Swimming with sharks in Galapagos

Snorkeling with Sharks in Florida: The Ultimate Adrenaline Experience (2024)

If you’re looking for an adventure that will take you out of your comfort zone, snorkeling with sharks in Florida might just be the perfect activity for you.

Known for its crystal-clear calm waters and stunning beaches, Florida is home to some of the most breathtaking coral reefs and a wide range of marine life, including several species of sharks.

In full disclosure, I have not snorkeled with sharks here myself, but I have scuba-dived with sharks in various places around the world. The top photo is, in fact, from when I was diving with sharks in the Galapagos, an amazing natural habitat.

Snorkeling with sharks is a great way to meet these creatures if you do not have a scuba diving certificate. If you do, though, shark dives are something you really need to do.

Affiliate disclosure: I only recommend tours, services and purchases I know and love on this website.

Snorkeling With Sharks In Florida

When you jump in the sea (or tank) with your mask and snorkel on a quest to meet sharks, there are a few things to consider.

Before we go into where and with whom, as a first-timer, you may benefit from having thought through them.

The recommendations in this article are based on thorough research, reviews, and testimonials from those who have been there and done that.

What To Consider When Snorkeling With Sharks In Florida!

Lemon sharks outside Jupiter Florida
Lemon sharks outside Jupiter Florida

Choose The Right Time And Location

Your first step is to research the best time and location to go snorkeling with sharks in Florida.

The best time to do this is in the period from April to October, even though this is partly during the wet season and hurricane season in these parts because the waters are calm and visibility is high.

Some of South Florida’s most popular locations for snorkeling with sharks include the Keys like Key West and Key Largo, Jupiter, and West Palm Beach.

Remember that different kinds of sharks live in different locations, so choose a place with the kind of sharks you want to see.

Book With A Reputable Tour Company

The sumbarine life in Florida is incredible with large shoals of colorful tropical fish!
You will see lots of other marine life as well

It’s vital to book with a tour company that has a good reputation and knowledgeable guides who can help make the experience safe and enjoyable.

These guides know the behavior of the sharks and will be able to reassure you during the activity.

Do your research, read the reviews, and ask for recommendations from friends who have already done this experience. The places I recommend in this article all have top-notch reviews, so you don’t need to worry about that.

Prepare Physically And Mentally If You Think You Need To!

Even if you go for snorkeling with sharks in Florida, you might meet up with a lot of other majestic sea creatures like this manta ray that I got to swim with for a while!

Before embarking on this adventure, it’s essential to prepare yourself physically and mentally, especially if you feel anxious about meeting up with sharks in the wild and free.

Make sure you are physically fit and healthy enough to do this particular activity.

If you haven’t been swimming, snorkeling, or diving for a while, try to head over to the swimming pool and do some exercises beforehand to prepare your body for the activity.

Don’t forget to mentally prepare yourself, too, as this experience could be a bit overwhelming if it is your first time swimming with sharks.

Understand that the sharks will not be interested in you and will mostly swim away. So, all you really need to do is to stay calm and trust your guide.

Follow The Rules And Guidelines

When it’s time to go snorkeling with sharks, make sure you follow the guidelines provided by your tour guide.

Stay in the group, don’t touch or harass sharks, and avoid wearing shiny objects.

You are a visitor in their home, so treat them with respect, just as you would expect visitors in your home to treat you.

And Lastly: Enjoy The Experience

Scuba diving in the Atlantic Ocean outside Florida is incredible!
An unforgettable diving experience can be really addictive

Finally, it’s time to immerse yourself in the experience. Swimming amidst the sea of sharks can be an awe-inspiring experience.

It is going to be awesome!

Personally, I have to say that for anyone who feels so inclined and is able to, the absolutely best way to meet with marine wildlife is with tanks on your back, so you can stay with them for a while.

I have both snorkeled with sharks (only not in Florida), and scuba-dived with sharks, and although they have a fringy reputation, most sharks are peaceful and relaxed creatures just minding their own business.

Keep in mind that many environmentalists venture on these trips to understand and promote shark safety, and so should you.

While the idea may sound scary, the time you spend in the water on shark viewing trips is sure to be unforgettable.

Who Should You Go Swimming With Sharks In Floridas With?

Across Florida, there are several tour companies that will take you to meet the magnificent sharks in a safe and sustainable manner.

Some of them allow you to do the first adventure in really controlled surroundings or just look through the glass bottom of a boat if you find out that jumping in the water is not your cup of tea.

Shark Tours In Palm Beach Florida

Tiger shark outside of Jupiter Florida in the big blue ocean
Tiger shark outside Jupiter Florida

Calypso Dive Charters offers shark tours for noncertified scuba divers from Palm Beach, north of Miami. They offer cage-free swimming with sharks and have one requirement: that you know how to swim!

In the wintertime, you can be able to spot these sharks:

  • Lemon sharks
  • Bull sharks
  • Tiger sharks
  • Great Hammerhead sharks

In the summer season, you might be able to spot:

  • Scalloped Hammerheads
  • Great Hammerheads
  • Dusky sharks
  • Blacktip sharks
  • Reef sharks
  • Silky sharks
  • Tiger sharks
  • Bull sharks

Shark Tours Florida also offers swimming with sharks in Florida for non-divers from Palm Beach.

They take groups of up to six people, and everyone must be at least 12 years old to participate.

Swimming With Sharks Tours In Orlando Florida

Discovery Cove in Orlando also offers a swimming with sharks experience of the more controlled and intimate kind.

You can swim and snorkel with more than 20 sharks in the shark habitat here.

You will swim with Blacktip sharks, Nurse sharks, Zebra sharks, and Bonnethead sharks and learn a lot about the different species during your shark encounter!

In Orlando, you can also see sharks while keeping completely dry by visiting the Sea Life Orlando Aquarium!

Swimming With Sharks In The Florida Keys

From Islamorada in the Florida Keys, you can swim with sharks in a controlled environment at Theater of the Sea.

Here, you can see a variety of shows and other marine wildlife, and you can opt for a shark swimming experience in the saltwater lagoon.

In Key West, you can boot this shark and wildlife viewing adventure, where you will not actually get into the water.

The catamaran will sail through shallow waters, and you can spot sharks, as well as stingrays, sea turtles, barracuda, tarpon, and maybe even dolphins in the Key West National Wildlife Refuge!

On this snorkeling trip from Key Largo, you can also encounter a variety of wildlife, including sharks, but this is not a tour dedicated to shark swimming.

Shark Snorkeling Tours In Jupiter Florida

Shark Addicts Jupiter offers full immersion tours to swim up close and personal with sharks from Jupiter, north of West Palm Beach in Florida.

These guys started these tours because of their love for the ocean and passion for protecting it, and the fully immersive expeditions are designed to show you their beauty.

No diving experience is needed, but participants must be at least 13 years old and have no serious relevant medical issues (see their home page).

Scuba Diving With Sharks in Tampa

You need to be a certified diver to do this one, but you can submerge through the coral reef biospheres at the Florida Aquarium to meet the sharks in the coral reef exhibition.

Even not in the wild, as such, this is probably the next best shark diving experience as you get to see both sharks and other marine animals like turtles, morays, barracuda, and a lot more.

You will prepare for the swimming with sharks experience much like you would for any other scuba dive at the Florida Aquarium, with a pre-dive briefing, a dive master to assist you in fitting the gear, etc.

The dive itself starts with you submerging via an underwater elevator cage. From there, you will ascend and visit three different marine zones with different lifeā€”and a variety of sharks.

YOU will also be an attraction for other aquarium visitors, who will see you from outside the glass amidst the rest of the exhibition.

This is definitely a “different” experience that lasts for around 30 minutes and maybe even better in many ways. As you are not in the open ocean, you are guaranteed to get up close and personal with sand tiger sharks, and in a controlled environment, the water visibility will be great.

After your immersive experience, you can check out the rest of the aquarium, which has lots of other interesting things to see.

Check out this Tampa travel guide to get great ideas for the rest of your stay in this part of Florida.

Wrap-Up Snorkeling With Sharks In Florida

Snorkeling with sharks in Florida in the south of the United States could be an exciting and unforgettable experience for those who seek adventure.

You’re guaranteed to have a great time if you follow the guidelines and prepare yourself mentally and physically.

Keep in mind that sharks are some of the most majestic living creatures in our oceans, and their presence should be appreciated and respected.

So there is nothing to wait for! If you want more detailed information on each tour, click the respective links to do thorough research. Mind over matter, book your trip, and get ready to dive into the clear waters of Florida’s coral reefs and incredible marine life.

Related blog posts:

23 Best Things To Do Solo In Miami From A Frequent Visitor

6 Amazing Private Boat Tours Miami From A Frequent Visitor

21 Best Beaches In Southwest Florida For Happy Summer Days

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *