My mini vacation from Sydney, took a spontaneous turn when I ran into Matt Waller from Adventure Bay Charters in the Adelaide – Shakespeare’s International Hostel. As I was leaving the hostel; heading out to the Haigh’s Chocolate factory I recognized Matt. I previously had met Matt during the “Best Jobs in the World” in Port Lincoln, South Australia earlier this June. I think it’s safe to safe that both of us had to do a “double look” before we realized who each other was. Adventure Bay Charters is a family owned and operated business, which specializes in providing water based wildlife encounters unlike anything else imaginable. The two main encounters they offer are the Swim with the Great White Sharks and the Swim with the Sealions. After chatting with Matt for a couple minutes, he was easily able to convince me to extend my holiday and book a flight to Port Lincoln.
After an amazing couple days exploring Kangaroo Island, I was ready to jet-off to Port Lincoln. Port Lincoln is a small city located in the lower Eyre Peninsula of South Australia. Known to be the Seafood Capital of Australia, Port Lincoln is situated on the shore of Boston Bay about 650km West of Adelaide. The first time that I had visited Port Lincoln (during “Best Jobs” in June 2013) I remember instantly feeling that it reminded me of my hometown, Huntsville in Canada. Small locally run restaurants and cafes, a few bars, one night club, one Macca’s (McDonalds) and a couple schools – it is easy to get to know and fall in love with this seaside town.
Day 1: Swim with the Great White Sharks
When I originally found out I was going to go swimming with the Great White Sharks, I couldn’t believe it. It had been something that I had put on my bucket list for a long while now, but never thought I would actually get up the courage to actually step foot in the tank. The trip out to the Neptune Islands took around 3 hours due to the extremely “wavy” conditions we had to battle.
When we finally arrived, I couldn’t wait to jump on into the cage! Right before I had a chance to jump in we spotted our first Great White of the day. While being in the cage, I had the chance to see a couple sharks swim by – they are quite the curious animals… they don’t seem to show they are bothered by your presence. This experience really changes your perspective on the characteristics of the Great White Shark. I definitely will be heading back down to Port Lincoln in the next year to do this again, and re-experience the cage dive with a few friends.
Day 2: Swim with the Sealions
Swimming with the Sealions is a once in a lifetime opportunity. After leaving Port Lincoln in June, I never would of thought that 5 months later I would be back to Hopkins Island, Eyre Peninsula playing with these sea puppies again. It was exactly what I remembered from last time but better. After making my way to the Port Lincoln Marina, the Adventure Bay Charters crew, myself and the other passengers headed out 1.5 hours to Hopkins Island.
As soon as we arrived, we all quickly suited up and wasted no time in getting into the water. Before even getting into the water you could see the Sealions basking in the sun and playing with each other! I have made a few attempts at trying to perfectly describe how incredible this morning was with the Sealions, but I truly felt that showing you in a video would give it the justice it deserves. A picture says a thousand words, but a video says a million more.
Being able to be so close and intimate with such an inquisitive wild animals is absolutely incredible. No visit to the local zoo, petting farm or wildlife park will even come close to the wildlife encounters available down in Port Lincoln, SA.