We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Great morning with the great whites”

Shark Diving Unlimited
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Shark Diving Unlimited specialises in conservation and education initiatives of all shark species around our coastline Owned by Michael Rutzen who has been working with great white sharks since 1994. Four years later Mike began freediving with great white sharks and is now known worldwide as one of the few people who is able to interact with these magnificent predators outside the safety of the cage!Breathtaking images of Mike have been featured in numerous magazines and documentaries including BEYOND FEAR (National Geographic) and SHARKMAN (Discovery). Mike’s aim is to portray positive images of great white sharks in order to dispel the ‘JAWS’ myth.Mike is a PADI Instructor and the only person in the world qualified to teach the prestigious Great White Shark Distinctive Specialty PADI course. He is a qualified skipper, First Aid instructor, qualified rebreather, nitrox and commercial diver. Your skipper Frank Rutzen has spent his life on the ocean from Kwa-Zulu Natal to the Western Cape. He has worked in the great white shark cage diving industry since 1995 and has a passion for wildlife and an extensive knowledge of the Dyer Island marine ecosystem.Nsunda is a qualified South African tour guide and qualified scuba diver. He will help you with all your diving equipment needs and make sure that your day runs smoothly!Shark Diving Unlimited was the company of choice for HRH Prince Harry, His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein, Leonardo Di Caprio and Brad Pitt.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great morning with the great whites”
Reviewed November 1, 2012 via mobile

We went on the tour this past Wednesday and enjoyed every moment. We were happy to get on board as soon as possible and the gent in charge made sure we all knew the procedures when in the cage and answered all additional questions I had (and I was terrified so I definitely had some).

They had also prepared us ahead of time that the trip may be cut short due to weather (very high winds and very choppy - in fact we were the only boat that went out that morning). So our expectations were in line with reality

As soon as the first shark was seen from the boat the we got moving. Both groups (7 each) had some terrific views as we had 5 different GWS come close to the cage. I am so glad we did this

Afterwards we could buy our trip DVD or some gear, and the crew never made us feel like we had to or that we had to get out of the shop afterwards. There tshirt designs could really use some work though and it would have been nice for an opportunity over lunch for some q&a with the guys in charge

3 Thank amanda_junk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

276 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Manchester, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“shark dive”
Reviewed October 9, 2012

amazing!!!!!! scary stuff but well worth doing. saw some big ones, best experience of my life. 10/10

Visited October 2012
3 Thank terry p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarborough, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
13 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed September 7, 2012

The SDU team were really on the ball on my latest visit and we all had an amazing time on the Barracuda once again.
The welcome was very warm and food plentiful and we were blessed with a glorious day at sea.
SDU keep comfortable numbers on their boat so that everyone gets time to enter the cage and view from the boat. Other boats were struggling for space and to find the sharks, we had no problems. as Johan explained the area and vessel we were instantly greeted by several big sharks.
Everyone on board had an amazing time and really got as close as possible. As a return customer I was made extra welcome and cannot wait to return for longer next year!
The trip finished off with us leaving the sharks after everyone had ample time and we journeyed along the coast to view the Southern Right Whales. This was a majestic and unique experience as no other boats did this. We were so lucky to be right next to a very inquisitive female who came right under the boat! A great end to an amazing trip.
Back at the office we were once again treat to Mother Rutzen and her staffs lovely soup and food and given chance to get souvenirs at a very reasonable price.

All in all Michael, Lara, Johan and the team make your trip special and give you all the knowledge you need to take with you and enjoy the wonderful experience you have with the majestic white sharks of Gansbaai.

4 Thank richmcguinn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Campinas, SP
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Sharks are great, but service was below average”
Reviewed August 18, 2012

Obviously seeing great whites is amazing. However, the rest of the experience, staff attitude, any pre-talk about GWSs, the need to protect them, etc. was left out. It was basically: "get on the boat, see the sharks, and get back".

Lots of room for improvement around customer service.

I think that ReviewerMD really hits the nail on the head:

"We definitely were enticed by the SharkMan's reputation in the community. But as others said, though he was there he doesn't go on the tour with you and frankly, was not friendly. The guide who took us on the boat was nice, but there is a lot of opportunity for the whole staff. It would have been nice if they had a quick intro talk, maybe introduced Mike, and talked about why they are in the business they are in. It felt a little like, "Yep sharks, let's go". Now other than the seasickness I had, once out there they do a great job attracting the sharks. Can't complain there!"

Visited August 2012
3 Thank CV39560
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Nature's Machines - unbelievable experience.”
Reviewed July 26, 2012

After ploughing through huge amounts of information and various websites advertising shark diving in South Africa, we settled on Shark Diving Unlimited. There's really only 1 word - wow. We unfortunately didn't see any sharks on our scheduled trip, however SDU were good to their word and offered everyone a free trip the next day. They're not obliged to do this - these beasts are wild animals and if they don't want to make an appearance, who are we to question? Anyways, the next day we jumped on the Barracuda boat once more and dived with the most majestic and awe-inspiring animals I have ever seen. The crew, on and off the water, were super-helpful and friendly, the service was really good - overall, an experience that everyone should do at least once in their lives. When you stare in the eye and down the enormous throat of a great white shark which is only about 3 feet away, you'll see what I mean. Astonishing.

Visited October 2011
3 Thank UpFlatDown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Shark Diving Unlimited also viewed

Gansbaai, Overberg District
Kleinbaai, Gansbaai

Been to Shark Diving Unlimited? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing