Dolphin Watching & Snorkeling in Golfo Dulce
Engage in this personalized custom eco-boat tour. It consists of the widest selection of sightseeing and activity options. The Golfo Dulce bay is ecologically protected leaving the beach zones clear. The coastal side consists of Corcovado National Park, Piedras Blancas National Parks, Golfo Dulce Forest Reserve, Golfito Wildlife Refuge and small towns. The gulf is one of the greatest natural treasures of Costa Rica. Renowned to be one of the four tropical fjords around the World, the Golfo Dulce should be on any bucket lists of who visit the South of Costa Rica.
On this boating excursion, encounter dolphins, flying fish and seabirds while sweeping sea views. Depending on the season, the tide and the location, a wide variety of wildlife including species in danger of extinction and endemic animals can be seen in the Golfo Dulce.
Experience a stunning boat journey in the company of dolphins up-close swimming and jumping in their natural environment. Dolphins are common residents of the Golfo Dulce. Their breeding seasons occur from July through October and December through March, but they can be seen in large pods all year. The species of dolphins that constantly visit the Golfo Dulce are the spinner (Stenella longirostris), bottle-nosed (Tursiops truncatus), common (Delphinus delphis) and pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata). Intelligent and playful, they love to leap alongside the vessel and frolic in its wake. Learn about this aquatic mammal’s incredible skills and natural habitats while sitting back in the boat and breathing the warm air of the tropics. Due to the natural wealth of the Golfo Dulce, it is not rare to see a school of wild dolphins jumping, they can be more than two hundred together. Also, have an eye open for the occasional whale shark and humpback whale.
Just as the terrestrial ecosystems, the Golfo Dulce has an infinite marine beauty which defines the gulf as an idyllic destination for wildlife lovers. Snorkeling, freediving or scuba diving near the shore around coral reefs is educational heaven. Coral ecosystems are being recovered with NGO Raising Corals organization, which places coral reef fragments from nurseries to the ocean.
During this sunny tropical getaway, explore the home of over a thousand of marine species where an abundance of exotic life thrives the magical underwater World of Golfo Dulce. A place to witness enchanting the high diversity of sea life including several endemics and endangered creatures. Share the sea beneath the wave with vibrant schools of fish along with four species of sea turtles, the yellow sea snake of Golfo Dulce, manta rays, mammals, intriguing invertebrates and essential aquatic plants.
Discover one of the best snorkeling spots of the bay visiting the clear water of the shallow depth La Viuda; a rocky islet where coral forests grow habitats on the seafloor. A one-of-a-kind experience in a diverse ecosystem filled with breathtaking wildlife and scenic reef stretching towards warm waters. In the sunlit and shallow tropical waters, identify a collection of reef fish and eye-popping corals. Get plenty of opportunities to get up close to the abundant marine life that inhabit the reef; a heaven on earth for animal lovers!
One of the most amazing things besides the marine ecosystems is the water temperature that varies between 27º Celsius (81º Fahrenheit) and 31º Celsius (86º Fahrenheit) degrees all along the year. You can spend the whole day in the water and never get cold, no wetsuit is needed all year round for this leisure activity. Whether you are a novice or an experienced snorkeler, this is a perfect family-friendly activity and great fun for nature enthusiasts. Learn the proper ways to enjoy the experience using a mask, snorkel, and fins, and remember to bring a waterproof camera to capture remarkable moments undersea.
Golfo Dulce Venture Boat tours
Either a few hours’ tours or a full day trip on the water, you can combine different activities while navigating the Golfo Dulce. Boat departures are usually from the main dock of Puerto Jiménez or the small dock of Golfito, but captains can pick you up from Pavones, Zancudo, a marina or from the beach of your hotel.
Dolphin watching and snorkeling being the most common adventure selection, this tour of an approximate duration of three hours and a half is great marine wildlife experienced journey. Here are more activities to choose from in this sightseeing/eco-tour while exploring the unique and spectacular Golfo Dulce.
Osa Wildlife Sanctuary
Cross the majestic Golfo Dulce by boat and visit the non-profit Wildlife Caña Blanca Foundation. Learn about their rehabilitation programs and have a hands-on activity, while helping with their injured and orphaned animals. Most critters are endangered species that eventually will be released at Piedras Blanca National Park if their conditions allow it.
Wild tropical beach
Take a stroll on one of the lesser-known beaches of the Golfo Dulce Rain Forest Reserve or Piedras Blancas National Park where the water is calm and transparent to soak up the sun and top up your tan out. Relax on the sand of a peaceful beach or free dive around reef corals encompassing the unmatched beauty the gulf is known for. Throughout the Golfo Dulce, plenty of secluded beaches remains mostly unspoiled and surrounded by undisturbed nature. They might be some of the least visited of Costa Rica, but the quiet vibe, crystal-clear waters and lushly forested mountains are what eco-travelers fall in love for. The only way to get to this perfect laid-back holiday destination is by boat.
Other popular activities available in the Golfo Dulce are inshore fishing (deep sea, coastal shore, fly fishing, artisanal fishing), scuba diving, sunset & plankton observation, mangrove & riverboat ride, dolphin & whale watching and any other wild marine watching.
Build your perfect combination of beach and brilliant marine life that will leave lasting memories!
- Enjoy the intimacy of a private tour
- Experience the uniqueness of the Golfo Dulce and learn about its importance in the world’s ecosystem
- Swim alongside hundred different species of fish
- Enjoy a close encounter with dolphins
- Private, local, bilingual, experienced and licensed captain/instructor/guide
- High-quality snorkeling gear and flotation devices
- Life vests for adults and children
- First-aid kit
- Complimentary drinks and fruit snacks
- Motorboat shaded by a T-Top and seating for all guests
- Bluetooth radio for streaming music of your choice
- Cooler with ice for storage for personal snacks and drinks (if required)
- Free time on a wild tropical beach (if wanted)
- On-board bathrooms
- Umbrellas or any other beach materials
What to bring?
- 1 liter of water
- Sunblock and Insect repellent
- Beach towel
- Long sleeved shirt
- Sunhat or cap
- Raincoat or poncho (in the rainy season)
- Waterproof pack (for personal items)
Why book with us?
- Emails and phone calls answered in English, Spanish or French
- Safety experience is our priority
- Eco and sustainable tours
- Professional, experienced and certified guides and captains
- Helping and supporting locals
- Competitive prices
- Fair cancellation policy
- No hidden fees
- Rated 5-stars on TripAdvisor
- Confirmation will be received at time of booking
- Departure time is flexible. Depending on the activities you want to realized we might suggest a time, either according to the tide, the weather or the best hour to see wildlife.
- The water is usually calm in the Golfo Dulce, but if you get seasick easily, bring sea motion pills or medications just in case.
- There is no age restriction for travelers to participate in this tour
- Children must be accompanied by an adult
- Must have a valid travel insurance
- Must advise of any particular health conditions before booking
- Tour available all days of the year (snorkeling is not recommended between September and November due to the poor water visibility)
- Each boat trip is customized according to the interest of the passengers. Boat trips are also private meaning you do not share your boat tour with strangers. We have different types of boats, some can fit up to 6 people others can fit larger groups up to 40 people. The price will vary depending on the boat that is available and the size of your group.
- In protected Costa Rican waters, which includes the Golfo Dulce, it is illegal for anyone but scientific researchers to swim with whales or dolphins. As a reliable tour operator, Osa Green Travel understands and respect this law and visitors should too.
- Beware of strong currents while snorkeling and swimming: stay close to sandy beach or the boat.
This tour offers roundtrip boat transportation from and to Puerto Jiménez or Golfito dock. Other shore locations may be available at an extra fee. We can help you to book hotel pick-up and drop-off if necessary.
This tour is subject to favorable weather conditions (if canceled due to poor weather, you will be given the option of an alternative date or full refund). If you book a boat tour between September and November, there is a higher possibility that the tour gets cancelled.