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Dolphin Research Center

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 58901 Overseas Hwy, Marathon, Grassy Key, FL 33050-6019
Phone Number: +1 305-289-1121
Website
Today
09:00 - 16:30
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 09:00 - 16:30
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Description:

Dolphin Research Center is a nonprofit education and research facility....

Dolphin Research Center is a nonprofit education and research facility. Home to a family of dolphins and sea lions, we offer fun-filled narrated behavior sessions and educational presentations every half an hour. During your visit you can watch and learn all about these amazing animals including dolphin maternity, social groupings, physiology, natural abilities and more. You'll see how we care for them, how we're working with them in cognition and behavioral research and the importance of conserving them and their ocean habitat. DRC also offers a variety of interactive programs including the Dolphin Encounter swim program, Ultimate Trainer for a Day, Trainer Experience half-day program, Researcher Experience half-day program and Paint with a Dolphin. We are actively involved in programs for people with Special Needs, as well as veterans from the Wounded Warrior Project, Military families, and others. Most of our dolphins were born here. Others have come to us for a variety of reasons -- including those who were injured and rescued as youngsters and later deemed non-releasable by the government. We are deeply committed to providing all of them with a safe, healthy, happy home for life. The well-being of the dolphins and sea lions is our top priority. Your visit and participation in programs supports the care of our marine mammal family, the maintenance of their natural sea water home, and the rest of our mission to educate others about these animals and the importance of conservation. Thank you for your interest in Dolphin Research Center!

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Worth an afternoon

I wasn't expecting this to be as entertaining as it turned out to be. Educational & inspirational, for sure. But the dolphins are charming, and the trainers can answer any... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 days ago
Rachel P
via mobile
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1,910 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 1,662: English reviews
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

I wasn't expecting this to be as entertaining as it turned out to be. Educational & inspirational, for sure. But the dolphins are charming, and the trainers can answer any question. The descendants of the original Flipper (the movie, not TV show) are there, and the movie was filmed there too. Later a local outfitter told me the original Flipper... More 

Helpful?
Thank Rachel P
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We had great time at the dolphin Research Center The Staff and the Trainer's were awesome, a the memberships we're great.$$$ good deal.

Helpful?
Thank Bob W
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Thanks for joining our family of members. As a nonprofit organization, we very much appreciate your ongoing support. We're also so happy to know that you have a great time visiting. Thanks for coming in. We hope to see you again soon. More 

Canada, Kentucky
Level Contributor
120 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We had no idea what to expect and were delightfully surprised. Attended the centre just in time to be entertained and provided interesting and informative knowledge sessions. There are many program offerings from interactive to just observing. We chose for general admission. Giving us the opportunity to observe everything happening. Enrolled online saving 3.00 ea on admission. Wheelchair accessible. Snack... More 

Helpful?
Thank Wibs39254
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Being around the dolphins and sea lions puts smiles on our faces everyday, too. We're so glad that you came in during your vacation and spent time with them and us. Thank you for visiting and for recommending us to others. More 

Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
27 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Swimming with the dolphins were part of my bucket list. It was a lot more specially accomplished by their staff. Their staff were amazing, just simply professional and very kind. This was an experience i will never forget.

Helpful?
Thank thej0nes3
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

When someone trusts DRC with a "bucket list" item as you did, we are always so happy to hear that we helped you fulfill your dream and expectations! Thank you so much for coming to DRC. We hope to see you again in the future. More 

Cleveland
Level Contributor
20 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

I wasn't sure if we would like this place, but we had a fantastic time. The dolphins are incredibly friendly, but they aren't putting on a show. The trainers do work with them, but no dolphin is made to perform. They seem to love playing. The sea lions are sleep masters. We learned a lot about dolphins, and my 3... More 

Helpful?
Thank midwesternadventurer
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Providing a fun, quality experience for all of our guests is important to us. We want you all to have a great time while you learn more about the dolphins and sea lions, see them in action, in general spend time with the DRC family. Thank you so much for visiting us during your vacation. We appreciate your support and... More 

Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

I love this place and will continue to visit as often as I can. If you want a real experience with dolphins, this is the place to go.

Helpful?
Thank Michele G
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Michele, we and the dolphins love when friends visit time and again. Hopefully you're a DRC member so your admission is free for the year! Thanks so much for coming in. We hope to see you again soon. More 

Punta Arenas, Chile
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

My wife did the swim with the dolphins at DRC. Unforgettable experience for her and myself. Just watching her and the group she was in interacting with the dolphins was almost as fun.. Great time at DRC. JUST DO IT!!

Helpful?
Thank mbrett653
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

You traveled a long way to see us and we greatly appreciate it. So happy to hear that you and your wife had a wonderful time and that she enjoyed doing the Dolphin Encounter. Thanks so much for including us in your vacation plans and for telling others about us with your review. More 

Florida
Level Contributor
24 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

It's a lovely facility where dolphins which have been rescued or born there live. There are multiple lagoons for them with viewing areas. You can tell that they are well cared for and loved. There's also a small theatre area with different films at various times along with a moderator explain and answering questions. We spent about 3 hours there... More 

Helpful?
Thank Beachsidegirl
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

We're so happy that you had a great time and that you've joined our family of members. We look forward to seeing you again soon. Thanks so much for your support, in person and in your review! More 

Belle Chasse, Louisiana, USA
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We had a great time there. Loved seeing the many dolphins real close. Had paid for a dolphin cruise in Key West before for $65/person and this is $28 for adults and way more worth it to me. There were a lot of iguanas roaming the grounds that were really cool looking. If you're not doing any of the dolphin... More 

Helpful?
Thank Karine T
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

It's important to us to provide a quality experience and give good value to each guest. We know that vacation budgets are always a consideration! Thanks so much for visiting. Whether you can stay for a couple of hours or all day, we present narrated behavior sessions with the dolphins and sea lions as well as other educational presentations throughout... More 

Neuchatel
Level Contributor
23 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Very well organized-it's not the tourist trap. You really are a guest. The whole team is passionate about dolphins. You'll love every minute, and the dolphins are curious, so be ready to feel like a kid again. Before going check their internet site, as some events may only be booked in advance. It is expensive, but the funds go for... More 

Helpful?
Thank HappyJohnNeuchatel
DolphinResearchCtr, Public Relations Manager at Dolphin Research Center, responded to this review

Every guest that comes through our doors helps to support our nonprofit mission. You are the reason that we can provide the best care and home for the dolphins and sea lions that live here, why we can continue to learn more about them through our research, and also why we can educate the public. Thank you so much for... More 

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