Whale Shark Dive

Today was a fun and adventurous day! Mark and I joined 6 other friends for a whale shark dive right off the coast of Oki! Torii Beach Scuba Locker offers everything you need to go on the dive. It's ran by a Japanese company, but the people at Torii are nice enough to put it together for us. They even helped us reschedule after sea conditions were "danger" a few weekends ago!
I'm pretty sure that's me looking up thinking, "Whoa that thing is huge!"

I don't want to spend too much time on "the bad," but I do want you to know what you're in for! We got to the Scuba Locker around 12:15PM and we didn't go diving until 2PM. Most of that time was spent waiting and waiting. I can't say why they make you get there so early or wait so long, but it's just a fact of life. Ha! We only dove for about 30 minutes, but it was totally worth it.

Also, Torii has underwater cameras that you can rent for $15. I highly recommend you do this! We 100% planned on it, but they were already gone by the time we made it to the Scuba Locker. A few of our friends brought GoPro's, but they wouldn't let them take them. However, we did notice that for 2500 yen you could rent one from the Japanese company.

We took a boat about 10 minutes off the shore to a net. This is where the two whale sharks were. From what I understand, they swap these particular whale sharks with the ones from the aquarium every few months or something. Once we made it to the net, we got in the water pretty quickly.

Mark being a gentlemen and holding the door open for me. Haha!

The 8 of us were required to have two Dive Masters in the water with us. I'm not sure if it was because of the rescheduling complications or what, but Torii had no one to go with us. Luckily, Travis from Semper Fi Scuba could take us (good thing his wife was going with us!) and he had a friend, Patricia, that pulled through at the last minute . Whew!

This looks like an old, fake photo to me. Cracks me up!

Once inside the net, they start feeding the whale sharks and they become pretty active (mostly towards where the food is coming from). They are very gentle, but not shy at all! At one point, I pushed off one of them and I thought I ran into another diver... turns out it was the same whale sharks tail hitting my legs! Powerful, but not hurtful at all.

I'm face to face with a whale shark. One of the coolest things I can say I've done so far in my life. You can see my white fins if you look closely. I'm pretty sure this is also where Kacey goes on a joy ride down the back of this big guy.

One of the guys compared their texture to a pool table. They are fuzzy! We only wore one glove at the advice of Mark's (former, sad face) boss and I'm glad we did. They are softer than sand paper, but rougher than felt.... make sense?? I hope so because that's the best that I can come up with at the moment.

Mark far left, Kacey in the middle, and me on the left. Mark and I have definitely spotted the whale sharks!

Overall, I'm so happy I did it. I'm also very happy that I didn't get eaten by a whale shark (totally kidding, they're vegetarians). At one point, I could see only the silhouette of one of the massive creatures and once it got into view its mouth was wide open... coming straight at me! Whoa!

Mark and checking him out. I'm easily identifiable because I'm even pigeon-toed in the water. Haha!

Needless to say, it was a great experience and I highly encourage anyone to go for it. I'm pretty sure they do snorkeling trips, too, but scuba is so much cooler since you're actually able to swim around with them. We're both pretty excited that we were able to check something off of our Okinawa Bucket List!


  1. This totally looks amazing, and I have added it to our Okinawa Bucket List - so far I have crossed nothing off it and added oodles of items, granted we did just arrive Friday! Can anyone do this or do you need to have your scuba thingy (blaming jet lag! but I totally can't think of the proper term!)

    1. Hey Hannah - anyone can do this, but if you aren't scuba certified you'll just snorkel over the net & they'll bring the whale sharks to you (by feeding them). Definitely add it to your list, it's awesome!!


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