Ultimate wildlife watching adventures in Llŷn
The Welsh coast is home to one of only two semi-resident UK populations of bottlenose dolphins. Explore the Llŷn peninsula for a chance to observe some of Britain's most beautiful marine creatures in their natural habitat.
Seeing dolphin and porpoise in their natural environment is a magical experience. If you walk along the coastal path or shore for any length of time you stand a chance of seeing these wonderful creatures all year round.
Hotspots include many sightings off the Saint Tudwal Islands, Cilan and off Bardsey Island. While bottlenose dolphins are seen regularly, Risso’s and Atlantic white-sided are more unusual.
You may be lucky enough to spot a ‘super pod’, when hundreds of dolphins gather together in warm summers to hunt shoals of small fish.
In 2005 the Seawatch Trust sighted a pod of dolphins two thousand strong in Cardigan Bay; in 2009 their volunteers were surprised by an even greater super pod of dolphins off the West Wales coast.
Have you seen a porpoise?
A smaller relative of the dolphin, porpoises are more often seen in shallower water closer to shore in small groups of up to 10. They are much less acrobatic than dolphins and do not leave the water, just breaking the surface with their dark fin and rolling back.
Whales in Wales
Other marine mammals do occasionally venture into the local waters. Sightings of whales, mainly pilot and minke whales have been recorded in the south west of the area.