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Have you ever ever needed to swim with manta rays? Then Coral Bay on the Coral Coast of Western Australia is the place to go!
Swimming with manta rays in Coral Bay was one of many highlights slot terbaru of our journey round Australia. Situated on the shores of the world well-known Ningaloo Reef, which is known for being a thriving house to whale sharks, wobbegongs, and several other species of reef shark – to say our expectations had been excessive was an understatement.
It’s stated that manta rays swim within the bay of Coral Bay all yr spherical. And since they’re filter feeders, they’re protected to swim with.
Should you’ve thought of swimming with manta rays however unsure what to anticipate, right here is our expertise swimming with these magnificent creatures.
The place is Coral Bay?
Coral Bay is positioned on the Coral Coast of Western Australia, and is a 1.5 hour drive (151 km) from Exmouth Western Australia and 11.5 hours drive from Perth.
You will get excursions out to Coral Bay from Exmouth Marina or from Coral Bay – although count on excursions from Exmouth to take a full day, whereas you possibly can take a half day tour from Coral Bay and find time for different actions.
Our Expertise Swimming With Manta Rays at Coral Bay
“Okay everybody, put your gear on, she’s heading this fashion. Get within the water as rapidly and quietly as you possibly can and observe me, I’ll be retaining close to it so you possibly can observe it.”
Finned toes started shuffling in all instructions to the again of the boat. Nobody needed to overlook the prospect to swim with these swish underwater butterflies.
I turned to assist Kalyra put her snorkel on and she or he began to have a type of meltdowns. The snorkel wasn’t on to her liking and so the frustration started to vent as wails. She wouldn’t take heed to my calm, sage recommendation.
One after the other, the others on the boat slipped within the heat Australian waters and began swimming. Quickly, we had been left on our personal.
We got here all this approach to Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia and paid some huge cash to take a seat on a ship and endure a tantrum. The others had been swimming behind the manta and getting farther from the boat.
We couldn’t catch up now. We lastly received the snorkel sorted and sat on the sting of the boat.
Holding palms we counted to 3 and slipped in.
We put our faces within the water and there was the manta ray’s face only some toes away swimming in direction of us. We each squealed, “manta ray!” It turned and we swam to maintain up.
Fairly quickly the others had caught up and overtook us and the manta slipped away. Making an attempt to swim quick whereas holding onto a seven yr previous isn’t any simple feat.
“Did you see that Mummy? We had been so near it. That was superb.”
Kalyra, she determined it was too chilly and waved the boat down to select us up. She’d seen the manta ray up shut and that was sufficient. No extra chasing was wanted, which was fantastic information for me because it meant I might return in to swim with the manta ray alone.
Due to the kerfuffle getting Kalyra prepared, I forgot to show the Gopro on so completely missed that second when the manta got here as much as say hello.
We’d joined the tour early that morning from Coral Bay and hadn’t sailed very far out in direction of the outer Ningaloo reef when the manta ray was noticed swimming the crystal clear turquoise water the Ningaloo Marine Park is understood for.
It was simply Kalyra and I on this tour because it was costly so we had been decreasing prices. Craig had opted to do the quad biking tour with Kalyra as a substitute on one other day.
However, we had been fortunate to be doing it with our buddies Nikki and Drew, and their daughter Maddie, who is identical age as Kalyra. It was so pretty for Kalyra to be having such a enjoyable time out along with her buddy.
Whereas they performed, I slipped again into the water to swim with the manta once more. I copped an ideal huge mouthful of diesel fumes on the best way in. Once more the manta got here shut and I began swimming, attempting to navigate by all of the arms and fins thrashing in my face
I swam across the outdoors of the pack and bolted in direction of the entrance. For the subsequent 5 minutes I swam behind the manta ray marveling at its grace and delighting within the small fish that swam near it’s stomach.
For some purpose, I believed that the manta rays would simply come as much as the boat and linger round us whereas we swam with them. I by no means realised it could contain Olympic fashion races to maintain up with it.
Fairly quickly the diesel fumes mixed with the bodily exertion began to meet up with me and I needed to maintain down the rising must vomit. I pulled away and swam again to the boat.
Man they’re quick, nevertheless it was plenty of enjoyable to swim with them. Subsequent time I hope they only linger!
It was time to let one other tour boat in to swim with the rays so we moved out in direction of the outer reef for snorkeling.
Kalyra didn’t wish to come again within the water so once more I went exploring the reefs alone. Faculties of tons of of tiny fish got here swimming in direction of and round me. There have been a number of waving blue coral out right here and some giant fish poking out and in of the gorgeous coral gardens to eat.
The present was actually robust and I didn’t keep out lengthy as I used to be nervous about drifting far-off from the boat and getting caught on high of the reefs, unable to be rescued.
Lunch was served by the crew. We had chilly meat and salad sandwiches, and though yummy as a result of I used to be ravenous, I felt the lunch unfold wasn’t that nice and will have been higher for what we’d paid for the tour.
There was a considerable amount of time spent driving round and at this stage I used to be attempting to resolve if the tour was price it (it’s not the most affordable exercise in Western Aus!)
It positively wasn’t for Kalyra. If I had been to do it once more, I wouldn’t take her as she solely had that one swim with the reef manta ray and didn’t wish to do the rest. It is determined by the temperament of your youngster.
I wasn’t bought on the worth till we stopped at our second snorkel spot.
I used to be fairly chilly by now and this reef was approach out the again close to the outer rim and the breaking waves. It made me a bit nervous to exit and was considering sitting it out.
Then our information stated she’d take us all on a guided snorkeling tour and I’m so glad I went. A guided snorkeling tour is the very best. You are feeling a lot safer snorkeling in a gaggle and she or he took us to all the very best spots mentioning discoveries alongside the best way.
The one drawback was a couple of kicks to the top as you’re exploring.
We swam within the channels between enormous reefs and bombies. It was a number of the greatest snorkeling I’ve ever finished.
We swam above a few inexperienced turtles after which a loggerhead turtle swam so near us, that are loads rarer to see. It was so superior.
The coral was significantly better out right here, vibrant and all sizes and shapes.
We weaved out and in of the reef system for a while delighting in it. One man from the group determined to go off snorkeling on his personal and he noticed a few sharks. So glad I wasn’t snorkeling solo!
FAQs About Swimming with Manta Rays, Coral Bay
Right here’s what folks often ask us about swimming with manta rays in Coral Bay…
What time of yr are you able to see manta rays at Coral Bay?
It’s stated that manta rays swim within the bay all yr spherical, however the very best time to see them is from mid-Could to November when there’s stated to be the best variety of rays. Weekdays are greatest as there are fewer folks on the excursions.
Are you able to swim with manta rays?
Sure, you possibly can swim with them. They have a tendency to feed close to the floor, which suggests you possibly can seize a snorkel masks and swim together with them.
Is it OK to the touch a manta ray?
No, they don’t like being touched and can seemingly swim away.
Are manta rays aggressive to people?
No, they’re mild animals and have a peaceful and peaceable nature. They’re recognized to be considerably curious of people, and should swim as much as you, however they’re no hazard to you.
How huge are manta rays?
There are two fundamental species of manta ray and so they have a wing span of between 4 and 7 meters!
The place to Keep in Coral Bay
Should you’re unsure the place to base your self to your manta ray expertise, then I like to recommend staying at Mantarays Ningaloo Seashore Resort, which is the one resort on the seaside at Ningaloo Reef Marine Park.
This family-friendly resort is positioned on Dawn Seashore within the Cape Vary Nationwide Park.
Every of the rooms comes with air con, free Wi-Fi, fridges, and personal loos. Some rooms have a balcony or patio.
You possibly can select between 1-2 bed room flats or bungalows. It has a swimming pool, free parking, and is positioned close to many close by sights.
Closing Ideas on Swimming with Manta Rays in Coral Bay
Ningaloo is an incredible coral reef to go to. You possibly can discover it from so near shore and it’s nonetheless so pristine, with fairly low variety of vacationers. We had been the one folks on the market snorkeling.
On the Nice Barrier Reef you’re competing with many.
I had a beautiful excessive after that snorkel and loved the gorgeous views of the white sandy Coral Bay as we sailed again in.
We didn’t see any reef sharks or dugongs, nevertheless it’s doable to see some dolphins and humpback whales taking part in within the waters as you sail again from visiting the mantas should you go to in the course of the winter months.
Kalyra felt she received her cash’s price on the finish with all of the lollies she saved sneaking in. She was tremendous excited to run and inform her Dad that she swam with a manta ray up shut.
So was I.
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Have you ever been swimming with swish manta rays in Coral Bay? What was your expertise like? Tell us within the feedback.