We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

Washington DC...
5 posts
Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

Our kids (7 and 10) struggle with crowds and noise, but they really want to see dolphins in the wild from a boat. Do you have recommendations for a particular tour or boat rental company that offers a smaller group tour?


4 replies to this topic
Liverpool, UK
Level Contributor
22,955 posts
36 reviews
1. Re: Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

This firm seems to get good reviews and does private trips for small groups.



Level Contributor
780 posts
98 reviews
2. Re: Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

Save the cost of the boat... they always go to the same inlet in Cortez and follow each other like sheep. I watch the pack behavior (human) multiple times a day for five months of the year.

Treat the kiddos to cokes at the Tide Tables while you enjoy a drink and look across the Waterway toward AMOB and wait. More than likely, you will see them south of the Cortez Brdge. And... fidos are welcomed!

I find this boat watching stuff in the Waterway to be marginally offensive to the animals. Once sighted, a pack of boats surround the poor critters. Does anyone ask the dolphins if they like having their pictures taken? IMHO, better to stand off and enjoy your chance encounters with the dolphins and let them pass when they choose, not you!

And for you who have the time and patience, find a nice quiet seat along the south side of the Waterway and wait for a pack of feeding dolphins to pass by. Once they start the feeding frenzy, you can't miss 'em! Flying mullet (in the winter anyway), deep breathing and splashing, while they litteraly drive their victims crazy! Almost a good reason to rent along this stretch! And a bonus, the boisterous ospreys!


Washington DC...
5 posts
3. Re: Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

TomC97 - Thank you - That's a great idea!

Zephyr - I see your point, but I also want to get my oceanographer girl up moderately close for her birthday. This is a big deal for her

Edited: 31 May 2018, 21:04
Level Contributor
3,972 posts
282 reviews
4. Re: Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?

Zephyr, that sounds great. I’d like to do that in October. Thanks.

Reply to: Seeing dolphins - least crowded option?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
Get answers to your questions about Anna Maria Island