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Whale Shark Season on the Coral Coast

1-shark-flickr-Marcel_Ekkel
Photo credit: Marcel_Ekkel / Flickr

To the delight of locals and visitors, the world’s largest fish makes its way to Australia’s Coral Coast every year during the spring and summer months of March through August.

Although the whale shark’s size may cause apprehension among some onlookers, it’s not as ferocious as many might think. In fact, sightseers often take to the water to get a closer look at this gentle creature.

Swimming with the Sharks

Swimming with the sharks requires special training, so that one can learn how to behave safely while in the water. These creatures are large and can be potentially dangerous, if individuals do not treat the sharks with respect. It is also important to know how to use diving equipment safely and effectively, to avoid any hazards while at sea.

There are a number of companies that provide training in the Ningaloo and Exmouth areas, making it easier to experience the whale shark season. However, visitors should do the right research and consider the risks before trying to dive, especially if they have medical conditions.

Dive and Snorkel Tours

Perhaps the most efficient way to see whale sharks is to take a dive or snorkel tour where experienced divers guide visitors in the water. Prices for these tours vary, making it important to shop around to find the ideal rate. Tour providers typically have face masks, oxygen tanks, flippers and wet-suits available for use.

This significantly cuts down on the cost of taking a dive and the overall amount spent on excursions. Some operators do not provide all the equipment needed to dive, making it important to verify what’s included in a dive package before selecting a service provider.

2014 Ningaloo Whale Shark Festival

This exciting festival takes place Thursday May 22 through Sunday May 25 in Exmouth, WA. In terms of attractions, there are float parades, fire shows and beach games, among other fun activities. This makes the whale shark season even more fun and entertaining.

One can spend a day swimming with the sharks, then have fun with locals and fellow tourists at night, celebrating the coming of exotic sea-life to the Coral Coast. Families, friends and individual sightseers all have something to enjoy at this festival, including live entertainment.

According to Ningaloo Whale Shark Festival website, bands playing at the Whale Shark Festival include:

  • Tijuana Cartel;
  • Blue Shaddy;
  • Huge Magnet;
  • New Southland;
  • Grace Barbe Afro-Kreol.

Additional Sea Life

Although whale sharks are a major attraction during the summer months, they’re not the only creatures gliding through the waters of Australia’s west coast. Turtles are nesting, laying eggs and cruising alongside the whale sharks, adding to the fun of sightseeing.

The coral spawn takes place March through May, and adds to the number of fish in the area. There are so many different types of sea creatures along the Coral Coast that visitors are sure to be amazed by what they see. Of course, one can take pictures of all the sea life, which are fun to send to friends and family.

According to the Three Islands Whale Shark Dive, other creates present during the whale shark season include:

  • Dolphins;
  • Dugong;
  • Manta Rays;
  • Turtles;
  • Humpback Whales.

For those that enjoy nature, the whale shark season on the Coral Coast is the perfect time to catch a glimpse of exotic sea life. It is the ideal opportunity to see whales up-close and even swim alongside these majestic creatures.

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