When I first started researching the excursions offered from Island Routes in Negril I immediately called Jeremy and told him we would be swimming with dolphins. Let me tell you a little bit of history about myself. I am a dolphin lover - those that know me in person know that my very first tattoo that I got is a dolphin jumping over a moon and in high school the only necklace I wore was a heart made out of dolphins. Also when I was growing up I was certain that I wanted to be a Marine Biologist, I love sea life - dolphins and sea otters being my favorites. I had dreams of taking care of those adorable sea otters and swimming with beautiful dolphins for a living. Well, that didn't happen; for many reasons but with the opportunity to jump into the ocean water and hang out with some dolphins I was so pumped!
Once we scheduled our excursion we had a date and time that a van would pick us up at Beaches Resorts. Super easy. An air conditioned van picked us up and another family right at the front desk and off we went. The drive a little longer than I expected but it did give us time to see the real area of Negril, not just the resort.
Once we arrived at Dolphin Cove we checked in and then had the opportunity to see some other sea life and land animals. For an additional cost we could've taken a little ride on a camel but neither of us were feeling that. ha! We fed some ostriches and met a silly donkey and then went and saw some sharks being fed. Yikes. Thankfully the sharks are no where near the dolphins.
Once it was time for the dolphin swim we headed down to the cove and got ready. Honestly, I was way more nervous than I thought I would be but the trainers were fantastic with us and the animals. We hopped into the water and waited our instructions. What was great about this experience is that there was time for everyone to get to do everything that everyone else got to do.
The first thing we all got to do was have the dolphin's nose touch our hand, give the dolphin a hug and then the best part, get a kiss from the beauty! What an experience. The trainer also told us all about the animal, how they breathe, eat and swim. It was really educational and quite the experience for all ages. Once we got to know the dolphin we went to another part of the cove and the dolphin took us all for a little ride in the sea. The strength and beauty of these animals are breath-taking.
Once we were done swimming with the dolphins we did get to "meet" some sting rays. Now, they are de-barbed but that doesn't help my anxiety at all. It started pouring rain while we were in the water with the sting rays and while we were being taught about their defense mechanisms one of those lovely rays brushed right up against me...yes, I screamed and freaked out. Remember, these rays couldn't hurt me. Eeek...still gives me the chills thinking about it. All in the experience I suppose.
Tips For Visiting Dolphin Cove:
- Bring towels with you
- Bring a change of clothes for the ride back to the resort
- Wear swimsuits
- Bring a snack for the drive
- Leave your camera at the resort (an on-site photographer will be taking your photos for you)
- Leave your jewelry at the resort
I will never forget this experience and I am so glad that Island Routes had dolphin excursions. If you are heading to the Caribbean for a vacation make sure you look up the options around you with Island Routes. There are so many great opportunities to experience the culture, environment and beauty of the Caribbean.
Have you experienced an excursion like swimming with the dolphins before?
Disclosure: This excursion was not included in the all-inclusive stay at Beaches Resorts.