For this cruise we didn’t have anything planned beyond getting on the ship and enjoying ourselves. After we arrived at our room we had a booklet listing the excursion that were available for the following day at Nassau. When we both saw that swimming with the dolphins were available we agreed that we should do. It was something I had always wanted to do, so I was fine with shelling out the money for it. The option we chose was the shallow swimming with the dolphins and the aqua venture park. This allowed us six hours at Atlantis, swimming with the dolphins and access to their water park and all the rides. It cost us $150 per person.
The Atlantis property is awe inspiring huge. We had a guide that took our group from the ship to the property and directly to the water park section. It’s very easy to get lost and it can very easily take you 30 minutes from one side of the property to the other. We were assigned a time of 10:30am to swim with the dolphins. We had almost two hours before then, so we started riding all the water rides. It was nice being at the property that early, because most of the resort guests were still sleeping or just getting up. This means no lines for the rides, lockers or beach chairs.
There are six water slides available on the property. They are the Leap of Faith (the one you see on all the commercials), challenger slide, the abyss, the surge, the drop, serpent slide, the falls and the jungle slide. The first ride we went on was the abyss and this is a pretty crazy slide. You are completely inclosed in a tube with rushing water. As soon as you push yourself off there is a drop that puts your heart in your mouth. There is eventually a opening in the tube that I thought meant you were at the end of the ride. This is not the case!!! I opened my mouth and choked on water the rest of the way down. At the end of the ride you are spit out into a cave with aquariums. This is definitely a thrill ride that will give you a rush.
The challenger slide is two slides side by side and you race someone to the bottom. The serpent slide was and still is my favorite ride. This ride requires a tube, single or two person. This ride is also enclosed and towards the bottom you spit out into a clear container, where you can observe all the sharks and fish swimming around you. We also rode the drop, the surge and the falls. They are all open water slides that require either a single or two person tube. They are very fast slides!! I also went on the leap of faith. Since I was at Atlantis I had to ride it at least once . . . and once was enough. I was scared to ride this and it’s terrifying (at least to me) to sit at the top staring straight down the slide wondering how you can possibly survive it and not fall into the shark infested waters below. I had to force myself to push off (with my heart in my stomach) and go down. It was over in a few seconds and you don’t really see the sharks as you go by them.
We walked to the dolphin cay where we were suited up in a tight wetsuit . . . did I mention tight? Then our group (maybe around 6 or 7 people) were shuttled into a room where we watched a short informational video on dolphins and how to interact with them. We were then taken to a section of the pool, with our instructor, and met our dolphin Noah. Noah was at Atlantis with two of his siblings, who were rescued during Hurricane Katrina and brought to Atlantis to recover from their injuries. Noah was such a sweet dolphin!! We spent around a hour with Noah and the instructor will answer any questions that you have about dolphins, in fact they really encourage questions. We were able to feed Noah, have pictures taken with him, and he performed tricks for us. Noah has quite the personality! He was constantly swimming away and stealing brother and sister from other groups and bringing them back to our group. There were multiple times we had 3 dolphins interacting with us and it was a blast!!!
|Noah doing tricks|
|One of my favorite pictures from my travels.|
Afterwards we purchased our pictures (the only way to get pictures). You are not allowed to take your camera to swim with the dolphins. If you want any pictures you have to purchase them from Atlantis. They have different package options available and we chose to purchase a cd and split the cost. The rest of the day we spent riding the water slides and lazy river. We unfortunately didn’t take a look at the aquariums while we were there, but I hear wonderful things about them. We also had to purchase lunch while we were there. The food and drinks were slightly pricey. Overall, I’m so glad we chose this excursion and were able to swim with the dolphins. It was such a blast and this day was the highlight of our cruise. However you do have to pay for a locker to use during the day, lunch and any drinks and this can add up to be a pricey day. The resort itself is beautiful and there is so much to see and do. I have no doubts I will be back again.