Sea conditions in our anchorage are generally calm with 25 - 40 meter visibility in very blue water and water temperatures around 23 degrees Celsius. 5 - 7 mm full suit is recommended for all seasons.
No special experience required. Divers in submersible cages are escorted by a divemaster.
The Nautilus Explorer is heavy 325-ton stable oceanic vessel. On the crossing the seas are usually 1.5 - 2 meters although they can also be flat calm or occasionally (maybe once per season) we experience 3-meter waves. Sea state is no problem for almost all divers especially if guests use the scopolamine patch. Note: we did cancel 1 trip in 2007 because of freak weather conditions. Our anchorage at Guadalupe is sheltered and calm.
WHAT WE SAY ABOUT GUADALUPE ISLAND GREAT WHITE SHARK DIVING
We are divers. There are loads of great white sharks in the crystal clear waters of Guadalupe Island, Mexico. We believe that the best way to see these magnificent animals is to descend into their world and interact with them on their own terms in a natural way from our double-decker submersible cages. Conditions permitting, you can get out from behind the bars on the upper deck of these cages with only a single hand-rail between you and these amazing apex predators. To go face-to-face with a great white shark in the wild is something you will never forget. Our highly experienced divemasters will be alongside you in the submersible cages to both critter point and ensure your safety.
NOTES : great white sharks are dangerous!! Use of the upper decks of the submersible cages is at the Captain's sole discretion based on our interpretation of what the sharks are doing. You can kneel, sit and crouch on the top of the cages but a recent ammendment to the park regulations does currently prohibit standing on top of the cages.
FUN FACT: Male great white sharks return to Guadalupe Island buy 22 July according to 8 year electronic tagging project. Read more >>
Guadalupe Island (Mexico) is the top destination for great white shark encounters. This small volcanic island located in the Pacific 240 kilometers (150 miles) off the west coast of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula outperforms both South Africa and Australia with shark-seeing consistency and watching conditions. Only Guadalupe Island can boast shark viewing in beautiful clear blue water with 125 – 150 foot visibility. We recently counted 108 great white sharks in the bay where we stage our submersible cage diving operations which guarantees unforgettable encounters.
July to November
Diving with great white sharks and going face-to-face with them at 30 feet is an unforgettable experience but also very different than most people imagine. We believe in natural interaction and instead of using oil and blood and chum at the surface, we use submersible cages with open top decks to descend down to where the sharks naturally congregate. Natural interaction results in more sharks, more interaction and unforgettable up close encounters. July and August features rowdy gangs of male sharks acting just like groups of teenage boys! Female great whites start showing up in September. October and November features the enormous 18 foot dominant females affectionately known as “big momma’s”. Over 120 individual great whites have been identified in the bay that we dive in.
WHY PICK THE NAUTILUS EXPLORER
A liveaboard diveboat is only as good as it’s crew and on the Nautilus Explorer we are proud to say that we have some of the best and most experienced staff in the business. A quick peek at the blogs, logs, comments and ratings posted online after every trip will give a true measure of the quality and pride we take in our operation.
Unlike the other boats in the fleet, we arrive on station early so that you can have a nice relaxing dinner and a restful sleep in a still, calm and quiet anchorage. Cages open at 6:30 a.m. the next morning. Guests who are certificated divers will have the opportunity to make 3 submersible dives every day. Cages close at 5 p.m. (not earlier) on the last dive day. Our crew and staff take great pride in our beautiful little ship. It was custom designed and built specifically for this kind of work and we keep it in tip top shape. No other ship in this part of the world boasts SOLAS certification (your guarantee of safety at sea), stabilization for an easier ride in open ocean, a mixed crew of men and women with decades of combined experience or all the little touches like a sparkling clear hot-tub, wide selection of micro-brew beer, fine wine, contemporary menu,
Voyages are typically 5 nights/6 days. Number of shark-dives on the trip is virtually unlimited. On the first morning upon arrival we do warm-up dives and afterwards the pool is always open. Current record is 31.5 hours of cage time over 3 dive days. Cages close at 5 p.m. on the last dive day to get ready for the steam home. We also offer 10- and 15-night Guadalupe combo-trips. 10-night trip combines diving with the great white sharks at Guadalupe Island with scuba diving in the giant kelp forests of the California Channel Islands and San Benito Islands and other remote islands on the Pacific side of Baja California. 15-night expedition in November combines Guadalupe and San Benitos with the famous giant mantas and dolphins of Socorro Island.
We offer a rich and natural experience of shark encounters on these trips by descending down into the shark's world where they prefer to spend their time. We don't need to use chum at depth; the sharks are already there. And we don't need to use heavy slicks of blood, oil and chum on the surface. We have seen up to six great whites at once circling the cage and even bumping up against it in a gentle way. Without chum around they are more relaxed, exhibit MUCH more curiosity, and come in MUCH closer to the cages. Best of all, our cages are double-deckers, which means you can venture onto the upper deck and outside the bars to truly go face-to-face with great white sharks out in the open. It is an unforgettable rush when a great white looks at you from 50 feet away and then swims over for a very close
Diving is done via surface supplied hookah with backup dive gear in each cage. Submersible cage dives are 30 minutes long and if you are a certificated diver, you will have the opportunity to make 3 dives a day.. Dive time in the suspended cage and surface cage is unlimited.
HOW TO GET THERE
Fly-in gateways are San Diego and Los Angeles, California and Tijuana, Mexico (connecting via Mexico City). We offer complete round-trip transfers from a hospitality suite at the Ramada Hotel in San Diego and we ask all our guest to be there and ready to go by 7:30 p.m. The Nautilus Explorer departs in the evening for a 20-hour voyage to Isla Guadalupe, generally arriving the next day at dinner time allowing for a nice restful night's sleep before the action begins the next morning. We generally arrive back in port at 2 p.m. on the last day of your trip with included transfers back to San Diego later that afternoon