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11 marine adventures to experience before you die

Published August 26th, 2015

Life's more beautiful underwater. A bold statement, perhaps. But you've got to venture beneath the surface to truly know what you're missing. From tracking the sardine run to diving in the South Pacific, Monty Halls identifies 11 unmissable experiences at sea.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

1. The Sardine Run

Billions of sardines enter the warm waters of South Africa's Wild Coast each year from May to July. It is one the world’s great natural events, representing more biomass than the wildebeest migrations across the Serengeti, and the sheer numbers create a feeding frenzy involving at least 18,000 dolphins, circling Cape gannets, sharks galore and several species of whale.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

2. Diving In Palau

This collection of rock islands in Micronesia has an abundance of reefs, drop-offs, lagoons and underwater wonders that would keep any marine enthusiast occupied for several lifetimes.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

3. Night Diving In Komodo

These are the most dazzling nocturnal dives you can make anywhere on Earth. Scrabble around in the muck on the sea floor to find creatures that scuttle and crawl. You’ll emerge from the sea marvelling at evolution gone mad.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

4. Nusa Lembongan, Bali

This Indonesian island off Bali has some magnificent marine life, including manta rays and, perhaps most notably, mola mola (pictured), the largest bony fish on Earth. They often weigh two tonnes, laying 300 million eggs. Their young are so small it’s the equivalent of a human baby growing to the size of five Titanics.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

5. Manatees In The Crystal River, Florida

Manatees are giant, gentle creatures, which give every impression of enjoying human company. The experience of seeing the residents of the Crystal River is an animal encounter for all ages and abilities.


There are amazing experiences on land, too: 10 do-before-you-die adventures

The South Pacific has both in spades: 5 South Pacific adventures to try


Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

6. Humpbacks In Vava'u, Tonga

This island group in the Polynesian kingdom of Tonga is pretty much the only place on Earth where you can get up close and personal with humpback whales. For me, this was entirely, completely and overwhelmingly unforgettable.

Picture: ALAMY

7. Roca Partida, Mexico

This rock spire – its name means 'split rock' – rises from a depth of five kilometres in the Sea of Cortez, and is frequently circled by giant manta rays. It’s an extraordinary sight, resembling something straight out of Tolkien.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

8. Thresher Sharks In The Philippines

A reef crest off the island of Malapascua hosts a cleaning station where thresher sharks come for their daily wash and brush-up. This is a front-row seat to observe one of the most beautiful of all sharks.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

9. Aliwal, South Africa

This site lends itself to an adrenaline-fuelled, harum-scarum dive. It is an undersea mountain of sandstone jutting into the warm waters of the Agulhas Current, and home to more than 1,000 fish species, many of them with teeth and attitude problems.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

10. Wrecks of the Isles Of Scilly, Britain

With white-sand beaches, reefs, wrecks and clear water, the south-westerly archipelago is a gem in the eastern Atlantic.

Picture: AP/FOTOLIA

11. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

These enchanted isles are beset on all sides by ocean currents, where evolution has gone haywire. If only Darwin could have looked beneath the waves …


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This article was from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

The Daily Telegraph

The Daily Telegraph is a daily morning UK English language broadsheet newspaper, published in London by Telegraph Media Group and distributed throughout the United Kingdom and internationally.