Whale sharks lure divers to St Helena

Whale shark in St Helena (Beth Taylor)
Whale shark in St Helena (Beth Taylor)

UK-based tour operator Diverse Travel has added to its list of global offerings the remote South Atlantic diving destination of St Helena, where whale sharks are a key attraction.

The tiny island with its population of fewer than 4,500 people lies in clear, warm and biodiverse waters, says Diverse. Beneath the surface it is characterised by rocky caves, arches, seamounts and reef structures where more than 700 marine species have been identified, at least 50 of them endemic, such as the “cunning fish” or St Helena butterflyfish. 

Sightings of dolphins, humpback whales, devil rays and turtles are said to be common, but of particular interest to divers are the large aggregations of whale sharks that form between December and April. St Helena is said to be is the only location where males and females can be seen in such large and equal numbers.

View above Jamestown, St Helena (Des Jacobs Photography)
View above Jamestown, St Helena (Des Jacobs Photography)

Divers have the further attraction of eight shipwrecks spanning 400 years of history, from the Witte Leeuw, dived by Jacques Cousteau, to the war grave Darkdale. “St Helena is a really exciting destination for all lovers of the natural world,” says Diverse product manager Phillip Connor. “The island is positively brimming with opportunities for adventure above and below the water.”

Tailor-made dive-holiday packages start from £2,845pp (March 2023), and include return flights with one item of checked baggage from London to Johannesburg, with an overnight stay in the city; return Airlink flights to St Helena; hotel transfers; seven nights’ B&B at the historic Mantis St Helena Hotel in Jamestown (two sharing); five days of two-tank boat-dives and a whale shark snorkelling trip, plus ATOL and full financial protection.

Two-centre holidays based on an extended stay in South Africa can also be arranged. Find out more about St Helena and other Diverse Travel offerings on its website.

Also on Divernet: Bony Would Have Died Happy, Big Bruvs Keep Watch Under Water


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Jeffrey hayes
Jeffrey hayes
11 months ago

Was born in St helena

Ry C
Ry C
11 months ago

Having worked in Falklands and Ascension Island I have met plenty of Saints. Looking forward to booking a dive holiday in the near future with amazing hospitality in a chilled out place (hopefully bump in to a few old friends too)

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