White sharks
Isla Guadalupe cage diving

CALL: 855.987.4275 or 619.887.4275

Join us for our upcoming season! Call 855-987-4275 or 619-887-4275 or email us at crew@sharkdiver.com

White Shark Cage Diving. When you think of ultimate white shark encounters, Mexico’s Isla Guadalupe has established itself as the world’s top white shark cage diving destination. Not too long ago, this pristine white shark site was relatively unknown. Today white shark fans from around the planet come to meet the shark conservation and media stars of this newly minted Bio-Sphere Reserve. Through the tireless efforts of CICIMAR at Isla Guadalupe, we have come to learn so much about these amazing creatures; from the 15-foot Shredder, with his unique dorsal fin and well known cage diver curiosity, to the massive 19-foot Tzitzimitl, who wows even our most well-seasoned researchers.

This is what it’s like to dive with Great White Sharks.

Guadalupe white sharks have been featured on television shows like Discovery Channel’s Shark Week and more recently National Geographic’s Great Migrations. Of course long before they were white shark media stars, we knew them simply as, “the locals.” Shark Diver has also been researching the history of the unique site that is Isla Guadalupe; uncovering rare title and ownership documents going back to 1845. This island has quite a history.

Our dives offer cages with plenty of room for up to 5 divers each, all shark diving permits, on-board accommodations, meals, snacks, unlimited beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages, wet suits, weight systems, and a memorable video of your awesome experience with us. Shark Diver offers expedition forward pricing so you do not get hit with surprises down the line. Solo shark divers are encouraged and are never hit with a single supplement fee, ever.

Passenger safety in Mexico

securityPassenger safety concerns with Mexico’s unfortunate ongoing drug war are valid

and we have gone to extraordinary lengths to address transportation issues into Mexico.  Shark Diver ensures your exposure to Mexican land is limited. Safety is our top priority both on land and at sea.

Our shark divers meet in San Diego, together and return to San Diego, together.

Shark diving

When it comes to west coast shark diving, knowing what to look for in a vessel and shark crew makes all the difference. After years of hands-on shark diving operations at Mexico’s Isla Guadalupe, Shark Diver’s crew is the most experienced in the business. Best of all, you do not need to be dive certified to cage dive at our location. Our experienced dive masters and instructors, or even our CEO, will take you into the cages and make sure that you are safe and comfortable.

Shark diving vessel details

The vessels in the Shark Diver fleet feature a range of accommodations from private air conditioned staterooms, to every other diving amenity you and or your group will need. All vessels have dedicated air system for shark cage operations, service the largest shark cages available, and have full time experienced great white shark crews. These guys know sharks. Our vessels are excellent long range dive platforms for those seeking laid back live-aboard comfort and style while diving with great whites in Mexico. Vessels are primarily designed to cater to adventure seeking individual divers, selected dive groups worldwide, and professional filmmakers.

Galley/salon areas are spacious with ample room for 19 passengers. Vessels are complete with TV and VCR/DVD, or hot tub and Wi-Fi, and are an excellent place to wind down after a day of incredible shark diving or while en route to Isla Guadalupe

We know you have a choice when deciding to experience white sharks at Isla Guadalupe. Your vacation time is important to us. If there is anything we can do to make your experience with us, better – from a birthday celebration on board, to a wedding proposal at sea, let us know and we’ll make it happen for you!

Food service

Meals aboard Shark Diver vessels are key to any successful dive expedition. Individual divers and group leaders will be happy to note that we take great pride in catering to every diver’s food needs. The galleys on board are fully equipped for any style of cooking; providing divers with a wide range of cuisine. Our chefs can prepare anything from traditional meals to made-to-order dishes. Our crews cut no corners in efforts to present a truly memorable dining experience. Dietary restrictions are not a problem and our on-board chefs look forward to accommodating your needs.

All non-alcoholic beverages as well as beer and wine are available at no extra cost.

Cage diving design

Shark Diver has reviewed our vessels’ shark cage designs and have provided you the best cage construction out there. The cages also feature 4’L x 15″H openings to allow for great bar-less shots taken on larger cameras. The cages are equipped with floatation pods designed for ocean use. The pods are located on each end of every cage.

The dives

The cage diving at Guadalupe is bar none the greatest on the planet, with up to 100 feet + of visibility. The water temperature ranges from 67 to 76 degrees making this the ultimate white shark destination for everyone. Especially for the discriminating underwater photographer, or the novice.

You will enjoy hours of cage time utilizing our state of the art cages. The 4 diver cages are built to maximize your safety and comfort. Our cages feature excellent viewing and photography characteristics, providing you with total freedom of movement and 360 degree panoramic visibility.

You will appreciate the use of dedicated surface supplied air, allowing you to be comfortable and secure during your dives. All our air systems are internal and we never use off the shelf air compressors. Our professional and courteous crew will make sure your adventure is a safe and rewarding experience.

Professional photography

Our shark diving crews looking forward to assisting you, the professional or semi-professional, with all your underwater photographic needs. As a prime example of stunning underwater shark shots taken from Isla Guadalupe please spend some time with renowned underwater photographer Phil Colla located at www.oceanlight.com.

Join us in 2018 and discover yours!

Conservation shark diving

CSD is an acknowledgment of shark diving operators who give back to the environment. Initiatives that help conserve local and regional shark populations, like the Shark-Free Marinas Initiative or local and regional funds that directly support area research teams such as the Isla Guadalupe Conservation Fund, are just two examples of this commitment.

Conservation Shark Diving is a way of directly impacting the animals we work with in a positive manner exhibiting site stewardship and conservation industry leadership. Our clients are, after all, the sharks.

Shark Diver is proud to support Conservation Shark Diving. Your decision to book with Shark Diver allows us to continue to manage and direct conservation efforts that have a direct and lasting impact on sharks all over the world. We are proud to have developed the concept behind the Shark-Free Marinas Initiative which has already garnered support from PADI, The Humane Society, the island nation of Fiji and even Slash from Guns n’ Roses. Thanks to the tireless efforts of Stewart Gow and Mike Neumann 80% of Fiji’s marinas are now Shark Free, a stunning achievement.

Help support sharks by supporting commercial shark diving operations that are making a real difference.

Group and Full Charter Sales, Returning Diver and Military Discounts

Our vessel accommodates groups of 19 divers. All group leaders automatically come for free when booking 9 divers or more at the regular rate. Groups of 6 or more, take $200 off each diver’s cost. Full charter prices are available too! Full charter bookings can save thousands, so if your company, organization, or party would like the entire boat to yourselves, inquire about an awesome deal on booking.

If you are a returning diver, let us know. You will receive $200 off your dive cost. And if you bring anyone with you, they’ll get a discount too; just for knowing you, our minted Shark Diver. Referrals are very welcome!

Military personnel will enjoy a discount too! Take $200 off your dive cost if you are active or retired in any branch of the military. Over the years we have hosted some of America’s best and bravest and will continue to do what we can for our troops who have allowed us so much, here at home.

This image is from Habbiniyah Iraq and Diane’s Marines who we met in 2008. They are wearing the Shark Diver Crew gear we sent them as a prelude to cage diving with us that fall. Semper Fi.

We are looking forward to providing you and your group the experience of a lifetime. Tell us what your needs are and we will do our very best to make everything run smoothly for you. We are fulfilling dreams, remember?

Shark diving
Itinerary

Welcome to Shark Diver. Your dive expedition to the Pacific’s most pristine and robust white shark dive site leaves from the Point Loma area of  San Diego; located just 10 minutes from San Diego International Airport and home to California’s long range fishing fleets.

Shark Diver’s vessels have seen divers from around the world and are ready to take you on the adventure of your life to Isla Guadalupe, Mexico. We are on site about 24 hours after you board. Board our vessel and enjoy complimentary beverages; non-alcoholic or beer or wine. At this time, you may be fitted for your wetsuit to ensure that when dive day arrives, you’ll be ready to get in the cages.

We take a maximum of 19 divers per trip – perfect for dive clubs, corporate groups, film crews, photographers, and YOU.

The First Night

Sit back and enjoy the ride. It is important that you adhere to your own body’s need for combating any seasickness to which you may be prone when boating. Please, make sure you read all directions for seasickness aids and medications. Some have to be started prior to boarding for best results.

Official Day 1

Since we board late at night, we are still traveling to the island today. Plenty of food will be served to satisfy your hunger on the journey to the island. Along the way, there should be many opportunities to see marine life, such as grey whales, dolphin, sea turtles, sea lions, or even the occasional orca! Keep your cameras handy, but remember the boat can rock. So wrap camera straps around your neck or wrist to ensure they stay on the boat and not end up in the Pacific Ocean!

Day 2

We dive! Wake up early in the morning to the smell of brewed coffee and sizzling bacon. Breakfast is served and the cages are opened and ready for you and your fellow shark divers. Before you awaken, you will be scheduled on a specific dive team. Make note of your dive rotation times and who is in your dive group. It’s time to suit up and see some great white sharks. Once your foot hits the water and you enter into the cages…you have become an official Shark Diver.

Day 3

By day two of diving, you will have become acclimated to getting in and out of the cages. But you won’t get tired of seeing sharks. Every visit by these apex predators is unique, so don’t forget your camera. You may see a breach! It is no surprise that we may get boarded by the Mexican Navy while we are on site. They will board each vessel at least three or four time during the season. They are looking for valid commercial shark diving permits, passenger manifests, or just some water or soda. These young marines work very hard with little pay, so we always offer them lunch and water. Do not be surprised to see guns, this is a typical Mexican boarding procedure and they have been doing this since 2008. The good news is their presence deters unlawful sport fishing boats who, in 2007, hooked a white shark right in front of us. Fortunately we sent a small boat over to them to film what they were doing and they soon cut the line and ran away. Having the Mexican Navy on site is a good thing. By now, you have moved over to the expert class of Shark Diver and you know what the color of a white shark’s eye really is. Tonight when you go to sleep just know that a few feet below you, lurk some of the great white sharks you have come to know. Shredder with his unique dorsal fin, Fat Tony, Mau, or even Bruce. Don’t worry. They’ll be here when you wake up and hopefully they’ll show their lovely faces.

Day 4

By now, everyone will be old pros and enjoy the relaxed feel of things. Your shark cage team will be some of your best friends. Cage teams typically assign names for themselves; ‘The Wild Ones.’ ‘The Grey Suits,’ etc.  When it’s time to go cage diving, your team is ready and able, knowing where all the gear is located and how to suit up. Our photographers will be focused on getting the ‘best of the trip’ shot, and shark fans will now be able to accurately measure, determine the sex, and identify each new shark. Shark Diver has a ‘share and share alike’ policy towards shark images. Basically if you happen to nail the best trip shot, share it, please! Flash drives are available for purchase on board so divers can offload images and share them with each other. That way every diver goes home with the absolute best images. It’s a group effort. The last cage rotation is always bitter sweet, time to say goodbye to the beautiful creatures that have captured our imaginations since, for many, childhood. It’s amazing but there are moments when you and the shark ‘just click.’ On this day, we start our journey back home. Make sure you take some last minute snap shots of Shark Fin Rock on the way out. It’s a great way to say ‘good bye.’

Day 5

The crossing back home can be smoother or choppier than your ride out to the island. Sometimes it feels good to hit the sack and sleep through any swells that may come our way. But if it’s smooth sailing, then get out and enjoy the sights. There’s bound to be some marine surprises swimming in the water on our journey home.  We should arrive back in San Diego between 7-9pm.

It has been the biggest pleasure for us to meet you, our next Shark Diver. Please, remember to share any videos you produce or still pictures you capture of our island friends, to our Shark Diver Facebook page.

We know we will see you again, someday!

Frequently asked questions

Even the most hard core shark fans have a few questions and our team have collected the most frequently asked from our divers. If your question about your next shark diving adventure isn’t answered below, don’t hesitate to call us at 619.887.4275 or toll free 855.987.4275 or email us, informed shark divers are better shark divers.

Is shark diving safe?

To date we have enjoyed a 100% operational record at every one of our shark diving sites. Shark Diver remains committed to Safe and Sane Shark Diving™. It is a way of doing shark dive operations right; the first time and every time. No shark system is 100%, so let’s talk shark safety.

Over the past decade Shark Diver has steadfastly stuck to a few core operations principals that are at the heart of Safe and Sane Shark Diving.

Respect the sharks. Shark Diver respects sharks for what they are; predators, first and foremost. No one, no matter how seasoned or professional, should lose sight that sharks have the potential to be dangerous if they are not treated with a healthy dose of operational respect.

Sharks are not ‘play things.’ Along with respect comes the understanding that stunt work with sharks with regular divers ultimately leads to disaster. We conduct the same dive and baiting protocol with sharks each and every time. Operations that conduct stunt work with sharks while commercial divers are in the water have little respect for the animals and the resource. We are here to observe these magnificent animals, not use them for personal gain, either with stunt based images or video or by calling stunt work “conservation.”

Baiting and sites. Shark Diver only operates at sites with seasoned animals. We do not change baiting practices in the middle of a dive, and we do not confuse the animals. When you change what you do with sharks in a baited situation you often have confused sharks. That can lead to situations that are not good for divers or for the sharks. Sharks do not want to attack humans as a general rule, but they have 300 million years of predatory evolution behind them. So we do the same thing with sharks each time, every time. Our crews work with the animals and let their behavior be our guide – not the other way around.

These are a few of the simple yet successful principals we have developed and stick with year in and year out. Like we said, no system is 100% safe, but decades later we have shown that respect, protocols, and understanding the animals that we are fortunate enough to work with can allow for safe shark interactions – and we hope you agree.

Do I need qualifications to dive?

Other than being reasonably physically fit, you don’t have to be an expert diver to cage dive with us at our Isla Guadalupe white shark dive site. Divers joining us in the Bahamas and Fiji, however, do need to be certified divers. For non divers joining us this season at Guadalupe, you will be required to attend a one-hour onboard cage diving presentation. Comfort in the water is a must. We strongly suggest that non divers take an “intro to diving” class at your local dive shop prior to joining us at our white shark dive site.

Do you have Bio-Sphere permits?

Shark Diver operates under Mexican operations permits issued to our vessel by CONANP and other agencies. We have done so since the permit system was introduced to Isla Guadalupe in 2008. There are no such things as “exclusive permits” at Isla Guadalupe. The Mexican white shark permit system is fair and even. Each vessel, each operator, has to operate within the established park guidelines. If you become aware of any operator who makes claims to “exclusive permits” be wary of that claim as they are false, and the operator is hiding something from the divers.

Do the sharks ever attack the cage?

As a general rule no, they do not. We do not entice sharks into cages nor do we seek hard shark interactions. As some operations have unfortunately discovered sharks can be unforgiving if you do not adhere to strict shark diving protocols. We do, and it’s our foremost consideration when you dive with us. Expect very close passes within 12 inches at times. We run a cage free operation in the Bahamas and Fiji, but do have film and television cage systems for rent if needed.

How big are the sharks?

Isla Guadalupe Great Whites are primarily transitional sub adults, 12 – 16 feet in length and are sleek, fast, and beautiful. We also encounter makos on very rare and very special occasions. Later in the season we encounter much larger sharks upwards to 19 feet. We call this “The Time of the Titans.” Late season sharks also come with a better chance of poor weather on site so you need to take that into consideration when making your shark diving choice with us. Typically we see an abundance of juvenile males from the beginning of August to late September when the numbers increase. Then in October and November the larger females come around, yet the numbers are known to start to taper. Tzitzimitl, a 30-yerar-old 19-footer, was the largest recorded on our dives. She appeared in mid to late September in 2016.

Tigers in the Bahamas run from 10-15 feet in length and are primarily female. They can be shy at times but we work with them over a period of days at Tiger Beach until they, and our divers, reach a good comfort level.

The bull sharks in Fiji can reach similar lengths…up to 15 feet. More than 40 have been known to be spotted at a time on our dives at the ‘Arena;’ a popular congregation site off Pacific Harbour.

Is cage diving always possible?

At Tiger Beach, Bahamas and Pacific Harbour, Fiji we run cage free operations for our divers. At Isla Guadalupe on occasion adverse weather may prevent safe cage diving operations. Our experienced dive operations managers will make the decision when he or she feels that your dive safety may be at risk. We may move to a better location or even cancel the weeks trip. Safety is always our first priority. We will never “push the envelope” at any shark site when it comes to your safety or your loved ones safety. In the many years we have been at Isla Guadalupe we have canceled only one expedition due to late season storms. To protect against any unforeseen circumstances or acts of God, we highly recommend the purchase of trip insurance.

How far in advance should I book my dive?

We suggest that you book your expedition with us as soon as possible to guarantee a spot on any of our fleet boats. We run limited expeditions to our incredible and pristine shark diving sites. Worldwide attention has grown for Isla Guadalupe, Fiji, and Tiger Beach over the past decade, and we are experiencing record interest again this year!

Sharkdiver.com Shark Sighting Guarantee?

Yes. We offer the industries only written shark sighting guarantee. Shark Diver only runs shark operations during peak seasons. We know when the sharks are on site. We have the benefit of operating at the world’s most productive and pristine shark sites. We will never offer a shark expedition to you without a full and complete guarantee that you will see sharks. Our guarantee is backed up by a return expedition with a two year window. Many shark diving operations will not offer anything to their divers if they fail to deliver sharks. We choose to back our sites up with a “no loss shark diving policy.” After all, this is your vacation, and your money. We are in the business of delivering sharks. Join us! Our shark sighting gurantee applies to being at the island either topside or in our cages. We highly recommend you purchase trip insurance to protect yourself against any unforeseen circumstances or acts of God that could cause trip cancellation either on your end or ours. The shark guarantee does not apply if we do not reach the island or if you never step foot on our vessels, due to storm related or other ‘Act of God’ cancellations.