Sharks are one of nature’s most beautiful—and misunderstood—creatures. When most people think of sharks, they think of unexpecting swimmers being attacked and eaten by a nightmarish creature. But what they don’t know is that many sharks are more afraid of us than we are of them. The sharks that come close are probably curious about why such a long-finned animal—a person—that they’ve never seen before is splashing around in their ocean. Wouldn’t you want to check it out too? Go ahead and check out these sharks in this slideshow of some of the best photographs of these amazing animals. Then read 5 Reasons to Revere, Not Fear, the Shark and learn more about shark diversity, biology and evolution.