Dolphin Trips Gran Canaria – What to Expect

One of the most popular excursions in Gran Canaria has to be the dolphin trips which leave from Puerto Rico harbour and you can check out my post “dolphin trips in Gran Canaria” for my review.


If you’re staying in San Agustin, Playa del Ingles, Meloneras or Maspalomas, there is no harbour in those areas so you’ll need to get the bus to Puerto Rico. There are various dolphin trips and you might want to check out both harbours (there is one on either side of the beach) – Puerto Escala harbour and Puerto Base harbour.

Do You Always See Dolphins?

One of the most common questions is “do you always see dolphins?” and that’s a good question because the dolphins are wild animals, so it’s not like going to the zoo! The answer is no and this is where you have to be careful because different boats have different policies. If the captain doesn’t manage to find the dolphins (or a whale) some boats will let you repeat the trip for free and others won’t, so ask at the desk when you book! Also, some dolphin boats have a glass bottom and others don’t. This isn’t vital but it does make the trips more fun.

Dolphins, Gran Canaria

Most dolphin boats have a multilingual tour guide and you can buy soft drinks, beer and snacks like chocolate or crisps. You might want to bring your own though. Also bring a camera or camcorder and perhaps a jacket or sweater unless it’s baking hot. Tips are never compulsory on dolphin trips and some boats leave a bucket by the exit when you get off. If you want to drop a euro into the bucket for the crew, you can. Others come round with a bucket but you don’t have to tip.

How Long is the Dolphin Trip?

Most dolphin trips range between 2 and 3 hours. Sometimes the dolphins are right in front of the harbour so it takes about 10 minutes to get to them. Other times you might have to go out 9 miles and this obviously takes a lot longer.

When is the Best Time to Do This Trip?

Choose a day when the sea looks calm, especially if you have a delicate stomach! The dolphins don’t care about the weather so if you have a dull, cloudy or drizzly day, this might be a good day for the trip, since all the dolphin boats have covered seating areas and you can enjoy the views without getting wet. If you are doing a Gran Canaria dolphin trip in the winter, take a sweater or coat with you. It might be 22 deg C and sunny but the air can be nippy out at sea.

What About Sea Sickness Pills?

Visit a chemist before your trip and ask for “biodramina con cafeina” – take one half an hour before the trip and another two hours into the trip. I don’t often get seasick but taking these guarantees I’ll feel fine. There’s nothing like seasickness to spoil a boat trip and if you like boat trips you might want to do more than one during your holiday!


You can usually find a trip easily enough but they do get busy in the summer months. If you want to ensure places on one of the good boats and if you need a pick up from Playa del Ingles or Maspalomas it is best to book your dolphin trip online before you go.


  1. patricia

    just wondering we are going to playa del-lnges in july
    and is the dolphins tour far from play del-lnges and how much would it be thanks so much lookn forward to your reply cheers

  2. Victoria (Post author)

    The dolphin trip goes from Puerto Rico. You can get a bus from Playa del Ingles to Puerto Rico (takes about 1/2 hour to get there). The trips are 24 euros for adults and 12 euros for kids and last for 2 1/2 hours. Check with your hotel though. Sometimes they arrange the trips for you and this would include transport there and back.

  3. liam paolozzi

    I am flying crimbo eve with my wife and kids and staying in playa del ingles but would love to see the dolphins with the kids can you swim with them??

  4. Natalie Dahl

    We took a boat from Puerto Escala.
    When we found a group of dolphins, the captain drove very fast into and out of the group. This was probably stressful and may have injured or even killed the animals. Later we read in our guide that there are several unserious operaters that engage in harmful activity. However the guide recommends because they care about protecting the animals.

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