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Ever dreamt of swimming with sharks? The snorkeling spot of Sharks Sandbank, a shallow sandbank located in the north of Moorea lagoon, is one of the best in Tahiti islands for living this unique experience. In a few feet of water, you will swim with dozens of blacktip reef sharks (some of them over 4 feet long) and friendly Pacific stingrays. If you explore this spot, we recommend you to pay an additional visit to the snorkeling spot of Motu Fareone & Motu Tiahura, located only a few hundred meters from here.
The nicest (and cheapest) way to explore this spot is by renting a kayak on the beach in front of Hotel Les Tipaniers (about €10/hour). To get to the beach, follow the path located on the left of the hotel entrance. The beach rental staff will tell you how to get to the spot and to the neighboring Motu Fareone. If you’re kayaking, reaching the sandbank will take you about 15 minutes. Moor your kayak to one of the mooring buoy of the spot.
You can also take part in one of the popular day tours leaving from Moorea, but they are quite expensive (often more than €100 per person) and you might have to share the spot with dozens of tourists.
Enter the water directly from your kayak. If you participate to a snorkeling tour, your boat will moor on the sandbank and you’ll simply have to dive in.
You only need to put your mask under the water to see the sharks and stingrays coming and going between the boats. You can easily get close to them, but they will swim away if you make any sudden gestures. Some stingrays are quite “tactile”, but don’t forget that they have a stinger that can inflict serious injuries.
Here and there, you will also see jacks, butterflyfish and pinktail triggerfish moving above the sand.
This is a very popular spot at certain times of day, so watch out for the boats and the other snorkelers. Sea conditions are generally good (few currents or waves) and are adapted to beginners who are looking for strong sensations.
There are no amenities on the spot, located in the middle of the lagoon. After your return trip to Moorea, you can enjoy a snack on Hotel Les Tipaniers’ beach bar. If you take part in a day boat tour, lunch will most probably be included. Make sure of it when booking.
Snorkeling spots are part of a wild environment and their aspect can be significantly altered by weather, seasons, sea conditions, human impact and climate events (storms, hurricanes, seawater-warming episodes…). The consequences can be an alteration of the seabed (coral bleaching, coral destruction, and invasive seagrass), a poor underwater visibility, or a decrease of the sea life present in the area. Snorkeling Report makes every effort to ensure that all the information displayed on this website is accurate and up-to-date, but no guarantee is given that the underwater visibility and seabed aspect will be exactly as described on this page the day you will snorkel the spot. If you recently snorkeled this area and noticed some changes compared to the information contained on this page, please contact us.
The data contained in this website is for general information purposes only, and is not legal advice. It is intended to provide snorkelers with the information that will enable them to engage in safe and enjoyable snorkeling, and it is not meant as a substitute for swim level, physical condition, experience, or local knowledge. Remember that all marine activities, including snorkeling, are potentially dangerous, and that you enter the water at your own risk. You must take an individual weather, sea conditions and hazards assessment before entering the water. If snorkeling conditions are degraded, postpone your snorkeling or select an alternate site. Know and obey local laws and regulations, including regulated areas, protected species, wildlife interaction and dive flag laws.
These spots are accessible to anyone with basic snorkeling skills, and feeling comfortable in the water and with his snorkeling gear. You will enter the water from the shore (beach, pontoon, ladder, rocks) or from a boat. The water height in the sea entrance area is reasonable, but you will not necessarily be within your depth. Moderate currents can occur in the area, even when the sea conditions are good. The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas of the spot does not exceed 200 meters.
This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.
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