Great White Sharks in South Africa

Discussion in 'Africa' started by TravelKane, Jul 1, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    I am starting to plan a trip to South Africa to see and dive with Great White Sharks.

    Anyone have any experience / suggestions?
     
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  2. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    What are your goals? Do you want to jump in a shark cage where they chum the water (hopefully not with the divers :p) and take photos of Great Whites? Do you want to free dive with Great Whites?

    You may want to think a bit more about your goals, and see what's available by professionally hosted tours/dive operations. If you want to dive with Great Whites, there are a number of places to do this besides South Africa (Australia, Guadalupe, etc.). I've seen most everything in diving around the world for a few decades, but being in the water with a Great White (and getting out of the water to tell others about it! ;)) are still on my bucket list.

    One operation that you may want to consider is Big Animals Expeditions, run by Amos Nachoum. See: http://biganimals.com/
    Going this route isn't going to be inexpensive, but you will get your money's worth, and all dive operations will be conducted with safety uppermost in mind. Good luck!
     
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  3. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    I would like to do an out of the cage dive, but I don't think there is a tour co option for that and setting up a private dive seems cost prohibitive. So I'm thinking I'll have to settle for a cage dive.
    Thanks for the link. Great info. The kind of stuff I'm looking for. Now looking at the Tiger Shark dive, where I think the Tiger Shark is scarier & more aggressive than the White.

    Cost is an issue. I've found some places where you can "volunteer" with the tour/conversationalist outfits. I say "volunteer" because you do pay & it's not what I'd consider a small fee.
     
  4. newbluesea
    Original Member

    newbluesea Gold Member

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    Out of cage white shark diving? :rolleyes: I guess some of us have some sort of death wish.:)

    Back to the original topic, Great White shark diving (in cages) are usually done from Hermanus, which is about 1 1/2 hours north-east of Cape Town. When I was there a few years ago to see the whales which nurse their new calves just off the coast (Sept-Dec???) and who sometimes come really very close to the cliffs below the town, I saw lots of road-side signs advertising cage diving trips. There were also lots of ads for diving operators on the Hermanus tourist website.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2014
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  5. RockoHorse

    RockoHorse Silver Member

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    A friend of mine went cage diving - where they chum the water and the sharks show up
    You are essentially swimming in chum (apparently they pour it over your head) to attract the sharks but it also means that you will be covered in it after the dive is over. The boat my friend took didn't have showers so they were "chummy" for the drive back to their hotel.
     
  6. bartlettjr17

    bartlettjr17 Active Member

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    TravelKane,

    Congrats on wanting to dive with Great Whites! My wife and I swam with them in 2012.
    If you're going from South Africa, you'll be diving in Gansbaai (pronounced- Hans bye) about 2 1/2 hours from Cape Town. First- It is an adrenaline rush like no other when you're inches away from a 15 ft apex predator. However, it is not as dangerous or crazy as many folks will have you believe. These diving outfits are highly reputable and realize that dead clients can't pay. If people get hurt, it shuts down the industry. So, safety to these folks is paramount. Second- They use a seal decoy (you'll be less than a mile from 'Seal Island'- the real interest of the Great Whites) and a small amount of chum/chunk of fish. We didn't have chum dumped over us or around us. It's not that dramatic. Sharks can smell blood from miles away, so a little in the general area goes a long way. I wouldn't deal with any operation that does shady crap like that.
    We went with a great outfit called- Marine Dynamics (I've heard great things about the Shark Lady as well) They are an awesome and professional group. They're concerned with the conservation of the shark, because no shark means no business. A marine biologist will accompany the group on the dive boat.
    You'll be picked up at your hotel and driven to Gansbaai. Once there, you'll have a light breakfast with other folks about to dive. I'm ex-military, and enjoyed chatting with a couple of South African soldiers about to go diving for their holiday. After a safety briefing, you'll head out. If you're prone to seasickness, take ginger or Dramamine BEFORE you get on the boat. It will be somewhat rough out there and some people were seasick. They'll give you a wetsuit to wear once you get to the stationary cage.
    My wife thought I was crazy and said she was going to get life insurance on me.. However, once she realized that it was relatively safe and an adrenaline rush, she wanted to do the dive as well!
    It will be the time of your life! Let me know if you have any other questions.
     
  7. bartlettjr17

    bartlettjr17 Active Member

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    I don't post very much, so it wouldn't let me embed any links. Let me know and I can PM you whatever links you may need.
     
  8. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    Thanks for the info. Glad to hear that I can avoid getting chummed. It's cool to hear that your wife decided to go for it.
     
  9. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    Feel free to PM me, I'd appreciate the info.
     
  10. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    :eek:
     
  11. TravelKane

    TravelKane Silver Member

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    Thanks for the info.
     

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