Imagine skimming across the surface of a pristine open ocean, along a sleepy coastal community wedged between white sands and deep valleys, under a toasty tropical sun balanced, by fluffy cotton-like clouds, cool sea spray, and tradewind breezes. Pure bliss! Suddenly, something moves quickly off the port side, gliding through the water with the ease of a guided torpedo.
As you scurry for a look-see, there is a magnificent explosion! The sunlight is eclipsed by a sleek, grayish 6 foot frame rising in the air and spinning longitudinally along it’s axis, suspended for a moment before crashing gracefully back into the water. While Spinner Dolphins are common in the Hawaiian Islands, it is uncommon to swim with them in the wild, but not unrealistic.
The area the company has chosen to charter on is located on the western or Leeward coast of Oahu off Makaha Beach. Many Spinner Dolphins come here to rest and frolic after a night of hunting off shore. Spinner Dolphins are a smaller species of dolphin that are so named for the extensive spins they exhibit in the wild. They travel in pods of as little as 10 to 100. Currently, they are still listed as an endangered species.
Dolphin Excursions employs a 32 foot Zodiac, the Nai’a I, with a twin 225 HP 4 stroke engine to comb the ocean for marine life. When dolphins are spotted, you are given the unique opportunity to swim with the dolphins in their natural habitat.
Hawaii is one of the few places in the world where you can observe dolphins in the wild. In addition you can find countless marine animals like sea turtles, octopus, and even eagle rays going about their business while snorkeling in a shallow, protected bay. During whale season from mid December through April, you can catch a glimpse of the migratory Humpback Whale in an awe-inspiring proximity.
The crew is experienced and informative as well as respectable to the ocean and marine life. The Nai’a I is outfitted with hydrophones to hear dolphins utilizing echolocation. It offers juice, water, and various snacks for the 3-4 hour stay on the water. Snorkeling gear is also provided. Dolphin Excursions even have an onboard photographer to capture your perfect moments on film and video!
Fees are $115 for adults; and $85 for children. No children under 4 permitted. You can make reservations by calling (808) 239-5579 or log on to Dolphin Excursions. Make your reservations early in advance as the tour fills up quickly! The boat leaves Waianae Harbor daily at 11 am and returns by 2 pm.
If swimming with dolphins NOT in captivity is your desire, Dolphin Excursions will not disappoint!