The seas are some of the most beautiful and most vibrant parts of our planet. Biologists, surfers and scientists are infinitely impressed by all kinds of sea-life, and especially revel in the chance they get at taking a closer look.

Luckily, ordinary lovers of sea life are able to take advantage of the fact that there are various opportunities for them to come into contact with some of the sea’s most impressive creatures.

Take a look at this jaw-dropping encounter a group of people had with a whale shark:

For instance, you could get onboard a whale-watching boat and encounter the most tremendously enormous sea life creatures on the planet.

Well, one boat full of unsuspecting tourists got much more than they bargained for on their whale-watching adventure.

They were on the Ningaloo Reef, 6 km off the coast of Western Australia, and were in utter shock when it emerged that a huge whale shark was lurking beneath them.

The extraordinary photos were taken earlier this week by 26-year-old Tom Cannon, who was born in England but moved to Australia when he was a teenager.

“I was born in Shoreham, England, and moved to Australia with my family when I was 13. I then moved to Melbourne and left to chase my dream three years ago,” he said. “I live with my girlfriend in a bus we converted into a house in the tiny remote town of Coral Bay Western Australia.”

Tom also went to explain that he knew that there was no need to fear the creature, despite the fact that it is officially the largest fish in the world.

“It spends most of its time living mysteriously at depths unreachable by humans but from March until July they can be seen of the back of the Ningaloo Reef In Coral Bay and Exmouth, Australia,” Cannon said. “The picture was taken about 6 km offshore on the back of the Ningaloo Reef Coral Bay while on tour with Ningaloo Reef Dive and Snorkel.

It’s pretty spectacular that this group of tourists, many of whom were whale-enthusiasts, were able to encounter something so undeniably breathtaking. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that probably won’t be surpassed by any other weird and wonderful spectacle they come across in their lives.