Dolphin Watching in Fiji | Experience a moment of Charm


Dolphins are commonly known as one of the most intelligent mammals in the marine world; this is clearly illustrated by their presence in the crystal-clear waters of the Fijian Islands, a place where you can watch Dolphins create freestyle acrobatic displays with air time extravaganzas, with the spinner dolphin, the most common type of dolphin in Fiji, reaching heights of 7 feet in the air, twisting and turning as they pirouette, displaying true joy at calling Fiji their home.

Watching dolphins gently glide from port to starboard and vice versa as they swim graciously across the bow of your boat is an awe-inspiring experience that you wouldn’t want to miss.

If you’re visiting Fiji on vacation, you may be searching for the best places to encounter wild dolphins living in their natural, pristine environment. In the article below, we have compiled a list of the most popular destinations, venues, and tour operators that enable you to safely interact with these incredible mammals.  This is an excellent activity for both adults and children alike, with Fiji having a handful of professional tour guides scattered around the islands. No matter what your level of adventure may be, you can take part in the dolphin experience of a lifetime.

Types of Dolphins in Fiji

ImageCommon NameWeight "lbs"
Short Beak Common Dolphin 1Short Beaked Common Dolphin
160 - 170 lbs (adults)6 ft.
35 - 40 yrs
Dolphin Bottlenose 1Bottlenosed Dolphin
300 - 1,400 lbs6 - 13 ft.
40 - 60 yrs
Spinner Dolphin 1Spinner Dolphin130 - 170 lbs4 - 7 ft.
15 - 20 yrs
Rough toothed dolphin 1Rough-Toothed Dolphin
350 lbs8 - 8.5 ft.
30 - 35 yrs

There are four types of dolphins in Fiji: the short-beaked common, the bottlenosed, the rough-toothed, and the spinner dolphin. The table above and the diagrams at the footer of the article provide you with a visual guide, detailing the Common name of the mammal, the average size of an adult, the Weight in lbs.,” and the typical length of lifespan. Being aware of the distinctive characteristics of the different types of dolphins allows you to appreciate the tours without drowning in technical lingo.

Popular Destinations in Fiji for Dolphin Watching

Takalana Bay Fiji - Home of Dolphin Watch Fij.
Takalana Bay Fiji – Home of Dolphin Watch Fij. (Courtesy of Takalana Blog)
DestinationTour OperatorVenues
SuncoastDolphin Watch Fiji
Vanua Levu (Savusavu & Labasa)Dolphin Cruise of Natewa BaySavasi Island Resort
Vanua Levu (Savusavu & Labasa)Dolphin Cruise of Natewa BayKoro Sun Resort
Vanua Levu (Savusavu & Labasa)Dolphin Cruise of Natewa BayDolce Vita Holiday Villas
Mamanuca IslandsDolphin SafariMusket Cove Resort
Mamanuca IslandsDolphin SafariPlantation Island.

Suncoast – Dolphin Watch Fiji – offers you an active Fiji Eco-tourism experience on the East coast of Viti Levu, just an hour and forty-five minutes drive from Suva. Try the unforgettable experience….of a trip on the “Moon Reef Express” to see the resident spinner dolphins. (Video Above). There are around 30 to 40 dolphins that come into a place called Moon Reef in the early morning and rest during the daytime, then leave between 3 and 4 pm every day to head to deeper waters to feed at night. Snorkeling fans will also fall in love with Moon Reef for its variety of pelagic fish and the clarity of the water.

Vanua Levu – Dolphin Cruise into the Natewa Bay – available from Savasi Island Resort, Koro Sun Resort, and Dolce Vita Holiday Villas

Mamanuca Islands – Dolphin Safari – Pods of spinner dolphins are a common site for visitors across the island of the Mamanuca and Yasawa. The Morning tour is available at the Musket Cove Resort and Plantation Island.

Dolphin Diagrams

Common Dolphin Diagram Terminology
Common Dolphin Diagram
Terminology of a Spinner Dolphin
Spinner Dolphin Diagram
Bottlenose Dolphin Diagram
Bottlenose Dolphin Diagram (Images wwhandbook)

Fiji Journal Fun Facts about Dolphins

  1. Common Dolphin Groups are extremely vocal, and their squeaks and whistles can sometimes be heard from above water or through a boat hull.
  2. Common dolphins are highly active and acrobatic, able to leap as high as 3 metres before slapping back down in the water.
  3. Spinner dolphins can form mixed groups with other dolphin species, numbering thousands of individuals.
  4. Bottlenose dolphins have a range of feeding techniques: some use ‘tools’ like sponges to protect their beaks when they dig in the sand; others hunt in formation, temporarily beaching themselves to catch fish on the land.

Fiji Journal Top Tips

Dolphins Swimming around and under the boat whilst sailing in the North of Fiji
Dolphins Swimming around the boat whilst sailing in the North of Fiji (Courtesy of Takalana Blog)

Fiji Journal Top Tip #1

If experiencing the wild dolphins is a must-see activity and on your bucket list of things to do while in Fiji, please book the tour early, especially during the busy tourism months of the year, as there are limited spaces and they get booked out quickly. We suggest going online and booking well in advance, ideally through the tour operator’s website or platform, as most online booking agents take 30 percent of the booking fee, which can be better spent on operational costs for the local tour company. If you decide to take part in this activity while in Fiji, it is best to get information about dolphin-related tours from the reception or the tour desk as soon as possible.

Fiji Journal Top Tip #2

Destress for the first couple of days upon arriving in Fiji, get accustomed to your new home, let your body and senses slow down to the pace of nature and being on holiday, and then go on your majestic journey with the dolphins. You will enjoy the experience so much more.

Fiji Journal Top Tip #3

Safety First: Professional Tour guide all the way! You should not consider interacting, especially swimming with Fiji’s Wild dolphins, without the guided knowledge and familiarity of the local environment provided by a professionally trained guided tour.

Unlike many other locations around the world, these beautiful, stunning mammals are completely FREE in their natural environment, protected by Local and International Laws and organisations. Although they are accustomed to humans and watercraft, they can act erratically at any time.

Fiji Journal Top Tip #4 | Expats | Volunteer Programs

There are many Marine Conservations programs from different volunteer organizations operating in the country, this is a wonderful way to learn about the diverse marine life and underwater ecosystems.

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