Azores Adventures – Futurismo

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Whale Watching guidelines

Respecting strict guidelines when we are watching wild and free animals is essential for the comfort of the cetaceans, but also of our dear travellers. Futurismo is an officially recognised Responsible whale and dolphin watching company, by the World Cetacean Alliance. Learn how we respect the animals.

Rules and Codes of Conduct

At Futurismo, we follow strictly the World Cetacean Alliance’s Global Best Practice Guidance for Responsible Whale and Dolphin Watching. This guide includes all the rules we should respect in order to be approved by the world’s largest organisation in charge of the protection and conservation of cetaceans all around the globe. We are very proud of our Responsible whale watching company status and want to keep it. In order to do so, we should:

  • Minimise negative impacts on cetaceans and the environment;
  • Result in high levels of customer satisfaction; 
  • Positively benefit local communities and the environment;
  • Educate and inspire the public and the wider tourism industry.

Certified by the WCA

Being certified by the World Cetacean Alliance means that we are recognised as a leader in our industry. Indeed, we have the only global certification for responsible whale and dolphin watching, and that is a big privilege for us.

Thanks to this organisation, nature lovers who come to the Azores know that they can trust us as a responsible company, whereas it is not the case for other ones. It makes their tour companies choice easier, making sure they don’t hurt nature while spending great holidays in the Azores Islands. Discover more about why choosing Futurismo.

Reducing our footprint

As we are offering whale and dolphin watching from a boat, we should establish a plan to reduce disturbance on the animals and a sustainability plan to minimise our impact on the environment. And we did it! Indeed, on the coast we have lookouts, called in Portuguese Vigias. They are an important part of our staff.

Located on the coast equipped with powerful binoculars, they lead our boat to the whales and dolphins that they find, thanks to radios. This allows us to consume less fuel, as we go directly to the animals and don’t have to look for them. This role comes from the traditional whaling times, but instead of indicating the boats where the whales are to hunt them, now they are telling us where to go see them peacefully, in their natural environment. 

Boat based whale and dolphin watching

Basically, the rules are classified as Unacceptable practices (what we cannot do as a Responsible whale and dolphin watching tour operator) and Best Practices (what we must respect). Those are all available on the official WCA guide.

Swimming with wild cetaceans

In the Azores, you should know that it is forbidden to swim with whales without a special allowance from the Regional Government. At Futurismo, we offer swimming with wild dolphins tours, which are absolutely incredible! The feeling of swimming among free animals in their natural habitat is completely unique. In order to not disturb those undomesticated animals, we should follow some rules, just like for watching whales. 

There are many rules that we should respect for swimming with dolphins in a responsible way. You can see them all on the official guide. However, there are Regional rules too, from the Azores Government, that we should respect to legally be able to conduct this activity. They can slightly modify or add new regulations.

Freedom feels so good

When you are going to watch whales and dolphins with us in the Atlantic Ocean, you are contributing to seeing those wild animals where they belong: in the ocean. Forget about dolphinariums where the welfare needs of cetaceans are compromised. In captivity, dolphins live less years, they are not happy and they cannot swim as much as they do in the wild. Their behaviour is trained, it is not natural for a dolphin to do the kinds of tricks you can see in those theme parks. The World Cetacean Alliance and its partners like us is currently fighting to close those facilities where animals are forced to perform everyday. Join us on an amazing experience out in the wild, respecting animals.

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