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Marine Life & Conservation

The 10 Best Places to Snorkel with Sharks

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Swimming with sharks is an unbeatable experience and high on the wish list for many divers and snorkelers. Read on to discover the best places you can snorkel with these amazing animals.

1) South Africa

Diving in South Africa is synonymous with sharks and there are many opportunities to go snorkeling with sharks there as well. You can go cage diving with great white sharks at Gansbaai or snorkel with numerous blue and mako sharks off Cape Point.

Visit Seal Island near Simon’s Town to snorkel with ancient-looking broadnose sevengill sharks and bronze whalers. It is a fantastic place to go snorkeling and meet some of the 60,000 noisy cape fur seals that call the island home.

Hop on a plane from nearby Cape Town to Durban and you’ll be at another top shark diving and snorkeling destination, Aliwal Shoal at Umkomaas. There you can go snorkeling with oceanic blacktip sharks.

2) Mozambique

Inhambane in Mozambique, with its idyllic beaches stretching along the coastline, is the perfect place to base yourself for a beach and snorkeling holiday. There you will find an incredible reef system with areas that remain unexplored to this day. You can go snorkeling with whale sharks from Tofo Beach, go dolphin and whale watching or simply enjoy the reefs this area is known for.

3) Cuba

Cuba’s Jardines de la Reina is one of the best places for shark encounters in the Caribbean, where you can swim with dozens of different shark species in protected waters. Relatively off the radar, you won’t find any crowds at this destination.

Go snorkeling there to encounter Caribbean reef sharks, silky, lemon, nurse, bull, blacktip reef sharks and more. Shark sightings are pretty much guaranteed year-round, and you can even go snorkeling with crocodiles during your stay.

4) The Bahamas

The Bahamas designated its entire territorial waters as a shark sanctuary in 2011 and is one of the best places in the world to swim with sharks.

Bimini Island is the place to go for snorkeling with great hammerhead, lemon and Caribbean reef sharks. If you want to snorkel with oceanic whitetip sharks, be sure to take a trip to Cat Island in the Central Bahamas.

5) Indonesia

Raja Ampat’s Cenderawasih Bay is one of the best places to snorkel with whale sharks in Indonesia. The fishermen of Cenderawasih Bay give fish to the whale sharks to bring luck and there are numerous whale sharks in the bay.

Photo by Sebastian Pena Lambarri on Unsplash

Cenderawasih Bay also sits in one of the most sought-after dive destinations of the world, Raja Ampat. There you can encounter thousands of fish species, manta rays and hundreds of vibrant corals. If you are a certified diver, make sure you go diving in Raja Ampat during your trip to this special area.

6) The Maldives

Diving in the Maldives is synonymous with huge whale sharks, drifting over gorgeous coral reefs and endless pretty atolls. All of which you can enjoy as a snorkeler as well.

South Ari Atoll is the best place to go snorkeling with whale sharks, though you can also see them at Huvadhoo Atoll and Thaa Atoll in the south. Vaavuu Atoll, the easternmost atoll of the Maldives, offers unspoiled reefs and an abundance of marine life. Visit Alimatha Island in Vaavuu Atoll to go night snorkeling with numerous docile nurse sharks and huge stingrays.

7) French Polynesia

When it comes to romantic destinations for snorkelers, it doesn’t get much better than French Polynesia. Picture-perfect Moorea Island offers dedicated snorkeling safaris to meet blacktip reef sharks, whitetips, grey reef, tiger and lemon sharks. You can also go snorkeling with humpback whales.

Photo by Moon on Unsplash

8) Mexico

No Mexico snorkeling trip would be complete without going shark cage diving at Guadalupe Island. This is the only island in the world where you can snorkel with great white sharks in warm, calm and crystal-clear waters.

You can also go snorkeling with numerous whale sharks at Isla Mujeres on the Yucatan Peninsula.

9) The United Kingdom

The waters off the United Kingdom might be chilly but don’t be put off, they offer seasonal diving with basking and blue sharks.

Cornwall, in the southwest of England, is a prime spot to swim with both basking sharks and blue sharks during late spring and summer. You can also go diving with basking sharks at the Isle of Man and in Scotland.

10) Belize

If you love nurse sharks, don’t miss snorkeling at Shark Ray Alley in Ambergris Caye. There are numerous nurse sharks there, which you can snorkel with during dedicated snorkeling trips.

Photo by Ryan Geller on Unsplash.

With clear waters and beautiful reefs nearby, there is also plenty to experience after you’ve had your shark snorkeling fix.


Kathryn Curzon, a shark conservationist and dive travel writer for Scuba Schools International (SSI), wrote this article.

Scuba Schools International (SSI) is the largest professional business-based training agency in the world. For over 50 years now, SSI has provided the ultimate training experience for millions of certified divers, not only in Recreational Scuba, but in every training category: Freediving, Extended Range, Rebreather Diving, Mermaid, Swim and Lifeguard.

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Marine Life & Conservation

Whale and dolphin research expedition in the Caribbean

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The three-month whale and dolphin research expedition, Ti Whale An Nou, started May 15, 2021 and the objective is to register the number of whales, specifically sperm whales, and the routes they take in the Caribbean. The results will be used to determine what is needed to protect these large mammals. This expedition is coordinated by the Caribbean Cetacean Society and is made possible thanks to the partnership with the World Wide Fund for Nature Netherlands (WWF-NL) and the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA).

The name of the research project Ti Whale An Nou is a mixture of French Creole and English and it means ‘our little whales’. In the Caribbean, 33 out of the 90 known species of whales have been documented, which is more than a third of the world’s total diversity. This makes the Caribbean an essential habitat. The main objectives of this study are to assess population size, distribution, movements, social structure and vocal clans of Lesser Antilles sperm whales as well as improve knowledge on the other species. Vocal clans are social groups of whales that sound acoustically similar. The biggest threats to whales are noise from ship traffic or coastal development, pollution, hunting, and by-catch.

Migration and Numbers

The research of this expedition can make an important contribution to a better understanding of the population size and distribution of whales. Similar research has been conducted in previous years. The difference with this expedition is that the research area is extended and includes the region from Saba to Anguilla. Mammal presence and absence will be monitored in the Yarari Marine Mammal and Shark Sanctuary, around Saba, Saba Bank, St. Maarten and St. Eustatius. By comparing the results of this expedition with previously gathered data, concrete follow-up actions for the protection of the whales can be planned. This research mission receives great support by not only DCNA and WWF-NL, but from Corail Caraibes, Orange, the EDF Group Foundation, Animal Wellfare Institute, and Parc Naturel Régional de la Martinique as well.

Importance for other Caribbean islands

This research will provide an understanding of the migration routes of marine mammals and therefore an opportunity to improve the protection of these animals. A stable population of whales and dolphins is an indication of healthy oceans. In healthy oceans, fish stocks are stable which is important for the fisheries and the economy on the islands. Furthermore, whales play a significant role in capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. Each great whale isolates an estimated 33 tons of CO2 on average, thus playing their part in the fight against climate change.

Photo credits: Alexis Rosenfeld – all rights reserved

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Marine Life & Conservation

Jeff chats to… Kimberley Ray, Founder and CEO of Marine Conservation Network (Watch Video)

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In this exclusive Zoom interview, Jeff Goodman, Scubaverse Editor-at-Large, chats to Kimberley Ray, Founder and CEO of Marine Conservation Network, about her work and some of the issues around marine conservation.

As Founder and CEO of Marine Conservation Network, Kimberly started her passion for ocean and marine conservation as a teenager wanting to become a dolphin trainer. Her dad was a fisherman and took her boating nearly every weekend, and that is what motivated her to get involved with marine life and education. She received her marine biology degree and quickly realized that the oceans were under threat from plastic trash, overfishing, and lack of compassion for marine life. She initially began a company called “Sustainable Seafood Experience,” but realized more coverage and education was needed concerning the many issues involving ocean conservation.

She then incorporated MCN, Marine Conservation Network, and began a global effort to link ALL conservation organizations around the world so that knowledge can be shared and efforts in marine conservation could become more effective. She also developed a common language in her efforts to educate the general public on the issues facing our oceans, one that even the public can relate to and not just other scientists. To this end, she has implemented a new focus of a Youth Ambassador Program involving children around the world from the ages of 8–15 who are becoming actively involved in marine conservation efforts and spreading the word of this mission. A scholarship is awarded to those who stay with the program when they reach their majority and go on to college. Kimberly believes that the oceans are the lungs of the planet providing half of the oxygen we breathe, and if we kill the oceans, then we will die with it.

Find out more about Kimberley and her work at www.marineconservationnet.org.


Rather listen to a podcast? Listen to the audio HERE on the new Scubaverse podcast channel at Anchor FM.

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Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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