sperm whale flukes

Christmas discount

Book now and save 10%

Christmas time discount! Book and pay an expedition before January 10th, and you’ll get a 10% discount on the participation fee.

Add the following coupon to the cart at check out:


An expedition for Christmas

Best gift ever

Best gift ever for Christmas: get a personalized voucher at 450€ and the lucky ones receiving the present will be able to freely choose their participation dates and their destination, Greece or Italy. They will be in the field, helping the researchers.

Donate for Xmas

Help cetaceans conservation

This Christmas consider the possibility of making a donation to our research projects, the Ionian Dolphin Project in Greece and the Cetacean Sanctuary Research in Italy. With a donation you can help us protect whales, dolphins and seals and their environment!

We have been investigating the ecology of marine species, most notably whales and dolphins, in research campaigns involving whale-watching lovers, that are among the earliest citizen science projects in the Mediterranen

Join us at sea! Everyone can participate

Sentire “chattare” le stenelle dai microfoni di bordo mentre ci circondano è stato molto emozionante. Solo la bellezza salverà il mondo.

I was lucky enough to get to know people from all over the world and to dialogue with them about everything we discovered.

La cosa più emozionante, l’attesa del primo capodoglio!

I have to admit, joining the Pelagos project was one of the best decisions of my life

Non mi aspettavo niente di tutto questo, ad ogni animale che ho visto ho provato un’emozione diversa, un sogno che si realizza.

This week has been a real roller coaster of emotions or maybe a rocky boat of emotions

Watch whales and dolphins in their natural habitat is one of the best things you can do in the world. You will learn that we have to protect these majestic and fascinating animals.

Si intravede all’orizzonte qualcosa che riflette la luce del sole in modo diverso dal mare… un altro soffio, stavolta verticale; è la balenottera che, più calma, si lascia avvicinare, facendosi accarezzare dai nostri sguardi nella sua interezza.

Learning about these species and their habitats and their importance has given me a greater appreciation and a new perspective

… so much involvement and motivation for wildlife conservation

Covid-19 strategy

During the COVID-19 pandemic, in an effort to slow down the spread, many countries are applying temporary restrictions on travel from countries outside the EU by closing borders. Some countries have also applied national border closures and/or border checks at their borders or when moving between different regions at the national level. These restrictions are subject to a continuous evaluation of the epidemiological situation by countries and they change frequently.

If you intend to travel in the EU, including Greece and Italy, check the European Commission Re-open EU web platform containing real-time information on borders, available means of transport and tourism services in the Member States (choose the country from the menu available).

Please refer to the dedicated pages for more detailed information about travel, anti-covid measures adopted at Tethys’ projects and useful links


Whales and dolphins are being studied in their natural environment; Tethys runs two long-term projects which are open to the participation of the public: one in Italy, in the Pelagos Sanctuary of the Ligurian Sea (north western Mediterranean), and one in Greece, in the Eastern Ionian Sea.


Participants are involved in all aspects of  the fieldwork and of the management of the life on board or at the field station. No previous experience is required


The field season runs from May to September, during the warm Mediterranean summer. Each expedition lasts 6 days. Please check out dates: in Italy (Sanremo) cruises will start in May; in  Greece (Vonitsa) in June.


Participants joining for more than one team will have a 10% discount in any additional team.  Special discounts will apply for students: check them out  on the project’s page “Dates & Fees”



CSR Expeditions 2024

Book now in the Ligurian Sea!

The dates for the research season 2024 in the Ligurian Sea (NW Mediterranean), from  May to October, are available. Help researchers on board the motorsailer “Pelagos” and learn first hand about the conservation of marine mammals in the Mediterranean.

IDP Expeditions 2024

Field research in Greece

The dates for the research season 2024 in the Ionian Greece, from  June to September 2024, are available. Enjoy a wonderful experience with monk seals and dolphins helping their conservation!

An expedition as a gift

Unexpected surprise!

Best gift ever: get a voucher and the lucky ones receiving the present will be able to freely choose their participation dates (2024) and their destination, Greece or Italy. They will be in the field, helping the researchers.

Support IDP!

Donation campaign

Bottlenose dolphin leaping

Help us to ensure a long-term viability to the marine mammals in the eastern Ionian Sea

30 Years 30 Whales

Donation campaign

Contribute to the safeguard of cetaceans with a donation. In return … choose “your” sperm whale flukes.



Last minute opportunities

Team CSR 6 (17 – 23 June 2024) has still a few places available at a special last-minute fee (752 Euro). Don’t miss this great opportunity to join us in the Ligurian Sea!

In this moment no last minute offers are available!


this year give it to Tethys!

Donate the 5×1000 and support Tethys’ 30-year commitment for the marine mammals in the Mediterranean. It has no cost and it can make the difference for the research and the conservation of these beautiful animals and their environment.

Cetacean Sanctuary Research

The Cetacean Sanctuary Project (CSR) takes place in the Ligurian Sea, N-W Mediterranean, between Italy and France, within the protected area known as Pelagos Sanctuary for whales and dolphins. Participants’ accommodation is on board a large and confortable motorsailer.

Ionian Dolphin Project

The Ionian Dolphin Project  (IDP) is conducted in the coastal waters of western Greece, in the Gulf of Ambracia and in the Inner Ionian Sea archipelago. Project participants are based in the traditional village of Vonitsa and participate to daily surveys at sea on board of our rigid-hulled inflatable boat.

Target species

Main two species  subject of study are bottlenose and common dolphins. Other marine animals frequently observed are striped dolphins, sea turtles and Mediterranean monk seals.


Participants enjoyed our expeditions since 1991


Km surveyed


Days spent at sea


Sightings of marine mammals

About us

The Tethys Research Institute is a non-profit research organisation supporting marine conservation through science and public awareness, founded in 1986 and headquartered at the Civic Aquarium of Milano, Italy. Tethys’ main goal is the conservation of the marine environment, achieved through the provision of scientific knowledge to conservation policy, the participation in the international conservation process, and public awareness. Over almost three decades of work, Tethys has generated one of the largest datasets on Mediterranean cetaceans and communicated the results of its research in hundreds of scientific publications. In 1991 Tethys was the first to conceive and propose the creation of an iconic protected area, the Pelagos Sanctuary for the Conservation of Mediterranean Marine Mammals, the world’s first to be established beyond national jurisdiction. Since 1987 Tethys has involved  thousands of people from all over the world as research volunteers in its conservation activities. Funding to Tethys derive from government and EC grants, private donors, and contributions from research volunteers. The work of Tethys is based on the collaboration of approximately 30 associates and assistants.

More about our scientific work can be found at www.tethys.org

Our supporters

Have you ever considered to give a whale for Christmas?

Befriend a sperm whale from the Pelagos Sanctuary or donate its friendship to someone you love for Christmas time. With this symbolic gift you will support the research and conservation of Mediterranean cetaceans through the Tethys Research Institute.


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