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Old 12-20-2011, 02:15 PM
 
102 posts, read 288,795 times
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Our family will be vacationing in Daytona Beach next year (probably late fall) and we want to take our kids out on a boat to (hopefully) see dolphins! Is that a good time of year for that? If so, can you recommend a great company?
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Old 12-20-2011, 05:33 PM
 
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Why not just sit on the beach and watch them?..
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Old 12-20-2011, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Everywhere.
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In the Daytona Beach area, there is a place called Marineland located up on coastal Route A1A (roughly 30 miles north of Daytona Beach). They have a dolphin and sea life aquarium and shows. That sounds better than going out on a boat just to see a hopeful dolphin encounter.
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Old 12-21-2011, 07:05 AM
 
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Thanks Star691! I didn't know about that and it sounds great for the kids (who don't have patience to just sit still on a beach and wait for something)! I'll look it up, thanks again! We wanted to go north anyway to St. Augustine and the alligator farm so that'll work great.
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Old 12-21-2011, 07:19 AM
 
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Originally Posted by adamnlisa View Post
Thanks Star691! I didn't know about that and it sounds great for the kids (who don't have patience to just sit still on a beach and wait for something)! I'll look it up, thanks again! We wanted to go north anyway to St. Augustine and the alligator farm so that'll work great.
Marineland is a like a 7/11 compared to Seaworld (like a Costco) and it is expensive for a roadside attraction. Never been to Gatorland place but I suspect roadside attraction as well.

Flager pier you might be able to spot some dophins and an occasional whale (not sure the type, but the locals can fill you in).
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Old 12-21-2011, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Everywhere.
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Would choose Marineland any day over SeaWorld. Marineland has a relaxed atmosphere, and newer additions to the facility. With all the congestion and tourists at SW, it's not worth it unless you really want to see the whales. If you went to a pier to watch a couple of dolphins swim in the ocean, it could be a long wait for them to pass by.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:52 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Star691 View Post
Would choose Marineland any day over SeaWorld. Marineland has a relaxed atmosphere, and newer additions to the facility. With all the congestion and tourists at SW, it's not worth it unless you really want to see the whales. If you went to a pier to watch a couple of dolphins swim in the ocean, it could be a long wait for them to pass by.
General admission to Marineland does not seem to give you a lot to do but look through some windows at the dolphins. They do various dolphin encounters but seemed more expensive than Discovery Cove at SW. $159- $199 for about 10-15 minutes in the water with the dolphins at ML..

At SW I can buy a tray of fish for $7 and touch and feed the dolphins. At Discovery Cove there are all day activities and all the food you want plus admission to SW for 7 days for the same price as a dolphin swim at Marineland. DC only allows 1000 guests in and has snorkeling etc. too.

To original poster seeing dolphins in the wild is chancey. You may see several in a day or none for weeks and weeks. Taking a boat tour on the Intercoastal/ Indian River you might see some dolphin and manatees and even some sharks. Personally I think a boat tour would be fun to do just for the experience.
We usually see a few dolphin when we fish at the causeway. Cloudy/rainy days at the beach you might have a better chance of seeing some close to shore but no guarantee.
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Old 12-22-2011, 08:12 PM
 
Location: Everywhere.
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Originally Posted by Rabflmom View Post
General admission to Marineland does not seem to give you a lot to do but look through some windows at the dolphins. They do various dolphin encounters but seemed more expensive than Discovery Cove at SW. $159- $199 for about 10-15 minutes in the water with the dolphins at ML..

At SW I can buy a tray of fish for $7 and touch and feed the dolphins. At Discovery Cove there are all day activities and all the food you want plus admission to SW for 7 days for the same price as a dolphin swim at Marineland. DC only allows 1000 guests in and has snorkeling etc. too.

To original poster seeing dolphins in the wild is chancey. You may see several in a day or none for weeks and weeks. Taking a boat tour on the Intercoastal/ Indian River you might see some dolphin and manatees and even some sharks. Personally I think a boat tour would be fun to do just for the experience.
We usually see a few dolphin when we fish at the causeway. Cloudy/rainy days at the beach you might have a better chance of seeing some close to shore but no guarantee.
Discovery Cove? Never even heard of it. Unlikely that place is near Daytona, which is where the OP wanted to take their trip. Also, the OP didn't state that hey wanted to jump in and pet the dolphins, so they may be fine with poolside and aquarium views only. Their best choice still sounds like Marineland, which is right between their planned destinations - Daytona and St. Augustine.
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Old 12-23-2011, 12:11 PM
 
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One other suggestion.....In November, the manatees arrive in Blue Springs State Park. It is located in Orange City about 40 minutes from Daytona.

Welcome to Florida State Parks
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Old 12-23-2011, 01:16 PM
 
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Interesting about the manatees... thanks!! We're not sure when we'll be coming yet, so I'll keep that in mind! Yes, we do want to stay in the general Daytona area, and the aligator farm in St. Augustine is NOT a roadside attraction (we've been there before). Thanks Honeycrisp and Star!
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