Did you know?
Whalesharks are currently listed as a 'vulnerable species' under Australian
Magical Manta Rays
Whilst manta rays are on the Ningaloo Reef throughout the year, manta ray tours in Exmouth only really become worthwhile from mid-May through to mid-September, when the numbers increase significantly and the mantas become more curious and willing to engage with snorkellers and divers! (Before this, trying to swim with one is a little like trying to catch a sprinter - they are much faster in the water than we are!!!)
The grace of these “eagles of the sea” as they cruise through the Ningaloo Reef needs to be seen to be appreciated. They often enjoy interacting with snorkelers and divers, circling them, swimming straight at them, doing loops around them, breaching and occasionally launching themselves out of the water. (Given they can be up to 7m (21 feet) in width, this can be a truly spectacular sight.)
If you are interested in swimming with the manta rays of the Ningaloo Reef, you join our tour as either a Manta Ray Swimmer or Manta Ray Diver. (Swimmers swim with the manta rays, whilst divers dive with them.)
We use our spotter plane to search for manta rays, and often combine our whale shark tour and manta ray tour so guests can see the best of both during their cruise. Guests buying Manta Ray Swimmer or Manta Ray Diver tickets get to then see and observe the whale sharks of the Ningaloo free of charge from our flybridge, as well as swimming with the mantas and snorkelling the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef.
And excitingly, should Manta Ray Swimmers decide they want to swim with a whale shark whilst on their tour, they can easily upgrade their ticket to a Whale shark Swimmer simply by paying the difference between the two tickets on the day.
What's the BIG difference?
Unlike other Manta Ray Cruises, Ningaloo Whale Sharks Swim is the only company to own and to operate our own spotter plane to find Manta Rays for our guests to swim with. This means both we are far more likely to actually find manta rays for our guests to interact with, and are more likely to have more interactions with manta rays during our tours.