In the last 350 million years sharks have dominated the oceans of the world. The fiercest predators within their domain, sharks have earned their reputation as the hunters of the sea.
South Africa, more specifically Cape Town, is without a darkness of any doubt, one of the finest destinations worldwide for experiencing sharks, especially Great White sharks, at close proximity. The population of sharks is unparalleled elsewhere, and the locations are so accessible and in close proximity to land, that you will be virtually guaranteed to witness numerous animals doing what they certainly were born to do.
The Adventure of a Lifetime
Shark cage diving and surface viewing is now increasingly popular within the adventure tourism industry within the last decade. It's the knowledge of an eternity to be able to witness these magnificent animals inside their natural habitat.
Annually 1000s of people travel the globe to see and dive with the 400 species of shark inside our oceans. Every year they undertake this adventure with apprehension and excitement and each time return with a passion and deep seated respect for these fascinating creatures.
Swim with the Sharks
Shark cage diving is a strictly regulated industry, with only some operators having been granted a license to engage in this activity. Great care is taken to not interfere an excessive amount of with the natural behavior patterns of the sharks. The feeding of sharks can also be strictly prohibited, to avoid them from associating boats having an easy meal.
Passengers on the shark cage trips are likely to see Great Whites as other sharks tend to keep a low profile inside their territories. The Cape Coast is one of the most famous Great White territories world wide.
On boarding the boat for the trip out to sea, the passenger's anticipation is overwhelming. It will take around one hour of chumming before the initial shark appears. After the sharks have settled down, the first band of cagers prepare to enter their cage while the remainder retreat to the trunk of the boat or viewing platform to witness the spectacular proceedings, eagerly awaiting their turn in the cage.
The bait line is slowly drawn towards the cage. While the bait line approaches so too does the Great White. The cage experience has been described by some as an emotional, heart-stopping and truly thrilling experience.
The ability is not just thrilling for anyone in the cage. The passengers on the boat are able to enjoy the outer lining viewing from an unparalleled viewpoint and to observe and photograph the Great White sharks from only a few feet away. Surface viewing here is amazing as passengers get an all-round view of the sharks attacking, circling and descending.
Shark Cage Diving Locations
There are two areas where Great White diving is completed, Gans Bay and Mossel Bay. Both these destinations are often reached by land or air from Cape Town International Airport. Both destinations may also be major tourist hot spots and accommodation and restaurants are of an excellent standard.
The most effective season for Great White viewing is between April and November mainly due to the mass-pupping of seals. Sharks really are a little less active between December and March but are not completely absent from the areas. During caging and viewing trips Great White sharks are encountered 95% of the time, on a good day upwards of several Great White sharks ranging between 2, 5 and 4, 5 meters might be encountered.
There are certainly a multitude of companies operating shark tours in and around Cape Town many specialising in specific sightings due to where they are based. On all the tours you will have the ability to see a great many other areas of marine life independent of the sharks: schools of dolphins; seals; penguins; bird life and occasionally whales.
Experience the Thrill
Whether sharks intrigue, fascinate or frighten you, it is the knowledge of an entire life being so close to them and observing them inside their natural habitat regarding Shark snorkeling. Being with one of these mighty kings of the deep is among the most popular activities in adventure tourism at the moment. Whether you wish to dive with Great Whites or simply just view them from afar, Cape Town is the perfect area for you.
Shark cage diving is once in a lifetime opportunity for shark lovers and adventure junkies alike. Experience the best thrill whilst diving with ragged-tooth sharks, a turtle, rays and game fishes in the I&J predator exhibit at the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town.