This post is the opinion of the Experimental Mommy. I won the cruise during a social media scavenger hunt sponsored by Carnival Cruise Lines. Excursions were purchased by my family. All opinions remain 100% mine.
After visiting Honduras and Belize, our final port on our 7 day Carnival Conquest Cruise was Cozumel, Mexico. After such a busy day in Belize, we were thrilled to visit Chakanaab Park for a Dolphin Encounter. As we approached Cozumel, I immediately noticed the beautiful water. The color was by far the most impressive of our stops.
At the pier, we boarded passenger vans for the 15 minute ride to Chakanaab National Park. Our tour guide helped us get fitted for life jackets (required for everyone) before entering the dolphin encounter area in the Caribbean Sea. We entered a sectioned off portion which included two dolphins about 3 years old. The dolphin trainer began by showing us what the dolphins can do! My girls were in awe as they jumped, swam and waved in front of us.
We stood on a ledge as each person got a chance to kiss, hug and shake “hands” with the dolphins (there were about 12 people in our group). For the next 40 minutes, the trainers were great making sure that every person had multiple encounters with the dolphins ending with a few opportunities to “pet” them before exiting. While you are not allowed to bring cameras, you can purchase pictures from the local photographers. There are several dolphin excursions to pick from, but if you have young kids that are a bit anxious about interacting with the animals, this one is perfect. If your child is a bit older and more adventurous, you can do a Dolphin Push, Pull and Swim excursion which offers more interaction.
After the dolphin encounter, we were free to explore Chakanaab on our own time. We chose to check out a free sea lion show, do some shopping and have my daughter’s hair wrapped in colorful string. For lunch, we decided on an outdoor cafe that served nachos, tacos and quesadillas….all delish!
Finally, we took advantage of the beautiful pool which has a large shallow end perfect for my two daughters. For most of the day, they were the only kids in this section of the pool which made it very enjoyable. Shuttles back to the pier left every hour, so we could choose to stay as long or as little as we wanted.
I would highly recommend this excursion through Carnival Cruise Lines. Everyone was very friendly and it was well organized. When the kids get older, I would love to return and do another Dolphin Encounter. Have you been to Cozumel? What was your favorite excursion?