Beyond any doubt, the Mexican Caribbean offers plenty of activities to make your stay a most enjoyable one. Cancun is an incredible destination for the lovers of Nature and extreme sports, because of the many different options.
One of the most exciting and fascinating excursions can be taken between the months of May and September. Swimming with whale sharks is clearly one of the activities you can’t miss on your “to-do-in-Cancun” list. Tourists from all over the world come to enjoy this beautiful event on the Gulf of Mexico.
In spite of its name being “whale shark”, it is really neither a shark nor a whale, but the largest fish in the world. During some particular months we can spot more of them because, with the increase of the plankton mass in the water, it is more likely to see them group-feeding. This is the ideal time to search for and swim with them.
Even though from the surface we only see the dorsal fin, as it is with dolphins, whales or sharks, under it there is a 36-foot long and a staggering 42,000-lbs animal at adult size. Its peculiar white spots have a unique pattern that identifies each fish, similar to our fingerprints. Despite their impressive size, they are tranquil and peaceful creatures and do not pose any danger to humans.
Even so, it is necessary to take some precautions during the activity. For instance, due to safety concerns, it is not allowed to touch the animals at all, because they can feel attacked and defensively strike with a fin or the tail. The most common reaction for them is to dive and take several hours to resurface, but the animal can also turn suddenly and harm someone.
The depth at the excursion places is between 80 and 100 meters (260 to 330 feet), so the use of a life vest is mandatory for all those who can’t swim. It is also possible to wear a neoprene suit, which provides more freedom of movement when swimming among the whale sharks. In these deep waters we can also find devil rays and turtles, so always have your camera ready.
Swimming with the whale shark is the perfect activity for the adventure and Nature lovers, it is one of those things that you must do at least once in your lifetime. Don’t just hear about it, enjoy first hand the beauty of this event in your next Cancun vacation.