- The shark cage diving boat trip starts between 7h00 and 12h00 in the morning from Kleinbaai harbor, which is 2 km along the coast from the village of Gansbaai.
- Times may vary due to the tides and expected sea conditions.
- You will be personally notified,(text message to the mobile number or email address provided during booking) after 17:00 the day before your dive, about the time you must meet at our crew house.
- After a continental breakfast (no greasy foods which will result in possible sea-sickness), payments can bemade in either cash or VISA/MASTERCARD and indemnities signed.
- We will give a full safety briefing on land during which you will be informed of the route, the boat, and the possible marine wildlife you might encounter during the trip.
- After a 2 minute walk to the harbor, you will board our custom built vessel, Apex Predator
- We will then launch to Dyer Island, Joubert's Dam or anchor spot chosen at the discretion of the skipper based on current sightings and weather conditions.
- The round boat trip to and from the harbor normally takes 3 to 4 hours.
- After dropping anchor, we begin attracting Great Whites with a specially - formulated ‘Chum’ mixture, made from completely legal ingredients, which has taken Brian McFarlane years to perfect, and is a highly-guarded trade secret. Sharks are seen 99.9% of our trips!
- MANDATE AGAINST THE USE OF SHARK PRODUCTS – Great White Shark Tours do not at any stage feed the sharks nor use any part of a shark product in their ‘secret chum mixture’ and have signed a mandate to this effect.
- Once the Great White Sharks arrive, you will have the opportunity to photograph these apex predators in their natural environment searching for the food source on the surface, next to the boat. This is when you enter the shark cage!
- We recommend that you book well in advance and allow at least 2 days for diving in case of adverse weather conditions. Passengers are exposed to the open sea while travelling to and from the 2 islands. At the islands the boat is anchored off the lee sides and protected bays.
- Tourists are exposed to the open sea. We provide jackets for protection against the elements while travelling to and from the 2 islands.
- At the islands the boat is anchored off the lee sides and protected bays.
- Vinyl side curtains give additional protection from the wind and sea spray.
- Safety briefings are given and passengers must pay attention. For your own safety the skippers' instructions must be obeyed at all times.
- We have a 20 year unblemished safety record
- We hold a $500million policy covering us for negligence whilst you are on the boat or in the cage.
- Great White Shark Tours is a licensed operator. There are only 8 licensed shark cgae diving operators. Be aware of GHOST OPERATORS who are not authorized to operate in this industry.
- A certificate with substantial shark info will be handed to each participant on completion of the trip. View PDF
- Great White Sharks are surface feeders and can be seen and photographed from the surface.
- Our cage, manufactured of 12mm galvanised steel, is of the floating type and is attached to the boat at all times.
- The divers are no more than half a meter below the surface.
- Two highly skilled Dive Masters and a Level Three Medic with O² Management supervise all the dives.
- The boat has two qualified skippers on board.
- The boat and operations are monitored by SAMSA ( South African Marine Safety Association), MCM ( Marine & Coastal Management)
- This ensures that our guests experience the most spectacular Great White Shark viewing and diving in complete safety.
The Boat – Apex Predator
- Apex Predator, Brian McFarlane’s latest modern hi-tech custom-built catamaran is the envy of every boating enthusiast. The vessel is fitted with a spacious cabin and sheltered seating, dive platform, separate toilet. It is sleek, fast and comfortable. The boat can take as many as 40 passengers per trip, but you will never feel crowded.
- Apex Predator is inspected annually by the Department of Marine & Coastal Management. Our boat and entire operation have been diligently scrutinized by the controlling bodies of the South African Government and have been awarded one of only 8 permits available in this part of Africa to take you down to see these giants.
- A new galvanized steel cage was recently put into service and are routinely inspected and certified by a qualified engineer.
- Our friendly and experienced qualified dive masters will help you at each step of the dive.
The Shark Cage
- No experience is required if you want to go down in the cage.
- It is breath holding and going under the water for no more than half a meter.
- Sometimes the water will be extremely rough or far too murky to use the cage. However, viewing from the boat is still an awesome experience, with excellent photo opportunities.
- The cage is of the floating-variety type and is custom-built to the highest quality standard with 12mm galvanized steel mesh. The sharks cannot get inside. Our viewing gap is now 230mm.
- The cage is 4.2 meters long and can hold 8 divers at a time
- The cage is attached with ropes to the boat at all times.
- All diving equipment is supplied. All of our 7mm wetsuits are in good condition, leak-free and easy to put on and take off.
- Every diver will be provided with a dry, clean wetsuit.
- We also supply dry towels after the dive.
- The cage isattached to the boat at all times and is easy to access, so you can climb out at any time.
- In event of negligence we are covered by a policy up to $500million.
- Our winter months, May- September, are normally our best shark viewing months because 1) sharks are more plentiful, 2) visibility is generally more superior to the summer months, 3) the temperature of the water is normally higher due to North Westerly winds. Great White Sharks are not always resident in 'Shark Alley' but we search for them insurrounding areas.
- Shark sightings are most numerous and there are more sharks in the winter months, because the water temperature is warmer and there is no algae bloom during this time.
Shark Alley - The famous great white shark island
- Dyer Island lies 5 miles (8 km) offshore, near the village of Gansbaai is the home to the endangered African Penguin and various migrating birds.
- Nearby, Geyser Rock supports a colony of 60,000 Cape Fur Seals….these guys are the reason the Great White Sharks move to this area.
- Shark Alley is the channel between 2 islands, Dyer Island and Geyser Rock and is protected from the worst of the Southern Atlantic’s weather…this is where we normally anchor our boat, Apex Predator.
- The islands and Shark Alley itself are teeming with life. Cape Fur Seals, Jackass Penguins, and a wide variety of sea birds are commonly seen from the boat. From July to November, Southern Right Whales are spotted almost every day as well! Dolphins very often swim next to the boat.
- As per Lonely Planet’s 2011 BEST IN TRAVEL:
The best places to go and things to do all round the world right now:
No 1 Best Underwater Experiences Diving with Great Whites, Gansbaai, South Africa.
Passenger requirements and equipment
- If you are prone to motion sickness we recommend that you contact a pharmacist prior to the trip and acquire the necessary medication which should be taken prior to the trip.
- Pregnant women should consult their physician prior to their trip.
- You do not require ant previous diving experience or qualifications. You hold your breath and view the white sharks swim pass you. You simply hold your breath and go underwater for a few seconds.
- We do not use air; it is believe that the bubbles keep the sharks away from the cage.
- Surface viewing of the Great White Sharks are just as spectacular as the great white cage diving, as sharks are surface feeders and can be observed closely and photographed from the boat.
- All diving equipment such wetsuits, booties, masks, wet weather protective jackets and clean dry towels are provided and are included in the tour price.
- On return to our crew house, a hot shower is available at no charge.
- Warm clothing including a change of underwear, a cap, sun block, camera & film are essential items for the trip.
- A variety of fresh bread rolls, water, cool drinks, fruit & other snacks are provided on board. Please help yourself.
- A DVD capturing the priceless memories of the trip is also available after the trip at an additional cost.