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“Superior Customer Service in an "Out of this World" Venue”

Wild Dolphin Swims with Roberta Goodman
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Friendly Family Pricing! Personally guided by Roberta and the Wild Dolphins Team into the blue Hawaiian waters,you are supported with attention and experience as you encounter the lovely Hawaiian Spinner dolphins. Nothing else you do in Hawaii compares to the natural beauty and joy of connecting with dolphins in the wild! A very personal and respectful encounter with dolphins. Traveling right along the coast, often seeing the coral or sandy bottom. Roberta is sought after by first time snorkelers, those afraid of the ocean, and mermaids waiting to be born! Share this lasting memory and story with your friends back home, perhaps with photos taken by Roberta.
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
81 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Superior Customer Service in an "Out of this World" Venue”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 11, 2013

We met Roberta and team early on the morning of September 30th. Roberta walked us to Jack’s Diving Locker boat, where we were introduced to Jeff and Kawika. We completed the paperwork and Roberta took some time to get to know each of our comfort levels in the water and what equipment we preferred to use when we were out in the ocean. There was only one other couple along with our group of four, so you could say that this was almost a private tour. Three of the four of us opted to wear wetsuits. One used a noodle and two brought their own flotation vests. None of this was an issue, which was great.

I had read about this tour and convinced the other three in our group to do this tour while we were in Kailua-Kona. In the time between the time we booked and the actual tour, I began to grow a tad concerned about the safety of swimming with wild dolphins. On the boat ride out to our first stop, Roberta, Jeff and Kawika spent time relaying what we could expect and going over other basic snorkel details. Any concerns that were built up in the lead up to the event were quickly allayed, the moment we saw dolphins swimming and jumping and spinning alongside our boat. The excitement mounted as we suited up and slid off the boat into the crystal clear water.

At first, we were taken simply by the clarity and calmness of that the Pacific Ocean, and the way the sunlight reflected down into the bottom of the coral. Shortly, we began to see dolphins swimming to the left, to the right, off in the distance. It was really something to see. We enjoyed our natural encounters with them and waited for them to swim more closely, which they ultimately did, as we were able to get some spectacular shots with our underwater camera. Roberta was generous with her time and her willingness to hang out with us, stay at our pace and take lots of pictures for us, swimming down below us to take shots of us up at the surface. When the dolphins seemed to have moved along, we decided to head back to the boat and find a new location. However, at this point, Jeff and Kawika said that they’d heard that Manta Rays were enjoying some time at a particular area of a coral reef. They asked if we’d like to head there next. Of course, we agreed. We hopped out again at this location and wow - there were three huge Manta Rays gliding gracefully along the bottom of the ocean. We admired them for a long time and snapped some shots of them. Jeff swam way down to their level to get some amazing photos of them and of us above. He made cool air circles in the water, which made for impressive pictures as well. We had one more stop at another nearby location, where we again saw Spinner dolphins – this time, in my view, closer than our first experience.

On our way back to Kailua Bay, where we had started our tour, they took us by some beautiful dark colored lava rocks, which set against the aquamarine blue color of the ocean, was a sight to behold. We each took photos at a nice backdrop they had picked out. We spotted a sea turtle swimming along the shore also.

All in all, it was a fun filled, safe, very unique experience. Roberta, Jeff & Kawika are a very relaxed group of folks who put safety first and very much seem to enjoy their own experience, not treating their duties toward us like a job in any way. We kidded them that this amazing venue is their “office” each day, and remarked how lucky they are to be able to enjoy such experiences as they make their living. Roberta knows so much about dolphins and was happy to share her knowledge with us. They all catered to us and pampered us throughout the tour, even to the point of pulling off our fins when we were ready to climb back up to the boat! There were delicious sandwiches and drinks, snacks to go around. We can’t say enough about the fun we had and how much we enjoyed this experience. We also purchased a personalized video of our experience from Jeff who filmed it on a Go Pro camera, unbeknownst to us at the time. Our party of four all agreed that this was well worth the money and our limited time in Kona.

Visited September 2013
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4 Thank le-metro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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87 reviews from our community

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  • English first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
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English first
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“An Amazing Swim with the Dolphins”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 11, 2013

If you are looking to swim with Wild Dolphins, then this is the tour to do it with – Seriously! From the moment I had my initial inquiry, Roberta was always kind, informative and accommodating and to ensure that my experience was a memorable and enjoyable one. From the moment I got on the boat I felt very welcome and it was like I was going out to see the dolphins with friends. As soon as we got out of the canal and into the bay, we were seeing Tiger sharks and the dolphins already – all within the first 5 minutes! We then continued on further to search for more dolphins and was able to take a swim in one of the bays and have some lunch as well – all provided as part of the tour. The weather was great that day and made the experience the more enjoyable. Once we spotted the dolphins, we jumped in the water and got to swim with them. There was about 15-20 dolphins in the pod and with about 3 baby dolphins as well. Roberta takes care of the pictures so that you can enjoy the moment and swim with the dolphins. Many times they swim up along side you, it was amazing. I really enjoyed the experience and would be happy to recommend.- Thanks Roberta!!

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Where_am_I_today
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, New York, United States
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Most Beautiful Experience of My Life”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 12, 2013

This was an absolutely incredible experience from start to finish. Roberta was warm, welcoming, and friendly from the first phone call. She is extraordinarily knowledgeable and knows exactly where to go and what to do to give you the best up-close wild dolphin encounter. There are many tourist attractions that do the wild dolphin swim. We saw many of them, and they had about 60 people packed onto one boat, did one drop, and headed back to the harbor. We did SIX drops, cruised around, found where the dolphins were playing, had lunch, and swam again. We were on the water for about four hours. Robert prepared a delightful picnic lunch as well. We were on a small private boat that held six passengers only. Due to the anticipation of a storm, there had been some cancellations, so my boyfriend and I were the only people on the boat. Roberta was a wealth of knowledge and answered all of our questions. Our boat captain, Mike, was also a joy. He let us ride on the bow of the ship and dangle our legs off. Dolphins swam with the bow of the ship and one jumped up and its fin went right between my feet!! I was in awe the entire day! We swam with hundreds and hundreds of spinner dolphins. There were so many that we could not decide which way to look and just as one passed by on the right, there were four more on the left or behind or in front of us. Because it was birthing season, we also saw about a dozen baby dolphins, which were just the most adorable things I'd ever seen. A mother and baby swam within a foot of my boyfriend. Roberta also takes photos with her underwater camera, which are available for a minimal cost. I highly recommend Roberta and this experience for any lover of dolphins and the ocean. It is an unforgettable experience and I guarantee this private intimate experience is far superior to the touristy boats I've seen attempting the same thing. It was truly the most beautiful experience of my life.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Jill B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colfax, California
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Dolphin Dream”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 3, 2013

I have always loved dolphins. As an animal rescuer of mostly domestic animals it was on the top of my bucket list to swim with wild dolphins. I adopted a little doggy out named Silly String (she had string tied around her tongue when I rescued her). We removed the string surgically and called her SS. The sweet lady who adopted Silly told me of Roberta in Kona. As I was doing a home check I saw these amazing photos of a dolphin they had rescued from captivity named Rosie. At that precise moment it became my mission to seek out Roberta. We saved money for a year and then planned our adventure. We rented a bungalow near the marina where we arranged to meet for what I have to say was the highlight of my entire life. I hold it right up there with having children and finding the man of my dreams. I highly recommend her and say, "let my pictures speak for themselves" Us with 400 dolphins! Oh and the day before our dolphin swim I sat on a crowded beach right next to Roberta and noticed her dolphin tattoo and said to hubby that'll probably be the only dolphin we'll see, little did I know that was Roberta sitting next to me. You can imagine our surprise the next morning when I saw her and that tat! Divine Intervention!!!

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Suzy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Exquisite Dolphin Experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 30, 2013

Everything that all these reviewers write here is true and more. Roberta is just as exquisite as the dolphins she lead us to. Extremely attentive to all of our needs, and wanting to create the best experience possible for us. Which she did. I'm so deeply glad that we ended up choosing her to lead us on this magical and joyful experience. I highly recommend Roberta and her team as your kind, loving and passionate guides.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank dancingfish75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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