Thursday, September 17, 2009

Aquarium Shark Diving - A Growing Trend

The world of commercial shark diving is growing. Countries, tourism boards, and dive operators from Fiji to the Maldives are realizing safe and sustainable shark tourism works.

None more so than commercial aquariums worldwide who are offering caged and non caged shark encounters at one of the fastest growth rates in the entire industry.

Case in point the Dubai Aquarium built as an interactive site, offers non caged dive experiences with sharks.

Where the global trend towards safe and sustainable shark encounters in all forms is growing, Hawaii is still debating banning all shark tours in Oahu, using similar language to a recent ban in Maui that failed to provide exemptions for aquarium based shark tours there:

The Shark Dive at Dubai Aquarium is indeed a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Where else do you have the largest collection of Sand Tiger Sharks in the world swimming right next to you while Giant Groupers edge closer and thousands of smaller fish species swim along? After having been an onlooker of the aquatic animals in the aquarium, you now have hundreds of mall visitors who gaze into the tank at you. And the comments from visitors have been varied: “I was surprised at how peaceful it is on the dive,” said one shark diver.

Another added: “You see it on television; sharks circling overhead, but you never appreciate just how spine-tingling that is until they are circling over YOUR head! What an adrenalin rush!”

Mr Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, Emaar Retail, said: “The Shark Dive is one of the several close encounters of our animals that visitors can experience at Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo. Their response to the experience of diving in the aquarium and spending time with the diverse aquatic animals has been overwhelming.

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