We are a party of 3, from Melbourne Australia. Me and my partner in our 40s and our daughter turning 16 soon. We love to snorkel and been to Great Barrier Reef, NZ and various Asian countries for snorkeling.
Decided to join this tour after reading reviews fr Tripadvisor. Big Mistake as this was more of a boat trip instead of snorkeling.
We go in a catamaran that seats about 30 people. We went on the 6.15am trip. It was a sunny day and wind was about 13mph. They took us on a boat ride for about 30mins looking for whales, the Cat was turning here and there, stopping in the middle of the ocean, etc, which was the beginning of our motion sickness. It was like a roller coaster ride except on the water.
The Cat was rocking terribly and bobbing, esp. when it stops in the middle of the ocean waiting for a whale to be sighted, and when the one small whale was finally sighted, it was about 100feet away, just the fins and tail was seen, and in one instance it jumped up and back into the water. I did not see it as I was so seasick but my family saw it. This was the only whale (small one) we saw, after about 45mins on the Cat. My 16yo then started to feel sea sick as well, whilst I was like 75% into the seasickness.
I know, Ive read all the directions as to how to prevent seasickness eg. no heavy/greasy/spicy food, I only had a protein bar for breakfast, which should have helped, took two 400mg ginger tabs, sipped on cold water throughout the trip and sucked on strong peppermint candies, looked at the horizon, etc. Despite all these, I threw up 6times, which was a first in my life of sea activities!
After whale hunting, we were asked to try on snorkeling gear, etc, which added to my seasickness and my daughter's. We were then shipped to Turtle Canyon and all were asked to jump into the ocean when we spotted some turtles.
The snorkeling was awesome, visibility was like 25feet and my daughter/partner had a superb time snorkeling and feeding the fishes. They saw several turtles ans hundreds of fishes. As I threw up few times, and was so unwell, getting into the water did not help either and I started throwing up into the ocean whilst standing on the stairs of the Cat. I forced myself to snorkel near the Cat but gave up after 5mins. Honestly, the view into the ocean bed was really amazing, water was so clear, one can even see the texture of the corals and the ocean floor. Unfortunately, after abt 10mins, everyone was asked to jump back into the Cat.
We then went to hunt for dolphins! OMG! It was the longest sea trip I felt I ever had and kept begging in my head for it to end soon. By that time, several other tourist were starting to feel seasick as well, though not as bad as me.
We spotted pods of Spinner dolphins about 20feet away and again, we were asked to jump in. My family went in, I could not go at first, stayed on the Cat and after 3mins or so, the Skipper asked for the snorkeling gear and floats back from me, I said I would like to try to go in again and he said if u want to go, u better go now, as he is going to summon all the rest back in about 3mins and I was thinking to myself, What The Heck, they have only been snorkeling for 5mins!
All in all, to cut a long review short, as my iphone is running out of battery, if there is anyone in your family that is likely to get seasick, this tour is not recommended. If you are looking for a snorkeling tour, this is not recommended. If you are looking for a speedy boat trip, this is recommended, as throughout the tour, you only snorkel for 20mins, the most.
We all wished there was a tour that actually takes us to those 2 snorkelling spots only, minus the whale hunting, which triggered the seasickness. The snorkelling with the Dolphins was amazing and once in a lifetime. We will not do this tour again.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.