The waters off South Padre Island are home to several resident dolphin pods. If you are out on the water, you will you often see them playing in the wakes of boats and swimming through the clear waters hunting for fish. If you would like to see dolphins on your vacation, there are several dolphin watch South Padre Island companies on the island that will take you to different spots where the dolphins are often found.
About Dolphin Watching
Cetaceans are animals that include numerous species such as porpoises, beluga whales, narwhals, blue whales, and of course, those loveable dolphins. In fact, the Gulf of Mexico contains about 20 different species from this infraorder of aquatic mammals. Fortunately for most Americans who would like to see them, all it takes is an excursion to South Padre Island! With all of the tour boat operators around town, visitors will definitely have the opportunity to see dolphins in their natural habitat.
Oftentimes when we travel, it can be difficult to find attractions and excursions that everyone agrees on, however an itinerary that includes dolphins will surely entertain everyone in your crew. Additionally, most of these dolphin watch boats offer more than just dolphins frolicking in the water; in fact, visitors can take a sunset cruise, go deep-sea fishing or fly through the air on a parasail as well.
The Original Dolphin Watch
The Original Dolphin Watch offers daily Dolphin Watch Eco-Tours. There is a Dolphin Watch Morning Special which leaves at 11 a.m., a Dolphin Watch Eco-Tour which departs at 1:30 p.m., and a Dolphin Watch Sunset Tour which departs at 6 p.m.
The crew of the Double Sunshine will take you out on the Laguna Madre where they will drag a net along the bottom of the ocean floor to bring some of the sea life up into their on-boat saltwater tanks. The crew members will give a presentation on the sea life and you will have the chance to view the organisms up close. After the crew puts the sea life back into the ocean, they will take you around Laguna Madre to follow the dolphin pods that live in the area.
All trips are BYOB, but glass is not allowed on the boat. Each trip departs from the Sea Ranch Marina and lasts two hours. Trips cost $13 for adults and $10 for children. The Dolphin Watch South Padre Island Morning Special lasts an hour and a half and costs $10 for both adults and children.
South Padre Island Dolphin Watch
South Padre Island Dolphin Watch offers daily dolphin watch tours on their newly remodeled boat, Murphy’s Law. Each trip lasts an hour and a half and takes you around the island to see several bottlenose dolphin pods in their natural habitats. The trip will take you past the U.S. Coast Guard Station, Boca Chica Beach, and the South Padre Island Jetties.
During the trip, crew members will use a special net to drag up sea life from the ocean floor. The sea life will be brought on board where you will have the chance to view it up close before the crew members put the sea life back in the bay.
Trips depart daily from the Sea Ranch Marina at 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m., and 7 p.m. All trips are $10 per person, children under 2 are free, and dogs are allowed on the boat. Bookings must be made online at least 48 hours ahead of departure.
More Aquatic Fun
As mentioned above, there are many different species of mammal in the Gulf of Mexico, yet two most sought-after in the water definitely have to be the bottlenose and/or spinner dolphins. The difference between the two is that bottlenose dolphins tend to be much larger and have shorter rostrums while spinner dolphins display why they received their name with the amazing acrobatics they perform when leaping out of the water. Moreover, the tour operators have taken so many visitors out upon these waters that the crew has become personally acquainted with the dolphins.
In addition to these interesting, intelligent animals, visitors can also see myriad wildlife throughout the tour. If you would like to see more wildlife around South Padre Island, visit the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, it is one of the Lone Star State’s hidden gems. With more than 97,000 acres, the wildlife refuge provides a diverse ecosystem that allows for activities such as bird watching, hiking, hunting, fishing and photography. When you return to South Padre Island, the comfortable and convenient vacation homes from Franke Rentals will provide everything you need to experience the best that this island has to offer.
Planning Your Stay
If you are looking for accommodation on South Padre Island, consider booking one of our vacation rentals. Our vacation homes range from two bedroom condos to large four bedroom homes. All of our rentals have gorgeous views of the ocean and surrounding island and are just steps away from the beach. For more information, contact one of our rental specialists today.