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Last updated: 01 April, 2022

The wild, enigmatic bottlenose and spinner dolphins found in Tamarin Bay have become a popular attraction in Mauritius – and let’s be honest, who doesn’t like dolphins? Excursions allow people of all ages to watch them frolicking in the bay, and some excursions offer the opportunity to swim with them here. Visibility is excellent, often up to 40m, so you can see them cleary underwater.

Other goodies can be thrown in, like a BBQ lunch on a deserted island, snorkelling on reefs, and even whale watching – sperm and (depending on the time of year) humpback whales are present.

If you don’t want to swim, you can always take a sailboat excursion to Ile aux Benitiers, which takes you to see dolphins in the wild, then moors up for a BBQ lunch and diving/snorkelling on a coral reef.

Price from: £50
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 6+
When: All year around
Duration: 2hrs - 1day

Getting there & doing it

Tours usually depart for Tamarin Bay from Grande Riviere Noire on the southwest coast. If you’re staying in the north, e.g. Grand Baie, it’s a 1.5-hour drive. Some tours include hotel pick up, but if you’re further away, you’ll spend time in the van stopping at nearer hotels. Other ‘dolphin’ trips, where dolphin sightings and swimming are incidental, may depart from other ports; make sure you select one going to Tamarin Bay.

A basic dolphin tour lasts around 2 hours; if you add on the BBQ lunch and snorkelling, it’s a full day. There’s no minimum age, but any participant must be a competent swimmer.

Tamarin Bay tours have a 90% success rate at spotting dolphins, but if you’re unlucky and miss them, most operators offer a second outing free. So book this trip early in your vacation, so you have the opportunity to go again.

When to do it

Tours operate in good weather all year round. Dolphin watching day excursions depart several times a day.

Swimming with dolphins has to be early in the morning. The water is clearest and calmest for viewing from October to December and March to April. Avoid the January to February cyclone season.

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Whale-watching in Mauritius

Grande Riviere Noire, Mauritius[1.3 miles]

A brilliant, but relatively unknown, whale-watching destination, with sperm whales spotted year-round, and pilot and Gray’s beaked in season. Often paired with dolphin swimming.

Best for ages: 4+ | £40 | 3 hours

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Round-ups that include this experience

18 Best places to swim with dolphins

Multiple countries

These intelligent, social beings have long held a special place in our hearts – a result of their seemingly-smiling faces, playful frolicking and friendly disposition. Here’s our round-up of some of the best places in the world to swim with them.

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