How the boat should approach whale sharks
Boats must make a controlled approach and they will moderate speed as they approach the shark.
The boat will never stop closer than 10 meters/32 feet from the animal and keep 23-30 m when moving.
The crew will organize the groups on board. A maximum of 2 persons are allowed swim with a whale shark in Mexico. If there are more people, you will enter the water in turns.
Prepare your snorkel tube and mask. We advise you to wear a life jacket throughout the swim.
If you use sunscreen, make sure it’s biodegradable.
Into the water
Follow the guides’ instructions. They will tell you when and how to make a controlled entry into the water. You will wait for the animal, anticipating its trajectory and far enough away so that the whale shark can continue in the direction it travels.
Wait for the shark with the snorkel in your mouth. Put your head in the water, looking in its direction along the waterline, never down.
Swimming with Whale Sharks in Mexico
When the animal reaches your position, swim next to it. NOT in front of it, NOT behind it.
If you swim in front of it, you will hinder its movement. It can disturb the whale shark. It is an animal of more than 50,000 pounds (25 tons) that moves 3 miles per hour/5 km per hour. Do not think for a moment that you will be able to stop it.
If you go after it, you’ll miss the show. Maybe you can swim at the same speed as a whale shark, but for how long. Let us also remember that the tail can be a potential danger.
While practicing whale shark snorkeling, remember to keep a safe distance. You will have to swim 5 meters / 16 feet from the whale shark’s head or central part of the body and more, if you can, from the tail.
Never touch the whale shark or try to ride on it.
Don’t feed the animals.
Of course, you can take photos and videos while swimming with whale sharks, but you can’t use a flash because it could disturb them.
When a whale shark is stressed, it rolls its eyes. Also, it tilts to one side when uncomfortable. If either of these two things happens, stop what you’re doing and let it go.