hour outings on small fast boats (where the aim is exclusively to see cetaceans) and two-to-three-hour outings on medium-sized boats that conclude with a dip in a bay and a meal on board before heading back to the harbour.

For the full experience, there are also larger boats offering outings of up to five hours. This includes a journey along Tenerife's south coast, one or two swimming stops and a meal on board.

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