Snorkel with seals at the Farne Islands in Northumberland
Snorkel with seals at the Farne Islands

Snorkel with seals.

Protect marine life.

Over 5,000 grey seals call The Farne Islands home and it's one of the best places to snorkel with seals in the UK.

During your adventure, you will get up close and personal with these cheeky sea doggos under the direction of our experienced snorkel guides.

You will learn all about the life and habitat of the seals along with how to interact responsibly while in the water.

There's no doubt that you will fall in love with these amazing creatures while you snorkel alongside them. We know you will want to help protect them so your snorkel tour also includes a donation to the Tynemouth Seal Hospital.

Price: £65.00 per person

Suitable for: Adults and accompanied children ages 12+.

snorkel trips in Northumberland

Help us protect grey seals.

We've shared some amazing encounters while snorkelling with seals. The Farne Islands are truly a very special place and we want to do everything we can to protect the habitats and marine life that lives there.

We operate a strict passive interaction policy when we snorkel with seals. This means that there is no touching or chasing... although it doesn't always work both ways! There is a good chance that these cheeky seals will give you a boop or a nibble on your fin.

We also make sure to minimise our impact on the ocean in general. We don't touch the bottom or stir up sediment while we snorkel and if we find any litter during our adventure we make sure to remove it.

You will learn about the seals and how to interact responsibly with them during the snorkel with seals mini-course. You can complete this at any time, if you think a friend might be interested you can even share it with them for free.

What's included?

  • Sunset cruise
  • Equipment (you can let us know your shoe size, dress or t-shirt size and height when booking)
  • Experienced guide
  • Snorkel with seals mini-course
  • Safety briefing
  • Hot drink and cookies
  • Donation to Tynemouth Seal Hospital on your behalf

FAQs

IT'S AMAZING!

We're so lucky to have these amazing snorkel sites right on our doorstep! The Farnes are a group of around 30 small islands and rocky outcrops a couple of miles off the Northumberland Coast. They're home to one of the biggest colonies of Grey Seals in the UK (some 5,000!). The place is home to a vast range of other wildlife too including guillemots, puffins, gannets and if you're really lucky you might even spot a dolphin or two!

The seals are super friendly. You'll learn about responsible interaction during your briefings. Snorkellers are not allowed to touch or stroke the seals... however... that doesn't mean they won't touch you! They are very curious and like nothing better than getting nice and close to snorkellers. They'll nibble on your fins, get eye to eye with you - you might even get a hug!

 

You don't need to be experienced to snorkel with seals, but it is important that you're comfortable in the water and have a reasonable level of fitness.

There's some important things to be aware of:

  • Although we visit shallow, sheltered snorkelling sites we are still open to the elements. Some days conditions can be a little bit rougher than others. You may experience surge or current. Rest assured that we will never snorkel in dangerous conditions, but you should be prepared to encounter them. You may need to swim against them for short periods of time. In the very unlikely event that the current shifts you and your group away from our snorkel area, you are not in trouble! The boat can easily pick you up.
  • Your wetsuits are super floaty and your guide will have a tow float that you are more than welcome to hold on to. You should be prepared to swim during your tour but your guide can pull you along for a short while if necessary.
  • You will be in the North Sea - it can be nippy. The water temperature will be around 12°c but your wetsuit, hoods and gloves will keep you toasty warm.

If it's your first-time snorkelling or you think this adventure sounds a little bit out of your depth, why don't you have a look at our snorkel lessons. You can jump in our training tank at the dive centre and build your confidence first.

 

All of your snorkelling equipment is included in the tour. Before your snorkel safari, you need to get in touch to let us know your shoe size, your dress or t-shirt size and your height. This way we can make sure that we bring the right equipment for you to try and get comfy!

You will wear:

  • A thick 5mm - 7mm wetsuit
  • Hoods, gloves and wetsuit boots
  • Fins
  • A mask and snorkel
  • A weight belt (for those who would like to do some duck diving)
  • A buoyancy aid (for those who want to remain firmly at the surface)

Anyone from the age of 12 years old can snorkel with the seals. Under 18's must be accompanied by an adult.

We'll meet on Seahouses Harbour at the time displayed above. We've got some paperwork for you to fill in before we head off.

If you're lucky, you can park on the pier itself. Not to worry if there's no spaces though, there's a couple of big carparks at the top of the hill. Regardless of where you park, it's all pay and display.

It works best if you come with your swimming cozzies already on underneath as we get changed into suits on the boat on the way out to the sites. There's a toilet on board but it's really small so difficult to get changed in! For afters, changing robes or a big towel work well.

There's hand gel available on the boat but you might want to bring your own too and we will provide mask defog for your masks - gone are the days of spitting in them to stop them fogging up!

The trip out to the islands takes about half an hour, maybe we'll see some puffins, guillemots and even dolphins on the way! When we arrive at the site, your guides will give you a safety briefing and also go over how to interact with the seals responsibly. You'll jump in and if you want, your guides can give you some coaching on snorkelling techniques too. Then you'll head out for your guided tour and get up close and personal with the cheeky seals! We're usually in the water for about an hour but the boat is moored close by if you need it.

Depending on the site we visit, the total trip takes about 3 to 4 hours.

You can find more details about our cancellation policy plus all the other terms and conditions here.