Sardine Run

 Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©

Aliwal Shoal & Port St Johns

Sardine Run Diving

Aliwal Shoal : Day-1 : 2 x dives

Sardine Run Diving : 5-days or 10-days [depending on package]

 

Aliwal Shoal Diving

Diving the Aliwal Shoal during the Sardine Run

The Aliwal Shoal is rated as one of the top-10 dive sites in the world and is where we operate our shark diving packages year-round. On the first day of our Sardine Run package, you will dive the Aliwal Shoal which gives you a chance to check your dive gear, get your weights sorted and also to dive with the sharks found on the Aliwal Shoal in South Africa.

Before each dive we will give a briefing to help you to understand the behaviour of the sharks, ensuring you have a safe and knowledgeable dive with the sharks. Observe the sharks, learn how to identify the different species, understand the sharks behaviour and find out how sharks interpret your behaviour in return.

During June & July, the main shark species found on the Aliwal Shoal include Ragged Tooth Sharks, Blacktip Sharks, Dusky Sharks & more. The Aliwal Shoal is also home to a huge variety of other marine life including Whales, Dolphin, Turtles, Rays, Eels, Game Fish, Reef fish & more. Between dives we often see Humpback Whales & Dolphin from the boat.

After the diving we will return to ScubaAddicts Dive Centre & Lodge, where we will enjoy lunch at the lodge before we transfer south to Port St. Johns in South Africa for the annual Sardine Run.


 Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©

Typical Day at the Aliwal Shoal

Breakfast

We meet at 7am for breakfast and we receive updates about the days conditions so we can decide where the best diving will be.

Kit-up and dive briefing.

Our dive centre is on-site and once breakfast is finished, we move down to the kit-up area to get ready for the days diving. Our dive team are there to help you with your gear, load the boat and to brief you on the boat launching and days diving at the Aliwal Shoal.

Dive dive dive.

Jump on the vehicles and we are off to the launch site, where you will experience an exciting surf launch on our 8m RIB. The diving is planned around the best sites for the conditions each day, get up close with the different types of sharks as well as the rest of the marine-life found on our coastline.

Our dives are for advanced divers and the depth varies from around 15 to 35 metres depending on the dive sites. While our main focus is to get your gear sorted for the Sardine Run, we will also dive with the some of the sharks found on the Aliwal Shoal. We do also see a huge variety of other marine life including whales, dolphin, rays, turtles, eels and much more.

We do two dives on the Aliwal Shoal before heading back to the dive centre.

After the diving.

After the diving we head on back to the ScubaAddicts Dive Centre & Lodge where there are hot showers, rinse tanks for the gear and we pack the gear ready for the transfer to Port St Johns.

After lunch we head south to Port St Johns for the start of the Sardine Run portion of your adventure. The drive takes about 5-hours and is through some really rural areas that have some great sights for you to take in on the way. When we arrive the Scuba Addicts team will be there to get you checked into the lodge in Port St Johns.

The Evening.

In the evening we will do a briefing on what to expect during the Sardine Run. If you are not completely tired by your days diving and travelling, then you can enjoy a drink, watch TV [Satellite] before you retire to your bedroom with en-suite facilities to enjoy a relaxing nights sleep, ready for the next days action on the Sardine Run in South Africa!

Sardine Run Diving

Port St Johns, South Africa

The Sardine Run offers activity from the boat as well as in the water. We enter the water as many times as possible during the day, sometimes just on snorkel and other times on scuba, depending on how fast the action is moving and how comfortable the animals are as sometimes the bubbles from scuba diving chases the action away.

Each morning we receive updates about the Sardine Run movements before deciding about or Sardine Run Diving for the day. We launch from the Umzimvubu River in Port St. Johns and operate north and south depending on where the action is.

The Sardine Run is amazing, you are often surrounded by hundreds of dolphin, sharks, diving birds, whales, game fish, seals and millions of sardines. During the Sardine Run, the annual Humpback Whale migration passes Port St Johns, offering some amazing up-close sightings of the Humpback Whales in the water, close to the boats and when the whales are breaching!

The birds, dolphin, sharks, whales all take part in the awesome event, all enjoying a huge feast. The noise of the diving gannets, the speed of the dolphin, the sharks and the whales coming in to join the feast is amazing.

We are holders of MPA dive permits which allows us access to SCUBA DIVE during the Sardine Run!

During the Sardine Run in South Africa we are based at Cremorne Estate in Port St Johns, South Africa.

 

 Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©  Photos from Sardine Run South Africa ©

Typical Day on the Sardine Run

Breakfast

We meet at 7am for breakfast and we receive updates about the sardine run action and the days conditions so we can decide where the best diving will be.

Once breakfast is finished, we kit up for the days action. The ScubaAddicts dive team are there to help you with all your diving needs and to brief you on your days diving and the action you are likely to see.

Sardine Run Diving

We launch from the Umzimvubu River in Port St. Johns and operate north and south depending on where the sardine run action is. We spend most of the day at sea, launching at about 8am and generally we are back by about 3pm.

The day is ruled by the Sardine Run action, we follow the dolphin as they work together to create the bait balls and then the action begins, the dolphin, birds, sharks, whales all enjoying a huge feast. The noise of the diving gannets is amazing as they surround the boat, diving for the sardines.

We enter the water many times during the day, sometimes just on snorkel and other times on scuba, it really depends on how fast the action is moving. The action is amazing and you are often surrounded by hundreds of dolphin, sharks, diving birds, whales and more. We also have many opportunities to watch the humpback whales on their annual migration.

Rest of the day.

In the late afternoon we return to the lodge, where you can choose to relax, download photos & video footage or you can opt to go sightseeing in the afternoon. We are always available to take you on local excursions to show you more of the area.

The evening.

In the evening we enjoy dinner at the restaurant. If you are not completely tired by your days diving and sight seeing, then you can have a drink at the bar, watch TV [Satellite]. After all this you retire to your bedroom with en-suite facilities to enjoy a relaxing nights sleep, ready for the next days diving.

NEW 'Shark Reef' found this year!

Towards the end of the 2016 Sardine Run we dived a reef off Port St Johns and found it to be home to 100's of Ragged Tooth Sharks as well as other sharks! So from 2017 Sardine Run we will be diving this reef if the Sardine Run action only allows us to snorkel and freedive and not to scuba dive. This gives us the best of both world's, shark diving and the Sardine Run!

Below are some picture taken on the new 'Shark Reef' by Rob Dumbrell during a dive off Port St Johns.

Sardine Run and Shark Diving © Sardine Run and Shark Diving © Sardine Run and Shark Diving © Sardine Run and Shark Diving ©

General Information

Wetsuits

Most divers seem to favour 5-mm wetsuits, if you feel the cold then gloves and a hoodie are a good idea.

If you do feel the cold then a 7-mm wetsuits or a shortie to put over your wetsuit is a good idea.

 

Cylinders

We use 12-liter steel cylinders which are available as A-clamp [international] or DIN so will suit all divers.

 

Gear Hire

Dive gear is available for rent. Once we have your booking, you can just let us know what dive gear you will need.

 

General Weather

Mornings are fairly cold but the general daytime temperatures are calm and warm.

We do from sometime experience winter storms which can make it fairly cold and wet with rain.

Generally warm and dry - Sea conditions are generally calm.

 

Temperatures

Winter : June & July

Daytime Temperature : 12 - 23°C

Water Temperature : 18 - 22°C