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Dolphin watching in the Inner and Outer Hebrides can be a cold, wet business so itís hardly surprising that many boat crews and their passengers choose to warm up their itineraries with a little whisky tasting as well. Some of Scotlandís finest whisky distilleries are found scattered around these islands, including well-known names such as Talisker and Laphroaig, and they offer fascinating tours as well as tasting sessions. Given that sailing holidays in the Hebrides are quite dependent on the weather and tides, a distillery visit makes for a reliable fallback option if the wind and waves are causing problems, and if you bring along a hip flask then itís a matter of minutes to whip up a hot toddy every morning to keep your spirits up in the rain.
The dolphin (and whale) watching off the Atlantic archipelago of the Azores is world-famous, with nutrient rich, deep waters providing cetaceans with the perfect feeding environment. But while boat trips or coastal spotting are bound to be the focus of your itinerary, you can also combine them with a wide range of other outdoor activities including kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding on island lakes, hiking and mountain biking along inland trails, canyoning and bathing in volcanic hot springs. In case weíre not making ourselves clear: if youíre the adventurous, outdoorsy sort, you should really, really go to the Azores.
Dolphin-watching in Walvis Bay in Namibia, usually forms part of a much broader itinerary. There is the spectacular Etosha National Park, home to some 150 mammal species including lions, elephants, cheetahs, leopards and black rhinos, the Namib Desert, Swakopmund, Damaraland and the Skeleton Coast National Park. If you are joining a dolphin monitoring expedition off Knysna in South Africa meanwhile, you might easily combine it with a scenic drive along the iconic Garden Route, or a safari in the majestic Kruger National Park.
If you'd like to chat about Dolphin watching or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
There are dolphin watching holidays in the Ligurian Sea off Italy, and in Greece as well, which will see you engaged in a variety of research methods alongside permanent staff on conservation projects. But while these trips do involve long days, they donít neglect the fact that youíre on holiday too. Youíll have plenty of opportunities over the course of a week for swimming and snorkelling off island beaches, under that warm Mediterranean sun. Alternatively, why not reward your efforts with a second week on the beach to relax Ė we all need to fly less, so it makes sense to take a longer holiday by air than several shorter ones throughout the year.
More Dolphin watching articles
Dolphins are incredibly intelligent, delightfully playful and able to inspire happiness in anyone who sees or swims with them.
Dolphins can be found around the world - from the warm waters of the Ionian Sea off Greece to the chillier climes of the Azores and Scotland.
The best place to go on a dolphin watching holiday depends as much on the other activities you want to enjoy as on the dolphins themselves.
Dolphin watching holidays in the Azores, as scores of these beautiful and intelligent creatures swim around you, is not an experience to be quickly forgotten.
Dolphin watching holidays in Greece tend to focus closely on conservation research when you travel with responsible providers Ė there are several species in these waters and they face a wide range of threats.
If youíre dying to swim with dolphins in Scotland then this page isnít for you. Dolphin watching in Scotland takes time, patience, and an awful lot of luck and local knowhow.
Some destinations are far more suited than others for family dolphin watching holidays.
Our dolphin watching holiday companies have shared their top dolphin watching advice to help you plan your trip.
Experts agree that the more responsible dolphin watching is, the more enjoyable it Is.