10 Gorgeous Spots to Swim With Sharks
Are you brave enough to try it?
Photo By: Getty Images/Sergio J. Pitamitz
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Photo By: James Moskito Great White Adventures
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Rangiroa, French Polynesia
On the Tahitian island of Rangiroa in French Polynesia, you don't need scuba gear to swim with sharks. When the current flows from the ocean into the lagoon, snorkelers can drift along and observe the reef sharks that gather here to feed.
Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia
Secreted on Australia's remote west coast, Ningaloo Reef is one of the most breathtaking and pristine places on Earth. Here you can swim with gentle whale sharks, or, if you're lucky, a humpback whale.
Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Belize
Belize's so-called "Shark Ray Alley" in the sparkling Hol Chan Marine Reserve more than deserves its name. Here, you can spot harmless nurse sharks and small rays, making for the safest of adrenaline rushes.
Playa de la Paz, Mexico
The crystal-clear waters of Mexico’s Playa de la Paz are the perfect setting for spotting the world's biggest fish, the majestic whale shark.
Shark Reef Marine Reserve, Fiji
Only the steeliest of scuba divers seek out bull sharks, one of the most dangerous sharks for a human to swim alongside. But you can do precisely that in Fiji's Shark Reef Marine Reserve—alongside experienced guides, of course.
Port Lincoln, Australia
Of all the shark varieties in the world, few strike as much fear into the hearts of divers as the Great White. Brave adventurers (or crazy people, depending on who you ask) can test their mettle during supervised cage dives in Port Lincoln, Australia. Just don't stick your fingers through the bars.
Hawaii's Kauai island—nicknamed "the Garden Isle" for its dense tropical rainforest cover and dramatic cliffs—is a staggeringly beautiful backdrop for a shark dive. No need to worry: The whale sharks here are perfectly gentle.
Farallon Islands, San Francisco
Just 29 miles west of the Golden Gate Bridge, the craggy Farallon Islands are home to a bustling population of Great White Sharks—making San Francisco the only major metropolitan city in the world to have that honor. Lucky for you, local operator Great White Adventures hosts a caged-in dive for thrill seekers.
If swimming in the great ocean blue is too nerve-wracking, you can always swim with the colony of grey nurse sharks, Port Jackson sharks and wobbegong sharks at the Sea Life exhibit at Australia's Sydney Aquarium. No cage required, we promise.
Nosy Be, Madagascar
Whale sharks abound in the bright blue waters around Nosy Be, a petite island just off the coast of Madagascar. Divers come from all over the world to gawk at this huge population, which has recently set off a boom of ecotourism.