I did the dolphin swim in Puerto Vallarta. This was one of the best things I have ever done. You spend about 30 minutes in a big pool. There were three groups of eight in the very large salt water pool. Each group had two dolphins. The dolphins love to have their bellys rubbed. There are many "Kodak" moments and there is a videographer capturing all of them. Each person has a moment when both dolphins are kissing you on the cheeks and then you get to hug one. The finale is riding the dolphin around the pool.
Buy the video! Very Cool.
I did it in the Bahamas so I can't help you with the place on the Mexican Riviera, but I would do the swim over the encounter. When we did it the people who were doing the encounter wanted to change to the swim and couldn't as the spots were all filled. In the swim you get much more interaction with the dolphin. Kuki just wrote a great article on this. Its posted on the home page.
Celebrity Century 1/09
Carnival Destiny 10/07
Carnival Destiny 9/06
Monarch of the Seas 3/06
Carnival Inspiration 8/05
Carnival Miracle 4/05
Carnival Inspiration 4/04
Sovereign of the Seas 4/03
I'm doing this next month. Few questions. I hear it's about 20 minute cab ride from the marina. How much should I reasonably pay? Is there a decent place around the area to get lunch or should I get something before I leave? Is tipping normal?
We did it some years ago. I donot remember how much we paid for a cab, but check your rate before boarding a cab. The white cabs at the cruise-terminal are more expensive then the yellow ones along the highway.
Around Vta Adventures there are no restaurants, but you will find some in the area of Nuevo vallarta.
On the way back you might pay a different price for a cab, since you leave from a different state.
(Pto. Vallarta is in Jalisco, Nuevo Vallarta is Nayarit).