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“Heaven on Earth”
Review of Dolphin Watch

Dolphin Watch
Ranked #4 of 292 Tours in Key West
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Dolphin Watch - The Key West Original... Since 1986! Join us to Watch Dolphins and Snorkel on our catamaran Patty C. The boat conveniently departs from the Historic Seaport in Old Town Key West and has many features that set her apart. • 6 Passengers Maximum • 31' length x 14' width makes her Largest Boat in her Class • 4 Hour Long Trip on a Quick Power Boat helps us consistently find Dolphins • Guaranteed Dolphin Sightings or Your Next Trip is Free. • 30 Years of Helping our Guests Experience Wild Dolphins Our trip focuses on delivering the best dolphin watching and snorkeling experience possible for our guests. We do this through the combination of our listed features and the passion and knowledge of our Captains. • Snorkel Gear and Instruction provided • Fresh Fruit and Water • Guided Snorkeling! Your Captain will join you for the Snorkel. • Bathroom and Freshwater Shower • Wet suits for winter months • Calm snorkel Locations.
Reviewed August 18, 2013

I went with a group for dolphin watching and some snorkeling and we had oodles of both, which made it perfect. Plus the Captain went way overboard with his charm, hospitality and helpfulness. You know you're in good hands here. He had everything under control, knew where the dolphins were every day we went out (for five days)...and where the best weather would be for snorkeling. He had ice, fruit, great music, and a can-do attitude. What more could we want? Not a thing, actually.

If you like dolphins, get this guy on your team. Star Captain John knows the ropes and takes you there! We had dolphins around the boat every single day, several times a day - I'm so glad I went. He actually knows a lot of them by their markings and histories.

Seriously. Don't even think about it. Don't miss this once in a lifetime opportunity. SKY HIGH RECOMMENDED. First class. Any time and every time. This is the one. THANK YOU DOLPHIN WATCH KEY WEST. You're by far the best.

2  Thank LisaFlyer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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507 - 511 of 750 reviews

Reviewed July 30, 2013 via mobile

The day was magical !!! It was by far one of my top 10 experiences in my life. My family had the best time!!! We just could believe this could ever exist. John, the captain of our vessel was very cool. He played the right kind of music going out to sea. He stopped on the way out for a small pod of dolphins that took our breathe away. Very patient telling us stories about "Stubby" and her story . They swam so close to us. We continued to the dolphin playground area and we were not sure where they were but they are wild mammals . We moved on to the reef to snorkel . John went in first and found us a "sea biscuit " to hold and a "sea urchin "as well. We could feel it move in our hands!! Very cool!!! We got our gear on and in the water, we were at the edge of the reef for a bit. The family loved!! The snorkel was not my thing but at least I tried it. John found another spot on the reef that was better so we moved the boat. My husband and kids got in again was out for a good while . There were some storms off in the distance so John stayed on the boat with me to watch out for them. John took us back to the " dolphin playground " area on our way back in and we hit the jackpot!!! There were at least 20-30 dolphins all around us.
We got awesome video and pictures!! We even made it to the Dolphin Watch Facebook page . The dolphins put on a show for us, jumping, playing around and got so close the boat we could. hear them breathe. Amazing!! There was plenty of room on the front deck to relax or sun bathe. John had fresh fruit, snacks and bottle water for the trip. John knew exactly where to go and even gave us advice on great local restaurants to try out. I could write forever about this day!! Bottom line Dolphin Watch is the charter to take. It should be bumped up to #1 for Trip Advisor!! Thanks for the memories !!! The Miller Family

3  Thank julessrq
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2013

Dolphin Watch was the highlight of my trip to Ley west, The trip consisted of 5 people including the Captain. The Captain was a warm well informed man who knows a lot about the Dolphins, the local birds and the local geography. He is also very patient, and thanks to him I was able to snorkel for the first time in my life. It was like entering a magical world in another realm, and he kept diving below us to point to stingrays , cow fish and other things we would never have noticed. I cannot recommend this trip highly enough!

1  Thank meg1952
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2013

This was the highlight of my trip to Key West. I chose this specific dolphin watch tour after reading all the glowing reviews and it completely lived up to my expectations. We went on the 9:30am tour on Tuesday, June 25. There were only 4 of us in the group, two couples, so it was nice and intimate. Everyone laid out in the front of the boat very comfortably, although eventually I found a nice spot sitting over the edge of the boat.

I've always loved dolphins and seeing them in their natural habitat made the fondness grow. Such beautiful creatures. In another review someone described it as therapeutic and I would have to agree. It was so calming sitting on the quiet boat and watching them swimming peacefully through the water. They didn't do any jumps or anything for us; John said that their behavior is unpredictable in terms of their level of activity at certain times of day. They just go with the flow I guess! At first there were only two dolphins, a mother and her calf, but eventually more came to join, probably about 15 or 20. John turned off the boat and the dolphins just kept coming over. It was so cool.

Now, I have to say that I didn't have any expectations for the snorkeling aspect of this trip. I had never been snorkeling before and didn't really care about it one way or the other. Turns out, I LOVED it. John walked us first-timers through everything, including the breathing which took me a while to get the hang of. He also seriously did his job with pointing out and naming the sea life. It was really impressive. We saw lots of angel fish, parrot fish, a small grouper, sting rays, and a shark! You can imagine my alarm when one of the guys in the group yelled out "there's a shark down there!" but John assured us that it was a nurse shark and nonaggressive. In any case it was sleeping. I'm so disappointed that I forgot to bring my waterproof camera out!

This was an unforgettable experience for me. If and when I visit Key West again, I will definitely be making a repeat visit with this tour.

2  Thank dairus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 27, 2013

As many have said, the Dolphin Watch trip is very well run, with careful attention to detail. The star of the adventure is the knowledgeable and engaging Capt. John. The catamaran is small, but very comfortable for the small groups.

The dolphins were amazing, and John recognized specific animals by name! We saw everything from old (and big!) Rocky to mothers with young calves. I learned so much.

The snorkeling included instruction for beginners and an incredible enthusiasm for pointing out interesting fish and plants. It couldn't have been more welcoming.

What makes the five-star review unexpected was the problems that came up on the trip. One of our party was terrified by the snorkeling and had to immediately jump back on the boat. After the snorkeling, another of the party managed to drop the bowl of fruit, which was the promised treat at the end of the day. I am sure that we were among the worst visitors inflicted on such a nice adventure. However, they could not have been more gracious. I feel bad for the other guests that day, but John made sure that they were cared for (including the seasick young woman). He deserved better than us!

So, for John, it was probably a trip worth forgetting, but for us it was one of the high points of the week in Key West. I couldn't recommend this more. Dolphin Watch, just about the best.

2  Thank ProfComb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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