“Definitely something on most people's bucket lists!”
For a lot of people getting in a cage surrounded by Great White Sharks might sound like a silly idea, but not me!
This has been on my bucket list for years and this year I had decided to bite the bullet and book my trip to go face to face with these giants of the ocean!
Flights and airport transfers to Port Lincoln
The cheapest and easiest way to get to Port Lincoln is via flight, all of which will connect in Adelaide. Qantas and REX airlines operate flights from Adelaide to Port Lincoln. Rex will be the cheaper option usually so you may be better off getting to Adelaide first and then booking a flight with them separately. In Australia, its best to book your flights in advance rather than leaving it to the last minute otherwise you will pay more than you need to.
Generally, a return flight from Adelaide to Port Lincoln will cost around $230 if you book early enough.
When you arrive in Port Lincoln, depending on which airline you catch and how many people you are, here are a few options on how to get from Port Lincoln airport to Port Lincoln YHA.
Option 1: You can get a taxi, usually the air stewardess will ask around the plane who needs a taxi and they will order it for you. The cost will be around $40-$50. (If you made friends with someone on the plane maybe ask if they want to split the fare.)
Option 2: If you are flying in with Qantas you can meet Paul’s Passenger Service who meets every Qantas flight and it is $15 per person.
Option 3: If you are flying with any other airline, Paul’s Passenger Service can pick you up upon request for $30 each way.
Tours and Self Drive
If you want to go overland from Adelaide and check out the scenery along the way then check out the 3 day Southern Ocean Wildlife Adventure and the 6 Day secrets of the Eyre Peninsula tour. If self driving it’s a must do activity when crossing the Nullabor between Perth and Adelaide.
Best Place to stay in Port Lincoln while Shark Cage diving
The best place to stay in Port Lincoln while Great White Cage Diving is The Port Lincoln YHA which is owned and operated by the lovely couple Debbie and Rob. The building used to be squash courts and they have totally gutted the place and turned it into a really awesome backpacker hostel. The rooms are spacious and meticulously clean.
There is even a cage and a life size Great White Shark on the wall where you can get a cool photo! Dorm rooms start at around $24-$33 depending on the season. If you want to spoil yourself and have a bit of privacy a private room will set you back around $100-$117 depending on the time of year.
They have a bar on site with cheap drinks and a bbq out the back and Rob is even known to cook a mean Paella if you ask him nicely!
So who should I jump in the cage with?
We recommend two cage diving companies in Port Lincoln when it comes to Great White Shark Cage diving and I guess it just depends on your budget and what kind of experience you’re after.
Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions
The first and original company to begin Shark Cage Diving is Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions.
Rodney Fox is world famous for surviving a shark attack back in 1963 and he dedicated his life to studying Great White Sharks. Rodney was the first person in the world to invent the shark cage and he has hosted the likes of National Geographic, scientific researchers and famous celebrities aboard his awesome multi day cage diving experiences.
If you are a certified diver then I strongly recommend spending a little extra to go with Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions as they are the only operator out of Port Lincoln who have both the Surface Cage and Ocean Floor Experience.
The Ocean Floor experience is where you and 3 other thrill seekers are lowered in a cage to the ocean floor and experience an array of sharks, rays and other marine life from this unique perspective.
For the surface cage experience you will have an oxygen line fed into the cage and you will have a thick wetsuit and weight around your shoulders and waist so you can stand as steady as possible in the cage. There is also a bar on the inside of the cage which you can hang onto as the BIG sharks role on by.
The way they attract the Great Whites is by a process called chumming where they have big pieces of Tuna tied to a rope and are thrown out in front of the cage. Generally the sharks will circle before attacking and by the time they do the crew will have the bait right up against the cage so you can see pretty much right down the throat of the Great White Shark!
You are down in the cage for around 45 minutes per dive and it depends on the length of the expedition, shark activity, weather and how many people are booked on to how many dives you will get.
Their trip is fully catered with food, drinks and accommodation provided aboard the boat. The trips are now usually hosted by Rodney’s son Andrew who has been observing these Great White Sharks since he was a baby!
You will become apart of the family and help with research and get a fantastic insight to these magnificent creatures.
The price of the trips range from $1495 -$2995 and book out well in advance so get organised people!
Calypso Star Charters
Calypso Star Charters host one day shark cage diving expeditions operating out of Port Lincoln. The day starts off with a pick up around 6:20am from Port Lincoln YHA after which you are transferred down to the Port Lincoln Marina where the boat will be waiting for you to board.
Being in Southern Australia it’s best to always take a jacket as the waters are generally cooler and by the time you get out of the cage its awesome to have that hoodie or jacket to keep you snug!
As you board the boat you will be greeted with a massive set of Great White Shark Jaws for a cool photo opportunity. Then its around a 2.5 hours journey out to the Neptune Islands to get set up for your meeting the BIG white pointers!
Calypso Star are the only other operator in Port Lincoln to use the chumming technique to attract the sharks and usually you can see the Rodney Fox boat from where they are allowed to chum in the Neptune Islands.
Being a one day experience the boat holds around 41 passengers plus 8 crew. It is fully catered for from the moment you step on the boat you will receive a warm coffee or tea with a croissant or bacon and egg muffin.
I would strongly suggest to take sea sickness tablets should you wish to keep your food down as depending on weather conditions it can get quite rough.
Take a tablet 20 minutes before you get on the boat, you can also buy these tablets aboard the boat should you forget to bring your own.
As soon as you arrive at the Neptune Islands you will have a safety briefing about the day and then everyone is allocated wetsuits and googles.
You will then be put into groups and start chumming up to attract the sharks. With any luck in no time you will see massive dark shadows in the water circling the boat and its game on.
You can take your own go pro down to document this life changing experience!
At the end of the day they are fully licensed so you can share your stories on the way back with your new found friends over a few frothies as this experience is surely an adrenalin rush like no other.
The price for this tour is $495 including the cage dive or $395 for a spectator.
I have been on both Rodney Fox and Calypso Star and both are awesome experiences, it just really depends on your budget and what you want out of it.
For more information or for any bookings please talk to us using the live chat in the bottom right of the site or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org