Updated: Jan 31, 2020
One of the best things about visiting French Polynesia is being able to dive or snorkel in unspoiled waters without being surrounded by hordes of other tourists. As much as we enjoyed our above-water activities, it was the ocean that called us to the islands and which will bring us back off the beaten path. Among the unusual activities that seem very usual in French Polynesia was swimming with sharks and stingrays. We were able to swim with them both in Bora Bora and in Moorea. Although there are always dangers inherent with meeting wildlife up close, we weren't overly concerned. Maybe ignorance really is bliss. Although we were a little nervous at first, once you are with the sharks you start to feel like you are seeing yourself in a movie, and it's easy to relax and go with the flow of 6-foot sharks swimming right next to you and rays bumping you. And just like the Instagram model who was bitten this week in Florida, we swam right into the midst of them to pose for photos.
Sting rays feel like friendly puppies when they bump into you.
It's easy to get great shots when the marine life is so plentiful. We used a Nikon Coolpix AW130. The camera takes pictures to a depth of 100 feet.
Eagle rays in Bora Bora glide through the water like their namesakes in the air.
Our guide from Puresnorkeling in Bora Bora dove down to show us where the Manta Rays were lurking.
This picture probably wasn't the smartest one to pose in, but it is real - no photoshopping!
The fish in French Polynesia look like they were created by Disney animators.
These "friendly" black-tipped sharks were the highlight of a swim just outside the reef of Bora Bora from our Dream Yacht boat.