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“An UNMISSABLE, breathtaking experience!”

Great White Shark Tours
Ranked #1 of 21 Tours in Gansbaai
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The owner and founder Brian McFarlane is a professional diver and skipper who has always made a living from the sea. He started diving for perlemoen (abalone) at a young age, then moved on to become a commercial fisherman for 6 years and spent another 6 years diving in search of wrecks along the southern coast of Africa. This was followed by the diving for diamonds from the sea-bed for the next 20 years.He has become a local legend with his fascinating tales about the sea and underwater experiences. During the time when Great White Shark fishing was allowed, Brian caught Great Whites, some weighing more than 1 tonne.Today, he dearly regrets this and now spends his time and efforts in finding the great beasts to be observed and photographed at close range. Brian has worked with the Great Whites for 18 years and has only had 6 non-sighting days in the last 10 years.
Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“An UNMISSABLE, breathtaking experience!”
Reviewed November 12, 2013

We spent 3 weeks in South Africa and this was by far one of our favourite experiences. This company has really earned its great Trip Advisor rating.

Notable awesome facts about our great experience with this company:

- The group met at a nice, well presented large meeting room with plenty of room for everyone to sit down and enjoy some (great) breakfast
- A DVD was shown about great white sharks, about cage diving and the area we were going to see together with some paper information on the tables during breakfast
-Great briefing prior to launch with a demo cage showing us how to hold on, what not to do in the cage etc,
- Big orange rain jackets/wind breakers were provided for the chilly ride out to the mooring spot
- The staff were all very friendly, helpful and respectful about the sharks and the general environment
- Snacks provided on board
-There's lots of room for everyone to sit (our group was around 30 and didn'f feel cramped on board)
- Great info provided on board here and there while the crew lowered the cage and we waited for the sharks to appear
- My husband and I both got two turns (of around 15-20min per turn) in the cage each which we felt was plenty as the water was quite cold
- The system of getting everyone in an out of suits, masks, booties etc and in and out of the cage was extremely efficient and impressive. This was a very well polished operation that made what could be a cumbersome process easy
- There are two compartments/small rooms just under the cabin where the wet suits are stored with curtains that can be used as changing rooms
- Towels are provided on board and there are lots of waterproof compartments for everyone to safety store their belongings
- Seal colony visit on the way back to base
- Lovely hot soup and coffee/tea and cookies provided back at the house while the dvd of the day's outing is shown (which can be purchased for R250 which we thought was well worth it. You can check out the video we purchased on Youtube by searching "Dave & Jenny's Shark Cage Diving Trip".

All in all we were very impressed. I suppose our initial concerns going in were that we wouldn't see any sharks (we didn't have enough time to re-book, although we could get our money back if no sharks were seen which is very reassuring), that we would get sea sick and have an awful time and that the water would be freezing. But we ended up seeing at least 4 sharks from small to immense in size, neither of us felt even slightly sea sick, the was was pretty cold but worth it for the experience and an overall amazing day!

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank J3nny_and_Dav3_nz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharky41, Manager at Great White Shark Tours, responded to this review, November 25, 2013
We are so pleased that we could make your experience with us a memorable one and hope you will return again soon.

Kind Regards
Team GWST
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Brewood, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent”
Reviewed November 10, 2013 via mobile

Brian and his team are first class shark diving operators. Very knowledgable and respecting of the environment whilst also providing a tremendous opportunity to meet these awesome creatures. Very highly recommended

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank diysteve345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharky41, Manager at Great White Shark Tours, responded to this review, November 25, 2013
Thank you so much Steve! We hope to see you again soon!

Kind Regards
Team GWST
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Petersburg, Florida
Level Contributor
70 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“These Guys Go Out Of There Way to Deliver!”
Reviewed November 6, 2013

I went on a day tour and it was amazing. We saw five Great Whites and I got to get in the cage twice. My 10 year old son also joined me in the cage for a father-son experience that will last a lifetime. We also saw whales and seals.

What set GWSTs apart is that they go the extra mile to deliver. We went in November where most of the sharks are in shallow with poor visibility. All the other boats immediately went shallow. We started off by trying two locations with clean water and great visibility. GWST did not settle and made the effort to provide the best experience. We did not find sharks in clean water but saw whales. We had plenty of time to join the pack later.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank Lastinger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharky41, Manager at Great White Shark Tours, responded to this review, November 25, 2013
Thank you so much for using us and for taking the time to post a review! We hope you will return for another trip soon!

Kind Regards
Team GWST
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
63 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Brilliant fun”
Reviewed October 30, 2013

This was a great fun trip. The whole time you felt safe and well cared for. The team took their time to ensure that you all had a good a fair viewing of the sharks. We even managed to get a second viewing. The food for lunch is exactly what you need a good sandwich and some crisps with plenty to go around.

I would recommend these guys as the company to go with. Professional and fun.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank jonnysh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharky41, Manager at Great White Shark Tours, responded to this review, October 30, 2013
Thank you so much for the review and the recommendation Jonny! We are glad that we could make your experience with us a memorable one and we hope you'll return again so that we can add to those memories!

Kind Regards
Team GWST
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daphne, Alabama
Level Contributor
171 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
“Awesome Experience”
Reviewed October 27, 2013 via mobile

I think all reviews will tell you how great it is to see sharks up close, and it's very true. The interaction is a once in a life-time experience for many. Myself included. I'm including some other notes that might be helpful to others.

1. Bring sea-sick pills or a patch. I grew up near the water and have spent plenty of time on deep sea fishing boats and have never been sea-sick. I've also never experienced such rough water in all my life. Regardless of your experience, you're going to want to be prepared. If you're stubborn like me, you will be nauseous by the end. Sea sickness claimed 4 victims on our trip and I was nearly the 5th.
2. Bring gum. It also helps with the nausea. You could end up being someones hero.
3. They say to bring warm/dry clothes to change into afterward. Attempt to bring a waterproof jacket/shell as well. Dry clothes don't always stay dry with high wind and sea spray.
4. The breakfast is meager but acceptable
5. They say that they serve a lunch, and they do, but it's basically a container of sandwiches on the boat. 95% of our boat declined the lunch. You may want to consider bringing something with you... or there's a nice shopping center down the road with a couple fast food places in it.
6. The experience video they offer is actually not too bad. The guy did a good job of getting plenty of video of everyone on the boat, both on the boat and in the water. He has a GoPro camera so he also recorded plenty of underwater shark footage. We thought the video would be $50, but it turned out to be $25. I don't know why there was a price change, but we felt it was worth it. STILL, if you have your own waterproof camera, bring it.
7. The water is just as miserably cold as advertised. Prepare yourself mentally.

Helpful?
5 Thank Adam M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharky41, Manager at Great White Shark Tours, responded to this review, October 30, 2013
Many thanks for joining us Adam and for taking the time to post a review!

Kind Regards
Team GWST
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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