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Kings Whale Shark Swim Exmouth

Kings Whale Shark Swim

Why we Love Kings Whale Shark Swim

This is a passionate owner operated company with 30 years experience of showing off Exmouth’s whale shark visitors. This knowledge makes Kings Whale Shark Swim a solid choice for a fantastic day on the Ningaloo.

Their vessel, the Magellan is one of the more spacious at 20 meters (65ft) in length and built by captain and owner Bill McDonald making this a truly unique owner operated experience.

Kings participate in Whale shark conservation is via a partnership with ECOOCEAN, globally recognised and not-for-profit organisation satellite tagging whale sharks in Ningaloo Marine Park.

Your tour will include the following highlights;

  • Snorkel with a Whale Shark growing up to 10 meters!
  • Introductory snorkel on the inner Ningaloo Reef
  • Experienced captain and crew who love the Ningaloo
  • Opportunity to see Manta Rays (from late May)
  • See a Humpback Whale breach (from late June)
  • Courtesy pick up and drop off from your Exmouth accommodation
  • Quality equipment in leading brands
  • Sumptuous lunch, snacks and hot and cold refreshments throughout the day
  • Professional photographer taking your FREE photos of the day
  • Start the day a morning snorkel on World Heritage Listed Ningaloo Reef
  • Sighting Guarantee (April – July)
  • Complimentary gift pack and certificate


Morning Pick-up

Your experience begins the moment you are collected from your accommodation in the morning by a friendly staff member who is as excited as you are to be spending the day on the World Heritage Listed Ningaloo Reef.

Time flies on the bus journey to Tandabiddi boat ramp, as the knowledgeable staff provide commentary on the history of the township and coastline, the Cape Range National Park, and information about marine flora and fauna that inhabits the reef. If you’re lucky you may even see a kangaroo, echidna or a cheeky dingo on the drive around the Cape

Boarding the Magellan

Upon arrival at the Tandabiddi boat ramp you’ll be safely transported via dingy to the purpose built luxury vessel ‘The Magellan’. As you step on board you’ll be welcomed by the rest of the crew, provided with all equipment needed for the day and inducted in all safety aspects of the vessel. 

With introductions and briefings all done, you’ll find yourself wandering around the deck and bow of the boat, marvelling at the views of the beautiful turquoise waters of the Ningaloo reef. Keep an eye out for friendly dolphins or maybe a dugong on the way through the lagoon!

Snorkel the inner Ningaloo Reef

Arriving at the first snorkel spot you’ll notice how clear the water is and the colours of the fish as they dart in and out of the coral structures. With trained in-water guides by your side, there’s nothing left to do but enjoy the sights of the coral reef gardens and the hundreds of species of fish that can be found. Regardless of your swimming ability and experience, you are in safe hands and need not worry about missing out.

During this time, a spotter plane will ascend above to search for the main attraction of the day, the majestic Whale shark. You’ll be grinning from ear to ear after your snorkel experience, and while you make your way back onto the boat you can sense the excitement of what lies ahead.

Whale Shark Encounters

Once a Whale Shark has been sighted, it’s time to get ready as the boat makes its way over to the area!

Lined up on the back deck in your snorkel gear, you wait anxiously for the signal from your trusty guide that it’s time to jump in. The Skipper and guides will position you so that the Whale shark will swim by you, allowing you to swim alongside the shark once it’s passed.

Despite the many weeks, months or years of waiting for that moment, nothing prepares you for the first time you see a big, beautiful Whale shark approaching. At first you may be taken aback by the size of this magnificent creature, but most noticeable is how calm and gentle these giants actually are. They are the only marine creature in the world that allow such a close and prolonged, wild interaction without being disturbed or changing course. It feels as though they are choosing to swim with you! And for the rest of your life you will remember that moment. The delicate spots and stripes patterned along their body, the graceful movements of their huge tail, the schooling fish that often occupy their underside, and the vast, deep blue surroundings as they disappears from sight into an endless sea. The whole experience may not even feel real.

Lunch and More Snorkelling

Once the time with whale sharks concludes, the day continues with a delicious, fresh lunch on board provided, that caters to all dietary needs. And to top off the day, one more final snorkel on another coral garden inside the lagoon. If you have the energy left! From there it’s time for a return journey back on the bus, where you are warmly farewelled by crew that feel like old friends by the end of the day.


This tour departs seasonally only dependant on the movement and migration of the Whale Sharks.

General Season: Early March to the end of August

  • Exmouth Pick-ups: from 7:15am
  • Returns Exmouth: approx. 5:00pm
Whale Shark No Sighting Policy:

On the rare occasion not sighting a whale shark our policy gives those snorkelling the following options;

    1. Free repeat tour on the next available day
    2. If you are not available for the next available tour we will offer you a *partial refund

Some other animals are seasonal and we that passengers will see all, or in rare cases any of the more sought after animals found on the reef. These animals include Humpback Whales, Dugongs and Turtles.

No Sighting Terms and Conditions

  • *Partial Refund: Difference between fare paid as Swimmer and Observer
  • A No Sighting is determined by the company or its representatives.
  • Guests who on the day decide to not enter the water for whatever reason and therefore do not see a whale shark, are not entitled to the No Sighting Policy including the free repeat tour or the refund option.
  • Guests who enter the water and claim they did not see the shark, while other guests in the group did, will not be entitled to the No Sighting Policy including the free repeat tour or the refund option.
  • In the case of a second no-sighting, i.e. guests who had a no-sighting on their first trip and elected to take another free tour rather than a refund, will not be eligible for any further refunds or tours. There are no further conditions on the free repeat tour.
Important Tour Information
  • Child age: 2-16 years
  • Family: 2 Adults + 2 Children
  • Seniors need to provide proof of age
  • Most additional Dietary Requirements can be catered for – Please ask upon booking.
  • Please read the ‘No Sighting Guarantee’


What to Bring
  • Towel, swim wear, sun glasses and hat
  • Reef safe sunscreen – what is this?
  • Warm jacket for the afternoon
  • Reusable sustainable water bottle
  • Camera
  • If you are prone to seasickness, medication is advisable.


Cancellation/Refund Policy
  • If you cancel at least 4 days in advance of the scheduled departure, there is a 25% cancellation fee.
  • If you cancel between 72-48 hours in advance of the scheduled departure, there is a 50% cancellation fee.
  • If you cancel within 24 hours of the scheduled departure, there is a 100% cancellation fee.
  • Unless otherwise stated all refunds will incur a 10% administration fee

We recommend you purchase Travel Insurance which would cover for such things as road closures, flight,  bus or other travel cancellations that would contribute to you missing the departure of your tour.

Eco-Certification Awards

The following Eco-Accreditation from Eco Tourism Australia had been achieved.

  • Nature Tourism CertifiedEcotourism Australia: Setting Ethical Standards for the Travel Industry

Tourism in natural areas that leaves minimal impact on the environment.

Additional Conservation Initiatives
  • Whale Shark Research Support Partnership

ECOOCEAN is a globally recognised, non-government, not-for-profit organization based in Western Australia working towards scientific research, education and conservation of the marine environment. Established in 1995 by marine conservation biologist Brad Norman, with participants from 54 different countries, all contributing to furthering the research and knowledge of this threatened species. Brad and his researchers are regularly found onboard the Magellan and our company has assisted them in countless tagging operations.

Where Booking Tours means Saving Rainforest

Tree Hugger Travel invest in rebuilding biodiversity hotspots around the world by funding land acquisition through the highly respected World Land Trust and their projects.

Saving Rainforest with David Attenborough, World Land Trust's No.1 Supporter and Patron

How Do We Do That ?

We fund it with Your travel bookings and our eco-rewards programme.

  • Every dollar earns an eco-reward
  • For example: Spend $100 ⇢ Earn 100 eco-rewards
  • Reaching 750 eco-rewards will enable us to fund the permanent protection of 1/4 Acre of Real Rainforest in Real Places.
  • Continue earning and every 750 eco-rewards Tree Hugger Travel will continue protecting.

☆ Recognising Your Contribution ☆

You made this happen and in recognition, You will receive a colourful and informative gift pack by post.

This includes a personalised certificate, information about the project you supported and a letter from World Land Trust thanking you for Your support.

More information? Head to our Eco Rewards Programme page.


Tree Hugger Travel - What is eco-certification - Eco Certified Nature Tourism Certification

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Please ask our friendly support team as many questions as you need.

It is possible to make reservations with our personal travel managers.

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Earn Eco-Rewards that fund the purchase of biologically important threatened rainforests around the world.

We partner with the World Land Trust to make this happen and you, our customers, will receive a personalised certificate in recognition of the land you have helped to save.

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