Anyone who enjoys observing nature and life in its wild will also admire whale watching in its natural habitat. For observation to be possible, you need to be in the right place at the right time, and this experience can be truly memorable.
Among the best places in the world for whale watching, we can mention Iceland, New Zealand, Colombia, the island of Dominica, Scotland, Sri Lanka, Vancouver, Canada, Western Cape, South Africa, Baja California, Mexico and also Portugal.
However, the presence of cetaceans in Portugal is rich in species, which can be observed all over the country. With greater incidence on the island of Madeira and the Azores archipelago, where among residents and migratory ones, common or rare, more than twenty species can be seen.
7 places where you can see cetaceans in Portugal
There are about 30 companies that promote trips for the observation of cetaceans, whales and dolphins on the coast near Albufeira. The ideal time can be a walk at sunset, between the months of June and September.
This is a privileged area for observing marine life in general. Boat trips in search of cetaceans or other species of marine animals are common in the area. The place that favors whale watching is in the heart of the Natural Park of Southwest Alentejo and Costa Vicentina.
Although not as well known, the Nazaré area also promotes the sighting of cetaceans, namely, the observation of dolphins. There are some companies that promote tours that leave in search of you, near the famous Nazaré Canyon.
Through the boat trips through Sado, you can get to know the community of resident dolphins, also known as bottlenose dolphins. There are about thirty cetaceans that live in their natural “habitat” throughout the year in the Sado River Estuary.
Although it is not common, it is possible to see communities of dolphins that enter the Tagus to feed. Since 2020, a family of common dolphins has frequented the Tagus river, and it is usual to see them near the bar of the São Julião fort, between the beginning of spring and the end of summer.
It is known that the availability of food such as sardines, mackerel, horse mackerel and other pelagic fish during the year in the waters of the Tagus, and also the fact that they are increasingly cleaner and less polluted, make them inviting to visit these cetaceans .
The islands of Madeira and Porto Santo are the places where you can most often witness the constant visit of whales and dolphins. On the island of Madeira is Rota dos Cetaceans, a company dedicated to whale and dolphin watching at sea. In addition to whale watching, they facilitate swimming with dolphins. Always caring for the safety of all customers and animals, swimming with dolphins is done in a calm way, providing a unique and unforgettable experience.
Throughout the year it is possible to observe 28 different species of cetaceans. In Funchal Marina, it is also possible to find several companies dedicated to tours and whale watching.
Between the observation of dolphins and, occasionally, whales and turtles, the tours offer the possibility of swimming in the warm waters of the Atlantic, where you can take the opportunity to discover the beauty of the Desertas Islands, where the important nesting center for rare and marine birds is located. where you can see the small colony of Mediterranean monk seals.