Swimming with Sharks and Stingrays in Moorea, French Polynesia


Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling tour and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, French Polynesia, blacktip reef sharks

Swimming with Sharks and Stingrays in Moorea

One of many actions we’re most enthusiastic about on our journey to French Polynesia is swimming with sharks and stingrays in Moorea. This is likely one of the finest locations on the earth to snorkel with blacktip reef sharks. The water right here is remarkably clear and heat, and it’s teeming with underwater creatures and wildlife.

Previous to this journey, our boys had not snorkeled within the ocean earlier than. We understood that asking them to leap within the water and swim with sharks may go both approach. Sharks might be intimidating.

The world in Moorea the place the sharks and rays ceaselessly go to known as Sharks Sandbank. It’s fairly shallow right here, which makes it appropriate for all ranges of swimmers.

You’ll be able to really stand on the sandbank in some spots, relying in your top. 

Company on the Moorea snorkeling tour should not obligated to get within the water if they don’t seem to be comfy. The sharks and rays are seen from the boat, so it’s potential to remain on the boat and nonetheless see them of their pure habitat. 

Our oldest boy was tremendous excited and splashed within the water seconds after the boat anchored. Whereas our youthful boy wants extra time to course of and construct up his braveness. He stayed on the boat and watched everybody else swim with the sharks first, earlier than entering into the water. 

snorkeling tour in Moorea, swimming with sharks in clear blue water

Snorkeling excursions in Moorea

There are a number of choices relating to snorkeling excursions and swimming with sharks and stingrays in Moorea. Most of them observe the identical itinerary and go to the identical spots.

Due to this, it may be tough to determined which Moorea tour firm to e book with. The massive gamers on the island are Moorea Tiki Excursions, Albert Excursions Moorea and Moorea Miti Excursions.

We booked the tour utilizing Viator a couple of months earlier than our journey as a result of we heard these Moorea snorkeling excursions can promote out.

We’re glad we did. Not solely did it give us piece of thoughts that our tour is confirmed, however we did discover some corporations displaying no extra availability.

We additionally just like the cancelation choices with Viator. 

One thing to notice – big cruise ships go to the island periodically. There was an enormous cruise ship anchored within the bay throughout our time in Moorea. Excursions will promote out rapidly on cruise days as a result of the native tour operators hit capability with their boats.

When researching this journey, we learn that it’s cheaper to e book straight with the tour operator or via your lodge. Nonetheless, we didn’t discover this to be the case. The value was largely the identical, give or take a couple of {dollars} in both path. 

Seek for Moorea snorkeling excursions right here.

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea

Moorea Miti Excursions

We selected the 6 hour tour with Moorea Miti Excursions that features lunch. Additionally they provide a shorter 3 hour lagoon snorkeling tour that doesn’t embody lunch.

You’ll be able to e book the three hour tour right here or the 6 hour tour right here.

We went with Moorea Miti Excursions for a couple of causes. First, they use a Polynesian outrigger canoe. We just like the smaller boats as a result of they max out at 12 passengers. We desire smaller group excursions. 

The corporate additionally has good evaluations on-line, which gave us extra confidence. 

Whereas on our snorkeling tour, we observed different tour operators with large teams and larger boats. Albert Excursions seems to be the largest tour operator on the island. A few of their boats had 30-50 folks, which is simply too large for us. Particularly when touring with our boys. 

Guide your Moorea snorkeling tour right here.

Is it protected to snorkel with sharks and stingrays in Moorea?

Sure. It’s protected to snorkel and swim with the sharks and stingrays in Moorea.

Nonetheless, a reminder that you’re swimming within the ocean, so it’s essential to put on a life jacket for those who’re not a robust swimmer. And it’s at all times a good suggestion to swim with a associate. 

The blacktip sharks should not very large, comparatively talking. Not less than, not those we witnessed. They’re curious, but in addition timid. There’s no must swim after the sharks as a result of they frequently swim across the sandbank in circles. Simply bear in mind to maintain your distance and don’t seize or startle the sharks. Simply be cool and watch these fascinating creatures swim.  

Be taught extra about blacktip reef sharks right here

We realized that stingrays might be fairly playful. They are going to brush up on you in the event that they assume you’ve meals, so don’t panic in the event that they strategy you.

We observed some guides feeding the stingrays (I’m unsure they’re supposed to try this), which is probably going why these stingrays would possibly assume people have meals. 

overwater bungalows on Moorea island, view of the clear blue water and green mountain from the ocean

What to anticipate on the 6 hour snorkeling tour 

Moorea Miti Excursions picks up passengers from the general public dock positioned beside Manava Seaside Resort. Happily for us, that is the place we had been staying, which meant we didn’t want to rearrange lodge transportation. 

Nonetheless, additionally they provide lodge pickups from various Moorea inns, together with Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea and Hilton Moorea.

The tour begins at 8:00am. Our information, Mana, arrived proper on time.  

Moorea Miti Excursions had two extra boats going out that day. We predict they separate teams based mostly on language spoken, as a result of the opposite two teams adopted us on the identical tour. We had been on an English talking boat. The opposite boats had been Spanish and French talking teams.

Analysis extra Moorea actions and excursions right here.

Mana advised our boys, ages 9 and 11 on the time, to take a seat on the very entrance of the boat to get the perfect view. They loved this “personal part” and felt like they’d the perfect seats on the boat. 

snorkeling tour with Moorea Miti Tours. Swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, Tahiti family vacation

The boat handed via Cook dinner Bay and Opunohu bay. Mana shared tales about Moorea and its historical past as we handed every location. 

views of Moorea island from the boat while on a snorkeling tour to swim with sharks on Moorea, islands of French Polynesia

We stored a glance out for sea turtles as a result of they’re typically noticed right here. Sadly, we didn’t spot any turtles that morning.

We collected coconuts from the water and Mana confirmed us methods to verify if the coconuts are good. We stored a couple of of the great ones for lunch.

view of Moorea island from the water. lush green volcano landscape

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling tour and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, clear water in lagoon, islands of French Polynesia

Snorkeling with sharks in Moorea

It wasn’t lengthy earlier than we arrived at our first cease, a shallow sandbank. We instantly noticed sharks and rays circling across the boats. It’s an thrilling second while you witness the sharks for the primary time. 

Mana shared some fundamental security suggestions earlier than entering into the water. He requested us to not contact the sharks and watch out to not step on a stingray. Carrying water sneakers is very advisable.

The depth of this sandbank is about 4 to five toes. Adults can simply stand on the sand, which is good. Our boys had been comfy within the water right here. 

French Polynesia’s Moorea Lagoon boasts crystal clear water that’s residence to various marine life. The clear water makes it straightforward to view the marine life. The water is calm as a result of it’s shielded from outer reef.

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling tour and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, clear lagoon water with green mountain in the distance

The sharks and rays on this space are used to human encounters. They aren’t afraid and can swim near you. Generally they might even brush up towards you with their fins or tails. 

A refreshing Hinano Tahiti beer after swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea.

Drinks are included with the 6 hour tour. However don’t anticipate an countless open bar – we had 2 beers on this tour.  

Snorkeling at Coral Backyard Tiahura

After swimming with the sharks and rays, we continued to the following snorkeling spot. Coral Backyard Tiahura is positioned in a channel between two small islets. These coral gardens are teeming with fish and underwater creatures. 

We noticed a wide range of colourful reef fish of all sizes, together with angelfish, butterflyfish, parrotfish, and triggerfish. Moray eels and octopus will also be discovered right here, however they don’t seem to be simply noticed and don’t prefer to be discovered. 

The water is evident and the visibility is great. You are feeling like you’re swimming in an actual life aquarium.

We captured lots of GoPro footage from this coral backyard, however not as many photographs. Video coming quickly. 

He’s all smiles after snorkeling the coral gardens in Moorea. 

Lunch at Motu Fareone

After snorkeling the coral gardens, we obtained again within the boat and made our solution to a small island for lunch. It’s solely a two minute boat trip from the coral gardens snorkeling spot.

Moorea Miti Excursions has a non-public seaside on Motu Fareone that’s designated for its visitors. A motu is the identify of a small islet that surrounds a bigger island (Moorea on this case). 

Proper beside the Miti Excursions seaside is the Albert Excursions personal seaside. They simply had 5X as many individuals as our group. We desire the smaller, extra intimate expertise with Moorea Miti Excursions.

Moorea Miti Tours lunch spot on a motu

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea

Freshly ready Poisson Cru

Our information, Mana, confirmed us methods to put together the well-known ‘poisson cru’, the nationwide dish of Tahiti. It’s just like ceviche, with uncooked sushi-grade fish, crunchy uncooked greens, contemporary pineapple, lime juice and coconut milk. 

First, Mana confirmed us methods to correctly peel a coconut. We used the coconuts that had been collected from the ocean earlier that morning. After we every took a crack at opening the coconut’s outer shell, we realized methods to shave the coconut meat the normal Tahitian approach. 

The coconut juice was used for the poisson cru and the coconut shells had been used as bowls. 

Then, as you may see within the picture above, Mana ready the dish along with his toes within the ocean!

He put a desk within the water and commenced including the elements to a big bowl. Many of the elements had been already prepped forward of time, however he added the contemporary coconut and lime.

One factor I used to be not anticipating was that he soaked the coconut shavings and fish with the ocean water. In line with Mana, the salt water is the key ingredient that makes poisson cru so good. 

freshly prepared poisson cru for lunch at Moorea Miti Tours, 6 hour snorkeling tour

As Mana was making ready the dish, a curious and hungry stingray tried climbing up his leg to get some meals. Actually! It was performing like a pet canine. I’ve by no means seen a stingray do that earlier than. It’s fairly comical. 

Poisson Cru served in a coconut shell. 

We love sushi and ceviche, so this dish is ideal for us. We every had two bowls!

The stingrays on this space love the eye. They’re very pleasant and can come proper as much as you.

They don’t thoughts being pet on the top. However, like all wildlife encounters, it’s finest to maneuver sluggish and take a look at to not scare them. 

After the poisson cru, a buffet type lunch is served. It’s ready within the shelter pictured above. 

The lunch is okay, however not overly spectacular. The small buffet serves hen, fish, rice, fruit and some sides.

Juice and water is supplied on the tour. And, Mana additionally shared a spiked juice for the adults.

We realized methods to make a standard Tahitian hat (pictured above and beneath). Mana patiently weaved 5 hats for visitors to take with them. 

If you wish to carry the hats again residence, we’re advised that you need to ask the lodge to place the hat within the freezer in a single day. Whereas within the freezer, the inexperienced hats flip brown. Then the hats are allowed to be transported internationally.

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling tour and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, clear water in lagoon, islands of French Polynesia

We spent about two hours on the motu. This consists of making ready the Poisson cru, shucking coconuts, weaving hats, consuming lunch and enjoyable on the seaside.

Moorea Miti Tours, snorkeling tour and swimming with sharks and rays in Moorea, clear water in lagoon, islands of French Polynesia

What to carry on the snorkeling tour?

We recommend you carry your personal snorkeling gear since you’ll seemingly use it each day. Ensure you get one which has a coated snorkel (like this one) in order that water doesn’t get into the snorkel.

In the event you don’t carry your personal snorkeling gear, most inns and tour operators have snorkeling tools out there. However, keep in mind that these snorkels have been in lots of different folks’s mouths and the googles in all probability have spit in them. I’m simply saying, it’s kinda gross to make use of group snorkeling tools.

You will want to carry your personal fins as a result of Moorea Miti Excursions doesn’t present fins. That mentioned, we had been completely superb with out fins. You gained’t be swimming far on this snorkeling tour. And the water is shallow. 

They do have lifejackets out there, together with one for our youngest (9 years previous). He prefers to put on a life jacket within the ocean (and it provides us piece of thoughts that he’s protected).

Deliver reef protected sunscreen. We just like the model Blue Lizard.

Deliver a hat, sun shades, a waterproof shirt (we desire the lengthy sleeves for solar safety), reef or water sneakers, and a water-proof digicam.

Towels are supplied. However, you continue to would possibly need to carry one as a result of the towels get moist. 

You need to use a water-proof case to your cellphone (I used this one for my iPhone), however for those who actually need nice underwater photographs you actually ought to put money into a GoPro. Though GoPro’s are costly, they’re the perfect for photos and underwater video. 

A cute pullover is good to have after getting out of the water. I like Cupshe for each seaside clothes, bathing fits and pullovers. Go right here to get an Additional 15% OFF CA$99+.

The tour embody drinks, together with native beer and water. We additionally introduced two giant bottles of water.

It’s possible you’ll need to carry some money for a tip (suggestions are appreciated, however not required).

Moorea snorkeling and sailing tours. View of palm tree beach in Moorea, from the water on a boat

Ultimate ideas in regards to the snorkeling tour 

We had a beautiful Moorea day journey with Moorea Miti Excursions and we’d advocate them. It’s a sluggish paced tour that means that you can loosen up and benefit from the second. 

We desire the smaller group measurement. The 6 hour tour was a great period of time. At first, we thought it is perhaps too lengthy, nevertheless it really glided by rapidly.

Our suggestion is to e book your Moorea excursions earlier than arriving in Tahiti. Dates and instances will e book up, so don’t depart it till the final minute.

Learn subsequent – Our expertise at Te Moana Seaside Resort in Tahiti

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