Best tours to see Dolphins in Fuerteventura

Seeing dolphins is a once in a lifetime experience that for many people represents an unattainable or even impossible dream due to the geographical location in which they live. Fortunately, if you go on a trip to Fuerteventura you will have the privilege of being able to do so if you wish.

Keyvis Montilva

Keyvis Montilva

13 min read

Best tours to see Dolphins in Fuerteventura

Dolphins in Fuerteventura | ©Fabian Maas

Without a doubt, seeing dolphins on a guided sea excursion is one of the best things to see and do in Fuerteventura. It is a plan that can entertain all members of the family simultaneously and it is also a unique opportunity to see one of the most beautiful marine species on the planet in its natural habitat.

Therefore, I invite you to continue reading all the alternatives that I have researched for you, as there are several ways to see dolphins in Fuerteventura and each of them stands out for their equally convenient and interesting features as the other options listed.

1. Dolphin and whale watching tours in Fuerteventura

Dolphin in Fuerteventura| ©Angelo Failla
Dolphin in Fuerteventura| ©Angelo Failla

The first alternative I can offer you as a viable and recommendable idea to see dolphins in Fuerteventura is to take a dolphin and whale watching tour. This is a guided excursion that departs from a port on the island and is focused exclusively on the idea of going to the corners of the coast that are usually a meeting point for these marine mammals.

If it is a trip with these characteristics, you can rest assured that it has the appropriate permits to carry out whale watching as a commercial activity. In addition, all the tour staff are highly qualified for the work they do.

This means that it is a sustainable ecotourism tourist activity and there is a real effort behind the tour that seeks to minimise as much as possible the impact they have on nature and on the natural environment they are taking visitors to.

When joining an excursion like this you should be aware that the most likely port of departure will be Morro Jable. This is because it is the most suitable natural harbour for boats of all sizes on the Jandia Peninsula. In fact, these types of tours along the coasts of Fuerteventura tend to focus on the waters surrounding the Jandia Natural Park, as the waves and tides make it an ideal place for whale watching.

Keep in mind that the average duration of a whale watching tour without any additional activities is usually between one and a half hours and up to two hours maximum. This means that you can have a whole morning or afternoon free to continue enjoying the activities available to see or do in Fuerteventura for 5 days. Or for however long you are deciding to stay on this beautiful island.

Regarding the number of people on the boat you should know that it is usual that the boats are of medium to small size in order to disturb as little as possible the natural outcome of the dolphins on the coasts of the peninsula. The group usually does not exceed 8 people, including the sailor and the dolphin specialist guide who accompanies them.

Details of interest:

  • Prices: a guided tour with these characteristics usually costs around 40 or 45 euros and it is also usual that there is a discount of 10 euros for children between the ages of 12 and 3 years old. Babies are allowed as long as they are in their mother's arms and it all depends on the availability of lifeguards for their size.
  • Duration: As I mentioned, as it is a trip that aims to find a group of dolphins and whales to observe them for a while and then return to the island, it is not necessary to extend it unnecessarily for many hours. On average, by the 2 hour mark you will probably have seen a couple of dolphins and a family of larger cetaceans.
  • Type of boat: these are boats of a moderate size and most commonly a boat with inflatable rims for the versatility and resistance that characterise them. There are also boats with structures that are entirely made of fibreglass, just like professional fishing boats, but it is not as usual due to the fact that they are more vulnerable to special care.
  • Advantages: if you go with a dolphin guide you will have the opportunity to learn all the details of the dolphins' life. These are very interesting facts and stand out for being very curious and unexpected, at least from what you might associate with the image of a dolphin. In addition, the fact that the trip lasts just as long as it has to, saves you from spending unnecessary time in the open sea. Where you are exposed to solar radiation and the sea sickness of sailing.

Book your dolphin & whale watching tour in Fuerteventura

2. Flounder Sailing Cruises with Dolphin Sightings

Sailing boat in Fuerteventura| ©Pablo López
Sailing boat in Fuerteventura| ©Pablo López

The next option available to you when you are looking to meet dolphins in their natural habitat in Fuerteventura is the Flounder sailing boat and its sea excursions along the south coast of this beautiful volcanic island. For many people this is a much more complete alternative to the previous one, as it offers you the experience of riding on a luxurious sailing boat. That while you also have a good chance of seeing live dolphins sailing freely in the waters of Fuerteventura.

The first thing I have to clarify about this option is that it is also intended for very small groups of people, as only 8 passengers are expected. They would join the captain and his assistant to start sailing on this sailboat that will take advantage of the strong winds of the south of Fuerteventura to explore the most beautiful corners of its coasts.

The sailboats also usually depart from the marina of Morro Jable and many of these tourist itineraries also offer a pick-up service directly from your hotel. At least if your accommodation is in this town on the Jandia Peninsula at the southern tip of Fuerteventura.

The experience usually includes alcoholic beverages and even meals, but the amounts of all this are configured based on the number of passengers and whether they all belong to the same reservation or not. You are offered binoculars so that you can take full advantage of the visibility of the dolphin pods you encounter, as a sailing boat is clearly not capable of reaching the area of the sea that these marine mammals decide to pass through in record time.

This sailing trip also offers you the chance to take a swim in the middle of the open sea in those moments when the sails are lowered and the navigation is slowed down for a while. As well as snorkelling in those areas where the captain is sure there will be sea turtles and manta rays along with all kinds of fish and marine species. The sum of all these details makes this alternative one of the best plans to see or do in Fuerteventura with children, as it offers a much wider and more diverse entertainment.

Interesting details:

  • Prices: it is a slightly more expensive plan than the previous option, as it is a larger and more luxurious boat that also includes drinks and snacks in the service. The approximate price is around 80 euros per person, but bear in mind that during the island's most touristy season the price can double.
  • Duration: as this trip also offers you the chance to swim in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean that surround Fuerteventura and as it is a sailing boat it is logical that it will take a little longer. On average it usually takes about 4 or 5 hours, but keep in mind that the main purpose of the trip is not to see dolphins, although it is part of the itinerary.
  • Type of boat: as I have just mentioned, it is a sailboat for about 8 people, which also has a small bathroom and a cabin to rest from the trip, very useful for those who have problems with sea sickness.
  • Advantages: Being on a sailing boat is a once in a lifetime experience and being able to do it while watching dolphins living in their natural habitat is an even more significant privilege. Therefore this option is highly recommended from my side if you have the possibility to afford this and if you feel you are in a position to sail on a sailboat for 4, 5 or 6 hours uninterrupted.

Get tickets to the best Flounder sailing cruises with dolphin spotting

3. Dolphin Sightings in Fuerteventura with snorkelling

Snorkelling| ©Lars H Knudsen
Snorkelling| ©Lars H Knudsen

Snorkelling can be the highlight of your day when you are also looking for a chance to see dolphins during a trip to Fuerteventura. This is something that the tours that try to combine both experiences in the same itinerary have in mind and I can't help but recommend them to you in this list of options that I have prepared for you.

Basically, they are a combination of the previous alternatives plus a good snorkelling session that tries to be as close as possible to the environment in which these families of marine mammals swim and frolic.

As for the boat chosen, I have to tell you that the most common is a significantly larger boat, as a kind of tourist ferry is almost always used, which allows 20 to 40 passengers to enter at the same time. All interested in the possibility of seeing humpback whales and dolphins in their usual way of life, but also in the fact of being able to get into the water to explore the beauty of Fuerteventura's underwater world among the waves.

The duration is usually just as long as the sailing trip and even longer, as you share the trip with a larger group of people and they will all want to enjoy their snorkelling session in the same comfort you have at your fingertips. The port of departure is also usually Morro Jable and the timetable is usually reserved for the morning section as it is more convenient for all participants to adjust their day knowing that by midday or early afternoon they will be back on the shores of the island.

Details of interest:

  • Prices: 75 euros per person is the going rate for these types of sea tours and this is a very attractive rate, as most of these boats offer snacks and drinks on board and even the possibility to consume alcohol for an additional fee at the ferry's bar.
  • Duration: 5 or even 6 hours is usually the duration of a trip like this, but the good thing is that you are guaranteed that a visit to the dolphin transit areas is part of the sailing itinerary of a trip like this.
  • Type of boat: I liken it to a ferry for reasons of size and mechanical dimensions, but these are really boats designed for these sightseeing tours. That means that they have no problem being turned on and off several times in the same day, just like when you get to the snorkelling area or enjoy the arrival of a family of dolphins on the sides of the boat.
  • Advantages: This option is clearly one of the best snorkelling experiences in Fuerteventura for the simple fact that it combines the possibility of seeing dolphins and whales in the same tourist event.

4. Catamaran sea tour with dolphin watching included

Catamaran trip to Lobos Island| ©FCO Javier
Catamaran trip to Lobos Island| ©FCO Javier

The last alternative you have at your disposal to see dolphins in Fuerteventura on a guided tour is on a boat that in itself is a true spectacle of engineering and an attraction worthy of being known at some point in your life. It takes place on a catamaran, a boat that combines two parallel hulls and which is usually propelled by the force of the wind, with sails, just like a traditional sailing boat.

There are catamarans with motor propulsion and there are also others that combine motors and sails. Either way, the ones you will see on these types of boat tours are configured for a maximum capacity of 10 people and stand out for the elegance of their design.

These boat tours of Fuerteventur usually last about 4 or 5 hours and almost all catamarans offer the possibility of snorkelling or swimming in the crystal clear waters surrounding the northern and southern tip of this Canary Island. Some offer hotel pick-up if your accommodation is in Morro Jable, as the departure is usually from this luxurious and beautiful marina.

Clearly in this case the dolphins and whales are the stars of the event and so the captain will always choose sailing routes that get you as close as possible to seeing several pods of cetaceans in one trip. Many usually offer snacks and drinks as part of the tour price, which is convenient knowing that it is not as short as the first alternative I mentioned in this post.

Interesting details:

  • Prices: around 80 euros is the approximate price for a trip per person on a catamaran along the coast of Fuerteventura with the intention of seeing dolphins and whales along the way. However, it is also very likely that you will find a slightly cheaper alternative and there will also be others that double this price.
  • Duration: 4 or 5 hours, but there may be some with shorter trips that only extend for 3 hours during the first half of the day.
  • Type of boat: As mentioned, they are catamarans and some of them have internal cabins that can give you privacy to go to the bathroom, while others are simpler and only have the upper deck in their structure.
  • Advantages: A catamaran combines the best of quirky design with the practicality and beauty of sail propulsion. So if you are a sailing enthusiast and you are interested in all that has to do with boats, this is a good opportunity to take your mind off dolphin spotting in Fuerteventura while also travelling in one of the most attractive boats of today.

Buy tickets for the best boat tours in Fuerteventur

What are the types of dolphins and cetaceans you might see in Fuerteventura?

Seeing a dolphin| ©Mar Ran
Seeing a dolphin| ©Mar Ran

On the other hand, there is the fact that you are almost certainly interested in the types of dolphins and cetaceans that you might meet while participating in any of these tours in the waters of Fuerteventura.

That's why I'm also going to tell you about some of the marine species that are most commonly seen on these tours and this will help you to identify them on your own as soon as you see them swimming on the horizon.

1. Bottlenose dolphins

This is the best known of all dolphin species and is characterised by being a marine mammal with an enviable intelligence and a more sociable character than other dolphins.

They tend to group together in families that stay together for periods as long as two or even three decades. They are easily identified by their fondness for swimming around boats and by their greyish hue. They are relatively large, averaging between 2.5 and 3 metres in size.

2. Killer whales

It is often believed that the habitat of killer whales is restricted exclusively to the cold waters of both polar extremes of the planet. However, this is actually a migratory species and it is possible to see groups of killer whales swimming around Fuerteventura all year round.

They normally reach a length of 9 or 10 metres and their average weight is around 5 or 6 tons. It is characterised by being a very skilful predator, which allows it to have a diet based on fish, seals, squid and even smaller sharks.

They live in groups of up to 40 individuals, but it is also possible for them to have periods of solitary navigation. They are easily distinguished by their skin that combines a black base with several white spots.

3. Spotted and rough dolphins

Spotted dolphins can be distinguished by their size, which is usually smaller than that of a bottlenose dolphin, and by their skin. This has small black and white spots all over its surface. They are equally sociable and also have a habit of frolicking with any boat that is sailing close to their family group.

Rough-toothed dolphins are quite skilful hunters, distinguished from other dolphins by their narrower snout and pink and white shades on this part of their body, as well as on their belly and throat.

4. Sperm whales

Sperm whales are one of the most impressive marine mammals in the Atlantic Ocean surrounding the Canary Islands archipelago. It is quite large, easily reaching 18 to 20 metres in length and 50 tonnes is an average number for the weight of a sperm whale.

They tend to feed on squid and fish at depths of up to 3 km and are commonly seen in groups of no more than three or four individuals because they live in small groups.

5. Humpback whales

It is not so common to see humpback whales on a tour of Fuerteventura's waters, but there have been exceptions and over the years these encounters have become more and more frequent. They are known to be extremely friendly with other dolphins, with other whale species and also with the boats that come across their path.

It is easy to identify them by the outline of their humpback, although their main distinctive feature is their habit of acrobatically jumping above the water level and then crashing into the water, creating a gigantic splash.

What do you need to see dolphins in Fuerteventura?

Dolphin Group| ©Photo Krieger
Dolphin Group| ©Photo Krieger

There are no specific requirements for you to participate in one of these dolphin watching tours in Fuerteventura. You will not swim with them in their natural environment for safety reasons and you will always be inside the boat while it is sailing from one point to another for the same reasons.

However, one thing I can't recommend enough is to take plenty of hydration and sunscreen with you. Because sailing at sea is a perfect occasion to suffer from sunstroke and being in the middle of the sea is a thirst-quenching experience according to most experienced sailors.

If you still want to enjoy the sea of this beautiful island beyond the sandy coastline , you can also take part in the kayaking activities in Fuerteventura. They offer you the possibility to have your own individual boat for short and safe trips.

Check out the best kayaking activities in Fuerteventura