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Dive Review of Shark Explorers/Simon's Town Quayside Hotel/various in
Africa/Simonstown and eastern cape

Shark Explorers/Simon's Town Quayside Hotel/various: "Outstanding Operator and Location", Jun, 2014,

by ROBERT PECORARO, NY, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 8 reports with 8 Helpful votes). Report 7920 has 1 Helpful vote.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We did a whirlwind tour of both the western and eastern cape of South Africa. The trip was approximately 3 weeks long and it started in Simon's Town, which is about a 45 min drive from the Cape Town airport. Simon's Town is located on False Bay, famous for breaching Great White Sharks. Shark Explorers offers a trip that allows you to witness this unique behavior and then get in cages for in water viewing of the sharks. Additionally we dove in the kelp forests of Miller's Point with prehistoric Seven Gill Sharks and numerous species of Cat Sharks. We also dove with a small seal colony close to shore. One day we took an off shore trip and dove with Mako Sharks and Blue Sharks, in amazing visibility. The visibility in the bay is variable. We had good days and bad days, depending on weather conditions. The Quayside Hotel in Simon's Town was great! It was located on the bay, overlooking the water. The boat picks you up right on the dock behind the hotel. Following a week in Simon's Town, we drove to East London on the eastern cape for the sardine run. There we saw migrating Humpback Whales and thousands of Common Dolphins and Bottlenose Dolphins, as well as Bryde's Whales, Sailfish, Tuna and diving Cape Gannets. Although we did not get an opportunity to get in with a bait ball, due to visibility issues. We then relocated to Port St. Johns to continue with the Sardine Run. We saw a lot more whales and dolphins and lots of Bronze Whaler or Copper Sharks. We did get an opportunity to jump in on an amazing bait ball and it was probably the most exciting event that we have done in the water. Loads of Bronze Whalers, Common Dolphins, Tuna and Cape Gannets working the bait fish into a ball and whittling it down to nothing. Shark Explorers set the whole thing up and they were with us every step of the way. I cannot emphasize enough what a professional operation it is. They knew the areas very well and we were able to see all the things we set out to see. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable and the operation was safe and professional. They made every effort to satisfy our group. I will definitely be diving with them again.
Websites Shark Explorers   Simon's Town Quayside Hotel/various

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Extensively in the Indo Pacific, South Pacific, Hawaii, Africa, Caribbean, Mexico, Central America, Alaska, Antarctica
Closest Airport Capetown/East London/Durban Getting There Capetown Airport and transfer by car/taxi. Very easy...Long drive (11 hours) to the Eastern Cape and then on to Durban airport at the end

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy, cloudy Seas calm, choppy, surge
Water Temp 55-70°F / 13-21°C Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 30-80 Ft/ 9-24 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions The diving was pretty relaxed. You could dive your own profile. We were on a group trip with experienced divers.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales > 2
Corals 2 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments We had our own subject matter expert who organized the group. There was not one provided by the dive company, although there were photographers working for Shark Explorers who were sensitive to the needs of photographers. There were no rinse facilities but water hoses were available on the dock upon our return.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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