Swimming with Whale Sharks
(Location: Exmouth, Western Australia)
In Victoria (the state where we live), the Queen (of England’s) Birthday is celebrated in early June. Other states celebrate it on a different day, and none are near the actual Queen’s birthday, but whatever, we get a day off work. Given June is peak whaleshark season, we decided to go to Exmouth.
Getting there isn’t easy. We flew from Melbourne to Perth (4 hours), and then from Perth to Learmonth (1.5 hours), and then picked up a hire car for the 30 minute drive to Exmouth.
- We stayed at the Ningaloo Reef Bed and Breakfast. The hosts (John and Sheila) were lovely and the property is about 5km south of town.
- We did two outings with Three Islands Whale Shark Dives. People kept asking us why we wanted to do it twice. Hmm… I don’t know – maybe because I traveled ALL the way to Exmouth and don’t want to be disappointed? The first day was amazing – we swam with four different whale sharks. But on the second day, the conditions were better, we swam with four SLOWER whale sharks, and saw breaching humpback whales, dugong (manatee), rays, turtles, and two types of dolphins. THAT is why we go twice.
- On our non-diving day, we spent the morning in Coral Bay (about 1.5 hours south) and then the afternoon at Cape Range National Park. Turquoise Bay was probably our favourite, with fabulous snorkelling right off the beach (though watch out for the rip current).