The Blog

Dream Vacation Adventure – Swim with Dolphin in the Florida Keys

April 16, 2014 Travel & Tourism

A visit to the Florida Keys is a perfect excuse to indulge in your fantasy of having a dolphin experience!  You can encounter them in the wild or visit one of the dolphin centers where you can intreract with them in the water! Go for a swim with them, give them kisses and backrubs, feed them,  ask them to perform with a hand signal, – these experiences can be had at multiple locations throughout the Keys. 

Of course, with several  dolphin facilities within 10 minutes to just a half an hour’s drive of Key Colony Beach, we think our island is the perfect base for exploring your dolphin dream.

Dolphin Connection at Hawk’s Cay

Experience: Dolphin swim

Daydream about swimming with, touching, feeding or holding dolphins?  Then this experience is for you.  Guests will stand on platforms in deep water to play with the dolphins, and have a chance to swim into the lagoon with them,  too.

Cost: Each person is $175.  For groups of 30+ cost is $155pp
Time: 10am, 11:30am, 1pm, 2:30pm, and 4pm every day
Length of program: Guests will have a 20 minute orientation and 25 minutes in the water with the dolphins
Ages: There is no age restriction, though guests must be 4’6” or taller

Two dolphins play ball with swimmer
Photo by Alexander Plushev
 

Experience: Dockside with Dolphins

Stay mostly dry while interacting with our dolphin friends from the dock.  You’ll have a chance to interact with, play with, and feed them after listening to a short education talk about training dolphins. This is a terrific experience for younger children.

Cost: Each person is $60
Time: NA but limited to 20 guests per group and 100 guests total per day
Length of program: Guests will have 10-12 minutes with the dolphins following a 20 minute lecture
Ages: Children 5 and younger must have a paid adult or guardian with them.  All guests all ages must be paying participants.

Restrictions to Dolphin Connection’s dolphin programs
If you are pregnant, this experience is not for you.
You must have an understanding of reading and speaking the English language to participate.

Family Make First Contact with dolphin
Photo by Upsilon Andromedae

Dolphin Connection at Hawk’s Cay
61 Hawks Cay Blvd.
Duck Key, FL  33050
(15 minutes from Key Colony Beach)
Website: Hawkscay.com/experience/dolphin-connection-florida-keys/
Phone: 888-313-5749

Dolphin Research Center

Experience: Dolphin Swim

Stand on a platform that is submerged and interact with dolphins through a kiss, handshake, and being pulled by their dorsal fin through the water.  Ask your dolphin to interact with you using a hand signal taught by our trainer.

Cost: Each person ages 5+ is $199.  Under 5 costs $50.  Cost includes admission all day to our park and shows.
Time: Daily.  Call in advance to make your reservation.
Length of program: 20-25 minutes in the water
Ages: Kids younger than 8 must be accompanied by a paying adult.  Kids younger than 5 must be held on an adult’s hip for safety.

Experience: Platform Dolphin Interaction

This is an activity that’s great for all ages.  You will stand on a platform that is underwater while interacting the dolphins.  Rub its back, shake its flipper, use a hand signal to ask it for a specific behavior.

Cost: Each person is $119.  Under 5 costs $50.  Cost includes admission all day to our park and shows.
Time: Daily.  Call in advance to make your reservation.
Length of program: 20-25 minutes in the water
Ages: Kids younger than 8 must be accompanied by a paying adult.  Kids younger than 5 must be held on an adult’s hip for safety.

Restrictions to Dolphin Research Center’s dolphin programs
If you are pregnant, this experience is not for you.

Dolphin Research Center
58901 Overseas Hwy
Grassy Key, FL  33050
(9 minutes from Key Colony Beach)
Website: Dolphins.org/
Phone: 305-304-0002
 

Theater of the Sea – Islamorada

Theater of the Sea was a pioneer in the dolphin interaction programs and has long offered dolphin swim experiences in the Keys. You can also swim with sea lions, rays and sharks – and the facility offers a variety of shows if you simply want to watch these animals perform.

Experience: Dolphin Swim

Theater of the Sea’s Dolphin Swim experience allows guests to get in the water with dolphins for 30 minutes.  Interactions include trained behaviors such as being pulled by the dolphin’s dorsal fin, dolphin kisses, and hugs.  Guests are also able to swim alongside these magnificent creatures and snorkel with them, too, to see what they look like under the water.

Cost: Each person is $185 exclusive of tax and service charge.  Cost includes entry to the park and all shows.
Time: 10am, 12:30pm and 3:30pm every day
Length of program: Guests receive an orientation lasting 20 minutes followed by 30 minutes of dolphin interaction.
Ages: No guests under 5 are permitted, and ages 5-7 must be accompanied by a paid adult or guardian.

dolphin pulls swimmer by its dorsal fin
Photo by Sylvia Westenbroek

Experience – Wade with a Dolphin

Stand in 3-4 foot shallow water with trained dolphins and ask them to kiss or cradle you.  If you’re not a swimmer, this is a great chance for you to have a dolphin experience. 
Cost: Each person is $175 exclusive of tax and service charge.  Cost includes entry to the park and all shows.|

Time: 10am, 12:30pm and 3:30pm every day
Length of program: Guests receive an orientation lasting 20 minutes followed by 30 minutes of dolphin time
Ages: Appropriate for all ages, toddlers welcome.


Restrictions to Theater of the Sea’s Dolphin programs
If you’ve come in contact with any wild marine animal within the two days prior or are pregnant, this experience is not for you.
If you want to have the experience of being in the water with a live animal and are comfortable doing so under light supervision as our trainers this is for you.
You must have an understanding of the English language or have a translator with you.

Theater of the Sea
84721 Overseas Hwy
Islamorada, FL  33036
(30 minutes from Key Colony Beach)
Website: TheaterofthesSea.com
Phone: 305-664-2431