Thursday, September 7, 2017

SeaOman offers opportunity to swim with whale sharks

Whale sharks are one of the wonders of the natural world, and the opportunity to swim with these gentle giants is now a reality thanks to the SeaOman programme.

Oman is widely recognised as one of the planet’s premiere dive locations, with the whale shark season through September and November an annual highlight.

SeaOman – the marine leisure arm of Oman Sail – is offering a unique opportunity to swim with the majestic creatures alongside world freediving record holder and environmental educator, Pierre Frolla. In addition, the Monegasque world record holder will also be holding free diving workshops to introduce others to the underwater experience.

Pods of up to 70 of the giant whale sharks – which can be up to 12-metres long - have been recorded off the Omani coast, though they are more usually found in groups of 10 to 15. During the season there is an average 90 per cent chance of seeing the harmless creatures on any particular day as they make their way towards the Damaniyat Islands.

The islands themselves are a protected marine nature reserve 16 miles off the coast of Oman, northwest of Muscat, and their large, unspoiled reefs are home to an unparalleled diversity of sea life. The clear, shallow waters typically offer visibility of 20 to 30 metres.

“Whale sharks are one of the most awe-inspiring sights in the ocean, and the conditions around the coast of Oman make it the perfect place to see them,” said Tony Hurst, SeaOman head of commercial operations.  

“SeaOman is also delighted to have the expertise of Pierre Frolla on hand as he will further enhance what is sure to be a fantastic experience for all those who take part in this unique opportunity.”

Spaces are limited to a total of 200 slots for the whale shark swim with Frolla, which will be held from September 29 to October 4, with only 40 people able to take part on each of the five days. The free diving workshops are on October 6 and 7, with just 24 spaces available on each day.

Registration and booking for all the sessions can now be made with SeaOman, and all spaces will be allocated on a first come, first serve basis. Whale shark swimming days will be run from SeaOman’s HQ at the Al Mouj Marina in Muscat, with divers transferred by powerboat to the fully equipped base boat. A safety RIB will be on location at all times. The free diving workshops will also be run from SeaOman HQ, with the dive location to be decided. - TradeArabia News Service

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