Dolphin Swim Australia gave us the unique experience of swimming with wild dolphins at NSW’s beautiful Nelson Bay and it was magnificent.
Dolphin Swim Australia operates the first and only permitted wild dolphin swim in NSW. The fantastic team have worked hard to create the first and only wild dolphin swim of its kind in the world.
A 5am start saw us up bright and early, excited and not knowing exactly what to expect as we departed Nelson Bay marina. It was clear as soon as we boarded the boat that the entire Dolphin Swim Australia team are very professional and extremely passionate about what they do and the safety of their local, wild marine life.
My brother joined me on the experience, and we were suited up in our wetsuits, snorkel and goggles as we listened to the safety briefing and training. Jacob and I sat there with big, goofy grins as the nerves and anticipation started to kick in.
The boat was packed, with some people visiting as far away as Switzerland to take part in the amazing interaction. We were assigned to group three, giving us the chance to watch the first two groups glide through the water only metres away from dolphins, including a couple of tiny baby calves which was incredible. One of our instructors pointed out how wobbly the little fella was in the water as he leapt out with his mother, still learning the ins and outs of diving.
By the time it was our turn to dive, we were jumping out of our skin to get in the water. We entered the net, grabbed onto the rope and with guidance from our swim leader, slid into the water where we were pulled gently with the boat. Dolphins love noise, so we screamed and yelled as much as we could to keep them entertained.
There were around 5 dolphins swimming with us excitedly through the water as close as 2 metres from us. The only way to explain how I felt is pure joy. I have never experienced anything like it.
We spent around 15 minutes with the beautiful creatures and climbed out exhausted and exhilarated. My brother looked at me and said, “holy moly that was the coolest thing I have ever done” and I had to agree with him.
With tonnes of photos taken by the swim team throughout the day and a video of each group in the water, you can remember the experience for the rest of your life. I know I’ll never forget it and will without a doubt do it again in the near future. You’re even given a certificate of achievement at the end which I have proudly displayed on my desk at work.
Swimming with dolphins in captivity is a common tourist attraction around the world, yet many of these dolphins die prematurely due to stress or illness. Swimming with people in shallow pools and towing people through the water are not natural behaviours of these beautiful mammals.
In 2010 CEO Andrew Parker fulfilled his dream, creating a program in which wild dolphins choose to swim with humans in their own natural habitat, and in which no harm comes to either species.
After thorough research and regulation, the swim ensures that the team never chase or harass dolphins and that no harm comes to any dolphins as a result of each swim with them.
I encourage everyone to book in with Dolphin Swim Australia to experience the pure beauty of our beautiful marine life in their natural habitat. A unique, ethical, spiritual and exciting adventure, you’ll absolutely love it!