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Friday, 10 February 2012

City of rays

Well for the last day and the last dive of the holiday we decided to do it in style and we would be remiss if we didn't do Stingray City.
Rays everywhere
We were in quiet season and we chartered a private boat so apart from one other boat, we were the only four people in the whole area diving, which was awesome!
Kisses from the rays
Now I know a lot of people think Stingray City is a tourist trap and rays should be fed and humans shouldn't interact with marine life, etc., etc. Yes, I firmly believe in non-contact with marine life and not interfering with their normal habits, but consider that the rays have been hand fed for over twenty years and there is now a symbiotic relationship which is unlikely to be be broken any time soon, would they survive without humans stopped visiting and feeding? probably not.
One of the many happy, friendly rays to visit us
Semantics and politics aside, it was a bloody good time had by all and the rays were all like big, medium and small puppy dogs flapping around you from all sides and gently bumping and nuzzling you for attention and tidbits.
Rays! Fishes! Girls!
The site isn't deep at just under five metres, so a hundred minutes on a standard two hundred bar fill is easily achieved and probably enough time to be all ray-ed out and gushing come time to go up.
Three amigos
Word of warning though, the sand here is incredibly fine and gets into every nook and cranny so make sure you flush your dive kit and camera rigs thoroughly. I'm still finding sand in places where sand shouldn't be.........
 
This little fella followed us around the whole dive

Whatever you may think about the wrongs and rights of Stingray City, put that to one side as you would be doing yourself a huge dis-service if you missed the opportunity to swim with these wondrous creatures, just go and enjoy the experience.