The Best Dolphin Cruises near Sanibel Island to Experience

Who doesn’t love dolphins? They are truly mesmerizing creatures who swim and leap so gracefully in the ocean. Seeing them is such a magical experience. And, while you’re staying in one of our Sanibel Island rentals, you can book a cruise that will let you see these dolphins up close.

dolphins swimming in the ocean

Sanibel Thriller LLC

With Sanibel Thriller LLC, you can charter a 55-foot long motor yacht that is captained by a U.S.C.G. Licensed Marine Officer. This officer will ensure your safety on this fast-paced diesel-powered yacht as you cruise along Pine Island Sound and the Gulf of Mexico, circling around the Captiva and Sanibel Islands. The tour is verbally guided, and you will be prompted to look when dolphins are spotted.

Not only will you get to see schools of dolphins, but you will also get more opportunities to see Sanibel wildlife and exotic birds. You will also get familiarized with the history of the Sanibel Lighthouse, a 98-foot tall iron structure whose beacon was first lit up in August of 1884.

Sanibel Island Dolphin Tours

While looking for things to do in Sanibel Island, consider booking a cruise with Sanibel Island Dolphin Tours. You can get a two-hour private guided Dolphin Eco Tour, which will get you right into the heart of the wildlife living in this beautiful tropical paradise. You might get face-to-face with sea turtles, manatees, osprey, and even some eagles. Of course, there are also dolphins.

This tour costs $250, and rates are per boat with a 6-person maximum capacity per boat. Larger groups will need to call to reserve multiple boats. Additional time is rated at $125 per hour, and, yes, you can bring a reasonable number of adult beverages along with you to enjoy!

a smiling dolphin

Captiva Cruises

If you’re researching Sanibel Island dolphin cruises, then Captiva Cruises should pique your interest. They’ve been family owned and operated since 1986, so you can bet they know what they’re doing. You can customize your experience with them, which is one of the best parts about going with Captiva.

If you choose the Dolphin and Wildlife Cruises, you will go between 4:00 and 5:30 p.m. to watch bottlenose dolphins playing in these gorgeous Atlantic waters. When in season, you might get a glimpse of white pelicans, bald eagles, or an array of migratory birds.

The cruise is narrated by volunteers from Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation, which is a non-profit dedicated to conserving these amazing coastal habitats and conducting research that might benefit them.

Adults and seniors pay just $30 per person, and children 12 and under are $20. Make sure you book in advance when it’s ‘in-season’ and enjoy the gorgeous weather in Sanibel.

Adventures in Paradise

There are a few different dolphin cruises you can take with Adventures in Paradise. Start the day off with the Morning Dolphin & Wildlife Cruise, guided by a naturalist who will narrate for you. You will get to see Captiva and Sanibel Islands while taking in a complimentary beverage.

You can also choose to do the Afternoon Dolphin & Wildlife Cruise or the Sunset Dolphin & Wildlife Cruise, which is known for being peaceful and relaxing – but still absolutely exciting.

Get out from your Sanibel Island condo rentals and climb aboard a boat that will take you out to where the dolphins are known to roam. These tours are perfect for the young and young-at-heart since seeing a dolphin up close can be a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will cement your memories of your time in Sanibel Island as being wonderful.

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