When is the best time to see whales (and dolphins) in Tenerife?
The Tenerife whale watching season lasts all year round. Costa Adeje, on the southern coast of Tenerife, is home to large resident populations of Pilot whales and Bottlenose dolphins. These resident populations can be observed on our small group tours 365 days a year. This is one of the best things about the whale watching season in Tenerife – every day is a great day to go whale watching!
As well as the resident Pilot whales and Bottlenose dolphins, there are also different species of whales and dolphins we encounter with varying frequency. These are both migratory and pelagic (open ocean) species that pass through the deep ocean channel that runs along Costa Adeje. During the 2018 and 2023 Tenerife whale watching seasons, we encountered 17 different species of cetaceans.
The resident Pilot whales are seen on 99% of our tours and Bottlenose dolphins are seen over 70% of the time. There are resident Sperm whales in the Canary Islands archipelago and are usually seen a few days per month. The Bryde’s Whale is another known resident species of the islands. This is the only species of baleen whale not currently known to migrate. There are also Fin whales that have been identified as regularly visiting the archipelago, and it is possible they reside here year round as well. The best time to catch a glimpse of migrating baleen whales is during the winter and early spring months, but it is a matter of luck! Migrating baleen whales seen off Costa Adeje include; Fin whales, Humpback whales, Sei whales, Blue whales and Minke whales – listed in order of frequency with which they have been seen on our tours.
Throughout the year there are also different species of dolphins that can be encountered. Atlantic Spotted dolphins are the third most commonly observed cetacean species on almost 45% of our trips. We also see Common dolphins, Striped dolphins, Rough-toothed dolphins, Risso’s dolphins and Frasers dolphins, here listed in descending order of how frequently we observe them.
So join us and meet the resident Pilot whales and Bottlenose dolphins that live here all year round. We may encounter other cetacean species, possibly sea turtles and typically several species of marine birds as well. Tenerife is an incredible place for whale watching. We look forward to welcoming you on board.