Dolphin Discovery, Playa del Carmen

3.6
#57 of 211 in Outdoors in Playa del Carmen
Tick another item off your bucket list at Dolphin Discovery, a center that lets you swim with friendly dolphins. Under the guidance of the trained staff members, you can swim and play with the personable, intelligent marine mammals, either by yourself or in a group. Learn from the staff about the behavior of dolphins in the wild, and the challenges currently facing them in their natural habitat. You'll also gain an understanding of what the center does to conserve the dolphin population in the area. Plan to see Dolphin Discovery and other attractions that appeal to you using our Playa del Carmen trip planner.
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Dolphin Discovery Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
734 reviews
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3.5
TripAdvisor
  • We had the best dolphin experience ever with our family. There was six of us and two of them were 5&7 years old. I was hesitate that the boys would have a good experience but it was over the top for a...  more »
  • Sunday was our last day in Mexico and to say goodbye we went here, It was amazing! Our dolphins were Lumiere and Hidalgo we fall in love! Our program amazing and Dara is an excellent trainer very nice...  more »
  • My friend and I arrived for our session to swim with the dolphin and there was little to not safety briefing. All we were told was where the dolphins were bred and a bit of history about how they are ...  more »
Google
  • I went there with my family on the recommendation of the resort we were staying with. There were 9 of us in total and DD did a good job of accommodating us. The show, facilities and trainer were very good and friendly. Up to that point I'd have given five stars. Where this facility lost me is the outrageous price for the photos. First, I'm not one of those who scream about bringing my own camera around trained dolphins. I get it, they need to keep control around the animals and having a trained photographer with good equipment actually makes the process go smoothly. So even compared to other dolphin businesses on the riviera maya the photo prices at dolphin discovery runs about 50% higher, and to add insult it's a haggle as you go price. In other words, they start super high per person to buy the pictures, and then you have to haggle down if you haven't already thrown up in your own mouth at their first offer. My complaint, the guy selling the pictures is anything but a businessman. He already took the pictures, so rather than come up with a reasonable price, he lets dozens of people walk out the door unhappy and he makes less money in the process. BTW, we were quoted 60 per person as a group of 9 (540 dollars for a picture CD!). Or 80 individually. Single pictures were 40 dollars. 4 of my party haggled him down to 50 per person so they made 200 dollars and had 9 unhappy customers. 5 were just pissed and four felt robbed. Business 101--figure out how to have 9 happy customers and make more money. Sell the 9 people their pictures for somewhere in the 30s each. Bottom line, Delphinus has better prices on pictures with the same dolphin service.
  • Brilliant day. Plenty of memories well worth it.
  • Very fun to interact with dolphins and manatees, an interesting experience!
  • Hate to see them trapped and being starved so they can perform for food. Instead wake up in the early morning and watch them swim in the open ocean on the beach. Really can not understand people who can pay money to have a dolphin performance form them without noticing the consequences. Really sad to see this still happening.
  • I've walked past this every day for a week and my girlfriend is a huge animal lover who desperately wants to have a great experience with these animals but... (I'll disclaim the next bit by saying I'm no marine biologist) animals that can swim that fast should not be in cages (there's no other way to describe them) that small. Swimming with dolphins in the ocean is one thing, this is quite another.

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Where to stay in Playa del Carmen

Look no farther than the shorefront if you're after a luxury hotel or resort with a swimming pool--some of the largest and most lavish options lie a few minutes from the town center, offering spacious settings and impeccable views over the water. The town center--especially the main street, Quinta Avenida--brims with smaller and more budget-friendly accommodations, a bit farther from the beach but just a stone's throw from a wide range of eateries and night spots.
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