The typical Western Australian Whale Shark season runs from March to August, triggered by the annual coral spawning at a full moon. Ningaloo is one of the only places on the planet where these huge but completely harmless fish can be reliably located in large aggregations.
Whale Shark operators use light-aircraft spotter planes to search for the whale sharks, guiding the tour boat skippers to the fish’s location. Learn more about how a Whale Shark Tour works
In 2019, over 30,000 people travelled from around the world to Ningaloo to swim with the largest fish in the ocean in either Exmouth or Coral Bay. Whale shark tour operators saw a 96% success rate, and the average in-water interaction time with the whale sharks was just over 13 minutes.
Did we also mention that this is a UNESCO World Heritage Area?
The Ningaloo Coast World Heritage Area is Australia's largest fringing reef system, stretching 300kms from Red Bluff north of Carnarvon to the Muiron Islands off the coast of Exmouth. To add to this list of acknowledgements, Ningaloo is also Australia’s newest Hope Spot - Ningaloo Coast and Exmouth Gulf, with the region now home to 2 of the 6 Australian Hope Spots, being global locations considered critical to the health of the ocean. The world heritage-listed Ningaloo Reef and adjacent Exmouth Gulf were designated as having global significance, and together have been cited a Hope Spot by international marine science organisation Mission Blue, which is run by legendary oceanographer Dr Sylvia Earle.
With the Easter weekend and ANZAC week falling in the April School Holidays this year, there has never been a better time to experience this life-changing event - book your tour early. Children aged over 5 years old and who can swim, can join a tour with their parents.