Schools of more than 100 scalloped hammerheads passing overhead as the resident giant manta rays played in the divers’ bubbles – that was what guests and experts experienced on the most recent Manta Trust liveaboard trip to the Revillagigedo Archipelago, aka Socorro in North America’s biggest marine protected area.
The fortunate divers on that trip encountered 40 oceanic mantas over five days, Galapagos sharks, silvertips on almost every dive, a mother dolphin and her calf, a whale shark, and the biggest yellowfin tuna the team had ever seen. That’s apart from the tiger, dusky and silky sharks and the sting and torpedo rays.
If all this makes you green-eyed you’d better not watch the expedition video but an eight-night Revillagigedo trip along these lines is within reach, because the Manta Trust has just released the dates of its next two, in November and in the early part of 2024.
Guests have the opportunity to participate in conservation research by helping the Manta Trust scientists collect photographic ID images of all mantas encountered to add to their database. They are also invited to name any new mantas sighted.
Using the 13-cabin, 35m Nautilus Explorer liveaboard, the first trip runs from 24 November and costs from US $3,295 pp (three sharing) up to $4,695 (premium suite). The second, from 19 March, is priced from $3,495. Extras after air travel and transfers include tax, port fee, park fees ($375), Internet and nitrox.
If you don’t feel you can wait that long to catch some rays, the Manta Trust is offering 20% off its 10-night Best of Thailand island-to-island expedition starting on 18 April. This trip will offer the small stuff alongside the big as it moves between the Racha Islands, Koh Haa, Hin Daeng, Hin Muang, the Similan Islands, Koh Bon, Koh Tachai and famed Richelieu Rock. The discounted price is $2,480 pp. Check out the Manta Expeditions site.
Also on Divernet: Diving Socorro, The ‘Mexican Galapagos’