If you time it right, Placencia offers one of the best opportunities to swim with these giants of the sea, the biggest fish in the world. It may be pricey, but if you get a good encounter, it is well worth it as this is a truly unforgettable experience. A long ride takes you right out to the boundaries of the reef and, once clearance is given (only three boats head out there at a time), you go out into the open sea where, after about five minutes of sometimes rough seas, you will reach the site. In season, the whale sharks come to the surface as they follow the spawning snapper, usually from April to June for a few days before full moon and up to 10 days after. Most trips spend 45 minutes looking for the creatures and it is pot luck whether you find one in the first five minutes or the last. Some companies offer the chance to look again later in the day if you failed to get a sighting and all combine it with a trip to beautiful Silk Caye for lunch and a further snorkel or dive. Operators in town are honest ad if there is not a good chance of seeing one of these giant fish, or if the weather will be too rough, they will not go out.
Lance at Caribbean Tours Agency can find a good price. Telephone #5233047 or 6011905. www.caribbeantoursbelize.com, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Costs BZ$315 (including park fee) to dive.