The list of amazing things I did during my recent Journey to Hawaii is almost endless. And right up near the top of that list is swimming with wild dolphins off Kailua-Kona on the Big Island.
Swimming with dolphins is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time now. And it’s something that’s been offered in quite a few places I’ve visited over the last few years. But until now, I’ve always resisted the temptation. Because I was determined to swim with dolphins in the wild, not in a tank or artificial pool.
And now I’ve done it!
We were taken out by Captain Glenn and David of Neptune Charlie’s, and it couldn’t have been better. We were on the Big Island in early December, which is the lull between the summer season and the Christmas and whale-watching seasons. This turned out to be a bonus for us, since we were the only ones booked for the dolphin excursion that morning.
We left the harbour and headed out into the bay off Kailua-Kona. And almost immediately saw our first dolphins a few hundred yards away.
As you can imagine, it was very cool to see Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins doing their thing in the wild. And when they decided to come and have some fun in our bow wake, we were all giddy with excitement.
Then David told us to put on our snorkelling gear and the real fun began.
(Clarification: Rich, Sue and Lori put their snorkelling gear on. Being only 3½ inches tall, they don’t make snorkelling equipment small enough for me, of course.)
The next hour or more remains a bit of a blur. An exhilarating blur.
With guidance from David, Glenn would pilot the boat out in front of where the dolphins were currently heading. Once there, and with everything safe, David would announce, “Pool’s open!”, and we’d all jump in.
Then, after the dolphins had passed by, David would call, “Back on the boat!” and we’d clamber aboard, breathless to repeat the procedure.
It seemed that each time we entered the water, the dolphins would come closer and closer to us. Floating there, with their sleek, muscular bodies circling around and beneath us, was a truly remarkable experience.
Thanks to Glenn and David’s expertise and enthusiasm – and the dolphins’ cooperation, of course – it really was everything I’d always hoped swimming with dolphins would be. An encounter of a lifetime!
And our experiences with Neptune Charlies weren’t over. That very evening we were out again, this time swimming with wild manta rays!
And if that’s not enough for you, there are now three Jaspa’s Journey novels to enjoy as ebooks! Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!