Diving With Whale Sharks

There’s nothing quite like the first time you see the silhouette of the world’s largest fish emerging from the blue. A momentary flash of apprehension at the sheer size of the shadow is immediately replaced by the joy of the realisation that you are finally in the presence of that big, spotty fish – the elusive whale shark. This behemoth of the fish world tops the bucket lists of many divers, and if you are one such diver, dreaming of diving with whale sharks, then we would love to help you giant stride into the world’s best whale shark diving locations to make your dream come true.

The iconic Galapagos Islands offer the chance of ticking off both a bucket-list destination and that bucket-list whale shark encounter in one fell swoop. These islands have piqued people's curiosity since Darwin's famed expeditions almost two hundred years ago. And with tropical penguins, schools of hammerheads and freediving iguanas to supplement the almost-guaranteed whale shark sightings, the Galapagos Islands are arguably the best place to dive in search of whale sharks.

The majestic Maldives is another bucket-list destination offering high chances of diving with whale sharks. Diving in the Maldives will leave you slack-jawed in awe. Drift along expansive walls, cruise through beautiful coral gardens, and most importantly, keep one eye on the blue for the big boys.

Liveaboard lovers will enjoy the spectacular setting of the Sulu Sea in the Philippines. The Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park is a World Heritage Site, and the diving is as spectacular as it is remote. A 14-hour overnight cruise from Puerto Princesa on Palawan transports you to this biodiversity hotspot in the middle of the Coral Triangle. Wide-angle lenses are a must for photographers here as the whale sharks seen in Tubbataha tend to be big, dirty, and in need of a cleaning station. So maybe let them enjoy a spa session before you start snapping away...

On the other side of the Pacific Ocean, Mexico is another famous destination where giant pelagics cruise the reefs. Manta rays and dolphins frequent the dive sites of Socorro Island, and whale sharks turn up later in the year (usually in around November until January). Earlier in the year, the Caribbean coast of Mexico, off the Yucatan Peninsula, offers almost guaranteed whale shark snorkelling opportunities too.

For diving with whale sharks without the need to cross multiple time zones, from Europe you can head to Mozambique or Oman to spot the big fish. In Mozambique, the Bazaruto Archipelago in the north, and the Quirimbas Archipelago to the south, are both home to stunning and healthy reefs with an abundance of big marine life - think whale sharks, manta rays and dolphins all vying for your attention. A few nights' luxurious stay on Oman's Musandam Peninsula is a great add-on to a Maldives trip (or worthy of a holiday in its own right), and the location, at the entrance to the Persian Gulf, attracts whale sharks between April and October.

Our blue planet offers many beautiful locations where you can go diving with whale sharks. Allow us to tailor your bespoke whale shark diving itinerary to ensure you giant stride off the right boat, in the right place, at the right time of year...

Read more
Show less


Where to go

Related Collections

Start creating your tailored trip today

Emily C and Eleanor are our 'Diving With Whale Sharks' experts and as seasoned travellers they have the inside track on the most memorable adventures.

Call us on 1-800-652-1972