Whale Sharks!

Posted by on April 22, 2010

Snorkeling with Whale Sharks!

While Matt and I were in Osaka, Japan we went to the aquarium, probably one of the best I’ve ever been to, whose chief attractions were whale sharks.  While we were there, we were both amazed by the size of the things, and thought it was quite cool that we got a chance to see them.
While in Loboc, one night at Nuts Huts, this Polish guy I met told me about the incredible time he had in Padre Burgos snorkeling with the beasts.

The first two jumps we made, the sharks were scared off before I got settled into the water and out of the bubbles of 6 people jumping in all at once.  The third jump, seeing one, and essentially chasing it until it went deep enough to disappear from view.  The closest I got to one was the 5th or 6th jump, when it was right under the boat and we dropped in practically beside the thing.

The best, though, was the last one just before lunch.  I was the only one who made it into the water on the first pass of the boat, so at one point my world consisted of me, alone, swimming maybe 10 to 15 feet to the right alongside this massive shark.

Then, almost as an afterthought just to fill out the day, Irish Guy and I snorkeled while the other four were cave diving.  Some of the healthiest coral I’ve seen yet, fronted by this short white beach, and full of huge schools of fish.  All of it no more than 6 or 8 meters down, so perfectly suited to free-diving.  Best part of that:  Swimming through a big mixed school of fish, as they parted before me and closed back behind.  Worst part: Jellyfish sting to the neck.

I feel like some of the days I’ve had here are so good to almost be caricatures of traveling, and unrealistic as Real Things one can do.  I hope that Cambodia/Malaysia/Indonesia live up to the same level of awesome that the Philippines have this far, but either way I believe I’ll have to make it BACK through here again to continue exploring.

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