For an unbelievable, once-in-a-lifetime experience, plan to swim with dolphins on your next trip to Florida at Marineland Dolphin Adventure in St. Augustine, Florida. If you love dolphins, this is your chance to touch, play, and swim with dolphins in Florida at the amazing oceanarium.
Kids and adults alike will have a truly unforgettable time and the memories you make with your children will be remembered for a lifetime.
This is a sponsored post.
Marineland Dolphin Adventure Review – Swim with Dolphins in Florida
I’ve always been mesmerized by dolphins but never imagined I’d be able to touch and even swim with a dolphin until our trip to St. Augustine, Florida. Marineland has been making dreams come true to dolphin lovers for the past 80 years.
They believe that once you emotionally connect to an animal, you’ll do all you can to preserve marine life for future generations. I believe this 100%.
Marineland offers several dolphin encounters to choose from including a meet and greet where you can visit a dolphin dockside all the way to a swim adventure.
During a swim adventure at Marineland, you’ll have many opportunities to engage with your dolphin(s) in the water and on the underwater platform. My family was chosen to swim out into the water to play with Zac, the largest bottlenose dolphin at Marineland. We pointed our finger at him and… he tipped his toes in and out of the water delivering a splash to us all!The amazing trainers at Marineland use commands in training that people like us can replicate to receive a desired and fun response. Here we are splashing the dolphin only to get splashed back royally! There was no competition! Zac can really splash! Being in the water with this 500lb dolphin was so thrilling, I can’t even put it into words. I’m not the biggest fan of deep water and honestly never thought I’d enjoy being in the water with such a large animal but I was 100% at complete ease and rest playing with our friendly dolphin. It was so exciting to experience this with my husband and kids. Having first-time experiences as a family together is what life-long memories are made of!We even danced with our dolphin, spinning round and round in the water! Back on the underwater platform, we were each able to test out our dolphin training skills by giving our dolphin several commands. We were able to put our hand straight out as a hand target, for the dolphin to swim out of the water to touch our hand with his rostrum. This friendly dolphin seemed to love every moment playing together!We could even reach both hands out to hold onto their pectoral flippers! The sweetest pose was to hold our hands out like a book and have the sweet dolphin come up out of the water and rest his head on our hands. And who can resist a kiss from a dolphin. If you are in Florida and want to get close enough to kiss a dolphin, Marineland is where you want to go!What a precious and exciting opportunity to get so close to such a magnificent creature. The above poses that happen on the underwater platform is part of their dolphin encounter package where you get into the water but not swim with the dolphins. This is great for non-swimmers and for families. If your child is between 48-54″, you must have a paying adult with them for an encounter. If you have a younger child, they can participate with paying parents at no charge. See website for details. Zac was the cutest! I’m just in love with this guy. Marineland is committed to the protection of ocean wildlife and habitats and research important to the health of animals—both in their collections and in the wild—and to the rescue and rehabilitation of injured and stranded marine mammals, sea turtles and other animals. Your support through visiting Marineland helps them protect to well-being of dolphins and other marine mammals in human care and in the wild.
As you can see below, there are several groups offering dolphin encounters and swimming at a time. You’ll be in a group with up to 10 people. Non-participants can watch from the seats on the outside, looking through the glass walls and above. This aquarium/oceanarium is part of your general admission to Marineland. It’s your chance to see dolphins up close, even if you don’t pay for an encounter.
My 17-year-old son was the first to be able to swim with the dolphins in our group. He was brave enough to swim across the oceanarium to try his hand at swimming with dolphins first! Our dolphin, Zac is a big guy so we were able to swim belly to belly, holding onto his pectorial flippers. My husband was next! Since we were married 24 years ago, I’ve loved hearing him laugh or give a big smile. Once we had kids, that passed onto my kids. Mama is happy when her kids and husband are happy. Seeing my husband so happy while swimming with dolphins made my heart so joyful. Having this experience together as a family and seeing how it made my family beam with big smiles for the entire day, reliving each moment makes me so happy. Talking about it once we are home and sharing our memories makes me happy. The Marineland dolphin experiences are well worth it! Marineland has amazing photographers that take super photos of the entire experience. We have nearly 100! Like I said, I’m not a fan of deep water and never thought I’d be ok with swimming with dolphins. I’m a worrier. I admit that I was nervous swimming out to the spot, holding my left arm out and then waiting for the dolphin to come up under my arm and for me to grab onto his fins. It was so easy and felt so natural once I did it. But, yea, I was scared so my pictures weren’t the big smiles of the rest of my family; they were of shock that I was facing my deep-water fears and actually swimming with a dolphin. ha! So, the below picture shows that I actually did it but without the big wide eyes the other pictures showed. ha! I was SO happy after I swam with the dolphin! I can’t wait to do it again! My daughter takes life and adventure every day without fear and with complete joy. She loved every second of swimming with dolphins as you can see below. She said she couldn’t believe she was so lucky to have this experience and I agree. To be able to have such a thrilling one-on-one dolphin experience with such beautiful creatures in a safe environment is amazing. Knowing that our tickets to this once-in-a-lifetime experience goes to help protect dolphins makes it even better. While at Marineland, you’ll also be able to visit other creatures including loggerhead and Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles, Moray eels,and red-footed tortoises sand tiger sharks, and diamondback terrapins.
It’s neat to see animals up close!
Marineland is located right next to a gorgeous beach that you’ll want to visit too! You have to check in 1 hour before your dolphin adventure, so it’s a great time to visit the other sea animals or the beach.
If you are planning a trip to Florida in the St. Augustine area, plan now for your dolphin adventure. It’s a quick 1/2 hour drive from Jacksonville and only about 2 hours from Orlando and well worth the drive for this once-in-a-lifetime experience. You and your family will have an amazing time and will never forget it. Digital photos are available for an additional charge – and a must!
Marineland Dolphin Adventure
9600 Oceanshore Blvd
St. Augustine, FL 32080