1 - Swim With a Whale Shark
Swimming alongside the largest fish in the sea is a bucket-list experience of epic proportions. Lucky, there are plenty of places in the world to accomplish this goal. Below are two (one on each hemisphere) to get you started.
Isla Holbox, Mexico
A 25-minute boat ride from Quintana, Roo’s sleepy northernmost island and just 150km north of crazy Cancun.
When to go: July to August is peak season
Where to stay: Holbox is a great alternative to the main tourist centers (and closer to the sharks).
Operators: Willy’s (holboxwhalesharktours.net) is among the most reputable per Lonely Planet.
Tofo Beach, Mozambique
This tiny traveler’s haven – and scuba diver's dream – 400km north of the capital Maputo is home to one of the largest concentrations of whale sharks in Africa thanks to a seemingly never-ending supply of plankton.
When to go: sightings of 50-strong congregations are not uncommon from October to March.
Operators: dive centers including TofoScuba (tofoscuba.co.za) and Diversity Scuba (diversityscuba.com) organize daily snorkeling trips in season.
Keep a respectful distance from the gentle giants, resisting the urge to touch them or to use flash photography.