When you think sharks, you probably think Hawaii or California, but did you know Florida is actually the nation’s shark capital? Over its history, Florida has had more shark attacks than the rest of the country combined, with eight times more interactions than either Hawaii or California. That might not sound like particularly good news for beach-goers, but it does mean that shark tours can be extremely rewarding. Indeed, sharks aren’t just plentiful off the coast of Florida; they’re also surprisingly diverse. While the iconic great white shark only occasionally makes appearances, there’s around a dozen well-known species that can be regularly seen. Some of these include the aggressive hammerheads, exotic makos, brutal bull sharks and near-threatened lemon shark.
One of the great benefits of shark diversity here in Florida is the fact that so many different options are available for getting up close and personal with these fascinating animals. On the west coast, cage diving is basically the only option, though in Miami there’s a few different possibilities. Free swimming and snorkelling with sharks are both possible, along with scuba for those certified. Cage diving is likewise possible, as are spotting tours from the safety of a boat. In other words, anyone can go on a shark tour in Miami; irrelevant of how qualified or terrified you happen to be.
Thanks to the growing popularity of Florida’s shark tours, there’s no shortage of operators in and around Miami. Some of the more established names include;
Run by serious shark preservation advocates, Shark Addicts really is the place to be for anyone who is hooked on these amazing creatures. Their most popular tour is their four hour snorkeling trip, which brings visitors within inches of the sharks themselves. For $200, they include everything, such as fins and snorkels. Be aware though that while they have video-graphical services, you can’t bring your own underwater camera on their tours.
Based in Jupiter, Florida Shark Diving offers tours across the state’s coastline. They have some of the best variety in terms of location, and offer packages suitable for everyone from beginners to serious divers. Their all-inclusive tours start at around $95 for shark viewing, and $195 for dives.
Calypso offers both snorkeling and scuba with sharks. These dives take place twice a day at Riviera Beach. This stretch of coast tends to have exceptional visibility, making it a popular spot for divers. It’s also popular for hammerhead sharks, and if you’re lucky you might even see a few. Not only that, but Calypso’s groups are smaller than many of their competitors, making for a more relaxed experience. Prices start at $115, and bear in mind they need a minimum of four people for a trip.
These guys offer a wide range of tour options around Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Palm Beach and Florida Keys. They cater to everyone of all skill levels, specializing in cage tours.
You can’t go wrong with any of these operators. Get your swimming gear on and prepare for an adventure of a lifetime!