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Updated by Joanna James on Dec 05, 2019
Headline for The Best Places To Dive With Manta Rays – Get up close with the graceful giants of the ocean
Joanna James Joanna James
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The Best Places To Dive With Manta Rays – Get up close with the graceful giants of the ocean

Giant Manta Rays are graceful, highly intelligent and are a majestic symbol of freedom. Diving or snorkelling with these wondrous creatures can be life-changing. They are completely harmless.


Socorro Island, Mexico

This tiny volcanic island sits 600km off the coast of Baja, California. Over 500 individual Oceanic Mantas gather near the coast of this island from November to June, although May and June are considered as the best months to spot them. The Mantas that visit Socorro Island all have a rare black-morph and the largest has been measured to be over 5m across.


Isla de la Plata, Ecuador

Situated just half a day's sail from Puerto Lopez; Isla de la Plata is home to over 2000 Mantas during the months of June and October every year. This is currently the world's largest recorded population of Giant Oceanic Mantas. The largest seen here measured 7m across. Diving is relatively new here and you will only find a few dive shops but don't let that dishearten you.


Kona, Hawaii

Diving with Mantas in Kona is somewhat of a manufactured event but it is thrilling nonetheless. The dives happen at night here; dive operators flash big lights into the water which attract plankton and in turn, they attract Giant Mantas at which point you also jump in. It's guaranteed that you will be surrounded by at least half a dozen specimens at any time.



Thailand, though being such a popular tourist destination is not famous for the hundreds of Mantas that can be found along its coast. Koh Bon and the Similan Islands are some of the best spots to dive with these giants of the sea. February to April is probably the best time to make the trip.



This archipelago of 17,500 islands is home to 25% of the world's fish species and 15% of the earth's corals. The whole of Indonesia has hundreds of great dive sites with 3-4 superb sites especially known for diving with Mantas.



The Great Barrier Reef is in Australia and it is not surprising the land-down-under has thousands of amazing dive spots all around its coast. You can even catch a glimpse of the gigantic Great White Shark if you're lucky. Giant Mantas flock to these coasts in the masses and some of the best places to dive with them are Lady Elliot Island and Coral Bay in Western Australia.
Located in the south of the Pacific Ocean Fiji is a marvel of nature. This tropical paradise attracts large groups of 200-300 Giant Mantas. June to October is the best time to go diving with Manta in Fiji.



The Maldives are best known for its dazzling white sandy beaches, crystal clear water and world-renowned resorts such as Kurumba Maldives. The sea-food here is like nowhere else and Maldives restaurants attract people from all over the world. But the real attraction of these tropical islands is the magical world the lies beneath the waves. You can not only swim with Giant Mantas but with Whale Sharks and Giant Turtles too. It's a bit expensive but its more than worthwhile.

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