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Dolphin Connection

Play with the dolphins: Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in the Florida Keys.

Guests at Hawks Cay Resort in the Florida Keys have the unique opportunity to encounter bottlenose dolphins in this marine mammal's natural environment. The Dolphin Connection program, located in an ocean-fed saltwater lagoon, is home to a pod of friendly dolphins that Florida Keys visitors can interact with while learning the importance of protecting Florida's marine ecosystem.


Hawks Cay Resort is the only hotel or resort in the mainland United States that offers free public viewing of trained dolphins. We offer a variety of educational and exciting programs for adults, children and the entire family to enjoy. Whether you choose to jump in the water for a hands-on dolphin encounter, learn how to train dolphins or sit on the dock and admire fantastic aerial behaviors, join us at Dolphin Connection for a one-of-a-kind Florida Keys vacation experience.

Reservations are required for all of our Dolphin Experiences. Short-style wetsuits are provided free of charge. For liability reasons, personal cameras are not permitted on the docks or in the water, but are approved at our beach and overlook areas. For your convenience, staff photographers are present at each program. Programs are offered daily, except for Christmas Day.

Guests with Special Needs should contact the Dolphin Connection Special Needs Coordinator when booking. Participants should check-in at the Dolphin Connection facility 15-20 minutes prior to program time.

Cancellation policy: Programs can be cancelled up to 72 hours of program time. Full price for the program will be charged for cancellations within 72 hours. Participants who do not show up for their scheduled program will be charged.

 

OUR EXPERIENCES

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Dolphin Discovery

The Dolphin Connection

Trainer For A Day

Dockside Dolphins

PROGRAMS AND PRICING

Dolphin Discovery

Availability: Reservations Required

Rates: $175 per group guest, $145 if booking 30 or more. Tax not included

Requirements & Restrictions: Dolphin Discovery provides a high quality up close and personal experience for each guest and is limited to no more than five participants per dolphin. Following instruction in our outdoor classroom overlooking our beautiful dolphin lagoon, guests enter the water to hug, kiss, splash and play with our dolphins for 20 - 25 minutes. For our guest comfort, dolphin interaction occurs from submerged, deep water platforms but also includes opportunities to swim into the lagoon for some special interaction with our dolphins. Program Length: 45 minutes (25 minutes in the water with the dolphins) Requirements & Restrictions: Reservations Required. Must be 4'6" or taller to participate. The swimming portion of the program is optional and not required. For safety reasons, pregnant ladies are not permitted. Participants must be able to read, speak and understand the English language. Space is limited and programs may be cancelled at any time for the safety and welfare of the dolphins.

Dockside Dolphins

Availability: Reservations Required

Rates: $60. Tax not included

Requirements & Restrictions: Interact with dolphins without leaving dry land but don't be surprised if you get a little splashed! Following a short lecture into the world of dolphin training Dockside Dolphins allows you to feed, play and interact with our animals from our dry training docks. Groups are limited to no more than 6 participants per dolphin, this is an ideal program for families with young children and for those that want to connect with our dolphins without entering the water. Program Length: 30 minutes (10-12 minute dock interaction time with the dolphins) Requirements & Restrictions: For safety reasons children five and under must be accompanied by paid adult (infants and children pay to participate). Space is limited and programs may be cancelled at any time for the safety and welfare of the dolphins.  

Dolphin Trainer for a Day

Availability: Reservations Required

Rates: $325. Tax not included

Requirements & Restrictions: The Trainer For A Day program is an in-depth, three-hour behind-the-scenes look into the daily activities of the Dolphin Connection training team. The program is designed to give participants an up close and personal experience by providing hands-on opportunities. Limited to a maximum of two participants per day, this program offers a unique opportunity to experience what it's like to be a dolphin trainer. The program includes ample opportunities to interact with our dolphin family. The Dolphin Discovery and the Dockside Dolphins programs are included as well as a private 5 to 10 minute training session with the dolphins from the docks. Participants have one-on-one time with the trainer and are involved in various hands-on activities regarding the care and training of our dolphins. You'll take home a t-shirt, certificate and personal photo with a dolphin to commemorate this rare and exciting opportunity. Program Length: 3 hours Requirements & Restrictions: Reservations Required. Ages 10 and up. Must be 4'6" or taller to participate. The swimming portion of the program is optional and not required. For safety reasons, pregnant ladies are not permitted. Participants must be able to read, speak and understand the English language. Space is limited and can be cancelled at any time for the safety and welfare of the dolphins.

ABOUT DOLPHIN CONNECTION

Dolphin Connection is an accredited and recognized leader in the advancement of marine mammal education, breeding, and conservation techniques. Since our inception at Hawks Cay Resort in 1990, we have raised multiple generations of dolphins in our large salt water lagoon and have helped visitors to the Florida Keys gain a better understanding of the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin and the impact we have on their marine ecosystem. For more information about our history, conservation and accreditations see The Dolphin Connection.

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