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Setubal Dolphin & whale watching

Our most recommended Setubal Dolphin & whale watching

From Lisbon: Comporta and Setúbal Trip with Horseback Riding

1. From Lisbon: Comporta and Setúbal Trip with Horseback Riding

Take a trip from Lisbon to Setúbal for a day of fun in the sun and the sea. Dive into the town's history and seafaring heritage on a walking tour. Take a ferry ride to the Troia Peninsula dotted with pine forested sand dunes. Then, in Comporta, mount your horse and gallop off to the beach. Explore Setúbal, the most important center of Portugal's fishing industry. Visit the bustling fish market of  Mercado do Livramento, the historic center, the Monastery of Jesus, and the São Filipe Fortress where you can soak in one of the most breathtaking panoramic views of the city. Next, head towards Comporta on a 25-minute ferry ride, admiring the beauty of the Troia's coast, one of the world’s longest uninterrupted stretches of sand, and keep your eye peeled for dolphins. Upon arrival in Comporta, a protected natural reserve suspended between sea and rice fields, get ready for horseback riding with instructions from your guide. Ride your horse across rice paddies, pine forests, and sand dunes until you reach the Atlantic coast. At the end of the tour, return to the center of Lisbon in a comfortable minibus. Before bidding farewell to your guide, get recommendations on things to do during the rest of your stay in Lisbon.

Lisbon: Dolphin Watching in Arrábida Natural Park

2. Lisbon: Dolphin Watching in Arrábida Natural Park

This boat tour goes along the coastline in search of dolphins that is possible to find again on the Marine Reserve of Arrábida. The tour will take you to the most known sighting, with a 95% success rate in dolphin sightings. The boats used are powerful semi-inflatable boats with seats and all the comfort and safety for a 3-hour journey. It's always a good experience, that combines the dolphins with a wonderful boat tour on a cost line of calm and pristine waters, that is protected from the north winds by the Arrábida mountain.

Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

3. Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

Depart from Setubal or Tróia onboard a 22-meter long catamaran and go in search of the community of dolphins that inhabit the Sado estuary. Be accompanied by a knowledgeable crew who will use their expertise to locate these playful dolphins in their natural habitat. Learn more about this unique dolphin community, the only one of its kind in Portugal, with your expert guides. Sail through the estuary and admire the beautiful landscapes of the coastline of the Arrábida Natural Park. Keep an eye out for the playful dolphins which have inhabited this part of the coast for generations. Watch the dolphins frolic and play as they swim through the calm waters. Hear more about their feeding habits, breeding and their relationship to humans on an informative and relaxing boat trip.

Full-Day Dolphin Watching Tour from Lisbon

4. Full-Day Dolphin Watching Tour from Lisbon

This full-day tour begins as you head south from Lisbon to Setúbal, a picturesque region best known for its fishing port. In Setúbal, board a fully restored salt galleon, or a modern catamaran (depending on weather and sea conditions), for a relaxing and enjoyable cruise in the Sado Estuary, where you’ll learn about the resident bottlenose dolphins and hopefully be able to observe wild dolphins in their natural environment. The duration of the cruise takes about 2 to 3 hours. See the natural reserve of Arrábida, take in the stunning views, and learn about the area’s history and gastronomy. See the Arrábida Convent and discover some important historical sites before returning to the old city center of Setúbal. Before returning to Lisbon, stop at a few sights in the Arrabida Mountain range, from where you can marvel at the natural reserve and get a land view of all the region.

Other Sightseeing Options in Setubal

Want to discover all there is to do in Setubal? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Setubal

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 126 reviews

Unforgettable experience for young and old. The dolphins are just magical. Our guide was awesome too! So much information, all questions were answered - including about the life of the dolphins, environmental protection (plastic was fished out of the sea during our trip), how to deal with the dolphins (they are neither fed nor touched etc.) The trip by boat was also a highlight and the extensive observation of the animals was followed by the return journey along the cave-rich coast with further interesting information from the bird kingdom about the caves as well as the settlement and use of the area. At the end there was a sweet surprise (very tasty ;) Very well organized, everything was clearly communicated. Otherwise very friendly, helpful and entertaining. Thank you for this great day!

We had an amazing morning on our trip. Everyone was really friendly and the staff on the catamaran were very knowledgeable. The views of the coastline are stunning and even though it took us a while to find the group of dolphins they were not in any rush and reassured us that we would find them and it was definitely worth the wait when we did! I would highly recommend this excursion for anyone in the area!

The team is very friendly and you can tell that they actually have a close bond and respect the animals accordingly. We rode along for about 30 minutes and then turned off so as not to disturb them further. The catamaran is large with plenty of seating. The environment is great from the water! All highly recommended!

This was a wonder experience I will never forget. The charming village of Setubal, the amazing views and the funniest horseback ride I never had. Our tour guide, Flavio was extremely professional. Worth your money!! Muito obrigado!!

Setubal was a surprisingly beautiful town and the horseback riding at Melides tops up this entire experience.