We suggest showing up at least 10-15 minutes early. The walk from the parking lot to the beach is about 5 minutes. If we have multiple sessions on the night you picked we may have other mermaids before or after you. If you are late unfortunately that time will be deducted from your session.
We provide the tails, as well as the accessories. (starfish for your hair, sea shell props, paint brush, fishing net, etc.) You need to wear your favorite swimsuit. The bathrooms are a 5 minute walk from the beach so please wear your suit to the session. You should also bring a towel and any other accessories you would like to be incorporated into your photo session! Also bring a quarter or 2 for public beach access parking.
Anyone! Babies as young as 3 weeks old have become mermaids with us, children, mermen, and even MERternity mermaids are welcome! Our oldest mermaid was 70 years old so you're never too old or too young!
For hair, we recommend beach waves. Check out our pinterest page for some ideas how to obtain that perfect mermaid look. We like to keep our mermaids natural looking, but as far as make up goes, we leave that up to you! You know best what makes you look like a stunning mermaid! We do not have anyone to help with hair and make up so this needs to be done prior to arriving for the experience.
Give us your best guess and we will bring different sizes to be sure you get the right fit. This is why it is important to show up early to your session. You may have to try on several tails before finding the one that is just right.
The price of your photo session does not include the cost of the tail, so while we provide the tail for your session, we will need it back for future mermaids. However, we do offer the option to purchase your tail if you choose!
The first mermaid is $75 and the cost is $50 per additional mermaid up to 4 mermaids. If you have more than 4 mermaids, you will need to schedule 2 sessions to be sure we have enough time to get photos of everyone. The only exception to this is our Mermaid Bachelorette Experience.
There is no age limit. Babies as young as 3 weeks old have become mermaids with us, children, mermen, and even MERternity mermaids are welcome! Our oldest mermaid was 70 years old so you're never too old or too young!
We have had many boys become mermen. We have an Aquaman trident for our mermen, and give them “manly” posses. We also have Hawaiian tribal necklaces to accessorize our mermen. If they don’t want to be a merman, but want to be included in the photoshoot with their sister, mom, or friend, we also have shark fins and surfer poses they can do. This would not be a full session and is a $20 add-on at the time your session is scheduled. Becoming a merman is a regular session price.
The weather in Hilton Head is changing constantly. If it is calling for bad weather at the time of your session, we will make the call the day of your session. (There is always a chance it may clear up last minute). We will try our best to reschedule your session, however if we are unable to reschedule, we would issue a full refund.
That is up to you! Nothing beats a mermaid photo on the beach with a beautiful reflection in the sand. However, that reflection only happens on wet sand. Most mermaids like water, however there are those who prefer to stay dry. We never force anyone to get in the water.
No. We allow 10 minutes of mermaid time to flop around in the tail and play in the water (ideal for younger mermaids) but due to such strong currents off of our Hilton Head coastline, we do not allow you to swim in the tails in the ocean. We do offer Mermaid-U Swim School however, if you would like to learn how to swim in a tail safely.
Yes! Water is provided to all guests prior to departure, but please feel free to bring your own snacks and drinks. We strongly recommend reusable bottles versus single-use plastics to reduce plastic waste that ends up in our oceans.
Dolphins are wild, like Mermaid Nina, and while we can always guarantee a mermaid sighting, dolphin sightings are not as reliable. We see dolphins on almost every tour however we cannot promise that they will be out. Luckily Mermaid Nina is friends with a lot of them, and they do like to swim around her when she is around, giving you a good chance of a close encounter with them.
Yes! Mermaid Nina is real! She is not animatronic, and we are not referring to manatees when we say "Mermaid Tour". Mermaid Nina is a real-life mermaid who will swim up to our boat for the most magical encounter you will ever have!
Our Mermaid Encounter Boat Tours are fun for all ages, but we find it is best suited for 12 and under, as it is focused more on magic with a touch of learning.
Our Mermaid Ocean Education Tour is for all ages. This one is more suited for more grown up kids who want to learn about the ocean and how to protect it. We have had large groups on adults go on this tour and they said it was the most fun they've had on their vacation.
If you are an adult, you do not need to wear a life jacket. Life jackets are provided for children and we do ask that they wear them, as we have had several little ones try to jump in the water with the mermaid.
Bring an empty bladder, sunscreen (reef-friendly is always best!), and a camera for some mermazing photo opportunities. You can bring snacks and drinks with you if you want. Note: The boat is covered, and mostly shaded, however depending on its position, there may be times you are still exposed to the sun, so reef-friendly sunscreen is recommended.
We watch the weather closely as it changes constantly in Hilton Head. If the tour needs to be cancelled due to weather we will let you know as soon as the Captain makes the call. We will either schedule your family on another tour if there is space or we will move the tour to another time. If we are unable to reschedule, we will issue a full refund.
Yes. Once we meet Mermaid Nina, she will swim up to the boat and talk with the kids. She will leave time for photos once they have earned their badges and she will pose behind each child who wants a photo.
Unfortunately there is not a lot we can do if seasickness occurs. If we are nearby the marina we can drop you off, however once we leave the marina, we are typically further away from it. If you have history of motion sickness please take the proper precautions prior to boarding our boat.
The price of your class does not include the cost of the tail, so while we provide the tail for your class, we will need it back for future mermaids. However, we do offer the option to purchase your tail if you choose!
The class is 60 minutes long. This includes an intro about Ocean Conservation and your duty to protect the ocean as a mermaid, how to perform a technically correct dolphin kick with a mono fin, mono fin safety and quick removal, and finally how to swim in a full mermaid tail safely, and then fun activities such as swimming through hula hoops, retrievals, bubble kisses, combined with free swim time.
Safety and quick release are an important part of the class, so you can feel free to bring you tail to class, however if it does not meet the safety requirements for the class, our swim instructors will make the decision to have you use one of ours instead.