Dolphin Explorer
Dolphin Explorer
4
About
Come to our beautiful park and discover the awesome feeling of swimming with dolphins and interact with others amazing animals in an unique tropical environment
Does not meet animal welfare guidelines
Tripadvisor does not provide bookings for this experience because it does not meet our animal welfare guidelines.
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  • Brian S
    27 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Worth every penny!
    Went to Dolphin Explorer last week while in Punta Cana. Worth every penny! Our Dolphin trainer was Calvin and he was GREAT!! He made sure everyone in our group of 10 got their pics and did what they wanted to do. The photographer took some really good action shots. If your wanting to do a swimming with dolphins experience I would highly recommend this one.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 2, 2023
  • Laela W
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Careful buying the photo package.
    My family and I wanted to swim with dolphins on our recent trip to the Dominican Republic. We loved the experience. We had our picture taken with a walrus and were able to feel, dance and kiss the dolphins before getting a ride holding the dolphins fins. This wasn’t a cheap excursion but I felt it was well worth the money. When going keep in mind that they photograph and video your experience. The photos come at a hefty price tag, for a family of four we shelled out $260 for the photos and video, however, as this is probably the only time in our lives we would swim with dolphins, we felt it was worth it. Overall a fantastic and memorable experience.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 8, 2023
  • Fly me to the moon
    Miami, Florida4 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    We will never forget it
    Its was a dream for my wife and kids, me myself never imagined dolphins were animals so grace-gifted, clever and authentic. Maia, the guide attached to our group was amazing, attentive to explain all the details related to these beautiful creatures. It worth every dollar spent, just take care with extra expenses (photos, tours on fast boat and so on).
    Visited July 2023
    Written August 18, 2023
  • Djoleary
    17 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Swimming with dolphins
    The most amazing experience of mine and my girlfriends lives. Beautiful creatures, well cared for and well trained. I know people moan about the cost of photos here but I was happy to pay and keep memories of my mind blowing experience. Very friendly staff and experienced trainers. 10/10
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 31, 2023
  • Rachael M
    40 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Much more fun than we expected!
    This was our favourite excursion! We Always wanted to swim with dolphins but this was more than that. We turned up and we’re led in a group through the trip. We started at a big cage full of parrots and your photo is taken. You then get your life jackets and a quick safety briefing and go on to a beautiful beach where u have more photos taken and meet a sea lion (called Lenny) who is trained well and absolutely adorable! You then have a picture taken with him too. Then you go out into the sea in groups for your swim with the dolphins who are well looked after with really knowledgable and interactive trainers. We were about 25 mins with them which was plenty of time. You then go back and get changed and have refreshments at a bar by the beach which also has free Wi-Fi and a gift shop with the option to buy photos. They then take you to another area and put seeds in your hands and lots of lovely little birds come and feed off you. We did not expect to have so much included! This is all done in perfect timing as the buses are waiting for you to take you back to your hotel afterwards. It was a lovely day out and highly recommended!
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written September 29, 2023
  • Beth C
    Manchester, United Kingdom7 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Expensive!!! But amazing experience
    Expensive!!!!! An amazing experience and day however ruined by the price and minor details. We could not wear our glasses even on the walk down to the dolphins. I could have placed my glasses with my shoes and at least been able to see where I was going. Bags, phones and cameras have to be locked away and everything is revolved around opportunities to take professional pictures rather than enjoy the experience. We were ushered to have photos with the gorgeous parrots but no time to look or admire them just a photo and move on. Then ushered to have a photo with a sealion, same thing again ushered through without any time to talk about the animal (not even sure he was a sealion) and then ushered to the dolphins. The dolphins are fantastic! What an amazing experience. The professional photos ruin it. $150 for photos on top of the entry price when the whole day has revolved around the photos is extortionate. Charge less for photos and more people would purchase them.
    Visited October 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written October 12, 2023
  • mgd2i
    34 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Sea lion (fur seal) encounter is a must do!
    This place is really underrated, especially the sea lion (fur seal) encounter. I did this with two kids today and it was really amazing. The staff is very friendly and helpful, the prices reasonable, the trainers are friendly to customer and the animals. The animals seem really well taken care of. I am an animal lover and sometimes these things can be hit or miss on the this. This place you can feel good about. The habitats are nice, the animals are friendly and healthy and happy. It’s a good place to bring your family. We were the only ones there doing the sea lion encounter, it’s worth it, give it a try!
    Visited November 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written November 5, 2023
  • Chuck M
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing once in a lifetime experience, highly recommend
    Amazing experience, the dolphins seem healthy and well cared for and the experience with them is truly special. My 3 kids ages 11, 13, 15 were just thrilled to try this, they would probably say its the best thing they have ever done in their lives. We did the "excellence" package. Our family of 5 had an area with 2 dolphins to ourselves (I think we lucked out as there was no other group on the "excellence" program). We all got some rides from the dolphins, and got to sing and dance with them. Really a once in a lifetime experience. We looked into 3 similar experiences in Punta Cana and we thought this seemed like the best setup. Other places have dolphins at an inland park in pools, or there is a place where they have to take you on a boat out to some docks. This layout made the most sense - they have their own small stretch of beautiful beach then they walk you out a long dock to the dolphins. I really think this is the best option in the area. We booked direct from their website which had some discounts. Do be prepared as others have said for the photos. They charge you a lot of money for a photo and video package. Consider ahead of time if this is worth it to you so you are not stressed after your experience. I considered it as part of the overall cost and was willing to splurge to document this family experience. For our family of 5 they wanted $300. The pictures and video were great quality. It would be a lot better if they listed the photo pricing upfront when you booked and let you pre-purchase, maybe with a discount for pre-payment. I think customers would leave happier with the chance to think about it earlier and not feel pressured. While you are waiting for the return bus there's a bar you can try but I recommend you BYO snacks and water to avoid having to buy anything if you dont want. As an unexpected treat, they have some tropical birds you see on the way in, and they finished with a cool little bird show plus a chance to feed the birds. There's a cool sea lion you get up close with as well. Yes, its rushed and a forced photo op but it is unique. The customer support was very helpful, but it works best if you use WhatsApp. I texted and spoke with them. It really helps if you know some Spanish, for most activities in Punta Cana. We had a mixup on our initial pickup, but they resolved it and got us in quickly just a couple hours later. The buses are clean and air conditioned. Huge thanks to the staff as I lost my ticket for the expensive photos. But after some messages on whatsapp they were able to send me the link to download and the access code. Ellos cuidarme!
    Visited December 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written January 3, 2024
  • Marissa W
    Pennsburg, Pennsylvania6 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Worth the Money!!!!
    This was an excellent excursion! Our resort was really close which was great but the checkin was quick and the lockers and facilities were nice (and free). Lots of staff to help out. The “sitting around” time was minimal, mostly to watch a video about how to do the different tricks with the dolphins. We were in the water for an hour and our trainer was amazing and so patient with the kids. We did the excellence package and it was definitely worth the money. Afterwards they put together a great video and pictures and honestly, the prices were not terrible and our photographer, Alexander, took some amazing pictures. We got 240 pictures total, plus a video and we added the extra pictures too. There was a small gift shop and bar with food but no one was pushy. There was a cute parrot show afterwards and you got to feed some birds as well which finished out your time. Then back to resort. Kids loved it, it exceeded my expectations and I would definitely recommend!
    Visited January 2024
    Traveled with family
    Written January 17, 2024
  • Marsha Y
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great Experience
    Absolutely incredible experience. Staff was fantastic. They take photos and videos for you that you can purchase. For $75 I got 40 photos plus a 10 minute video that showed all the dolphin interactions with our group. We did the “excellence” package as that had the most interaction with the dolphins!
    Visited February 2024
    Traveled with family
    Written March 4, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles4,774 reviews
Excellent
2,039
Very good
1,203
Average
706
Poor
372
Terrible
454

Anthony K
2 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Our Party of 9 rented a private snorkling/boat ride through our travel agency in February 2020, they booked us through Dolphin Explorer. When we arrived for the excursion we were greeted with friendly faces & a welcoming atmosphere. however, we were promptly told that we were not allowed to use our cameras/phones anywhere within the complex. Our party enjoyed holding stingrays, the boat ride, snorkeling, &the swimming area that the boat dropped anchor at and the floating bar (an inner tub with a tray on it) was a nice touch. My issue comes from the end of the event. When we returned to port we were escorted to view the pictures, what we found was very disapointing The person taking pictures lost all of the pictures taken with the stingrays. Most of the photos taken on the boat were shot from behind rather than being able to see the people in our group we were able to see the back of their heads. Upset to say the least I was appuald when they requested $100 for a copy of the photos. I am not an unreasonable person and had they had all of the pictures (which would have included the pictures of the stingrays) I would have purchased the photos and just chalked it up as a "fun tax". I spoke to the manager & explained my disappointment in his photographer. I offered him more than I felt the photos were worth ($20) . He laughed & said no. Bottom line if you are the type of person that enjoys an experience but has no desire to have photos to remember it, then this company for you.
Written March 1, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Hi A4906XB!!! We appreciate the time you´ve taken from your schedule to let us know your impressions on Dolphin Explorer. A 2-star rating speaks volumes of your disappointment, even though you found the excursion wonderful, but the photo issue ruined what would have been a terrific time. We have taken due note of all your concerns, which will be properly addressed to the staff concerned Warmest regards, The Dolphin Explorer Team
Written March 15, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

FlyWithKids
San Antonio, TX268 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2021 • Family
Whatever “experience” you buy, they will strongly encourage you to upgrade for $100-$250 per person at the entrance. Then, be ready to wait quite a while before they take you to the activity you booked.
The actual time with the animals is very short, in our case, only 15 mins.

Most of the animals we saw were in poor shape, sea wolf with no eyes, dolphin with its snout showing exposed red flesh, sea lion with eye and teeth issues... very, very sad.

They do NOT let you take your phone with you or take any pictures for that matter. Only THEIR photographer takes all the pictures which they will attempt to sell you at the end, for $15 usd each.

And if you did not book all their “experiences” including the bird show, you have to wait for everyone to be done. The driver that picked you up at your resort will not take you unless it’s THEIR time to take you back (read “wait for everyone to be done and for their show to end” (which you are bot watching if you didn’t book it) to be driven back. The guy told us we could take a taxi if we wanted! Mind you, the neighborhood was most definitely NOT tourist friendly!

We ended up walking to our resort on the beach side.

Hope this review helps, we would have never booked with this company if we knew in advance how they actually operate once you have become their “captive” audience.
Written March 14, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JenyaQ
Toronto, Canada278 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2021 • Couples
Very misleading pictures ripoff. I hate to give one star because of the dolphin but experience was nice. But the rest is just to squeeze money out of you. They don’t allow to take your cameras or phone and then they charge ridicules money for pictures (download). Plus they force you to wait 50 minutes at the cafe before the birds show, so you can spend more money. And that cafe one more ripoff ($13 usd for a hotdog and a pepsi). I just don’t get it. We bought this excursion with AirCanada representative, it’s already not cheap . I just wish to know ahead that the trip will cost more, then what you paid at the hotel, One more thing- no COVID protocol at all.
Written September 29, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

San
13 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021 • Solo
First of all I didnt get to do all the things that were "included" and promised.
Also I already knew the people here only try to rip you off as a tourist and as a single Woman. I said I dont wanted pictures of me or at least only with the animals but the camera guy would stop taking pictures of me and standed by my side and asked me personal stuff.

I asked what the picures cost like and also the sea lion picture, they just blocked me off saying they are included as a package, I'll get the pricing at the end.
Well birds and sea lion are not included they cost 15€$ each !! Also if you are a family or a couple they dont let you take pictures together with the sea lion so youre forced to take to pics for 30$.

The dolphinepackage is 80$ p.p or a single picture is 40$ !! Theres one video takes of you too but it cotains everyone else in your group so maybe not the beat memorie material and also, who ever buys it, has your video too !

Afterall I decided to buy the dolphine package, they said it'll be online in 1-2h, now after 6h the pictures are online, with watersigns allover, when I try to download them one by one I only get to download the watersign.
The video isnt able to be downloaded, only error massages appear, tried different devices and wifi's.

Also you'll be only able to download it to 2 devices and for 30 days only... Dont need this again ! Going to charge my money back since I dont get a single photo !
Written December 22, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Steve Yorke
3 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2022 • Couples
My wife and I did the "excellence' experience, 2 dolphins, 10 people 1 hour. Our time with the dolphins was amazing. We enjoyed it so much, the trainer was fun and made sure everybody had the same experience. Our time with the dolphins in my view, made it a wonderful experience that we're pleased we did and was well worth the cost.

Why only 3 stars? There is a sea lion show and a bird show, neither of which do much to enhance the experience of the dolphins. The promotions say you will be swimming in the ocean and, while this is technically true, there are several enclosures within the sea that we actually swim in. The steps leading to the water were dangerously slippery. When we first arrived we were fitted with life jackets, shown to the lockers and toilets, then directed to wait in our group. We were left there for 15/20 mins in high heat and uncomfortable swimwear with all our belongings, including drinks, being left in the lockers. Before the dolphins there is a photo with the sea lion. Although we all took part, it's clear it was another persuasion tactic to encourage the buying of the photos.

At the end you are told the cost of of all the photos they have taken. To be fair, they are good quality, but $150 for 60 photos including the sea lion, and an optional 6min video of the whole group was a shock and I should imagine that would be unaffordable to a lot of people. It was obvious they were going to profit from the photos and rightly so, but $150 to have memories of what should have been an amazing experience is just plain extortion and has the potential to ruin someone's day, as we saw first hand for a honeymooning couple.
Written April 26, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

travelindeeter
Knoxville, TN37 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2021 • Friends
Actually swimming with the dolphins was wonderful. Twice you swam out abotv50 feet, grabbed their fins, they swam you back. One you held their fins. The entire personal interaction took about 10 minutes due to large groups. The main thing was them taking many pictures and trying to sell them to you. There was also a bird show and a sealing show. Our price was $149 but a little talking got it down to $99. Still high for alot ofcwaiting around.
Written April 9, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nikki S
Bethlehem, PA17 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021 • Couples
Overall we had a good experience. I purchased the full package which was supposed to be dolphins, sea lion and sharks/rays. Upon entering we were told the sharks/rays were not available so they offered a discount on pictures. The dolphin part was awesome. We were in the water for quite a while, petting and swimming/interacting with the dolphins. We were in a small group of 8 people and it was out in a fenced off part of the ocean. Our tour guide was super informative and funny. He would yell “attack” when he sent the dolphins to come interact with you or sing the jaws duhduhduhduhduh. Lol. After that just we did the sea lion swim. I honestly felt very bad for Jerry the sea lion. She didn’t seem to be able to see very well. It was very short and the sea lions are kept in small pens under the dock. The man who took us out for sea lions swimming was grabbing and hold wild pelicans which was very strange. They had a show and bird experience. It was ok. After you’re done with the dolphins they bring you into a tent to sell you pictures. It’s quite expensive. We purchased just the dolphin digital and video and it was $210. Overall I enjoyed it.
Written January 12, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lacy K
Lumberton, MS31 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2022 • Couples
We found this excursion while staying next door at Radisson Blu. A tour guide found us on the beach and offered the explorer package (swim with 1 dolphin, sea lion show, and bird sanctuary) for $180US (2 people). When arriving the workers attempted to overcharge us citing the exchange rate was different. (Thank goodness we were able to have our tour guide return and settle the issue, as I observed many others having the same issue) know your exchange rates and the money you should be handing them!! Swimming with the dolphins, the sea lion picture, sea lion show, and parakeet feeding was all nice. However, we were at the end of the line and didn’t get as much interaction as the people closer to the trainer. Also, I wish I had pictures to remember my honeymoon and the events we encountered!! The pictures plus video for 2 people was $150US or just the pictures option was $100US. You aren’t allowed to have your phone in the water. You don’t get them back until it’s time for the sea lion show and parakeet feeding. Wish we would have known the pictures were almost as expensive as the event itself.
Written April 26, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Christopher O
Burnsville, MN1 contribution
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Couples
At our hotel, we are staying at live aqua, we were told that the dolphin explorer was 100$ with a free upgrade to swim with them. We arrived and we’re told my wife and I had to pay the extra 100$.. 50$ a piece to swim with the dolphins at the same time. After thinking about it we decided to do it because we are on our honeymoon. At the door if you have the Basic package or something called upgrade. They try very hard to sell you on the two dolphin package which is when you both get to be in the water at the same time. That’s 100$ extra keep in mind. We did the upgrade and had a blast with each other and the two dolphins In the water. The time with the dolphins depends on how big your group is. We had 8 people in our group so they say it’s an hour but really since you are in a group, it’s about 15 20 mins.
The dolphins are so much fun to swim with and they do a few fun things with them. BEWARE this excursions all about photos. They take photos and won’t let you have cellphones or cameras during the swim and encounter. After the group hour is up they have a booth with all the pictures that you can buy a digital copy of them. 1 picture is 40$ we had two swimmers so everything together ended up being 195$. Bow the excursion went from being 100$ to almost 400$. We ended up buying the photo package because we are on our honeymoon and wanted to share our experience with friends and family.
Try and bargain with them. I didn’t realize you could but a few people In our group did so. After purchasing the whole photo package we left and headed back to our hotel. We ended up being able to download some our photos but not the video they promise you and other pictures you take. It’s a lot of fun just be prepared to spend lots of money otherwise it’s not worth your time.
Written July 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Irinamar1983
Vienna, VA1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2021 • Family
I wish I read review before We went there.
We took a swimming with dolphins and I was shocked when Realized that those training one actually was already a swimming 🤦🏼‍♀️😵😰
I was expecting at least really a swim a little bit.
But this is was not the worst thing, after that they given a price for pictures OMG it’s even more expensive then ✌🏻swimming with dolphins✌🏻 and the pictures was so so not even really good 😣
I was so much upset for throwing out money and time plus at the final we didn’t get any pictures. Because I liked only 6 from 50 and I was not ready to pay for those 6 pic $150. If you want to take by pic it will cost you $39 per picture 🤬🤬🤬🤬
So I would definitely NOT recommend this place.
Written January 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Dolphin Explorer - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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