People have traveled thousands of miles to see this sunset and whether you are visiting or are lucky enough to call Cape Coral home, the show that nature puts on as the sun is setting over the our coastal waters never gets old.
Come along on our 1.5-hour Sunset & Dolphin Cruise to watch this nightly miracle take place, what a beautiful spectacle to see.
- Begin in Cape Coral about one hour before sunset
- Meanders through the canals and down the Caloosahatchee River
- Cruise out into San Carlos Bay
- Sight playful dolphins and other wildlife native to Southwest Florida
- Listen to the symphony of nature as you experience the breathtaking beauty of Southwest Florida at twilight
Whatever you do, make sure you don’t forget your camera so you can capture the beautiful colors of our unrivaled Florida sunsets.
What Is Not Included?
- Gratuity for the crew is not included in the ticket price. If you feel they did a good job, please let them know it. A 15% gratuity is average in the industry for a job well done.
- Refreshments and snacks are not included but can be purchased on board with cash. Guests are also encouraged to bring their own food and beverages. However, we do have one rule, NO red wine, other than that there are no restrictions.
- Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
- We highly recommend purchasing your tickets in advance, as tours very often sell out in advance. There is nothing better than knowing you have the day and time booked for the tour you want. Tickets can be purchased with Visa, MasterCard or American Express.
- Where do we go on the tour?
- While tours can vary slightly depending on certain circumstances, we generally explore the same area. The tour typically departs from the canals of Cape Coral, then journeys on the Caloosahatchee River out onto San Carlos Bay in the direction of Sanibel Island. During our journey we will see and learn about our dolphins and watch the sun go down before returning to Cape Coral.
- Does the tour go out into the Gulf of Mexico?
- No, we don't go that far out for a couple of reasons. In general, there's not much to see except water in the gulf as most of the local wildlife makes their home in the protected waters near the bays. And also, the waters of the bay are calm and better for a smooth ride.
- What do we see on the tour?
- While each tour will have a variety of things to see, none will be exactly alike. We focus on dolphins and the diverse wildlife of Southwest Florida. Plus we'll also see some of the most beautiful coastal islands filled with natural fauna and floral as we watch the sunset.
- Where does the tour leave from?
- The primary departure location is from Cape Harbour in southwest Cape Coral. However, for guests staying at the Marina Village Resort, we also offer a second pickup about 15 minutes after the initial departure. When booking your tickets, please let us know if you are a guest at the Marina Village Resort and would like to be picked up there.
- Do you cancel tours due to bad weather?
- Tours usually run in light rain and minimal weather conditions, but keep in mind some of our tours in light rain have seen some of the best wildlife and dolphin shows. Please note all our boats have a roof that runs the length of the boat. If we decide the weather conditions are unsafe we will cancel the tour. We monitor weather conditions right up to the departure time and cancellations are made by Banana Bay Tour Company up to one hour prior to your departure time. If we cancel the tour you will have the opportunity to reschedule based on availability or receive a credit towards a future tour.
- Can I get a refund or reschedule my tickets after buying them?
- Because we are guaranteeing your space on the boat, tickets cannot be refunded or rescheduled once purchased.
- Will I get wet on the tour?
- Most likely no. Our tour boats are fully covered on top, but the sides are open and if we have light rain or wind, we may get some sea spray or rain through the sides.
- Are children allowed? What about strollers?
- Yes, children of all ages are allowed as the tours are great for all ages and we do allow strollers on board for small kids. Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by an adult but we do offer a reduced-price ticket for children ages 3-11 and kids under 3 years old can come for free. Please note that due to Coast Guard rules all children are required to have a ticket, even a free Wee One ticket.
- Are food and beverages available during the tour?
- Light refreshments such as water, soda and snacks are available for purchase on board with cash only. However guests are more than welcome to bring their own food and drinks. Our goal is for everyone to have a good time and bring the food and beverages they enjoy. We do have one rule, NO red wine! The Captains do not like getting dry cleaning bills for red wine stains. In addition, we do also recommend bringing plastic cups, even for wine.
- Is there a restroom on the boat?
- Yes, we have restrooms on all of our boats.
- How smooth is the ride, am I likely to get seasick?
- Our tour boats are a dual-hull design which provides a very smooth ride. We also stay in the back bays so we do not encounter the big rolling waves like on the open ocean. We have not yet had anyone get seasick on our tours.
- Can we bring a cooler onboard?
- Yes, feel free to bring a cooler. We do recommend small coolers as they can generally be stored easily on the boat. Large coolers may have to be placed in areas away from your seats.
- Are the tour boats handicap assessible?
- No, unfortunately due to the tidal changes and constantly changing dock heights we are unable to be wheelchair-accessible.
- Is the trip safe for pregnant women?
- Our tours are safe, calm and comfortable. There are no restrictions for pregnant women, but we recommend consulting your doctor to be sure.
- What are the chances we will see dolphins on this tour?
- We guarantee you will see dolphins or your next trip is FREE. We do not give too many free trips simply because we have so many resident dolphins in Southwest Florida and it's unusual not to see them.
- Will we be able to feed, pet or touch the dolphins?
- Banana Bay Tour Company is a “Dolphin SMART” tour approved operator that strives to protect wild dolphins. Dolphins are protected by the national marine mammal act therefore we do not touch, chase, pursue, harass or feed wild dolphins as it is against the law.
- Is gratuity included in the price of the tour?
- A gratuity for your Banana Bay Crew is not included in the ticket price. If you had a great time and wish to recognize the contributions of your crew, you are welcome to give a gratuity and all gratuities are shared and appreciated. We are sometimes asked what is appropriate, and while it is entirely up to you, 15% is most common in the industry.
- Is there parking available nearby?
- Yes, there is free covered parking available in each of the two high-rise residential buildings in Cape Harbor. From the parking garage it is only about a one minute walk to the boat, which is docked behind Rumrunners Restaurant. For our guests of the Marina Village Hotel there is free parking in the hotel parking garage.
- Are there life jackets on board?
- Yes, per Coast Guard regulations we have life jackets for everyone on board, including adult and child life jackets. For infants we recommend you bring a life jacket that fits your small child.
- Is there any shade on the boat?
- All of our tour boats are fully covered on top, but expect the sun to shine in from the sides of the boat as they are open. Therefore, we'd still recommend sunscreen.
- What should I wear?
- While the top of the boat in covered, this is an open-air boat and therefore guests should dress according to the day's weather conditions. Keep in mind that it's often a little cooler on the water and during the evening you may want to consider bringing a light jacket or sweater.
- Should I bring a camera or binoculars with me?
- We definitely encourage guests to bring a camera or binoculars, as we never know what we are going to see out in the wild.
- Is there music on board?
- We do have a PA system that can be used for music, however we usually keep it off or very low so our guests can hear and enjoy the beautiful sounds of nature.
- Is smoking permitted during the tour?
- No, smoking is not permitted on board the boat.
- Do you offer gift certificates for your tours?
- Yes, gift certificates are available for purchase directly through Banana Bay Tour Company. If you wish to purchase a gift certificate, please click on the "Contact BananaBay" link.
- Are private charters available?
- Yes, if you would like to book a private group tour for one of our many unique ecological friendly tours or have one custom tailored for your needs, please click on the “Contact BananaBay” link and we will be happy to assist you whether you are planning a wedding or just a private party. Bay Tour Company will work with you to create the tour you have in mind.
- Non-refundable, cannot be rescheduled.
- Once purchased, tickets cannot be refunded and cannot be rescheduled because your space is being guaranteed at the event.
- Activity may be cancelled due to severe weather.
- The activity usually runs in light rain and other moderate weather conditions, but the seller may cancel the activity up to an hour before the start time in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. If the seller cancels the event, ticket-holders will be allowed to reschedule tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit for a future event.
- All participants are required to have tickets for this event.
- Our boat is United States Coast Guard documented for a certain amount of passengers and we cannot exceed the capacity. This means that all passengers, including infants and toddlers, must have a ticket.
Banana Bay Tour Company
Our goal is to educate and provide our guests with the opportunity to view nature at its best. To help ensure you have a great experience on the tropical waters of Southwest Florida, Banana Bay Tour Company keeps up to date with ecological knowledge through training programs. We are a proud member of the Society of Ethical Eco Tourism and we are a “Dolphin SMART” approved tour operator through “NOAA” the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “Dolphin SMART” is a voluntary recognition and education program encouraging responsible viewing of wild dolphins. It also includes an important research component that provides insight about the daily lives of local, wild dolphin populations.
Experiencing nature as it happens is what we do best. Come take a ride on the wild side and see the nature that abounds us here in Southwest Florida. We would love for you to be our guest on one of our ecological nature cruises.
Hope to see you aboard!