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“it is worth it!!!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of HortaCetaceos

Cais de Sta. Cruz | Marina da Horta, Horta, Faial Island 9900, Portugal
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Ranked #1 of 10 Activities in Horta
Type: Boat Tours, Adventure
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Attraction details
Owner description: Whale Watching Operator, HortaCetaceos is in the Arquipelago of Açores, island of Faial, city of Horta. We aim to deliver our guests an amazing experience: watching Whales and Dolphins in wildlife. To be in harmony within the Nature, having deep and real feelings is reached when respecting the sea and its inhabitants and this the way we try to get to them.At HortaCetaceos, we simply do our best to overcome our customers'expectances so don't wait anymore, make the gap and come with us to live an unbelievable adventure at the meeting of Whales, in the Ocean !
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“it is worth it!!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2012

To see these giant whales quietly preparing to dive is a fantastic experience of respect for nature, something that Azores are very good at. We took a tour with Pedro, who always handed everything in a funny disposition. A happy and professional way from someone that really enjoys is work. And the icing on the cake is when those huge tails just dive. We also listen to the sounds of the whales under water. Nature at its best.
The sea was a bit shaky on the way back but what a ride. YAAAOH!!! Always felt safe. Saw dolphins jumping out of the water. Only tortoises didn’t show up. Don’t miss it.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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83 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Is such a Good Place to find Whale Watching!!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2012

Is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Açores and especially between the islands of Faial and Pico. For me, it was a pleasure to live in Faial during six months, and thanks to this I had the opportunity to go many times to see whales and dolphins with Horta Cetáceos. It was amazing experience to see a lot of species like Spermwhales, Fin Whale. During the period of April-May it’s possible to see Blue Whales and it’s gorgeous to see this big animal in the Ocean. The people who work there are very nice and kind with clients because they really love their job, the whales and the ocean. I also swam with dolphins, which is one of the best experience I’ve ever had. I totally recommend people to go and enjoy it with this company; You will have an incredible trip and unforgettable day! I will miss you !!!!

Visited June 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brookline, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
262 reviews 262 reviews
85 attraction reviews
Reviews in 98 cities Reviews in 98 cities
100 helpful votes 100 helpful votes
“Yes, you do want to swim with the dolphins”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2012

This experience was such a rush, although I started off very apprehensively.
The day before our booked swim with wild dolphins, we stopped by to ask probably 20 questions. The girl working was very patient and answered all of them.
When we arrived for our swim, we were informed that a family had come in pleading that it was their last day and could they please do a whale watch. So HortaCetaceos decided (without asking us) to combine our excursion with theirs. Now we had already done a very similar whale watch on Pico, but we enjoyed the experience the first time, so we decided to go again. This was a similar tiny 12 person boat. We were able to get very close to the whales.
There were a few hicups with the dolphin swim though. The first pod we saw was swimming next to a huge group of false killer whales (apparently not so friendly, and illegal to swim with), so we couldn't get in. Then we drove quite far (and over some serious bumpy waves) to find a group of common dolphins. Finally we got to go in. It's quite the rush. You gear up and wait for Pedro to tell you, "quick, quick, get in, get in, they are coming!". Get in, put your snorkel gear on, and watch the show. Completely amazing (although very slightly scary, since you can only see the deep blue sea, and then suddenly dolphins swim by out of nowhere)! We did have to cut the swim short though because there were tiny jellyfish (that no one had seen) that started stinging us (we were fine, and they doused us in vinegar when we returned to shore). If you have an underwater camera, or even better, one that does movies, bring it. I so wished I had had one.
Also, if you are not a good swimmer, this may not be the experience for you. We swam with no life jackets and basically jumped out of a moving boat.
The weather was pretty rainy on the way home (be prepared for rain or extreme sun- pack a raincoat, sunblock, and a hat and you will be all set), but we saw multiple rainbows, including a full double rainbow. Icing on the cake.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mol, Belgium
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Incredible experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2012

During my stay on the Azores, I actually went whale-watching twice: once with HortaCetaceos on Faial and a second time on São Miguel. Perhaps it was because it was my first time, but I prefered the HortaCetaceos one by far. We saw a lot and despite being caught in some rather nasty weather on the return journey, I never felt unsafe. They absolutely take no chances (the first time our trip was cancelled and rescheduled to the next day because the weather was too bad) and behave very professionally all the time. You get an excellent briefing beforehand and interesting facts on board.
I highly recommend it!

One tip though, DO NOT forget to protect yourself against the sun if you do not yet look like a native, or you will look slightly more red when you return!

Visited July 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Go with Pedro!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2012

We went with Pedro and his team on a dolphin swimming tour with our 7 year old daughter. He made sure everybody on board the boat got to see the dolphins in the water even if that meant our daughter tried time after time until she saw them. Because of his clear and precise explanation of the behaviour of the dolphins when four other boats arrived it was obvious for all on board that the dolphins were now stressed. Pedro immediately left that pod and looked for another pod who were willing to play along with the boat as we cruised back towards the harbour. The day was so good we immediately booked another trip, this time whale watching. This trip was again a superb morning due to the passion and respect that Pedro shows first for the animals and then for his guests. His English is also perfect.

Visited August 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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