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“Amazing experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of White Shark Safaris

White Shark Safaris
12 Geelbek Street | Kleinbaai, Gansbaai 7220, South Africa (Formerly White Shark Adventures)
+27 60 966 8844
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Ranked #11 of 19 Activities in Gansbaai
Type: Boat Tours, Adventure
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Owner description: Whether you are an adrenaline junkie, ticking off another experience on your bucket-list or planning a special family outing, we aim to give you the most exciting day of your life when you choose to come Shark Cage Diving and/or Viewing with White Shark Safaris. It is our privilege at White Shark Safaris - to offer you an opportunity to dive and view these magnificent animals in a safe and professional environment and have lots of FUN at the same time.
Johannesburg, South Africa
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Amazing experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2012

My husband and I really enjoyed the experience. Our booking was last minute due to the weather conditions. We were given breakfast on the morning and then briefed regarding the trip and safety regulations. The visibility on the dive was not great and the swells were quite big but it was still an amazing experience. The staff were friendly and patient which helped a lot to calm the nerves of some of the passengers. They were very well organised and we were always well informed as to what what happening. Hot soup and fresh bread after the cold water was very welcome!!

Visited August 2012
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Baltimore
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
“Fantastic Experience”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2012

My husband and I booked direct through White Shark Adventures based on the excellent reviews on TripAdvisor. This ended up being a real highlight of our trip, and honestly it was one of the biggest draws to South Africa for us. We had a car and drove ourselves to the marina, which was easy enough to find with the directions that WSA provided to us. A very nice breakfast was served, better than we anticipated, and there were bathroom facilities available at the office in Gansbaai. The staff was very knowledgeable and friendly, and the boat Nemo seemed to be in good condition. A number of people did get seasick, as it is a rocky ride out and back, so definitely take Dramamine ahead of time if you even think there is a possibility that you may be affected. We were very lucky to have a number of sharks there waiting for us when we arrived to the cage, and there was never any shortage of action. Everyone was given about 20 minutes in the cage, but they will let you get out early if you decide you're done prior to that... which many people did. One complaint that I do have, is that we were told that the oxygen was not working when we went out (we were also told that it would scare the sharks, so I'm not sure which it really was...), and that we would have to just hold our breath when we went under. This wasn't a huge deal for us, but it was disappointing since the continuous oxygen is so heavily promoted as differentiating WSA from other operators. I will say that the cage was very sturdy and felt safe. After seeing some of the cages that other operators were using, I am still very glad that we chose WSA. After the dive we all went back to the office to warm up and have a very nice lunch of soup and good bread. We watched the video that the very skilled videographer took, and had the opportunity to buy that as well as shirts and other souvineers.

Visited August 2012
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Munich, Germany
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Breathtaking experience, watch out if you get seasick easily”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

This was a once in a lifetime experience. We booked one day in advance and were welcomed with a nice breakfast at Gansbaai. Afterwards we left with a boat called Nemo, we went out on the open sea. The drive took about half an hour. We stopped the boat and the crew started attracting the sharkes with fish and blood. I went in the cage twice. The water was ice cold, but seeing a shark this close, it was just amazing. I remember that i was screaming out a huge "WOW!" underwater. We saw plenty of sharks, one really big one swam towards the cage with his mouth wide open and then dived under the cage. Wow, again. The crew was really professional and I felt safe all the time. On the way back we were offered fruit, sandwiches and drinks.
It was one of the best things I ever did. But it was the worst day ever for my boyfriend. The waves were pretty rough and after 45 min he started throwing up and feeling really sick (not only he). He went in the cage one time but wasn't able to do anything afterwards. So if you get seasick easily try the pills or spare the money (it's quite expensive) as you won't enjoy the trip.

Visited February 2012
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Whitesharks, Guest Relations Manager at White Shark Safaris, responded to this review, August 20, 2012
Dear Client

Absolutely great to hear that you enjoyed your upclose-and-personal experience with the Cape's Great Whites!
Pity to hear about your boyfriends' seasickness. Seasickness is all in the mind and unfortunately something that we can't control.
Hopefully, he will be back!

Kind Regards
White Shark Adventures
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“A well organised and enjoyable trip”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2012 via mobile

We were picked up from our hotel in Camps Bay at 7.15 and this was on time and we were given a friendly welcome by the driver. However, it was an hour before we left Cape Town due to other guest pick ups and so, we advise getting a small breakfast before you leave.
Upon arrival we received sandwiches and hot drinks which were very good. The staff were extremely friendly and enthusiastic about the trip ahead!
Staff on the boat were friendly and helpful and altogether we saw 6 Great White Sharks.
Expect around 20 passengers per boat which is low to some we saw out that day.
A great day and well reccomended. A must do when visiting The Cape.

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Whitesharks, Guest Relations Manager at White Shark Safaris, responded to this review, August 18, 2012
Dear Client

I am glad that we were able to share our passion for sharks and service with you.

Kind Regards
White Shark Adventures
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
1,093 reviews 1,093 reviews
737 attraction reviews
Reviews in 91 cities Reviews in 91 cities
706 helpful votes 706 helpful votes
“Nice operation”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2012

I booked through another company (I think – Unreal Dive) but it was White Shark Adventures that ran the trip. They were very good. The little dive centre in Gansbaai is comfortable and after a very early pick-up from central Cape Town (4.40 am!) and a 3 hour drive, it was nice to arrive to find coffee and tea and a nice, warm breakfast ready to go. After a quick briefing and indemnity signing, it was a short walk down to the very picturesque slipway.
White Shark Adventures’ boat, “The Nemo”, was brought down shortly afterwards, and it was all aboard, before putting out to sea. Watching the sun rise as the boat got under way was quite an experience in itself.
Those with a weak stomach should be warned that the ride out was quite rough – on my trip there were half a dozen people who spent most of their time being very sea-sick, even after a 15-20 minute ride out to the sharks. If you are that way inclined, remember to take your sea-sickness medication. I also found the Nemo to be a little cramped – there were about 18-20 customers on board, along with 5 crewmen, and space was at a premium. Certainly not the worst ratio, but just a little uncomfortable for mine, especially in the bumpy water.
Launching the cage was a smooth and interesting process – the crew basically slide it off the back of the boat and man-handle it around to the side. After a short wait, with the staff chumming the water to attraction the stars of the show, the wetsuits are handed out and everyone geared up, before taking the plunge into the cage. The gear that was used was good quality and I didn’t feel the cold when I was in the water – perhaps I was far too excited. Others did mention the cold, but the staff were happy to pull people out the water early if they wanted. Sadly, cold water goes with the territory – unusually, the summer is apparently colder as the melting Antarctic ice cools the water!
White Shark Adventures is one of the few operators that have regulators connected to an on-board compressor, theoretically allowing customers to remain underwater while watching the sharks. I tried the regulators, and just found the hose warped and twisted and was a real hassle. After a while the crew turned off the compressor as it was disturbing the sharks (they had warned that that might happen). The viewing was just as good and a darn side easier. A nice extra, perhaps, but I could take it or leave it. Oh, and no dive certification required.
The only other general note I would make is that it is not a gentle ride in the cage. Sure, the boat is anchored, but the waves were moving it around quite a bit, and there was a lot of rocking and rolling in there. I didn’t mind, but again, for those not accustomed to the rough seas, it might be a bit disconcerting. Don’t let that deter you – give it a try, but maybe ask to be the last diver in so you can sit under the entry hatch to allow you to get out quickly and easily if required.
So to the beasts themselves… I could get out a thesaurus and look up all the words associated with “amazing”, “stunning” and so on. You get the idea. To see a true apex predator up close was not just a trip highlight, but a life highlight. And they do get close; at one time a shark was thrashing against the front of the cage. Real bucket-list stuff! Just to recap – I was in cold water, getting tossed around inside a small metal cage, duck-diving and out of breath, but I had the time of my life and did not really notice any of this stuff – the adrenalin was running and I was too excited!
Sadly, time was up all too soon and it was a quick motor back to land. Once again, lunch was hot and ready on our arrival back at the centre. While we ate, the crew-videographer played the video he had made during the trip, then offered the same for sale. A pretty cool and smooth process.
All in all I would say that White Shark Adventures is brilliant. The whole process was smooth and lived up to expectations. Staff were friendly and knowledgeable and the whole operation was run ethically and with respect for the Great Whites.
And a hint if you do decide to take the plunge – the sharks take a while to warm up and it was noticeable that they were a little more active towards the end of the trip, so try to be in the last group that gets into the water, which should maximise both the number of sharks and the maximum activity. It could have just been a different perception due to excitement, but it also seemed that the last group was left in the water for longer than the rest. Of course, that is all based on only one trip, but it does tend to make sense if you think about it.
White Shark Adventures was excellent. Like a safari in Kruger Park, nothing can be guaranteed when it comes to wild animals, so all you can ask for is a company that knows what it is doing, makes the most of each and every opportunity and does it all with a smile on their faces. White Shark Adventures does all of this. Very highly recommended.

Visited July 2012
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