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“Take the other Dolphin Cruise in Tarpon Springs”

Spongorama's Cruise Lines
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: This is the trip you don’t want to miss on your visit to Tarpon Springs. We take you on an exciting narrated cruise down the beautiful waters of the Anclote River to the Gulf of Mexico. You’ll be looking for dolphins, manatees, birds, the Anclote lighthouse and other historical sites. Our beach excursion allows you to disembark on the Anclote Island to stroll the beach and look for shells.
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Take the other Dolphin Cruise in Tarpon Springs”
Reviewed April 29, 2012

I took the other dolphin cruise in Tarpon Springs last year and decided to try something new this year. Ok, so I'd like to start with the positives:
Getting out on the beach was cool. There were tons of shells, but the island was packed with other people there in their own boats.
The boat itself was pretty new and in decent shape.
The negatives started when I bought my ticket. I had a feeling and I should have just walked away. The lady that sold me the ticket had a mouth full of sandwich..and continued to eat it while answering my questions. Rude and disgusting. Then, she didn't have the register key to give me change....which is fine. The part that is not fine is when she got the key, then helped 3 other people before I finally gave up and let her keep my $3.60 because it's not worth my time.
The captain smoked the whole time, which...again, it's ok...but then don't have signs on your boat and tell everyone it's no smoking. The captain was extremely rough with the boat. We slammed into the dock when we came back without warning, and he was constantly being rough with the controls. It made things uncomfortable. There was a little bit of tour explanation, but not much. I'd like to hear about why we are doing what we are doing, and maybe tell everyone to watch for dolphins and say something if you see one. We didn't see any dolphins, and the captain didn't really seem to care. I realize sometimes you see them and sometimes not, but unlike the other cruise in town, these guys didn't go out of their way to find one.
Overall, it wasn't worth the $$ and I've been on a ton of trips like this that were better.
Thanks

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank sconi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Tampa, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
22 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“No Captain Stubbing & Julie, but a nice little excursion”
Reviewed April 14, 2012

With my reviews, I always share the good news & the bad news.

I'll start with the bad:
When I went to make my reservation for this trip, I was greeted to a woman on the other end of the phone who screamed "HOLD PLEASE" and then several minutes of loud live music and scratching. The reservation "desk" is in the bar of the onsite restaurant - right by the stage. They make you give a credit cart # to hold your space, which is no big deal. But they don't take American Express.

We were told it was a noon cruise and to be there right on time. We did, only to find out that boarding starts at 12:15, but we could wait in the bar ... where drinks were $3 and meals could easily be prepared and served in time for the 12:15 departure. SNAP! Tourist trap. LOL

We had a couple of margaritas, a greek salad and some hummus - $12 each including tip, so that wasn't too bad. Then we went to the "boarding area" and waited. Two very large men lumbered over to the boat and allowed everyone to get on at about 12:25. A little pokey and unenthusiastic.

No dolphins, no manatees, no mention of these items.

The 2 captains seem like they'd rather be sitting in their barcaloungers in the comfort of their air conditioned living rooms watching the History Channel than doing this tour. If you want a boat ride with a friendly, outgoing skipper who points out interesting things, this is NOT the trip for you. If you can look past a couple of old farts behind the ship's wheel, you'll be fine.

OK, now the good news:

More than 1 life jacket onboard for each passenger. (I always check for stuff like this because you never know.) There were 58 total and I think it only holds 45 passengers.

The trip gives you a really neat perspective of the sponge docks and the waterways.

The island adventure lets you spend 30 minutes on an uninhabited beach were there are some nice shells to be found, and the boat even provides plastic bags to use when collecting your beach treasures.

This stretch of beach is gorgeous! Blue-green waters, a scenic lighthouse and not many people around.

There are snacks and potties on board the boat, so no worries in either the thirst or restroom department.

A pretty good view from all of the seats on the boat. Some folks sat outside on the bow and the rest of the people sat under the canopy on the inside.

If you have an elderly or limited mobility person in your party, I can tell you there's a nice ramp to get on and off the boat, but there's a rope/pole in the middle that prevents a wheelchair or walker from being able to go all the way up or down. However, if the person can walk a few steps using a railing on both sides, they'd be ok. Disembarking on the island wouldn't be too hard either - but once on the shore, you're kind of on your own. Some folks just waited on the boat for the 30 minutes - but they do have a version of the tour that doesn't stop on the beach.

For $19, it was a nice little excursion and I'd definitely go again. We took some pics, found some shells, walked in the water and had a nice couple of hours.

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Knizzle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
“Nice boat ride nice shells but where are the dolphins and manatees??”
Reviewed December 9, 2011

Nice boat ride nice shells but where are the dolphins and manatees?? It would have been nice to at least attempt to look for them when we were in the gulf!

Helpful?
Thank Tillyshop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Coast of Florida
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“It was worth the money”
Reviewed July 5, 2011

We had a fun time. Our captain was professional, answered questions, and even slowed down so folks could get pictures of dolphins..No he would not win a Mr. Congeniality conest , but I would ride with him again. He gave us a good amount of information about the area. This cruise was worth the money and the island visit was a nice touch.

Visited July 2011
Helpful?
1 Thank LadyBec50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Rudest people EVER!”
Reviewed July 3, 2011

We drove over there to buy tickets and they were so rude we just left. They acted like they were doing us a favor and could care less if we took a cruise. We had three different people yelling at us like drill sergeants as we drove around the parking lot. :(

Helpful?
3 Thank Clharp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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