While in the West Indies for my Bachelorette Party (also known as the BEST BACHELORETTE PARTY EVER!), the ladies planned a special surprise for me. We would be swimming…
We stopped at what seemed to be the middle of nowhere.
As it turns out, we were at a sandbar that was covered in rocks.
Although, when the rocks started moving, we realized they weren’t rocks at all but massive, wild stingrays!
Lauren was the first of our group into the water.
She was so brave!
Not that I can give her a hard time for freaking out. I may or may not have screamed the first time one swam by me.
Ann seemed to be the only one not at all worried.
It’s amazing to me how big they are, and how close they swim to you.
The guides had no trouble at all grabbing one to show us the stinger.
They also allowed us to feel both the tail and the body.
Then it was time for us to hold the stingrays ourselves!
Then from there, the guide placed the stingrays on our backs for a “stingray massage.”
Some of us loved it.
As much as I’m enjoying Lauren’s funny pictures, she did take some cute ones too!
Those are just less fun to show than the hilarious ones!
Just when we had become somewhat comfortable around the stingrays, we were given the opportunity to feed them. They would swim up over our hands, quickly grabbing the food from us while hopefully not taking any fingers with them.
All while splashing around wildly.
Ann was cool, calm and collected.
While the rest of us? Not so much!
And Lauren was… Lauren.
We were also given snorkels so we could watch the stingrays swim underwater.
And I made this awesome video (yes, the newest iPhone is actually waterproof, just in case you were afraid to test it out yourself)!
Afterwards, when we had gotten all of our pictures, the guides answered our questions about the stingrays. We were impressed with their knowledge, and the reverence with which they treat these creatures. The guides were very respectful of the animals, which made the experience feel that much more natural.
Then it was time to board the boat and head back.
Where we were given the opportunity to decide just how attractive we were!
I loved loved LOVED swimming with stingrays! It wasn’t something I ever thought I’d do (or even realized I could do), so it felt like such a special, once-in-a-lifetime experience. We got great pictures, we had lots of laughs (mostly at each other’s facial expressions!), and learned a lot about stingrays. And the best part is we returned safe and sound!
Thank you, ladies, for the wonderful surprise! It’s one I’ll never forget!
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