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Dolphin & Whale Encounters

The Turks & Caicos Islands are truly blessed given the number of whales and dolphins we see throughout the year, both inside the reef (in the shallows) and off shore (outside the reef) in the big blue.

We make a habit and a concerted effort to always try and get in the water with these amazing mammals.

Dolphins

JoJo
Our most famous dolphin, JoJo, is a legend in his own right and has been cruising our shores, surfing boat wakes, surprising divers and playing with swimmers for close to four decades. He is a Bottlenose dolphin and is frequently seen between Grace Bay and Parrot Cay. His scarred body makes him easy to identify and he has also been seen to commune with other blue water dolphins out in the ocean.

Family
Over the years it seems JoJo has had mates and offspring. Most recently it is very common to find JoJo hanging around a mother and an amazingly curious tiny female calf (Bo and Scooter). The young ones’ behaviour is uncannily similar to how JoJo was in the late 80’s and 90’s, allowing for some truly amazing and extremely close encounters.

Others
There are numerous pods of Bottlenose dolphins that live on the Caicos Bank which we sometimes see on our way to West, French or South Caicos. More common are the larger open ocean pods of both Bottlenose and Atlantic Spotted dolphins which we see on our snorkel and dive adventures.

Guest appearances
In the winter months we sometimes see pods of Pilot Whales, large, muscular dolphins, second only in size to Killer Whales. These deep divers, cruise past our drop offs looking for squid and other denizens of the deep.

Whales

Humpback Whales
By far the most common whales to visit these islands, they pass outside our reefs during the latter stages of their annual mating and calving migration to the tropics, from December to April. At 30-45’ long, these stunning leviathans are the highlight of our season and year. To see them is one thing, to swim with them will take your breath away.

Rarities
Every once in a while, if we are really lucky, we might see Sperm Whales or Bottlenosed whales. Both are rarely seen here, and both are able to dive extremely deeply, hence surface sightings are few and far between.

Encounters – soft in water

We are always on the lookout for dolphins and whales and always want to try and see if we can swim with them. As always, when it comes to mother nature, we don’t always get what we want, when we want. Guarantees of seeing much less swimming with them is pointless. They are wild and that’s what makes any encounter so utterly compelling and addictive.

Our approach is, if we don’t try, we’ll never know. While JoJo and his companions are fairly easy (relatively) to “encounter”, open ocean experiences range from boat only viewing to full on in water encounters. More often than not, dolphins will put on a surface show. In water, they might come to check us out and if interested, stay. If not, they swiftly move on and the show is over.

Humpback whales on the other had are a whole different ball game. During peak activity of the winter months, we “bend” all our snorkel, dive and private boat charter trips to increase our chances of finding and seeing them. Our team are seasoned experts in how to correctly approach whales and more significantly are often able to get our guests in water to see them. There are however, NO GUARANTEES, except for trying. It is a waiting game, that requires patience and respect. We don’t chase whales! We watch and learn to make the right move. Sometimes that means, leaving them alone. Sometimes it means gambling and sometimes it means joining them on their swim. If you get to see them you are super fortunate, if you swim with them you will never forget the experience. Join us.

Best trip options – Edge of the Banks, Snorkel Ecotour, diving or any private charter (half or full day)

What to bring and what to wear

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Mask, fins & snorkel

We provide them (cressi), you can always bring your own

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Wetsuits

Sometimes a good idea in winter,
we also can offer these
before departure

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Rashguards

Excellent sun protection, more reliable than sunscreen as you don’t have to reapply. We sell these

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Sun screen

highly recommended but it must be 100% bio degradeable. We do sell an excellent variety

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Hat

A hat is always a good idea
when on the ocean

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Sunglasses

sunglasses are also very useful in the tropical glare

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Water

Drink lots and stay hydrated.
We provide water

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Camera

Is of course a great way to
capture the magic.
Gopros rock!

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Towel

You can’t have
enough of them.

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Clothing

A long sleeve top to keep you warm is always a good idea after a long day on the boat

  •   My family and I (my wife, my daughter and her fiancé, my other daughter, my mother (76) and myself) charted a 30ft Power cat for a full day on Christmas.... read more

    Jamie F
    1/01/2020

      Our family of 10 with kids ages 15-3 did a 1/2 day charter with Colin and Jake. It was a first class experience from the start. From the... read more

    Lbp1129
    12/27/2019

      Really glad you had a great time exploring the reefs and islands with Lee and Cole.
    Two very knowledgeable and experienced guides.
    Thank you so much for writing the review.... read more

    Daveydoggg
    12/26/2019
  •   Had the privilege to spend time with the kitesurfing team and these guys are great.

    Kudo to Christopher for making my kite days better !!!

    rogermontrealcanada
    12/26/2019

      Excellent snorkeling , professional crew, wonderful day of cruising and snorkeling ! Collin was the best snorkeling guide and JC was fantastic also. The boat was big enough for the... read more

    wwfrench
    12/24/2019

      We were looking for a snorkel tour as opposed to a boat that had snorkeling and boozing. This was the perfect trip for us. On... read more

    Mike W
    12/24/2019
  •   I was not very happy with my experience. The weather was not good for paddle boarding, which of course I totally understand, but instead of calling me and telling me... read more

    I5508ADD
    12/24/2019

      Guides Ricco and and Aisha were attentive and excellent at pointing out wildlife in the clear shallow waters along the mangroves. We saw sea turtles, young lemon sharks sting rays... read more

    sherih363
    12/21/2019

      Fantastic day of snorkeling. The best snorkeling I've done in TC islands over the 5 times ive been there. This is the second trip I went out with... read more

    tec660
    12/20/2019
  •   This was probably the best Caribbean excursion I've done. Ricco was the BEST - very sharp eyes, was great at pointing wildlife out and checking in on every kayaker. Would... read more

    407fayef
    12/17/2019

      My husband and I just got back from our Cay cruise and it was AMAZING!!! The staff was so friendly and helpful and our captain Collin was fantastic! Will for... read more

    370allied
    12/17/2019

      We have done the Caicos Cays Cruise three times in the past 4 years. Each cruise gets better and better. This most recent time was by far the best!... read more

    bethanywilladsen
    12/17/2019
  •   Definitely recommend this tour.. the reef, fish and scenery were unmatched !! We will be doing this one again in our next trip!

    Elizabeth D
    12/15/2019

      We did the mangrove and iguana island eco tour. This was probably the best tour we have ever taken. We were beginner kayakers but our guide Ricco was the... read more

    theadmiral1
    12/15/2019

      Beautiful! Rico was great! Very knowledgeable and informative. Turtles, sharks, Rays, jelly fish and iguanas! Thanks for a great day!!!

    Rvingfrombaja
    12/14/2019
  •   We went on the Caicos Cays boat tour and I have to say this was the best snorkeling/boat tour I've ever been on, and I have been on many such... read more

    lisa z
    12/12/2019

      We rented a tandem kayak twice during our stay. Took ourselves over to Iguana Island and to the mangroves. The staff were friendly, equipment in good condition and we... read more

    happiholiday
    12/10/2019

      You need reservations for this so call or email ahead of time. Also note that this is an early morning activity during high tide. Mangroves are beautiful and crawling with... read more

    dandytime
    12/10/2019