Cancun has so much to offer to visitors at all times of the year, but summer is extra special because summer is when the whale sharks that have been slowly migrating arrive to the warm coastal waters of the Caribbean. These wonderful creatures come to the waters around Cancun and Isla Mujeres in order to find fresh feeding grounds in the sunny and abundant Mexican Caribbean. This year the whale shark season is set to run from June to mid-September, and as always there will be plenty of tour operators offering the chance to swim with these giants of the marine world.
Whale Sharks in Cancun
Whale sharks are the single largest fish species in the world and, weighing in at over 20 tons as well as averaging at 18 – 32 feet long (though some reach over 40 feet), they stack up well against the larger mammals too! Their name, as you might imagine, comes from their size which is comparable to that of many whales. Nonetheless, despite being of the shark family, they are incredibly serene and gentle animals. They are, in fact, gigantic filter feeders, which means they eat small prey by filtering water through their gills. They are one of only three shark species which feed this way. Therefore, as you have probably gathered, they are not at all dangerous to human beings.
Whale Shark Tours
As such, whale shark tours are safe and fun for people of all ages and there are many companies who will happily take you out onto the water in search of these majestic creatures. In fact, tours from the Villa del Palmar resort in Cancun will include transport directly to the docks from where you will head out by boat to find whale shark infested waters. When you do find some of these gentle giants, the brave among you will be able to slip into the water for a wonderful snorkeling experience. Due to the nature of their feeding habits and prey, whale sharks feed close to the surface of the ocean. They also move fairly slowly, at around 3mph, and should pose no challenge to your ability to keep pace.
This is a magical experience that you won’t ever forget.