So you’re ready to take the plunge and swim with the biggest fish in the ocean, and why look anywhere else? There’s none quite like us!
Our passion and enthusiasm for what we do is recognised by customers and industry professionals alike, earning us a Silver in Adventure Tourism, and a Bronze in Ecotourism from the 2016 Perth Airport WA Tourism Awards, along with a 2015 Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence.
Our Whale Shark License was awarded to us. That’s right, we didn’t buy the rights to provide you with this experience, we earned it!
Our license was the first to be released in years and after the hefty process of sifting through many applicants, the Department of Parks and Wildlife decided that due to our high standards, long running reputation in the Eco Tourism industry, our extensive knowledge, and passion for Whale Sharks and the marine environment, we deserved to operate these tours. Team that with a strong and vibrant crew who retain their position with Ningaloo Discovery season after season and it’s clear that this isn’t just our job, it’s everything that we are, and we want to share it all with you.
The Ningaloo Discovery family is always growing (our guests choose to return year after year!) because they trust us, and it’s worth every minute!
Ningaloo Discovery operates the Whale Shark Swim & Sailing tour on board our 15.5m purpose built sailing catamaran Windcheetah. Windcheetah is a fast and stable vessel complete with plenty of open and undercover deck space, comfortable seating, functional marine toilet, plus an easy entry/exit swim platform at the rear which even caters for people with restricted mobility and makes for a safe and effective drop into the waters of the Ningaloo Reef. These tours run with a maximum of 20 passengers, although Windcheetah has room for many more which means more space for you!
Our guests also have the option of boarding our second vessel Highland Spirit. A 60ft mono hulled powerboat, which is purpose built for our Whale Shark Swim and Snorkel Tour. Highland spirit is modern, ultra stable and super comfortable with plenty of deck space and seating at the rear, a functional marine toilet, and marlin board for quick and easy entry in and out of the water.
Have we mentioned that as an added bonus your tours are inclusive of the most sought after crew in Western Australia?
Ningaloo Discovery owners Matt Oakley and Sarah Ellis have spent most of their time working hard, and raising standards to where they are today. Quite often your skipper for the day will be half of this dynamic duo! They have decades of experience working the waters of the West Australian coast. They live and breathe this industry.
Over time, we’ve carefully selected what we think are the best and brightest people around! Each and every one of our crew holds a current Senior First Aid Certificate as a minimum, as well as a Bronze Medallion surf lifesaving rescue or Dive Master certification. They have all undertaken Department of Parks and Wildlife training in Whale Shark interaction and Cultural Heritage.
We have 4 qualified and experienced skippers amongst our team, and a qualified Marine Specialist onboard to answer any of your marine related queries. Some would say it’s a prerequisite of working with Ningaloo Discovery that you must be an all round awesome person! We don’t just work together, we have our very own little Ningaloo Discovery family and we want to meet you!
One of the many things that sets us aside from the rest is our constant validation of our environmental footprint. Owner and director Sarah holds an honours degree in Marine Resource Management and applies her degree in conjunction with our operations. Matt has extensive experience working in Sea Search and Rescue and Marine Safety, so rest assured you are in capable hands.
Ningaloo Discovery is an Advanced Eco Tourism certified company. On each tour we pride ourselves on delivering marine education to those who want to learn!
We aim to conserve the natural and cultural heritage of the Ningaloo Reef Marine Park. All staff strive to become guardians and ambassadors of the environment, while enhancing visitor opportunities and experience. Ningaloo Discovery Whale Shark & Eco Tours provide an enriching nature based experience combined with sound conservation practices and messages (and of course the adventure!). We strongly endorse the conservation of all things we value in our world.
It’s our job to provide you with the most unforgettable whale shark experience.