Shark Ray Alley: The #OMGBelize Adventures

It's all fun and games until a local on a nearby boat throws a ton of chum right next to you and you find yourself smack dab in the middle of a legit sharknado.

Technically I think it'd be a cyclone, aren't those the ones IN the water? A sharkclone. Or a jackclone really, since it was 50% jacks, in addition to the sharks, plus a few sting rays.  A rayjacksharkclone. And that's my final answer.

(In retrospect, looking at that sharks eyes makes me second guess everything they said about this being totally safe)

Rewind. Way back when we first booked our flights, Whit started a Pinterest board for all of us to throw trip ideas into. That's when I stumbled upon Shark Ray Alley and it immediately became a MUST on my list.

Chelsea's MUST list: 
Swim with sharks. 
The end.

I don't believe in bucket lists, but if I did that would have been on it. None of the other girls were quite as keen on the idea of willing hopping into the open ocean with Jaws, but my power of persuasion is truly immeasurable.

Not long after leaving Caye Caulker, our water taxi docked on Ambergris and we made our way to our hostel. I brought up swimming with sting rays approximately 32 times during the trek, and swimming with sharks approximately 45. Give or take a few.

There's actually a very high chance everyone else just agreed in sheer hope of shutting me up.

Either way, on a sunny Tuesday morning the four of us set out on a boat to become live bait. Whit was the complete opposite of excited. Meanwhile, I rivaled a kid headed to Disneyland.

It was a pretty short ride out to the reef, and the water was so clear you knew EXACTLY what you were about to get into!

Throwing on our flippers and masks, it didn't take long before all 4 of us were overboard. We saw countless rays, jacks, sharks, clown fish, parrot fish, red fish, blue fish, one fish, two fish. Oh and an eel. Who wasn't too enthusiastic about seeing us, and made that very clear (chalk that up as another near death experience)

I befriended this dude, who let me swim next to him for quite a while. I was sure we would end up in Sydney, but it was actually only about 20 feet from where I found him and then he got tired of our Asian peace signs and paparazzi ways.

It was so wild being in the middle of the open ocean swimming amongst these beauts. Call me crazy, but they are just so graceful gliding through the water. Although I'm a little nervous that next time I'm in the water and spot a fin sticking out I may be a little TOO eager to approach the fella.

The morning flew by, and the camera roll filled up. As we headed back to shore, I think we were all in agreement that it was definitely worth every penny we spent!

Belize is home to the second largest reef in the world... I wont lie, it's kind of fantastic having the bragging rights that I've snorkeled the two biggest reefs on the planet!

Things to note:
-All underwater photos were taken with my good ol iPhone 5s, in a LifeProof case. Expensive, but worth every penny.

-We went with Greg from Ecologic Divers, and I cannot speak highly enough of them! They were amazing, and definitely went above and beyond.


Jen said...

Wow, this looks awesome!!!

Lindsey said...

These pictures are amazing! and I'm with the rest of the crew - you would have to do some MAJOR persuasion to get me to swim with SHARKS!

Jess said...

I'm in the ocean every week and this is way more awesome than all those trips combined!

Ashley @ ladyacray.blogspot.com said...

Absolutely gorgeous!! These photos look unreal - I'm so jealous of your adventures!

AllCreation said...

Our family was right there a year ago. LOVED it! And your pictures are far better than mine. ;)