Cancún
Dolphin & Whale Watching

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Our most recommended Cancún Dolphin & Whale Watching

Cancun & Riviera Maya: Whale Shark Tour + Playa Norte Beach

1. Cancun & Riviera Maya: Whale Shark Tour + Playa Norte Beach

Experience a once in a lifetime opportunity to swim with the largest concentration of Whale Sharks in the world, just north of Isla Contoy.  Start your tour with early morning pickup from any hotel or Airbnb in Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, and Tulum. Head towards the all-new private marina located at the Punta Sam Ferry Terminal in Cancun for a quick check-in. Before boarding, enjoy pastries with coffee while listening to the instructions and safety briefing.  Once in the boat, get kitted out with mandatory life vests and full snorkeling gear. All boats depart at 8 AM and navigate for approximately 45 minutes to the whale shark area north of Contoy. Once you have found the sharks, begin the swimming and snorkeling. Enjoy 2 to 3 immersions per person always with 2 people and 1 guide in the water. Spend a full 2.5 hours in total with the Whale Sharks, also observing Manta Rays, Dolphins, and Turtles.  After swimming with the sharks, make a final stop in beautiful Playa Norte beach in Isla Mujeres, considered one of the 20 most beautiful beaches in the world. Here, the boats will remain for about 1 hour for you to relax on the beach or do some more snorkeling. Return to Cancun at around 1 PM where the transportation will take you back to your hotel or Airbnb.

Cancún: Dolphin Encounter on Isla Mujeres with Buffet

2. Cancún: Dolphin Encounter on Isla Mujeres with Buffet

Interact with friendly dolphins at the Dolphin Discovery center on Isla Mujeres, departing from Playa Langosta in Cancún. Suitable for all ages, this program is suitable for non-swimmers. After you spend some time with your new friend enjoy a hearty buffet lunch with open bar service. Board the ferry at Playa Langosta in Cancún and sail to Isla Mujeres. Upon arrival, proceed to the Dolphin Discovery center where you will meet your marine mammal specialist who will guide you through the experience. Next, proceed to the underwater platform, which you will be standing on at all times, so the dolphin can come and meet you. Your specialist instructor will teach you some interesting facts about dolphins, their diet, and their behavior. Also, hear about nursing programs taking place at the center. After your encounter, enjoy the rest of the day at the center by taking a dip in one of the pools, or with some sunbathing. Enjoy a delicious buffet and sip on some drinks from the open bar onsite. After relaxing in the afternoon, board the ferry back to Cancún in the late afternoon.

Cancún: Dolphin Swimming Program on Isla Mujeres with Buffet

3. Cancún: Dolphin Swimming Program on Isla Mujeres with Buffet

Enjoy swimming and interacting with friendly dolphins at the Dolphin Discovery center on Isla Mujeres, departing from Playa Langosta in Cancún. After you enjoy some time frolicking with the dolphins in the water, enjoy a hearty buffet lunch with open bar service. Board the ferry at Playa Langosta in Cancún and sail to Isla Mujeres. Upon arrival proceed to the Dolphin Discovery center for your swimming program where you will meet your instructor. Get ready for your experience by learning about dolphins as a species, specifically about their behavior and diet. Hear more about the reproductive and nursing programs taking place at the center, as well as special tips to protect our environment. Once in the water, say hello to your new friend in a relaxed and joyful setting. Shake hands with them, and then participate in a variety of exciting activities, including giving them a hug and a thrilling boogie push movement through the water. After your experience, enjoy the rest of the day at the center by taking a dip in one of the pools, or with some sunbathing. Enjoy a delicious buffet and sip on some drinks from the open bar onsite. After relaxing in the afternoon, board the ferry back to Cancún in the late afternoon.

Riviera Maya: Whale Shark Encounter

4. Riviera Maya: Whale Shark Encounter

Be picked up from your accommodation at 5:45 AM in Tulum, 6:45 AM in Playa del Carmen, or 7:45 AM in Cancun. During the drive, your guide will explain the itinerary and teach you about whale sharks and their habitat. Upon arriving at the marina, relax and eat breakfast. Depart to the whale shark area and start your search. Once you spot a whale shark, go snorkeling. There is a maximum of 1 ship per whale shark and 2 people per guide. During the trip, your guide will teach you about the fauna of this ecosystem.  Sandwiches, fruit, soft drinks, and water will be served. Then, you will return to Isla Mujeres for lunch: sandwiches and shrimp ceviche or fish with guacamole and fruit. After an hour of relaxing or swimming at the beach Playa Norte in Islas Mujeres, return to the marina at 3:30 PM.

From Playa del Carmen or Cancun: Swim with Whale Sharks

5. From Playa del Carmen or Cancun: Swim with Whale Sharks

Swim with the mighty whale sharks off the coast of Cancun on this guided boat trip. Be surrounded by these massive creatures, learn about their behavior, and enjoy a hearty lunch after your swim. Start with pickup from your hotel and then hop on a small powerboat from Cancun. The conservation and protection of the area is of top concern so the number of visitors is limited every day and you can only swim with whale sharks with a certified captain and expert guides. Your guide will teach you how to swim with whale sharks in Cancun with instructions that ensure you maximize your experience while causing no harm to the delicate ecosystem. Swim with the whale sharks as many times as you wish during a 3-hour stay in the area. Professional guides will make sure you feel safe and you have the best possible views of the whale sharks – even if you are not an experienced snorkeler. Learn why the whale sharks are called “dominos”, what is “bottling” and why these gentle giants are only interested in eating microscopic meals. Thankfully. Your whale shark adventure from Playa del Carmen or Cancun includes a lunch of the freshest local ingredients to refuel after your huge adventure.

Cancún: Isla Mujeres Sea Life Encounter Program with Buffet

6. Cancún: Isla Mujeres Sea Life Encounter Program with Buffet

Enjoy an interactive encounter with friendly marine creatures at the Dolphin Discovery center on Isla Mujeres, departing from Playa Langosta in Cancún. After you spend some time with your new friends, enjoy a hearty buffet lunch with open bar service at the onsite beach club. Board the ferry at Playa Langosta in Cancún and sail to Isla Mujeres. Upon arrival proceed to the Dolphin Discovery center, where you will meet your marine mammal specialist who will guide you through the experience. You will also learn fun facts about the animals you will meet. First, meet the adorable and intelligent dolphins. Enjoy the opportunity to give them a hug and a kiss. Feel a rush of adrenaline as your new friends pull you through the water with their dorsal fins, and push you from your feet to rise above the water. Next, share a relaxing time with gentle manatees. Prepare to stretch your arms wide and give these large and relaxed creatures the biggest hug ever. Then, meet the enthusiastic sea lions who are always eager to play. Play and laugh with them as they waddle and swim beside you. After your encounter, enjoy the rest of the day at the center by taking a dip in the infinity pool, or with some sunbathing in the VIP area. Enjoy a delicious buffet and sip on some drinks from the open bar onsite. After a relaxing afternoon, board the ferry back to Cancún in the late afternoon.

Cancun: Whale Shark Snorkeling Experience

7. Cancun: Whale Shark Snorkeling Experience

Swim with the largest known species of fish on the planet: the famous whale shark. Embark on an adventure boat trip from Cancun to get up close and personal with these creatures. Board a comfortable, air-conditioned van at your hotel’s motor lobby and head to the marina for your check-in and briefing. As well as learning all the safety essentials, receive interesting information and facts about whale sharks' biology, their environment and their behavior. Next, embark on the 1-hour journey to see the sharks on a clean and modern boat. Relax as you head out to sea aboard a vessel that is roomy, clean, stable, and safe. Make use of dry storage onboard the 32 ft. boat. Spend some time with the whale sharks. Swim or snorkel in the water among these incredible creatures. On the return journey, enjoy a courtesy stop at Playa Norte, Isla Mujeres, enjoying the crystal clear water and white beach sand.

Cancún: Swim with Whale Sharks & Playa Norte Beach

8. Cancún: Swim with Whale Sharks & Playa Norte Beach

Hop on a boat and head for Contoy Island, home to the largest congregation of whale sharks in the world. After a close encounter with these creatures, head for the beach to relax or snorkel. Start your adventure at the marina in Cancun with some coffee and bread. Receive a safety briefing from the crew and board your boat. Life vests and full snorkeling gear will be provided to ensure you have the safest and best experience. Enjoy the boat trip out to Contoy Island, then get ready to jump in and swim with the sharks. Savour the experience of swimming with these incredible creatures. There will be 2 to 3 immersions per person, always with 2 people and the guide in the water at any one time. After swimming with the sharks, enjoy a stop at Playa Norte beach in Isla Mujeres. Either relax on the beach or do some more snorkeling. Enjoy some soft drinks and snacks, before heading back by boat to the marina at Cancun.

Quintana Roo: Whale Shark Swim, Private Boat Trip, and Lunch

9. Quintana Roo: Whale Shark Swim, Private Boat Trip, and Lunch

Enjoy a private boat tour with plenty of time to swim with whale sharks. Try fresh local food for lunch. Following pickup from your hotel in Cancún, Puerto Morelos, Playa del Carmen, or Tulum, climb aboard the air-conditioned private van to be taken straight to the port. Enjoy a quick breakfast at the marina. Then, listen to your expert guide share the activity briefing and safety rules. Next, set sail to an area popular with whale sharks near Isla Contoy. Swim with these incredible fish. Enjoy the perks of a private tour: more chances to jump in and swim with the sharks and no waiting for other travelers. After your swim, sail to Playa Norte at Isla Mujeres for lunch. Taste fresh fish ceviche and relax on the top-rated beach. Finally, relax on the sail back to Punta Sam Port before taking your van transfer back to your hotel.

From Cancún: Swim with Whale Sharks Experience

10. From Cancún: Swim with Whale Sharks Experience

Add a little spice to your time in Cancún and experience an extreme adventure with the whale sharks of the Mexican Caribbean. Discover one of only 2 locations in the world where this activity can be accomplished, and achieve what so many people desire but so few get to do. Depart from the Cancún Hotel Zone and head for the shark's natural habitat. Get beautiful views of the Caribbean landscapes along the way. Benefit from a complimentary breakfast and lunch during the day, including a healthy meal with non-alcoholic beverages. You will be provided with a life jacket and snorkeling equipment to make the most of your adventure in safety. Immerse yourself in the wonderful world of the slow-moving whale shark, and discover one of the largest creatures of the sea.

Frequently asked questions about Cancún Dolphin & Whale Watching

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What people are saying about Cancún

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 4 reviews

Wow. What an experience. Truly one of the most amazing things I’ve ever done. Our guide was informative, fun and really friendly. We found the sharks (between 3-5) so quickly when we arrived in the area different ones. When we first arrived there were around 20 boats but within 5 minutes they’ve all disappeared and we were the only boat - we had the sharks to ourselves! I would recommend requesting a late morning trip to avoid all the other boats! The food was great and the crew were all helpful. HIGHLY recommend taking travel sickness medicine beforehand as the sea is really rocky even on a clear day! They also provide this on the tour. The sharks were MUCH faster than expected and you really need to swim FAST to even try to keep up with them. What an amazing experience.

Having Collin as a guide was already the first main prize that day. The guy does his job more than great, always trying and helpful. This experience to snorkel with the whale shark is a great feeling and luckily nobody can ever take it away from me. I am happy to have seen it !!!

This trip was absolutely fabulous made all the better by our guide (Toro) and our brilliant captain (Lobo). Many thanks for helping us achieve a lifelong ambition.

A once in a lifetime experience! I can only recommend it 100%! Also no "souvenir tour" etc. but go straight there and marvel at the whale sharks.

Recommended again and again!!!Very exciting experiences!!!