2017 Itinerary: Big 5 Shark Dive.

2 full days Great White cage diving.
2 dives looking for Sand Tiger Sharks (Raggies) on Aliwal Shoal.
2 full days spent free diving with Tiger Sharks on Aliwal Shoal.
4 dives looking for Tiger Sharks, Bull Sharks and Hammerhead Sharks on Protea Banks.  

Please remember, this is purely a “suggested itinerary” and we can add / reduce it any way you like, by increasing or decreasing the number of days spend diving at any of the above locations..

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Best time of year: November to May. Within South Africa's 'Aliwal Shoal MPA' Tiger Sharks occur seasonally. Our research and observations over the past decade indicate that Tiger Sharks are detected only when water temperature reaches over 23'C. For those divers who harbour an ambition to dive with these impressive marine predators, we recommend joining an expedition between (and including) November and March. This time of year offers the greatest chance to encounter tiger sharks as water temperatures often are peaking above the required 23'C. 

Please note, “The Big 5 Sharks” have not read this timetable and have no idea where they are meant to be and when!

The Dive The Big 5 “Big 5” Sharks” are Tiger Shark, Sand Tiger Shark, Bull Shark, Hammerhead Shark and the Great White Shark. The first four were all found in great abundance on Protea Banks. This is what made this itinerary the “ultimate” shark dive. That was until a few years ago when the Tiger’s, Bull’s and Hammerhead’s almost disappeared from Protea Banks due to “sport” and commercial over fishing. Protea Banks fall outside the Marine Reserve with the result that the sharks were being targeted by sport fisherman and commercial fisherman alike. Due to public pressure this situation has improved to such an extent that the Tiger, Bull and Hammerhead’s are now again being encountered by sport divers on Protea. Divers now stand the chance of not only encountering Bull Shark, Hammerhead Shark and Tiger Shark but also Dusky and Black Tip Sharks on Protea, and the Sand Tiger is a common winter visitor to Aliwal. The world renowned under water photographer, Daniel Botelho, www.danielbotelho.com rates Protea Banks as one of his top shark dive destinations. Join Dive The Big 5 on a Big 5 Shark Dive to see why!

Please note: The Great White Shark activity takes place on or just below sea level. Full scuba gear is not required for Great White Shark cage diving, as the cage is attached to the side of the boat and no diving certification or experience is necessary. Your head and shoulders are above sea level until the dive master gives the call to let you know that the Great Whites are approaching. You then submerge your head and shoulders below sea level for the close-up sightings of the Great Whites, as they swim towards and past the cage. Snorkel equipment and breath holding are the most popular options selected as the scuba gear sounds are found to be distracting to the extremely sound sensitive Great Whites.  When you are not in our 8 man cage, refreshments are enjoyed while viewing the Great Whites and other sea life from the viewing deck.

Also…, you’ve come this far to dive. Why not take advantage of being in Africa and spend 3 days on safari in the world famous Kruger National Park. We have a 2 night / 3 day safari special for all divers travelling with “Dive The Big 5”.

Cost based on two divers sharing
Cost

Cost based on two divers sharing

ZAR 27 815 per diver sharing
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Non-diver cost based on two people sharing, diver with a non-diver
Cost

Non-diver cost based on two people sharing, diver with a non-diver

ZAR 12 680 for a non-diver sharing with a diver
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Cost based on singe diver
Cost

Cost based on singe diver

ZAR 35 020 per single diver.
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Cancellation policy:

  • Full refund in the event of the dive being cancelled due to bad weather.
  • Should we launch the boat for the dive and during the course of the dive the skipper decides to return to shore due to unfavourable weather conditions, there will be no refund.
  • The skipper’s decision is final and is based purely on your safety and comfort.

Please note: The Great White Shark activity takes place on or just below sea level. Full scuba gear is not required for shark cage diving, as the cage is attached to the side of the boat and no diving certification or experience is necessary. Your head and shoulders are above sea level until the dive master gives the call to let you know that the Great Whites are approaching. You then submerge your head and shoulders below sea level for the close sightings of the Great Whites, as they swim towards and past the cage. Snorkel equipment and breath holding are the most popular options selected as the scuba gear sounds are found to be distracting to the extremely sound sensitive Great Whites.  A “hookah” system, where air is supplied to the divers in the cage, is available on request, should you so wish. When you are not in our 3 man cage, refreshments are enjoyed while viewing the Great Whites and other sea life from the viewing deck.

Itinerary and prices are subject to change without notice.

Other “bits and pieces” of interest:

The cage is an 8-man / woman / person, cage, subject to change, and groups of divers spend roughly 20 minutes in the cage during their 1st “dive” session, thereafter they take it in turns for subsequent turns in the cage. Exact times spent in the cage differ from day to day, depending on the number of divers on the boat, and obviously shark activity. No point being in the cage when there are no sharks about! The number of divers, surface viewers is limited to 22, excluding researchers and crew, which allows each diver more cage time and a personalised on-board experience. The boat is licensed to carry 30 people maximum. When you are not in the cage, on-board refreshments can be enjoyed whilst viewing the Great Whites and other sea-life from the upper sun-deck.

NB When diving anywhere in South Africa or Mozambique, please don’t expect to do more than 2 dives a day. By noon, along the entire east coast of southern Africa the wind tends to pick up quite a bit, causing white caps on the ocean and making diving conditions difficult and even dangerous. As all dives are drift dives, it’s very difficult for the skipper of the Rubber Duck to spot the buoy in rough conditions and even more difficult to spot individual divers as they surface after their dive. The first dive of the day is usually scheduled for sunrise with the second dive of the day being scheduled after surface interval time and breakfast, at about 10h30. By noon, when the wind has picked up, all dives for the day have been completed. If by chance there is no wind, then a 3rd or even 4th dive might be possible, but this is very unlikely. The wind tends to drop by about 17h00, and if it does, then there is the possibility of a night dive. But this can only be confirmed on the day, at about mid-afternoon.

Itinerary and prices are subject to change without notice.

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