Belize Dolphin Encounter

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#1
3 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
My family is sailing on the NCL Dream in March 2007 and I have promised my daughter we would do a dolphin encounter. We missed Cancun on our last cruise due to inclement weather so she's been waiting for 2 years to get another chance to swim with the dolphins. The NCL Dolphin Encounter description in Belize is very vague. I have been to the website and emailed them directly to ask but I get general answers (ie. 20 minutes with dolphins). When I search various ports and tour operators I get the sense that the dolphin encounters vary quite a bit. Hoping to get a review from someone who has actually been on this excursion in Belize. The dolphin adventure is only a couple of years old at Hugh Parkey and I want a top notch experience. Its over $200 for this excursion so I'd rather put my money elsewhere if this excursion is just a cattle call with a little info on dolphins and a few minutes in the water. There's another Dolphin experience in Cozumel but I didn't want to waste good shopping time there if we could do this in Belize and be worth the month. Any help is greatly appreciated.
#2
1,954 Posts
Joined Oct 2004
The one in Cozumel is sold in two levels. One group was actually pulled through the water by the beast. My fiance did the cheaper version, but it seemed to me that she was in the water with the animals for almost an hour. I think there were about a dozen people in her "stick" and one trainer. It is strictly a matter of choice whether you think the extra money is worth it for the 'ride'. I did mine a few years earlier on Roatan Island. I was, and am, somewhat uncomfortable with the whole idea of exploiting such beautiful, intelligent creatures. It has become so popular however that it seems the option is available at almost all the warm water stops.

In Belize, we went overland to look at Mayan ruins.
#3
Here, there and everywhere
1,363 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
Before you book one of these, you might want to do a little reading.

http://www.wildlifepimps.com/feat-SwimWithDolphins.htm

http://www.wdcs.org/dan/publishing.n...2570B900510DB6

http://swimming.about.com/od/swimmin...inswimpeta.htm
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#4
New Orleans
40 Posts
Joined Oct 2006
The cozumel excursion is at ChacaKhab (sp). It isn't cheap, but you swim and interact with the dolphins. They push you by your feet and you "FLY" through the water. They high five and kiss you. If you do this excursion at cozumel, buy the available video. It's tailored to you and is captioned with your name and music. If you only do one expensive port, make it this one.
#5
35 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
I just did (Dec 2006) the Royal Swim at Chankanaab Marine Park in Cozumel. I booked through Shoretrips.com and was very happy with the whole experience. The park is beautiful and you swim with the dolphins in the ocean-the area is fenced to protect them. You spend about an hour in the water-you view a video first on how to touch, pet and do the rides with the dolphins. I wholeheartedly suggest this experience! You do have to take a cab to the park-10 min-$10.00. The park's website has a coupon for $2.00 off admission. If you have anymore questions I'd be happy to answer them for you. Pam
#6
Florida
1 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
The encounter with the dolphins in Belize (Hugh Parkey's Encounter with the Dolphins) was an AWESOME EXPERIENCE!!! Both my husband and I thought about canceling or changing this excursion - yes, the description is vague and we were worried that it would not live up the the money. But the receptionist on board the cruise ship told us not to cancel - she had gone on it and loved it! We were glad we listened to her! This was the ABSOLUTE BEST excursion!!! They have 4 dolphins on hand 2 male and 2 female and we spent plenty of time in the water with them! There were 7 total in our group so we were split into 2 groups - our group had 4 people in it! The trainer we worked with was Chris and the female dolphin was Maury - they were both WONDERFUL!!!! WELL WORTH the money - we learned more than ever about dolphins, wildlife, and the compound itself. There are no tanks - everything is out in the open - in the dolphin's natural environment! The place was new, CLEAN, and BEAUTIFUL! The trainers, guides, boat operators, photographer and even in the gift shop were ALL friendly, and they sincerely wanted you to have the BEST experience of a lifetime which they certainly acheived for us. Take a t-shirt to wear in the water as you are not to wear suntan lotion, (we forgot and were quite sunburned) - take a camera (we had an underwater camera, so that our digital wouldn't get wet) as you will be able to take pictures at certain times. IT WAS AN EXCELLENT TIME...let me tell you how I really feel !
Both my husband and I absolutely LOVED THIS, we felt it outshone the other three excursions we went on by leaps and bounds. Go, learn and ENJOY! I almost hate to give such a great review - I would love to keep this a secret so that it stays small and intimate and doesn't change! Kudos to everyone in this establishment - WELL DONE!!! Kitty