Dolphin Watching On Indian River Florida

dolphin surfing a boat wake
Dolphin surfing the boat wake

A day spent on the Indian River in Florida was an easy adventure. Just south of the Kennedy Space Center the water and land intertwine making a sanctuary for marine life and water birds sharing the space with expensive estate homes and marinas.

Indian River shore
The coast from the Indian River

Recently we took advantage of a Groupon and booked a morning excursion with Good Natured River Tours and we had a great time. Cruising out of the marina next to Grills Riverside restaurant the trip went out on the Indian River and circled back toward Banana River and the tip of Merritt Island.

A number of dolphins seem to have made their permanent home in these sheltered waters and in addition to raiding crab traps they really love surfing in the wake of boats. That alone makes the trip worthwhile.

feeding frezy

Brown pelicans, anhingas, herons and gulls where everywhere. At one point the water near the riverbank was a froth and we went over to take a look. It seemed a large school of fish had come in and the seabirds, along with a few dolphins were taking advantage of the situation. The water was an explosion of froth, wings and flippers with hundreds of anhingas sticking their heads out of the water or bursting into flight.

All along the river’s banks were trees and boat sheds with the nests of Osprey decorating their tops, where male Osprey were hoping that there handiwork would attract a female.

Onboard everyone was busy with phones and cameras trying (hoping) they would be fast enough to catch a photograph of a dolphin as their dorsal fins broke the surface. Not an easy job. The sky was blue and the temperature pleasant and the crew were very knowledgeable about the wildlife and area. It ended back at the marina with a late lunch on the deck of Grills Riverside – highly recommended.

Grills restaurant
The deck at Grills


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