Puerto Vallarta Whale Watching Regulations
Whale watching tours are regulated by the Mexican Government in Puerto Vallarta, as they are in all of Mexico. Like many other countries dedicated to sustainable tourism around the world, Mexico’s Whale Watching Regulations are a set of regulations and rules for all aspects of people approaching and observing Whales. SEMARNAT is the Mexican Government agency that is in charge of producing, disseminating and enforcing these Whale watching regulations. SEMARNAT ensures all companies, individuals and even scientists observe the Mexican Whale watching regulations. SEMARNAT works to ensure that only companies with proper certification as a Whale watching tour operator can participate in Whale watching tours by a permit scheme.
So to help ensure the healthy future of Whale watching in Puerto Vallarta and to help visitors to Puerto Vallarta recognize a certified Whale watching company we want to publicize the Mexican Whale Watching Regulations. Every year companies that have been awarded a certification by SEMARNAT to provide Whale watching tours gets a new Whale watching flag. It is required to display the flag on the boat when on Whale watching tours. You can look for the flag during the Puerto Vallarta Whale watching season, December 1 to March 23. This is the 2017 Whale watching flag, there will be a new color flag for 2018.
Whale Watch Vallarta strives to ensure the best possible experience for our Guests by supporting the Puerto Vallarta Whale watching regulations. Guests who have not been on many Whale watching tours may not realize the reason such rules have been created. The regulations provide for the safety of boats and guests observing Whales and Dolphins. As well, these rules also aim to eliminate negative impact on the Whales and Dolphins. We know our guests want to help protect the Whales and Dolphins when participating in sustainable, respectful tourism.
Choosing a certified Whale watching tour company in Puerto Vallarta is very important to everyone. First, the companies and their Captains, Guides and support staff that are licensed to offer these tours have undergone scrutiny by SEMARNAT. This means, ideally, companies that have been found in violation of the Whale watching regulations in the past should not have current licenses. Secondly, the companies that are certified to offer tours have undergone training in order to receive their certification. This ensures that visitors to Puerto Vallarta will be joining a responsible tour operator. We know our guests want to be assured they are choosing a reputable, licensed and trained company, Captain and Guide to lead them into the realm of the ocean giants.
The Puerto Vallarta Whale watching regulations cover many pages (and are in Spanish). So we have created a diagram for visitors. Even if you chose to go Whale watching with a different company here in Puerto Vallarta, feel free to download and take a copy of this diagram. You can share it with other visitors and be part of the effort to ensure Puerto Vallarta maintains its commitment to responsible, sustainable, ecotourism in regards to Whale watching.