Hitch a ride with the giant whale shark at Maroma Resort & Spa
13th May 2011 - Mexico's Caribbean coast is the only place where it is possible to snorkel alongside Whale Sharks, slow-moving filter feeding sharks and the largest living fish species in the world. Orient-Express' Maroma Resort & Spa www.maromahotel.com on the Riviera Maya is offering guests a once in a lifetime opportunity to swim with these amazing creatures with a private VIP package, available from June 1st to September 10th 2011.
Once a year, Whale Sharks visit the Yucatan Peninsula's Caribbean coast during the short summer season to feed on tiny fish and plankton that swim near the surface, presenting an ideal opportunity to see these docile creatures up close and in their natural habitat. Indifferent to human beings who pale in comparison to their sometimes 41ft length, Whale Sharks are slow swimmers and very tame creatures, often allowing swimmers to “hitch a ride” with them.
Including transfers, snorkel equipment, life jacket, lunch, traditional light Mexican snack, empandadas, and lasting four to five hours, the tour starts off early in the morning when guests are transported to Puerto Juarez in Cancun and then taken by private boat to the Whale Shark zone off of Holbox Island. Holbox Island is a small island to the North of Cancun and is separated from mainland Mexico by a shallow lagoon that serves as a sanctuary for flamingoes, pelicans and many other exotic creatures. Expert guides who are familiar with the area will locate the giant mammals, and then give guests the opportunity to dip their toes in the water and swim alongside them. After swimming with the great creatures, guests can then snorkel in the lagoon before heading back to the hotel.
Prices for the exclusive Whale Shark diving package start from approximately £308 per person.
Maroma is a barefoot luxury resort in the style and tradition of a gracious hacienda, where personal service, warm hospitality and privacy are unsurpassed. Set on a former 500 acre coconut plantation that borders the Caribbean Sea, the property is amongst the most sought after places in the Mayan Riviera for its unspoilt beach and lush jungle. Rates for an Ocean View Room at Maroma Resort & Spa start at approximately £316 per room per night and include daily a la carte breakfast, one snorkeling trip per person, complimentary in room wifi, and a daily wake-up coffee service.
Orient-Express, (NYSE: OEH, www.orient-express.com) the name behind an elite collection of travel experiences, first came into being in 1883 as one of the world’s most exciting and indulgent train journeys. Today that evocative name also embraces hotels, cruises and other luxury rail adventures in 24 countries, across five continents. The Company has offered exceptional luxury travel experiences since 1976, when it first purchased Hotel Cipriani in Venice and then shortly afterwards, recreated the celebrated Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, linking London, Paris and Venice, along with other European cities. Today, the company owns or part-owns and manages 50 businesses, 41 of which are highly acclaimed hotels, each unique in style, from the Mount Nelson in Cape Town and Rio’s Copacabana Palace, to the Grand Hotel Europe in St. Petersburg and Maroma Resort & Spa on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. There are six luxury tourist trains, two river cruise operations and ‘21’, one of New York’s most iconic restaurants.