Wakatobi is also a playground for six different species of dolphin - in addition to the plethora of marine creatures that inhabit its coral reefs.

The Bajo culture has a strong bond with these friendly creatures. At sunrise you can witness the beautiful symbiosis between the fishermen and the dolphins. In search of tuna, the fishing boats often follow a group of dolphins, who know best where to find the best catch. Once they find a school, the hunt begins and the boats and dolphins together encircle the tuna. While the fishermen snatch up the larger fish, the dolphins go for the smaller ones. This is the reason many Bajo consider the dolphins their best friends and would never hurt them.

Dolphin Watching - Photo by Amal Hermawan

Ancient Belief

An ancient belief also states that if a dolphin jumps across the front of your ship, you should return to the harbor immediately, as it is trying to warn you about rough weather and high waves further out to sea, or that one of your loved ones at home is in trouble.

Best Time to See

The best place to see dolphins is near Kapota Island, which is reachable within 40 minutes by boat from Mola Harbor. Here, you can see the Bajo’s best friends jumping and playing around the boats. They often come close enough that you can hear the clicking and squeaking sounds they make to communicate, and see their beautiful and intelligent faces. Sometimes it is even possible to spot pods of pilot whales. Tours to see the dolphins usually start at 6am.