We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Dolphin Research Center

58901 Overseas Highway, Marathon, FL 33050-6019
305-289-1121
Website
Improve this listing
93%
Ranked #2 of 15 Attractions in Marathon
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Wharfs/ Piers/ Boardwalks, Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Zoos & Aquariums
Activities: Swimming with dolphins
Owner description: Dolphin Research Center is a nonprofit education and research facility. Home to a family of...
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
More attraction details
Attraction details
Type: Wharfs/ Piers/ Boardwalks, Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Zoos & Aquariums
Activities: Swimming with dolphins
Hours:
Sun - Sat 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Owner description: Dolphin Research Center is a nonprofit education and research facility. Home to a family of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins and California sea lions, we offer fun-filled narrated behavior sessions and educational presentations every half an hour. During your visit you can watch and learn all about these amazing animals including dolphin maternity, social groupings, physiology, natural abilities and more. You'll see how we care for them, how we're working with them in cognition and behavioral research and more. DRC also offers a variety of interactive programs including the Dolphin Encounter swim program, Trainer for a Day, Researcher for a Day and Paint with a Dolphin. We are actively involved in programs for people with Special Needs, as well as veterans from the Wounded Warrior Project, Military families, and others.Most of our dolphins were born here. Others have come to us for a variety of reasons -- including those who were injured and rescued as youngsters and later deemed non-releasable by the government. We are deeply committed to providing all of them with a safe, healthy, happy home for life. The well-being of the dolphins and sea lions is our top priority. Your visit and participation in programs supports the care of our marine mammal family, the maintenance of their natural sea water home, and the rest of our mission to educate others about these animals and the importance of conservation.Thank you for your interest in Dolphin Research Center!
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children

Hotels near Dolphin Research Center

Write a Review

984 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    776
    144
    40
    12
    12
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2014 NEW

We visited the DRC on Christmas Eve at the recommendation of a friend who works there on the summer. The extra $25 we paid for our kids to "meet the dolphins" was worth every penny--our kids were thrilled to pet Jax and Rainbow and shake flippers with them. The staff are available to answer any questions, and their love for... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Halifax, UK
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2014 NEW

can anyone advise what is the scuba shop to get wetsuit is it rented from drc or do we need to go to another place to rent

Was this review helpful? Yes
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

DRC does not provide wetsuits, however there are many dive shops in the area that you can rent them from. If you do a google search for "Dive Shops in Marathon, FL" a list of neighborhood scuba centers will pop up. The ones closest to us are Captain Hooks (who provides our wounded warriors with wetsuits), Abyss, and Tilden's. However,... More 

Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2014 NEW

My family and I vacationed in Florida this mid-December and visited the Dolphin Research Center at that time. My daughter and I did the Dolphin Dip. This was our very favorite part of the trip! It is easy to feel the love and admiration the staffpersons have for the dolphins in their care, the interaction is beautiful to see. The... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Melissa we are thrilled that you had a great time with Pax, and the rest of the DRC family. Thank you for taking advantage of a day at the facility and taking part in a variety of narrated educational presentations. It is our goal to insure that our guests have a wonderful time, while also learning all about marine mammals,... More 

Houston, Texas
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
13 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2014 NEW

This is just another tourist trap with a great name but actually is nothing more than a small version of the dolphin section of Sea World. Dolphins are i. Small pens and trated with care considering that they are simply prisoners.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

We're sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy your visit to Dolphin Research Center. While it's true that we are smaller in size than Sea World, the dolphins and sea lions that live in our family have ample room in our array of natural water sea pens. The areas absolutely meet their needs as well as the government guidelines for... More 

Key West, Florida
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2014 NEW

I have been a member of Dolphin Research Center for the past six years and cannot believe I have not written a review yet. This is one of the best marine mammal facilities I have ever visited. I love the natural lagoon settings off the Gulf of Mexico, watching the interaction between staff members and the dolphins, and also getting... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Thanks so much for being a member of Dolphin Research Center. Your ongoing support enables us to always provide the finest care and home for the dolphins and sea lions. It also empowers our mission of research and education. With your help, we are learning more about these amazing animals, sharing this knowledge with the world, and inspiring people to... More 

Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2014

Today we took our two boys to swim with dolphins - an expensive treat but one we felt was worth the money. We arrived at the dolphin research centre today - a sunny day, greeted by warm and friendly staff. The place is doing great research into dolphin rehabilitation and longevity of life. Lovely centre full of warm and happy... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Thanks so much for visiting Dolphin Research Center. We're happy that you and your boys enjoyed the Dolphin Encounter. We appreciate you providing feedback on not feeling that there was adequate seating in order to hang out and watch the dolphins. We're always looking at ways that we can further enhance our guests' experience. While we have benches out along... More 

New York City, New York
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2014

I really loved it. The staff were well informed and helpful. The dolphins were fantastic. You can stay all day and it's great for kids. It's a must see.

Was this review helpful? Yes
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

So glad that you and your family had a great time visiting DRC. We think the dolphins are pretty fantastic too. Thanks so much for coming in and for telling others about us with your review. More 

Austin, Texas
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
56 attraction reviews
92 helpful votes 92 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2014

We really enjoyed this place as a family. Here is my summary: - this is a non-profit business and I felt that they were very respectful and appreciative to us as customers - the dolphin encounter which included the swim with the dolphin was a special experience for us. If you can afford the price then I would encourage you... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
DolphinResearchCtr, Front Office Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

We can't tell you enough how delighted we are that you and your family enjoyed visiting Dolphin Research Center and that you feel you learned more about these amazing animals. It's so important to our mission that we inspire respect and caring by providing information and the chance to experience the dolphins up close in meaningful ways. Thank you for... More 

Whidbey Island, Washington
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2014

This place was absolutely awesome. My husband and I were so impressed with virtually every aspect of the Dolphin Research Center (DRC) and their mission, we became members and adopted one of the sea lions. We spent all day there, and the time flew by. It was such a great experience, we had to go back the next day for... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Wow, so many things to thank you for! We so appreciate that you joined the family of members, adopted one of the sea lions, and are providing ongoing support to DRC and our mission. We would not be who we are without the members! Even when you're home in Oregon, you'll be able to keep in touch with the bi-monthly... More 

Midway, Utah
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2014

You will love this stop! Not your average interaction. The dolphins are in Lagoons but seriously could leave if they want to. The facility while open to the public is more as the title suggests for research to help the marine community. A great education for adults and kids. I highly recommend the visit.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

We're so glad that you and your son had a terrific time visiting Dolphin Research Center. Thanks so much for coming in and for sharing about your experience with others! More 

Travelers who viewed Dolphin Research Center also viewed

 
Marathon, Florida Keys
Marathon, Florida Keys
 

Been to Dolphin Research Center? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Register now for free — and start getting automatic notification of new reviews, responding to traveler feedback, adding new photos to your listing and much more.

Manage your listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Dolphin Research Center and other visitors
2 questions
Ask a question
Key West, Florida
Pottstown, Pennsylvania
7 days ago

See all questions (2)

Questions? Get answers from Dolphin Research Center staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?