Azores
Dolphin & Whale Watching

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Our most recommended Azores Dolphin & Whale Watching

Azores Whale Watching Expedition and Islet Boat Tour

1. Azores Whale Watching Expedition and Islet Boat Tour

This 2.5-hour excursion begins with an introduction to cetaceans (whales and dolphins) and other marine species, their natural habitat, communication, migration and behavioral patterns. After the briefing, board the designated boat and head out to sea. The boat will approach the whales slowly and carefully as the naturalist guides and marine biologists on board provide commentary. The boat trip also includes a tour around the Princess Ring Islet of Vila Franca do Campo, for an up-close look at the volcano and resident wildlife. Light food is permitted on board, and a camera is essential to capture the wildlife you spot on the tour.

São Miguel Azores: Half-Day Whale Watching Trip

2. São Miguel Azores: Half-Day Whale Watching Trip

Enjoy a half-day whale watching trip in the Azores, one of the ‘top ten’ whale-watching spots in the world, and get the opportunity to meet the ocean giants in their natural habitat. Meet the boat crew and get a short briefing about safety and code of ethics and then put on your life vest and head out in the ocean. Listen as the crew follows the instructions given by radio from the lookouts placed in strategic points along the coastline using military-grade binoculars to find and communicate the position of the animals. Take comfort that the crew has a 99% success rate of sightings. Once whales have been spotted it´s time to enjoy the company of these magnificent animals, always keeping a safe and respectful distance. It´s usual that more than one group of whales and dolphins are observed per trip. On the way back to the marina, observe the geological formations of the island as the boat sails close to the coastline.

Pico Island: Azores Whale and Dolphin Watching Boat Tour

3. Pico Island: Azores Whale and Dolphin Watching Boat Tour

Uncover the beauty of the marine wildlife of Pico island on this dolphin and whale watching tour. Stay safe with the use of a life jacket and keep dry with the use of a waterproof top. Approach the whales slowly and carefully to ensure the well-being of the animals.  Enjoy a short briefing before boarding the Zodiac boat in the town of Lajes do Pico. Snap some pictures of the shoreline as your cruise along. Look for birds, turtles, whales, and playful dolphins as you make your way to locations where they are most active.  Get an introduction to cetaceans (whales and dolphins) from your guide. Hear about other marine species, their natural habitats, communication styles, migration patterns and behavioral features. Return to your starting point on Pico island. 

Pico Island: Whale Watching Boat Tour with Biologist Guides

4. Pico Island: Whale Watching Boat Tour with Biologist Guides

Lying in the middle of the mystical Atlantic Ocean, the Azores Islands are a permanent home or point of passage for more than a third of the entire world’s whale and dolphin species. Dive into a lifetime adventure with these ancestral creatures during this guided Pico Island whale-watching trip. Away from the masses and close to the desirable peace, you will be the guests to nature guides and marine biologists, certified and, most importantly, sharing the contagious passion for the islands and its fauna and flora. Your adventure starts at Lajes do Pico harbor, where you’ll be welcomed by staff and check-in. Afterward, head to the boat where the marine biologists will give a briefing. Hear about the species you might see, whale watching history in the Azores, as well as how to respect the animals. Then, you’re ready to navigate and look for cetaceans in the wild. On the way, have a look at the coast of the island, full of magical landscapes. Whales live in the deep ocean and some of them simply pass by the waters during their migration. It is in this dark-profiled paradise of basaltic landscapes and silky vegetation that a rough sea awaits to introduce the visitor to some of the most spectacular aquatic specimens, freely swimming in their element. Prepare for awe-inspiring moments where time suddenly freezes and natural magic happens right in front of your eyes. After the boat trip, head back to the harbor with a heart full of good memories.

São Miguel: North Coast Whale Watching Cruise

5. São Miguel: North Coast Whale Watching Cruise

Discover the whale population of the Azores Islands on a boat cruise along the northern coast of São Miguel. Observe these majestic giants of the ocean in their natural habitat, at a respectful distance. Set off from the fishing village of Rabo de Peixe on the north coast of São Miguel. Explore the sea north of the island, known for its strong tides and whale population. Explore on a semi-inflatable craft, and observe the whales from a respectful distance so as to not disturb the whales. With the help of your onboard spotter, identify the whales as they breach the ocean surface. Be amazed by their grandeur and grace as the whales frolic in the ocean. See their gigantic tailfins, and hear the sound of the blowholes. As you cruise through the ocean, learn about the behavior and feeding habits of the whales with your expert crew. Afterward, return to the port in Rabo de Peixe.

Terceira: Swimming with Dolphins

6. Terceira: Swimming with Dolphins

Swim with the Dolphins in their natural environment along the coast of Terceira Island. Learn about how to properly meet these gentle giants and feel good knowing it won't disturb their environment. Connect with nature and admire the island's shoreline on the way back. Meet your guide and get a welcome briefing so that you can make the most out of your dolphin swimming experience. Gain useful advice on how to interact with them, and the best ways to behave at sea. Once you reach the point where the Dolphin's have been found, it's time to jump in. Feel totally comfortable, with experienced watchman making sure the animals are safe and comfortable, and you are as well. On the return trip back, relax and enjoy the stunning landscapes of the Island's shoreline.

Ponta Delgada: Whales and Volcanoes Tour with Lunch

7. Ponta Delgada: Whales and Volcanoes Tour with Lunch

Benefit from pick-up at your accommodation in Ponta Delgada, and then explore the coastline of the Azores by boat. Spend 3 hours looking for majestic whales and playful dolphins in their natural environment.  Reconnect with the natural world as you go in search of the sperm whales, blue whales, humpback whales and orcas that make the archipelago one of the best places in the world to see different marine mammals. Keep a look out for turtles, flying fish, sea birds and jumping dolphins along the way.  Disembark the boat and enjoy a tasty lunch, and then make your way to the volcanic landscapes of Lagoa do Fogo and Caldeira Velha. See one of the most beautiful lakes in São Miguel and experience the amazing interior of the island up close. Learn about the many uses the volcanic landscape gives to the island, from its medicinal mud to its energy source. 

Terceira: Whale and Dolphin Watching in a Glass Botton Boat

8. Terceira: Whale and Dolphin Watching in a Glass Botton Boat

The Azores are considered one of the best places for whale watching in the world. 28 species of whales and dolphins have been spotted there over the years. This unique 2.5-hour tour is the ideal situation for spotting whales and dolphins. The vessel has the capacity for 28 people, a glass bottom, and two 300 horsepower engines. With a 90% sighting success rate, the tour is assisted by a whale spotter located at the top of Monte Brasil. With long-range binoculars, they'll be able to guide the Skipper via radio, helping you to find the whereabouts of cetaceans (the animal family that these marine mammals belong to).

Lajes de Pico: Small-Group Swim with Dolphins

9. Lajes de Pico: Small-Group Swim with Dolphins

Enjoy a swim with the Azores' resident dolphins on an ethical and sustainable tour. Get the opportunity to swim with Risso’s dolphins, bottlenose dolphins, and common dolphins in their natural habitat. You may also have the opportunity to spot Atlantic spotted dolphins, striped dolphins, and rough-toothed dolphins. The dolphins you will see during the tour are 100% free and living in their natural habitat. Start your tour with an important briefing from your marine biologist guide. This briefing will help ensure your safety in the water whilst also giving you an understanding of how to protect the dolphins during your swim. Then, simply dive in and follow your guide's instructions to make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Frequently asked questions about Azores Dolphin & Whale Watching

What are other things to do than Dolphin & Whale Watching that are worth visiting in Azores?

The other unmissable things to do in Azores are:

Other Sightseeing Options in Azores

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What people are saying about Azores

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 2 reviews

What a great day on the water! It was a gorgeous day, period, but we also saw 4 different types of dolphin species and a sperm whale that day. We only had 8 other travelers with us, and the captain and guide were incredibly nice and well-informed.

Friendly, helpful, and informative guides, and the tour was in English. We saw a group of bottlenose dolphins and then sperm whales. I went as the only solo traveler on board among mostly couples and groups of three and enjoyed my time. Recommend.

Amazing, the guide was extremely nice and we were so lucky to see many marine species. The island of Vila Franca do Campo was amazing. I hope to come back and see other animals!

Great trip - very fast fun boat, responsible guides who clearly enjoy what they do. Saw dolphins and sperms whales - and beautify scenery!

It was great, we even had some extra time so he took us to a pineapple plantion!