I just wanted to post our thoughts about our excursions. We took a Carnival cruise to Cozumel and Progreso in Mexico.
First, we went to Chankanaab Park in Cozumel (where Dolphin Discovery is). The park is beautiful. They have gardens to walk through, a small beach area (rocky by the water's edge though), restaurants on the beach and snorkeling spots. Also, they have a pretty lagoon where we saw a huge iguana! I did the Royal Swim with the dolphins. It was really fun. The dolphins are so gentle yet really fast and powerful! The trainers were very nice and clearly have great relationships with the dolphins. The facility is large and clean and the dolphins seem happy and healthy. I was worried about this type of activity and the treatment of the dolphins, but they really seem well cared for and happy. We worked with 2 dolphins, but before our group could go into the water, another trainer had to go and interact with another two dolphins that were in the area. Our trainer told us that the other two dolphins would keep swimming over to us if they did not have anyone to interact with them. I thought that was really cute and it made me feel like dolphins really like people. This was a great experience and made me love dolphins even more! They are amazing creatures! The snorkeling also was neat. We saw lots of fish! We are first time snorkelers so I have nothing to compare Cozumel to, but it seemed good to us! Schools of fish would swim right around us. The people at Chankanaab were very nice and friendly. We got a taxi from the ship. It is a fast trip to the park - about 15 minutes. The only drawback would be the rocky area around the beach.
Progreso was where we went cave snorkeling. We did not walk around the town of Progreso but rode a bus through it. This town did not look very big or developed, but I cannot talk too much because we only saw it from a bus. There was a beach area, but I didn't think it was as pretty as Cozumel. The cave snorkeling was awesome. The water is so clear and pretty and not cold at all. We had to ride in carts pulled by donkeys to get to the caves.The carts are wooden and move along rails. It kind of felt like a wooden rollar coaster only much slower of course! This area of Mexico is very rural, but the people were very nice. Also, our guides for this trip were great. When our bus went through some of the little towns, the kids all ran out and waved at the bus.
Sorry so long! Please feel free to ask any questions!