Best 14 Destinations in India to Spot Dolphins

Best 14 Destinations in India to Spot Dolphins
Last Updated: September 9, 2019

Watching dolphins whooshing out of the water like it’s some kind of dance performance for them, is one of the world’s most surreal experiences one could ever savour. There are not many people who are aware of the fact that India is also home to dolphins as well. Yes, you heard it right! From north to south and east to west, dolphins in India are pretty much common. So, to impart you with some essential information, I have compiled a list of best places to see dolphins in India. Scroll down to know more!

1- Goa


Just imagine, the surreal sights of dolphins whooshing out of the water while cruising in the Arabian Sea. It would certainly be a baffling experience, isn’t it?

Without a doubt, Goa is the most favourite beach holiday destination in India. It has plenty of treasures in its fold to astound you. Apart from its golden sandy beaches and tranquil ambiance, the place also offers tourists a lifetime opportunity to spot dolphins in the Arabian Sea. As you embark for a cruise on the waters, the thrill to see some amazing water creatures, especially dolphins, would definitely set up a perfect tempo for this enthralling experience. Though for that ultimate sight of dancing dolphins is worth of your time but for that, you need to have a bit of patience and silence. However, a point to remember here is that dolphin sighting in Goa is ideal in the morning time. There are plenty of beaches in Goa to capture dolphins in your camera lenses.

However, when not indulging in dolphin safari in Goa, tourists can do numerous other equally enthralling activities like sunbathing, clubbing, houseboat cruising, shopping, water sports, trekking to Butterfly Beach, scuba diving and much more.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Goa: Palolem Beach, Coco Beach, Cavelossim Beach, Sinquerim Beach, Morjim Beach,

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Goa: October to May

Type of Species: Ocean Dolphins

2- Andaman


Andaman is one of those places around the world that brings a unique way to tourists to see dolphins. Here you don’t have to be patient to see a dolphin peep out of the water, rather, you will get to see these gorgeous marine creatures beneath the water with the help of spacious and stylish glass bottom boat. Andaman allows tourists to unveil the underwater world without diving into the ocean. In short, these boats serve as the portals between our world and the marine world. Not just in India, with such luxury, Andaman is definitely a popular dolphin sighting location around the world.

A vacation to Andaman is not just restricted to spotting these lovely creatures, but it is also about fun and adventure. There are numerous exciting activities to do in Andaman which include snorkelling, scuba diving, riding a banana boat, parasailing, bird watching and kayaking.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Andaman: Lalaji Bay Beach, Jolly Buoy Island and Havelock Island.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Andaman: March to June

Type of Species: Irrawaddy Dolphins

3- Lakshadweep


For many, Lakshadweep might be just a coastal destination with some amazing beach fun and enthralling water sports. But for those who love dolphin sighting, Lakshadweep is the perfect haven in India to catch a glimpse of whooshing dolphins. For that, all you have to do is to sail out in the ocean and wait for these gorgeous creatures to show off their skills of diving. Apart from dolphin sighting, you can also indulge into some enduring water sports experiences, like that of, jet skiing, kayaking, canoeing, snorkelling, scuba diving, yachting, parasailing, undersea walking, sea fishing and a lot more.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Lakshadweep: Agatti Island, Kadmat Island and Bangaram Island.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Lakshadweep: October to May

Type of Species: Bottlenose Dolphins

4- Maharashtra


You must have been surprised to see Maharashtra in this list, isn’t it? Well, there is no need to be as the state is a treasure trove of numerous such surprises! Being one the coastal states in India, Maharashtra has numerous scenic beaches where you can spot dolphins. Some 227 km south of Mumbai, there is located the most ideal destination for dolphin sighting in Maharashtra – Dapoli. Very few know that Dapoli serves as the gateway to several beaches where dolphin sighting is possible, Murud Beach, Tarkarli Beach, Kuravde Beach, Dabhol Port and Harihareshwar are some popular hideouts in Maharashtra for all the dolphin lovers. Far away from the cacophony of the city life, these places (apart from dolphin sighting places) are some must-visit offbeat destinations for that indelible vacation time in Maharashtra.

It’s not just the dolphin sighting that makes Maharashtra a must-visit travel destination in India, the state offers a number of exciting things to do and places to visit. Elephanta Island Caves in Mumbai, Pataleshwar Caves in Pune, Parvati Hill Temple in Pune, Marine Drive in Mumbai, Lonar Lake in Buldhana, and Lohagad Fort in Lonavala are just a few names in the list of places to visit in Maharashtra.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Maharashtra: Tarkarli Beach, Harihareshwar, Murud Beach, Dabhol Port, Kuravde Beach, Bhogwe Beach, Anjarle Beach, Nivati Beach and Ladghar Beach.

Best time for Dolphin Safari in Maharashtra: November to February

Type of Species: Ocean Dolphins

5- Bihar


Another surprising entry on the list of places to visit for dolphin sighting in India is Bihar. It’s not the oceans that proffer the perfect habitat to the dolphins, the River Ganges is also a significant home to these playful creatures. In the district of Bhagalpur in Bihar, there is located the Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary on the River Ganges. This 50 km stretch was established in the year 1991 with an aim to conserve the river dolphins. The sanctuary is home to numerous Gangetic dolphins and is a perfect delight for all the wildlife lovers of all ages, especially kids, as one never leaves this place without grasping a lot of knowledge about these wonderful creatures.

The state of Bihar not only gives you a chance to catch dolphins but it also gives tourists a chance to unveil the cultural, historical and sacred side of this alluring place. While being here, you can also visit Bodhi Tree, Mahabodhi Temple, Sanjay Gandhi Jaivik Udyan, Mahavir Mandir, Vishwa Shanti Stupa, Patna Museum, Wat Thai Magadh and Tomb of Sher Shah Suri.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Bihar: Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary in Bhagalpur district.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Bihar: October to May

Type of Species: Gangetic Dolphins

6- Odisha


It’s not the coastal area where you can see dolphins in Odisha, but, it’s the world-famous Chilika Lake which is the home to many dolphins. A brackish water lagoon, Chilika Lake, is primarily a ground for numerous migratory birds along with various critically endangered species of animals and plants. This entire place is famous for bird watching but, a small part of it, called Satapada, is famous for dolphin sighting. Yes, it’s true! The site gives you an opportunity for kayaking, canoeing and boating in the waters to spot the famous Irrawaddy Dolphins. Just be ready with your camera to capture these beautiful creatures into your lenses as you might not get many chances.

Apart from dolphin sighting, you can also opt to explore other parts of Chilika Lake for some enthralling bird watching experience. Flamingos, Indian roller, spoonbills, greylag geese, jacana, white-bellied sea eagles, and white ibis are some popular avifaunal species that you can expect to spot at Chilika Lake.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Odisha: Satapada in Chilika Lake.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Odisha:  November to February

Type of Species: Gangetic Dolphins and Irrawaddy Dolphins

7- Kerala


You ask for anything and Kerala has it! It’s not just the exotic backwaters, serene beaches and gorgeous hill stations for which this state is famous, dolphins are also a significant part of Kerala’s imposing grandeur. The Cherai Beach is the perfect stopover to catch the sights of whooshing dolphins. But this experience can’t be savoured while sitting on the shore. You have to hire a boat to sail into the ocean water to see the surreal glimpse of humpback dolphins. The pleasant experience of dolphin sighting in Kerala is something that will remain etched in your memories for a long time.

The exotic state of Kerala offers a lot more to discover than just dolphin sighting. While vacationing here, you can opt to have the surreal experiences of houseboat cruising and shikara ride in Alleppey, exploring Neelakurinji Bloom in Munnar (once in 12 years), visit coffee estates in Wayanad, bird watching in Kumarakom, swim in the Arabian Sea and a lot more.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Kerala: Cherai Beach

Best Time for Dolphin Sighting in Kerala: November to March

Type of Species: Humpback Dolphins

8- Karnataka


Apart from a popular beach destination, Karnataka is also touted as one of the best destinations for dolphin spotting in India. Like the above destinations, dolphin sighting is quite common in Karnataka as well. With vast expanses of sand, trees and water to proffer you an ultimate holiday experience, beaches in Karnataka are also the ideal spots to catch the sights of dolphins popping out of the water every few seconds. Though not all the beaches in Karnataka let you have the dolphin sighting but a number of does. However, the most famous spots for this is Karwar Beach and Gokarna Beach.

Besides this, a number of other things/places can be enjoyed/visited in Karnataka. Trekking, silk shopping, skydiving, camping, river rafting, surfing, and parasailing are some popular adventures in Karnataka that could give you the thrill of a lifetime. Along with that, Mysore palace, Cave Temples, Bidar Fort, Cubbon Park, Virupaksha Temple, Om Beach, Mahabaleshwar Temple and Chitradurga Fort are some popular places to visit in the state.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Karnataka: Om Beach, Devbagh Beach, Kudle Beach, Kurumgad Island, Murudeshwar Beach and Paradise Beach.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Karnataka: October to February

Type of Species: Humpback Dolphins

9- West Bengal

West Bengal

Have you ever dreamt of spotting the sights of dolphins and Royal Bengal tiger at the same place? Wondering, how is it possible? Well, it possible at Sunderbans in West Bengal!

What would be more blissful than catching the spectacular sights of dolphins in the mangrove forests of Sunderbans? By a boat cruise safari, traversing the winding and imposing mangrove forests, you reach an open area of the river where these playful creatures await to astound you with their diving skills. Dolphins can also be spotted in the Hooghly River in Kolkata and Tajpur Beach in Purba Medinipur. On a whole, Sunderbans is one of the most perfect dolphin spotting destinations in India for that wholesome treat to the eyes.

Apart from this, the state also offers a lot of other interesting things to do to tourists. Paragliding in Darjeeling and Kalimpong, White Water Rafting in Rangpo, Jungle Safari at Gorumara National Park, Boating at Prince Ghat in Kolkata and a lot more exciting activities you get to be a part of while vacationing in West Bengal.

Places to Spot Dolphins in West Bengal: Sundarbans National Park, Hooghly River in Kolkata and Tajpur Beach.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in West Bengal: November to February

Type of Species: Gangetic Dolphins and Irrawaddy Dolphins.

10- Uttar Pradesh

Uttar Pradesh

Uttar Pradesh is also one of the great places to spot dolphins in India. The state offers an ample opportunity to tourists to get the dazzling sights of these gorgeous marine creatures. For that, there are several places in the state where you can go on a dolphin sighting trip but the most famous one is the Chambal River. Dolphin watching in Uttar Pradesh is one of the must do things in the state.

The state of Uttar Pradesh is an ultimate travel destination in India which, apart from dolphin sighting, offers a range of enthralling experiences. Taj Mahal in Agra, British Residency in Lucknow, Manikarnika Ghat in Varanasi, Allahabad Museum in Prayagraj, Dwarkadhish Temple in Mathura, Buland Darwaza in Fatehpur Sikri, Jhansi Fort in Jhansi and Bankey Bihari Temple in Vrindavana are some popular places where you can head out after done dolphin watching in Uttar Pradesh.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Uttar Pradesh: Chambal River, Katarniaghat Sanctuary, Sarah River in Ayodhya, Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, Hamirpur, Garhmukteshwar, Ekdala, Banda, Chilla and Fatehpur.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Uttar Pradesh: October to February

Type of Species: Gangetic Dolphins

11- Assam


It’s not just the soothing surrounding and verdant greenery for which the northeastern state of Assam is famous for, wildlife too plays a significant role in pioneering the tourism scene of the state. Dolphin sightseeing is one those gorgeous experiences that the wildlife of Assam offers to tourists. For that, you can opt to spend a day out on a riverboat to spot some freshwater Gangetic dolphins in Brahmaputra river. You can descend down the sandy bank of the river and set off a journey down the river in a wooden boat. After some point of time, you will be surrounded by dolphins feeding and frolicking in the river waters. If you are lucky enough, you will treated with the sights of Pink River Dolphins in the Brahmaputra River. Along with that, you will also get an opportunity to capture the sights of various different avifaunal species.

Besides dolphin spotting, the gorgeous state of Odisha also offers a chance to indulge in various other equally enthralling activities like a pilgrimage, nature, bird watching, history, culture and wildlife. Chilika Lake, Dhauli Hill, Odisha State Museum, Ram Mandir, Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves, Astasambhu Siva Temples and Lingaraja Temple are some well-known tourist sites in the state.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Assam: Brahmaputra River and Dibru Saikhowa Wildlife Sanctuary.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Assam: October to March

Type of Species: Gangetic Dolphins

12- Punjab


Well, you can expect to feel a bit astounded if you weren’t expecting the vibrant state of Punjab in this list. The pristine river Beas and the exotic Harike Wildlife Sanctuary have lately witnessed a rise in the population of dolphins. Indus River Dolphins are rare to capture as compared to Gangetic Dolphins and the region of Punjab is blessed with those in abundance. So next time, when you are in Punjab it’s not only ‘sarso da saag and makki di roti’ which should be in your bucket list, dolphin spotting is also a must thing to do here.

Punjab is not only famous for its vibrant culture and lovely people. Apart from dolphin sightseeing, you can also visit places like Amritsar, Wagah Border, Chandigarh, Anandpur Sahib, Patiala, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Bhatinda, Kapurthala and Pathankot.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Punjab: Harike Wildlife Sanctuary and Beas River

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Punjab: October to March

Type of Species: Indus River Dolphins

13- Diu


Being a coastal territory, Diu is also the place where you can often spot dolphins in the ocean waters. Marine Wildlife Sanctuary – India’s first marine wildlife sanctuary, offers an amazing variety of marine life which also includes dolphins. Besides, you can hire a boat from the Okha Port to Beyt Dwarka island. Dunny Point is a popular spot which offers a good opportunity to see dolphins.

It’s not just dolphin sightseeing which makes Diu a significant travel destination in India. Birdwatching, cave hopping, water sports, and nature expedition are some popular things to do in Diu. Here in Diu, you can also visit places like Diu Fort, St. Paul’s Church, Ghogla Beach, Gangeshwar Temple, Nagar Sheth Haveli, and Gomtimata Beach.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Diu: Marine Wildlife Sanctuary and Beyt Dwarka

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Diu: November to March

Type of Species: Humpback dolphins, Bottlenose Dolphins and Common Dolphins.

14- Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu is also one of those places in India where you spot these adorable creatures. However, not every coastal city or town in Tamil Nadu offer the amazing opportunity of dolphin sightseeing. The town of Rameshwaram is not only known for its sacred significance but is also an ideal place to catch the sights of dolphins. Along with that, the Gulf of Mannar National Park is also a perfect hideout in Tamil Nadu for the dolphin lovers.

Apart from dolphin spotting, here in Tamil Nadu, one can also indulge in pilgrimage, nature, heritage and history. Some popular places, apart from Rameshwaram, which you can also include on your Tamil Nadu vacation are Chennai, Mahabalipuram, Kanchipuram, Madurai, Thanjavur, Chettinad, Ooty, Kanyakumari and Tiruvannamalai.

Places to Spot Dolphins in Tamil Nadu: Rameshwaram Beach, Point Calimere Wildlife Sanctuary, and The Gulf of Mannar National Park.

Best Time for Dolphin Safari in Tamil Nadu: November to March

Type of Species: Bottlenose Dolphins, Common Dolphins, Risso’s Dolphins and Spinner Dolphins.

So, these were my handpicked list of good places to look for dolphins in India. Hope you’ve liked it! If we have convinced you to visit these places, it’s time to get down to the most important thing – how to plan a visit? As a leading tour operator in India, Tour My India bids you the best tour packages for dolphin sightseeing in India and that too at best possible rates. You can contact us to know about the prices and details of the packages. Meanwhile, stay connected as many more such amazing blogs are on the way!

Published: 22 Jan, 2019


Comes from the ‘heart of India’, Delhi, Jatin is big-time dreamer. He is a travel blogger who loves to express about his ventures through his writing. Besides being a blogger, he is a foodie, who follows the aroma to reach some of the most amazing places to eat. Another thing that is equally important to him is sports; he eats, sleeps and breathes cricket!

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