Your Newest Bucket List Addition, Shark Diving.
A complete guide to swimming with sharks
The first time I saw a Great White Shark in the flesh, I peed my wetsuit.
You’ve seen it on Discovery Channel’s infamous Shark Week, divers submerged in cages hoping to get up close and personal with Great White Sharks. For the adrenaline junkies and the adventurous souls, I have your next bucket list item: cage diving.
I was in Cape Town, South Africa when I went cage diving. South Africa is a popular destination, but other locations include Australia, Mexico, The Bahamas, even California. If you find yourself in Cape Town, check out White Shark Projects. The staff is personable, attentive, focused on safety and very accommodating. The company even provided transportation to and from the house we rented in Camps Bay, and served breakfast in the morning.
Preparation? Probably None…
I’m not sure there is anything I can write to fully prepare you for a cage diving experience, so I will sum up mine.
After suiting up, groups of four are lowered in a protected metal cage under the water. The cage diving team attracts the shark to the boat and cage either using chum, noise, or dummies. The staff on the boat even reeled the bait on top of the cage, drawing the shark, and teeth, directly to our faces. The sharks would bump the cage, swim away, bump the cage again, and sometimes sneak in a bite to the cage we were inside of.
I’ll say it again, the first time I saw that shark, I peed my wetsuit. And it was awesome.
Another friend of mine threw up underwater. And it was awesome.
Actual Preparation Advice
Hydrate like crazy the night before cage diving. The boat might be rocky from the swells, and seasickness is not your friend (I know from experience). On that note, pack some seasickness medicine such as Dramamine just in case.
Have an open mind and be brave, if you get the opportunity to go cage diving, take it, because its not something everybody gets to do, and it is incredible to see the sharks move with such fluidity.
Cage diving prices are based on location and the duration of time. I’ve seen prices ranging from $150 to almost $800 USD per person. The White Shark Projects company in South Africa was less than $200 USD per person, and worth every single penny.
Start planning your next trip now. It is incredible to see such a beautiful and curious creature potentially bite a cage four inches in front of your face.