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  • Writer's pictureJessie Ladipo

10 Unique Animals to Swim with on a Trip

Expand your thinking beyond dolphins! By far, the number one excursion request we get from clients heading to tropical destinations is to Swim with Dolphins. It is indeed a fantastic experience, and we loved doing it ourselves! However, beyond dolphins, many other animals would offer incredible and unforgettable swimming encounters for your next vacation. Here are our favorite nine unique animals to swim with on your next trip.

Sea Turtles

Offered in many countries, swimming with sea turtles, but it is quite prevalent in places like Curacao, Bonaire, and Aruba. There are multiple resorts where find nests of turtle eggs. Imagine the memories you will have from helping the baby turtles make it safely to the sea!


Swimming with the dolphins was so 20-teens. The hot animal to swim with now is these cuties. Swimming with the pigs is the next big thing. We can't wait to do this ourselves! Exuma is relatively easy to get to, and it is the go-to destination for anyone that wants to swim with pigs.


We got to swim with the Manatees in Cozumel on a recent trip. But many destinations offer Manatee swims, if you are looking for something a little closer to home, Florida is a great option. It was one of the highlights of our Disney Cruise. Manatees are so gentle, and they will come to give you a big hug. The boys especially loved when they would roll over and let them rub their tummies. Besides, look at that face! Don't you want him to be happy? He would be so delighted if you feed him some lettuce!

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Sea Lions

Sea Lions are a ton of fun. Like dolphins, they love interacting with people. Warning: you will be on the receiving end of tons of sloppy kisses. You can swim with sea lions in many destinations, but I am very fond of the park, we went to Cozumel, Chankanaab National Park. They have dolphins, manatees, alligators, and sea lions available for play. Talk about a full day.

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Polar Bears

Thought this list was limited to warm weather animals, think again. Yes, you can swim with polar bears. Unlike many of the other animals, polar bear swims are only available in Ontario. I've heard if you are kind to them, the bears will give you a Coke, and introduce to you Santa.


The Aussie's have their "Cage of Death" for those of you that find the manatees and the sea lions a little too tame. I'm pretty sure this is safer than it looks and sounds. On a completely unrelated note, we have a Release of Liability form for you to sign.


You can't tell me this doesn't look fun! I would go to Phuket right this instant if I could snorkel with the elephants. Unfortunately, swimming with elephants is only in Thailand. Worth the trip, am I right?

Photo taken at Grand Cayman (During our Disney Cruise)


Many places offer swimming with the stingrays, but Grand Cayman is the grandaddy of stingray swims. We did a lot of animal swims on our Disney Cruise (yes, we even swam with the dolphins). The stingrays were a little weird, though. They were somewhat slimy and would give me the creeps when they would swim by my legs!


Of course, we had to throw in horses, we live in Kentucky after all! You can swim with horses in many places, but I think Ocho Rios, Jamaica has some of the best beaches for swimming with horses. We were just there, and we really wanted to do this but we had a limited amount of time and were forced to choose between horses and Dunn’s River Falls (totally a great excursion, the climb is pretty challenging) Next time we are in Jamaica though, we will try this.


Cue the "Jaws" theme! Yes, you can take a dip with sharks, if you dare. For the more adventurous among us, try a cage dive with Great White Sharks in Australia. Want to make sure that you live to see another day? Try snorkeling with the Whale Sharks in Isla Mujeres, Mexico.

Anyone of these excursions would enthrall all your Instagram followers. Would you skinny dip with any of these animals? OK, you don't have to be naked, but the animals most likely will be! Haha.

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