Welcome to Gansbaai, South African Great White Shark Top Destination
Welcome to Gansbaai village which takes its name after a flock of wild Egyptian geese that are alleged to have congregated at the freshwater fountain next to the harbour. Known as the Great White Sharks Capital, Gansbaai is home to the Southern Right Whales and Great White Sharks which has made their second home to the cold Atlantic waters of the Danger Point Peninsula and are a major drawcard for the town tourism industry. Situated between the towns of Hermanus and Pearly Beach, Gansbaai lies in Walker Bay at the foot of the Dynefontein Mountains with a magnificent coastline rich in fynbos vegetation.
Dyer Island, a stone throw away from Gansbaai, is the breeding ground of the african penguin, cormorants and other sea birds and a second island in the vicinity of the village is Geyser Island, home to some 60 000 Cape fur seals. It is the passage between these islands that scientists believe attracts the Great White and has become known as ‘shark alley’.
Gansbaai remains the one spot in South Africa to go to for Shark cage diving. Another place where these activities take place is in Mossel Bay along the Garden Route. Winter months are the best time to go to see the great white sharks. Gansbaai offers some of the best trails in the Western Cape and an amazing tidal pool which is a great place for the entire family to cool off.
Where to Go?
If you are to take a vacation in Gansbaai, surely the prime activity will be to take a boat trip to do Shark Cage Diving. There are a number of local tour operators such as the White Shark Project, the Shark Lady, Unlimited Shark cage Diving, Apex and many more who run the day to day sharks trips right away from Gansbaai harbour.
Besides the Shark cage diving, you could explore some of the hiking trails. You could opt for the option of a private guide to explore Platbos Forest, Klipgat, Panorama Mountain or even better opt for the fynbos trail. Your private guide will recommend which trails are easy and which ones are challenging. You can plant a tree in the Platbos forest, which is situated in the Baviaanspoort Hills on the Grootbos Road, between the village of Stanford and Gansbaai. Here, you will find some trees dated back to 1000 years alongside the newly restored forest damaged by fires.
The Gansbaai tidal pool is the ideal location to cool off with your family. The tidal pool is located on Kus Weg in Perlemoenbaai, between Gansbaai town and De Kelders. There are some great nooks in the rocks where you can snorkel and see some fish.
When to Go?:
Although Gansbaai is an all-year-round destination for great white sharks, the best times are early winter to early summer. These months will be from May to December. Summertimes are superb as the sea is relatively calm.
Best Time to Go: Best: Good:
- Great White Shark diving
- Swim with Sharks
- Marine Safari
- Dine at Grootbos
- Danger Point Lighthouse
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