Goodbye to a great year, hello to a Great White

Goodbye to a great year, hello to a Great White

While most people choose to celebrate New Year’s Eve at a party or a bar, I said goodbye to 2018 in a different fashion. Monday December 31 2018, I took a very literal plunge and went shark cage diving.

We were an eager group, up bright and early at 6am on the last day of the year to head down to the Adventure Bay Charters office to check in. By 6:30am the rest of the tour group had arrived and it was out onto the boat, the formidable Shark Warrior.

The trip took us around 70kms south of Port Lincoln to Neptune Islands, and while I proudly stated “I’m so glad I don’t get sea sick” as we boarded the boat, there were a few moments of the journey where I had to eat my words while I made sure nothing else came back up (if you’re thinking of doing a shark dive but are prone to sea sickness I’d strongly recommend investing in something to help with this).

Eternally grateful for the stationary boat, we put on our wetsuits and headed to the stern to see the cage now submerged and ready to protect us from whatever was lurking below.  

Not only do Adventure Bay have the shark cage, they also have their Aqua Sub, a submerged glass viewing area in which you have 360-degree underwater views without getting wet, so there is an option for those not keen on sharing the water with sharks.


At this point we were ready to go and waiting, both hopeful and nervous to see what we’d travelled 3 hours by boat for. And we weren’t waiting for long.

Someone yelled, and there it was. Cruising along next to the boat, come to check out what all the noise was about, was a roughly 4 metre long great white shark. Now I knew they were big, but seeing a shark gliding through the water so close was truly mesmerising.

The great white cruised around the boat a few times, with the nonchalance of an animal oblivious to the fact that it’s one of the most feared predators among an alien race of bipeds, while a line formed to jump in the cage and the Aqua Sub filled up.

Believe me I never thought I’d be so eager to knowingly jump in the ocean with a shark, but that is exactly what I did.

Being completely submerged in the occupied habitat of such a powerful yet graceful animal is something I’ll never forget – though the fact that the memory pops into my head every time I go swimming now makes for nervous beach trips!

I can’t say I have any regrets though. It’s such a special experience that is offered in our region and I can’t recommend it enough, even if the thought initially terrifies you. While tour providers can’t guarantee shark sightings on every trip, we were lucky enough to see 2!


If Shark Cage Diving is something that’s on your bucket list, then here on the EP we’ve got you covered. As well as Adventure Bay Charters, Port Lincoln is home to Calypso Star Charters who also do day trips and Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions who run multi day tours.

You can find all the information you need on their websites and they all have reputations as excellent experience providers.

While I’ve tried to do so here, putting into words what it’s like to come face-to-face with a great white shark is pretty impossible, so I guess you’ll just have to do it for yourself and find out!

Written by Nicole Ettridge.


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