Things to know about swimming with Whale Sharks in The Philippines

Things to know about swimming with Whale Sharks in The Philippines

Things to know about swimming with Whale Sharks in The Philippines

Get up close to the world’s largest fish, the whale sharks in The Philippines. Well, maybe it’s a bit too close for us in Oslob, where we went. Swimming with a whale shark is a unique wildlife interaction that will last forever but think twice if this really is what you want. We want to tell you our story, some useful tips, and an alternative.

swimming with whale sharks in the philippines cebu

Our Whale Shark experience

Sorry for starting this article a bit skeptical. Swimming with Whale Sharks sounds like an amazing experience, and it is. But after seeing how this works at Oslob, we felt bad. We didn’t read any bad things about swimming with Whale Sharks in Oslob, so what we expected was: A lot of people on a big boat, sail away from the coast, into the sea. From there we would jump into the water and see the Whale Sharks. But the situation was a bit less attractive. ➳ Read: Ultimate Philippines Travel Guide

couple swimming with whale sharks in the philippines

The people who run the company feed the Whale Sharks every morning, and not in the middle of the sea but just 50 meters away from the beach where we stayed. That’s a weird spot the swim with Whale Sharks, don’t you think? ➳ Read: Ultimate Philippines Travel Guide

Now that we’ve made clear the real situation, we still like to provide you with information and tips about this activity.

Swimming with Whale Sharks in Oslob, The Philippines

It’s best to stay in or near Oslob. Don’t book a tour to the Whale Shark diving spot. Arrange a tricycle, jeepney or taxi and get to Tan-Awan village, 10 km to the south from Oslob.

whale sharks in the philippines

Good to know before swimming with whale sharks:

  • Get up early, be there around 5:45 and you’ll be on the first boat.
  • Do not put sunscreen on! This isn’t good for the health of the Whale Shark.
  • When you’re in the water, try to keep a certain distance (6+ meters) from it, never touch this protected species and watch out for his tail.

Whale shark swimming is safe as long as you stick to the rules.

whale sharks in the philippines oslob rainbow sunset beautiful

How to get in Oslob?

Ride a bus to Oslob at Cebu South Bus Terminal. The terminal is beside Elizabeth Mall. Don’t worry about getting on the wrong bus because there will be boards displayed clearly to guide you on which bus goes where. If you want to be sure, the guards and staffs are friendly and will be more than happy to offer assistance.

This will cost you around 150PHP.

Whale Sharks in Donsol

Probably a better place to watch Whale Sharks is in Donsol. As far as we know, they don’t feed the whale sharks. So you have to be more lucky to spot them. They are very clear about the rules and really freak out if people don’t stick to those rules. The rules at Donsol are a lot better. Simple rules as scuba diving and photo flash are prohibited. Check out Bicol Dive Center.

Everything about The Philippines

Where to stay in Donsol

Where to stay in Oslob

Things to know about swimming with Whale Sharks in The Philippines

Blog comments (5)

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  • Whale Shark Canyoneering Package

    Amazing! This is great, you have just made everything so easy for people to see the whale sharks by your guide. Thanks for this.

  • saltinourhair

    Hi Rose,

    We’ve traveled through the south of Cebu and an awesome thing to do is going Canyoneering around the Kawasan Falls. This is our article with all the information you need

    If have more questions about it, just let us know :)

  • Which do you prefer North or South Cebu adventures? Aside from Oslob what other activities to do in the south Cebu?

  • Skye Sherman

    Sounds cool! I didn’t know they did this. We went on a scuba trip in Thailand and saw a whale shark in the distance, and some people on our trip got to swim with it up close. Luckily they didn’t feed them; we just went to a spot where they are often spotted and got lucky. Definitely an unforgettable experience though!

    • saltinourhair

      Hi Skye! We’re glad they didn’t feed them over there. It sounds like a good spot to watch these beautiful creatures :)

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Cebu Guide Oslob

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