Swiming with the Whale Shark

During July and August, several dozens of the beautiful, gigantic and harmless whale shark arrive at a marine pool located an hour off the coast of Quintana Roo, between the islands of Holbox and Contoy.

The Rhincodon typus, better known as the whale shark, is neither a shark nor a whale, it is the largest fish in the world reaching up to 15 meters in length, imposing though harmless it is spectacular in the eyes of those who have the fortune to contemplate the characteristic patterns that make them one of the most aesthetic animals of the marine range.

The immense ocean and the great size of the whale shark, reminds us how small we are in such an immense planet, this magnificent experience is exalted with the amount of species that the Mexican Caribbean shelters and that we can witness in the second activity of this incredible tour, Snorkeling at Cape Catoche, populated by banks of multicolored fish that fill our journey with life and joy. After a day of adventure we finish our trip enjoying the freshest, classic ceviche of this magical region of the Mexican Caribbean enjoying the unique view that its islands offer us.

In order to continue enjoying this unforgettable journey, we must follow certain rules to protect the whale shark and ourselves in this activity, for this reason we list the protocol to follow, in order to have fun in a friendly way to the environment.
1.-It is mandatory for boat drivers and users, the use of lifejackets.
2.- Only one boat per organism must remain, for a period of time not longer than 30 minutes.
3.- The maximum speed of navigation in the observation zone should not be more than three knots.
4.- The boat must remain at a minimum approach distance of 10 meters with respect to the whale shark.
5.-The approach for the observation of the whale shark must be in a diagonal line only on the back lateral part and the boats must advance parallel to the whale shark’s course of movement.
6.- When whale shark units increase their swimming speed, interrupt their activities abruptly, dive deeper and / or away from the area, the boats should move away at low speed without accelerating sharply.
7.- If the whale shark shows a friendly or indifferent behavior, the boat must remain without accelerating, with the engine turned on in a neutral position and then will be able to disembark the tourists to perform the swimming activities.
8.- The garbage generated should be collected in plastic bags and then thrown in the containers installed for that purpose at the arrival dock.
9.- The activities of swimming and free diving (snorkeling) should be done as follows:
– The maximum number allowed is one guide for every two tourists.
– Stay at a distance within a radius of at least five meters. Whale sharks are not to be touched, disturbed or mounted.
– In the case that there are few whale shark specimens, the distance between each of the boats that are in the area should be 100 meters, in order not to disturb the species in question.
10.-During the activities of observation, swimming and free diving (snorkeling) with whale shark, it is prohibited:
– Use recorders, loudspeakers or any device that produces noise or sounds that may disturb the specimen.
– The use of flash while taking photos of the whale shark in the water.
– Use propulsion engines to swim near the whale shark.
– Harass, annoy, chase or damage other marine organisms, for which a minimum approach distance of five meters must be kept, limiting the activities only to the observation of the creatures.
– Swim and dive using oils, sunscreen, and sunsblock that are not biodegradable.
– Collect, capture, hunt, pursue or appropriate species, derivatives, products and / or remains of flora and fauna whatever their status.
– Carry out sports-recreational fishing activities, without the permission of the Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (Sagarpa), as well as the extraction of marine organisms, other than those authorized by said secretariat.
– Leave residues on the seabed or floating in the water, throw or dump any type of organic and solid waste, as well as discharge liquid wastes, fuels, oils or any other type of contaminant.
If you want to be part of this magnificent story, book now with us since the quota is extremely limited, do not miss this unforgettable experience, come live and feel Holbox.

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