|Appears in||Mario Kart 8 (2014)|
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (2017)
|Staff Ghost||2:19.160 by Nin★Skip (8)|
(Wendy with the Landship, Wood, and Bowser Kite)
2:14.832 by Nin★Skip (8 Deluxe)
(Wendy with the Landship, Wood, and Bowser Kite) (150cc)
1:38.911 by Nin★Polly (8 Deluxe)
(Ludwig with the Steel Driver, Blue Standard, and Bowser Kite) (200cc)
|Online play||Available (Wii U, Switch)|
Dolphin Shoals is the second race course of the Star Cup of Mario Kart 8 and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. This course takes place on a beach with dolphins swimming around and an undersea cave with a large Unagi. Dolphins here appear and swim by the racers in the shallow waters. Multiple dolphin shaped hills can be seen in the background. It is the last new course in the game with an underwater section.
This course has three music themes that alternate mid-race depending on which portion of the course the highest-placed human player is in, with the first version playing in shallow water, the second version playing in the sea depths, and the third version playing on dry land. On the final lap, a faster variant of the dry land music with added whistles plays instead for the entire course, unlike most other lap-based courses in which the final lap music is simply a sped up, slightly higher-pitched version of the regular music. When viewing Highlight Reels, an extended version of the dry land theme with a saxophone solo plays instead, but when racing, the music loops before the solo begins, similarly to Super Bell Subway's music. Dolphin Shoals is the only course in the Mario Kart series to start underwater.
The course starts in a lake. On either side of the start/finish line, Toads wearing scuba diving gear can be seen floating up and down in the water. There is a left turn coming out of the lake and then leading back underwater with three ramps in the section - one is on the left, one is on the right, and one lays straight ahead. There are rings situated in the air past the ramps, which Dolphins also jump through. After that section, still underwater, there is a left turn, at which the point the music switches to its deep sea variant in the first two laps. The turn leads the players to an undersea cave, where two paths split. The left path leads to an area where players float above Pipes generating currents keeping the player floating, which they can also perform Jump Boosts on. The right path is a shortcut split with two other paths, one with the current-generating pipes going to a platform with a Dash Panel and one leading to a small cave section with two more Dash Panels.
When the two paths meet, there is a Dash Panel which players jump over along with more water bubble pipes, and a big Unagi. Players can drive over and perform tricks off the Unagi's body, where coins also appear. If players fall off it, they can just drive under it. After that, players leave the water and go into anti-gravity by jumping off a ramp out of the cave, at which point the music switches to its dry land variant in the first two laps. The ramp leads to a platform held with rocks that are almost tilted sideways. There are then two more ramps, the second of which is a Glide Ramp. Players fly over a water rapid then land back on the track where there are a few more turns, going back underwater and leading to the finish line, with the music cycling back to its shallow water variant for the second lap.
When Lakitu is holding the start signal, he is shown on the right side of the player. When crossing the finish line to start another lap, he is also shown on the right side of the player, holding the lap count signs.
- At the end of the course, just before the Start/Finish line, a Mushroom boost can be used across the sand to bypass the final turn of the lap.
Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- Mario Kart Facebook page: Next stop: Dolphin Shoals – an underwater paradise in Mario Kart 8 where blue Spiny Shells glisten in the sunlight and shortcuts hide behind every reef. 
- Nintendo Magazine 2022 Summer: "Aquatic creatures swim around this beautiful, marine track. You can enjoy some underwater encounters with animals like dolphins and manta rays. Be careful, though! You may spot gigantic Maw-Ray in a certain area in the tracks!"
Mario Kart 8 Original Soundtrack liner notes
"On this track we used a nylon-stringed acoustic guitar to give it a gentle feel. We then added the samba rhythms, which I think fit that tone perfectly. The musical arrangement for the depths of the ocean adds a touch of mystery to proceedings.
On Dry Land
"We made the background music for this course completely change to try to get across the dynamic shifts in the landscape, with that liberating feeling of emerging from the water onto dry land. Kazuki Katsuta's sax is a perfect fit for the seaside vibes, and makes for great driving music."
Yoshi at the starting line
The Unagi in the underwater cavern
Rosalina approaching the glider ramp
Ludwig approaching the glider ramp
Rosalina and Waluigi perform a trick after passing the glider ramp.
The stamp obtained for beating the staff ghost for this course
Names in other languages
|French||Lagon Tourbillon||Swirl Lagoon|
|Italian||Laguna Delfino||Dolphin Lagoon|
|Portuguese||Lagoa do Golfinho||Dolphin's Lagoon|
|Spanish||Cala Delfín||Dolphin Cove|
- Mario Kart Facebook Page
- Nintendo Magazine 2022 Summer (Digital English edition). nintendo.co.jp. Retrieved August 16, 2022.