From wreck dives and tropical reefs to cage diving and everything in between, there are a myriad of diving experiences along the South African coastline. The warm waters of the Mozambique current carries a diverse array of marine life with it, including various whale and shark species, eagle and manta rays, turtles, and dolphins. As you trek down the eastern coast towards Cape Town, the warm waters gradually transform into cool waters and stunning kelp forests, providing you with a diverse diving experience. Let’s take a look at three dive sites in particular that are widely considered the best dive sites of South Africa.
Aliwal Shoal is widely known as one of the best dive sites in the entire world. The shoal, which is a rocky reef five kilometers offshore from the village of Umkomaas, is an impressive one kilometer in width and three kilometers long, providing numerous interesting spots to explore. The most popular spots are Pinnacles, Shark Alley, South and North Sands, Cathedral, Inside and Outside Edge, Manta Point, and Chunnel.
Storms River Mouth
Storms River Mouth is a breathtaking dive site situated in the Eastern Cape inside of the beautiful Tsitsikamma National Park. The dive site at Storms River Mouth provides gorgeous reefs, large game fish, and arguably the best diving experience in South Africa. Rather than being an ocean dive, Storms River Mouth is a distinctive river dive where shark sightings are common among the river’s awesome array of marine species, which include zebras, streepies, mussel crackers, red romans, blacktails, eagle rays, and sand sharks.
Gansbaai is well-known for the multitude of great white sharks and whales that call the area home, making it one of the most memorable dive sites in South Africa. For divers brave enough to dive head first into the water with these massive predators, cage diving expeditions to Dyer and Geyser Island regularly depart from Kleinbaai Harbor. The channel separating these two islands is commonly called “Shark Alley”, and is known throughout diving circles as the best place in the world to cage dive and meet great white sharks face to face. In fact, this stretch of water is home to the largest great white population in the world.