Skipping Dolphin "Swim" at Discovery Cove

Shermonica Simon

Earning My Ears
Joined
May 20, 2017
I visited discovery cove about 15 years ago and did not do the dolphin "swim" but really enjoyed the park. I want to teach my 6 and 8 year old to snorkle. I want them to have the experience I had 15 years ago. Back then, you could go the entire day and never see the dolphin pools. But looking at a current map, it looks like the dolphin pools have been moved to the center of the park. Will it be obvious to the children that we are skipping this attraction? I will tell them in advance that some people go in the water to pet a dolphin and have their photo taken, but we will not be doing that. They will understand, but I am just wondering if we will be seeing folks frockoling with dolphins all day as we go about our day. Last time it was out of sight out of mind. But it looks like the position of the dolphin pools make out of sight out of mind impossible. Is this the case? Thanks in advance for sharing your experience.
 

andyw715

Mouseketeer
Joined
Oct 27, 2016
I think you can plan it where there might not be anyone at the dolphin swim area. IIRC ( we went in 2015 ), there weren't any swim times during lunch. So you could start after breakfast in the lazy river/aviary portion. Walk back to lunch, then walk over to the grand reef for snorkeling; without seeing people with the dolphins.

This way you could also use the lazy river area as a practice for snorkeling before making your way to the grand reef.

 

Shermonica Simon

Earning My Ears
Joined
May 20, 2017
Thank you!
I think you can plan it where there might not be anyone at the dolphin swim area. IIRC ( we went in 2015 ), there weren't any swim times during lunch. So you could start after breakfast in the lazy river/aviary portion. Walk back to lunch, then walk over to the grand reef for snorkeling; without seeing people with the dolphins.

This way you could also use the lazy river area as a practice for snorkeling before making your way to the grand reef.

Thank you! What time are you referring to for lunch? Is it the full 3 hours that lunch is served? Thanks again!
 
  • andyw715

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Oct 27, 2016
    Thank you!

    Thank you! What time are you referring to for lunch? Is it the full 3 hours that lunch is served? Thanks again!
    That I'm not sure....We did our swim early in the morning (9am) and my daughter noticed that there wasn't anyone swimming when we had lunch.... not sure if it was a real break or not.
     

    jaceraden

    Ringleader to 3 kids in a Disney loving family
    Joined
    Apr 19, 2010
    Honestly, there's a lot of standing around and talking with the dolphin swim so it's very easy to walk right past it and not really know there's anything going on besides pictures and education.
     

    Capt_BJ

    So Many Times
    Joined
    May 17, 2005
    It would be pretty hard to 'hide' the fact there's dolphin encounters IMO. When checking in the kiddies are SURE to hear others scheduling their times, or hear discussions during meals etc. OTOH the dolphins area, altho you are right that activity IS 'in the middle', is actually pretty well visually separated IMO (we were there this past July) Let's look at a picture ... the 'reef' is on the left side, the 'river' is on the right.

    453640

    If you take the paths to go from Reef to river, you typically have a set back of 30 to 50 yards with trees, brush, umbrellas, chairs and often buildings meaning the dolphins are NOT 'in your face'! AND then the shore of the dolphin area has a lot of (artificial) rocks providing yet MORE visual barrier. We bought dolphin for our two first time visitors but did not do this ourselves ..... finding a viewing spot was a wee bit difficult when we WANTED to watch! I'd say that unless you make an effort to go watch you'd never see it . . . (if you stick to walking paths . . .)

    See how far away the folks on the beach are?
    453643
     

    Attachments

    Last edited:

    mjhtvchick

    Universal Fan-atic
    Joined
    Apr 10, 2012
    Thank you!

    Thank you! What time are you referring to for lunch? Is it the full 3 hours that lunch is served? Thanks again!
    Lunch is available from 11:15 am - 3:30 pm

    While you won't be ale to completely "hide" that this is going on, I don't feel like it is a big issue and probably won't be for your kids either - there are quite a few "extras" going on throughout the park during the day - seaventure, ray feeding, swimming with the sharks, cabanas - the dolphin swim is just one thing.
     
  • keishashadow

    Proud Redhead...yes, I have some bananas!
    Joined
    Dec 30, 2004
    Jmho the snorkeling pool isn’t the place I’d introduce my kids to the sport Are they good swimmers & relaxed in what simulates open water?

    If u have gear, perhaps a dry run of sorts in bath tub then hotel pool to help them acclimate

    it get reallys crowded at times and the stingrays do circulate freely. Have seen more than a few kids badly startled. Visibility is lessened in shallower areas once people segue over to that area

    Imo, kids at that age are aware. Quick google and first thing that pops up is the swim. no way would they miss the dolphins in the Water, let alone the large groups standing on shore; even if just walking past them on walkway to snorkel. If it’s not on your radar, I’d let the kids know ahead of time so they can adjust their expectations
     

    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates

    UNIVERSAL PODCASTS


    UNIVERSAL ORLANDO VIDEOS


    UNIVERSAL ATTRACTIONS



    Top