FACTS ABOUT TRAVELING TO GUADALUPE, MEXICO | CAGE DIVING
Guadalupe Island is remote, located 210 miles from our home port in San Diego, Ca off the Pacific coast of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico. Since 2000 when we first discovered white sharks at Guadalupe Island it has become famed for its shark encounters. Getting to Guadalupe Island takes a 20-hour boat journey. You’ll stay on the boat for 5 days as the island has no accommodation for shark divers on the island.
About Guadalupe Island White Sharks and Habitat
There isn’t too much to do on this essentially uninhabited island except cage dive with great white sharks. Diving at Guadalupe Island is all about the great white sharks where you can encounter upwards of 3 or 10 white sharks per dive in Aug-September months.
Diving at Guadalupe Island is always within a shark cage. Its against Mexican law to dive outside the cage. During shark season, which runs July to November, water temperatures remain between 67° – 72° F combined with visibility of near 140 feet. It’s the BEST conditions for great white shark diving in the world.
Traveling to Guadalupe Island
- Cage diving at Guadalupe Island is for anyone. Cage diving with great white sharks divers use a hookah and cages that stay on the surface.
- There are over 260 individual great white sharks who regularly visit Guadalupe Island.
- During the Guadalupe cage diving season, there are two important periods. From July to August, very active juvenile males frequent the island. Huge females arrive around at the end of summer and stay until mid November. The island is a mating hotspot for Great White sharks, and there have even been some baby sharks observed in recent years.
- Mature females can often be seen around the island sporting gruesome bite marks and other scratches. This can be a result of the violent mating rituals of Great Whites, but unfortunately also from being hit by boats and props. To reproduce, males must hold onto the female by biting the area around the gills and pectoral fins.
- One of the major reasons Guadalupe island is a beacon to a large number of Great White sharks is the Guadalupe Fur Seal. One of six fur seal species in the world, this shark food source was once pushed close to extinction by commercial sealers in the 19th Century. Luckily, the fur seal population has since recovered to numbers in excess of 10,000.
- The island of Guadalupe has an elongated shape and was originally formed by two overlapping shield volcanoes. Today, the island features a rugged landscape and reaches an elevation of 1,298m at Mount Augusta.
- Although extremely remote, Guadalupe island does have a human population of just over 200 individuals. These inhabitants are mostly abalone and lobster fishermen who survive thanks to generators and a military vessel, which provides 30,000 liters of fresh water annually. There is also a shark research station on the island that provides invaluable data on the ocean’s most fearsome predator.