Swim With the Fishes

"It's one of the coolest things to do in Denver right now," exclaims dive guide Shane Taylor. He may be right. In landlocked Colorado, the Downtown Aquarium's scuba and snorkel activity is a way for ocean lovers to don their wetsuits without the debauchery of a Cancun vacation.

Taylor gives his pre-dive spiel: "If a moray eel starts toward you, stay still; they are old and they can't see very well. Thrashing to get out of their way could hurt them. Just let them pass you."

The best part — if it's possible to narrow it down — is that from far away, many of the fish appear to be merely different shades of brown, but up close, even the most ordinary sport an iridescent outline or an almost imperceptible neon stripe. Best of all, they don't seem bothered by swimmers bobbing about in their habitat.

Underwater adventures at the Aquarium, 700 Water Street, aren't for the shy or nervous — other visitors will be able to check out your swimming skills, and the shark dive includes close contact with sand tiger sharks, zebra sharks, brown sharks and barracudas. Call 303-561-4487 or go to www.downtownaquarium.com.
Starts: July 10. Daily, 2006