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“One fabulous bucket list experience”
Review of Dolphin Cay

Dolphin Cay
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Sometimes the best way to describe something is by saying what it isn't. Dolphin Cay isn't an aquarium, it's not an entertainment facility, and it doesn't stage marine shows. Opened in 2007 in response to a need to provide a safe haven for 16 stranded dolphins whose home was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, Dolphin Cay is one of the world's largest open-air, man-made marine mammal habitats. Located on the west side of the Atlantis, Paradise Island property, the 14-acre environment includes an 11-acre lagoon complete with coves and sandy beaches, 7 connected "residential" pools, a state-of-the-art education center, an animal rescue-rehabilitation hospital, an animal pharmacy, a quarantine, and a separate sea lion center. Dolphin Cay is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums (AMMPA), and the International Marine Animal Trainers' Association (IMATA). Through its partnerships with the University of Florida's School of Veterinary Medicine and University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, Dolphin Cay plays an active role in the development of the advanced research and knowledge about marine mammals. Every visit to Dolphin Cay supports the Atlantis Blue Project Foundation, creating and promoting solutions for a wide range of marine conservation challenges from coral reef degradation to marine species in decline.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Lockers / storage, Bathroom facilities
Reviewed February 24, 2013

What a delightful experience from beginning to end! First you break into groups of 10, put your wetsuits on and then listen to an instructional video. I was the first one of our group to "play" with Eli (our dolphin). I knelt down in the water and held my hands just under the surface, and lo and behold, he put his head there and I kissed him on the lips! Then, I got along side of him and put one of my arms around his fin and wrapped my other one under his belly to give him a big hug. After that, he swam back by, stopped and had me rub his belly. A bit later, he swam by, I made the sign of a karate chop two times and he came up out of the water and "gave me five". All I can say is WOW!!! I would recommend this for anyone! The staff could not have been nicer or more professional, and the photographer that was there took some awesome shots that I will treasure forever! Next time I'm down there, I think I'll try the deep water swim. The whole adventure was like feeding the dolphins at Seaworld on steroids. All I can say is Bravo Atlantis!

4  Thank Bonnie F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,350 - 1,354 of 1,987 reviews

Reviewed February 21, 2013

Was an experience I won't forget. Although we had to go thru 3 dolphins cause the first 2 had attitudes & did't want to play well. LOL but was definitely awesome experience. Not sure of the fee cause I did it for FREE.

Thank Anthony M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2013

I'm 25 and have wanted to swim with Dolphins since I was a child, so when we booked our trip this was a must do. I looked at all the programs offered at Dolphin Cay and despite the cost I decided to sign me and my Fiance up fot the Trainer for a Day program. ( It was $400-$425 per person). DO NOT LET THE PRICE SCARE YOU! It was a fantastic day! When you consider paying $100-$200 for one interaction this price is unbeatable!! Here is what a qucik run down of our day included. We were in the program from 10:00- 4:30.
We started the day with the shallow water interaction with the Dolphins. This was when we got to kiss, hug, and take photos. (BTW you have a personal photographer with your group and you get all your pictures on a jump drive at the end of the day. Ours had 133 pictures that are to die for). We then moved to the second lagoon where we put on our snorkle gear (which is yours to keep), got water scooters and did the deep water swim. This was awesome, we were able to reach out and touch them as the swam by and multiple dolphins were in the area.
We then moved on the sea lions. We got to interact, have a photo session, and feed them. Also, in the back we got to see how the operation functions. The kitchen where all the meals are prepared as well as the hosptial for the animals.
We came out and did our training session with a dolphin. This was fun to be able to give commands and reward them when they came back. We then went back to lagoon 3 where we did our footpush, and dorsal tow. TALK ABOUT FUN!!!!
We then went to lunch, we had a buffet style lunch at Mosiac. It was very good (cost of a lunch buffet for 2 would have been $60+, this in included in your day).
After lunch we loaded up on a golf cart and headed over the the Royal Tower. We went to the basement of the hotel. To see what happens down there is awesome, I couldn't have imagined everything happening down there without seeing it! We entered a room where they raise fish to be introduced into the tanks. Then we went to yet another kitchen where we prepared food for the sharks and sting rays. Yes you have to cut up squid and fish!
We took our prepared food out to the sharks first. This is right in the middle of the resort so while you are feeding people are everywhere, it's fun! Then we went to the sting rays. You get in the exhibit with them to feed them. Once you're done you get to snorkle around in the tank. I had a great time until I saw the baby hammer head sharks, then I wanted out...
This was the end of the day, we went back to Dolpin Cay where we got our pictures, along with 2 picture frames.
If you consider what you get: Shallow and Deep Water Dolphin Interaction, Dolphin Training Session, Sea lion Interaciton, Foot-push and Dorsal Tow, Sting Ray Experience, Feeding the Sharks, Snorkle in an exhibit, lunch, T-shirt, 2 bags, 2 picture frames, all your photos. It is worth every penny!
My fiance was not excited about doing this activity day with me and couldn't believe I spent that much money to in his words "play with dolphins". HOWEVER by the end of the day I think he may have had more fun than me. It's the first thing he tells people about when they ask about our vacation.

6  Thank Kristen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 18, 2013

There was nothing to dislike about interacting with these beautiful animals. It was a great experience and I would definately do this again!!

Thank Lori_T610
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 17, 2013

First off the dolphin experience thay say u can watch it! Well if u get thear early u can fit into the little area to watch people who paid a lot $$$ to do basically the same thing as we are doing ! So if you want to see the dolphins get thear early!!!!

1  Thank keith p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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