When it comes to bucket lists, few things appear more regularly than seeing or swimming with exotic marine life. I’m talking, of course, about dolphins and whales. Not many people harbour a desire to swim with jellyfish before they die, and those that do carry out this ambition generally end up passing on a lot sooner than they had perhaps anticipated.

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If you’re interested in dolphins and whales, there is no better place to see them in Europe than Tenerife. As one of the top three places in the entire world for spotting marine life, you’re sure to get fantastic views of a variety of species. Among the creatures that call this beautiful volcanic island their home are bottlenose dolphins, pilot whales, sperm whales, sharks, manta rays and a thousand and one species of seabird. Book yourself a flight with Monarch Airlines and see them in their natural environement.

Typical day

Dolphin and whale watching trips from Tenerife are extremely popular, and there are plenty of companies on the island catering to the demand. Wildlife fanatics should research the most suited providers before starting their holiday, or failing this, venture to the nearest harbour town and have a scout around.

Remember there’s always an element of pot luck in whether you’ll see anything, but by choosing more experienced  captains, you’ll increase your chances. If in doubt, opt for an afternoon trip, but watch the morning one come in and see if the passengers look happy. Remember that a luxury yacht may not be conducive to good wildlife observation and try to avoid those boats that are overcrowded. Often, captains will receive information from their colleagues out on the water as to where the wildlife is on a particular day, so this is also an advantage when seeking out the marine life.

The majority of companies offer trips of quite a long duration – three to six hours generally – but this is necessary in order to maximise the odds of seeing something. It can take more than an hour for the captain to locate any whales and dolphins. But when he does, make sure you’ve got your camera ready. Witnessing marine life in its natural habitat is a truly incredible sight to behold and you don’t want to miss your chance to grab some incredible holiday snaps.

What to bring

Obviously, the warm weather will mean that a hat is necessary, as well as plenty of protective sun cream. It’s especially important to reapply the lotion when out on the waves, where a cooling breeze can often make you forget about the sun.

Some ships provide food and drink, but it’s worth checking beforehand so you can prepare sandwiches if necessary. A couple of water bottles certainly wouldn’t go amiss, and whatever you do, don’t forget your camera!

Boat trips in Tenerife are an incredible way of witnessing some awesome marine life and fulfilling that bucket list dream. Following the hints and tips above can make sure you have no regrets about the way you go about it.


Tenerife: Europe’s top whale spotting destination
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