Whale & Dolphin Watching
Snorkeling With Dolphins
A magic experience with wild dolphins in deep blue waterseling
In the Azores we are allowed by law to snorkel with 5 different species of dolphins and snorkeling with whales is forbidden. The use of scuba is also prohibited. All the dolphins are wild and free and the encounters are always in deep waters. Good snorkeling experience is mandatory and will be assessed before the trip.
Snorkeling with dolphins is possible during a regular whale and dolphin watching trip, but only in good sea conditions and when the behaviour of the dolphins allows it. By our experience, the best species to snorkel with are the atlantic spotted, common and bottlenose dolphins.
A maximum of 4 snorkellers can join in each trip and only 2 are allowed in the water at the same time. A detailed briefing is provided prior to embark.
The skipper is in charge of assessing the conditions and coordinating the activity. A second crew member helps and keeps an eye on the snorkellers. Our first priority at all times is your safety and welfare of the dolphins.
In order to minimise the impact on the dolphins, we enter the water as quietly as possible and just stay floating at the surface by the boat with a mask, snorkel and fins (fins are used to increase safety and not to chase the dolphins). In-water encounters seem to be closer and more fruitful if the snorkeller remains motionless. The dolphins are then free to approach and satisfy their natural curiosity; this usually lasts only a few, but intense minutes.
Although a thrilling and unique experience, snorkeling with wild dolphins is not an activity without risks. Touching the dolphins is NOT permitted on our expeditions. Don’t forget that these dolphins are wild; trying to touch them can only scare them away or result in a potential aggressive behaviour. You should always stay close to the boat and stick to the rules of our experienced crew members.
Not to disturb the dolphins we don’t stay more than 15 minutes with the same group of animals.
If the skipper decides that the conditions are not ideal for the activity the decision must be accepted by all.