Tripadvisor Reviews Guadalupe Island Cage Diving
Not many things these days are as advertised, but this trip delivered everything as promised and then some.
We set out from San Diego and followed the itinerary as detailed on their website. The border stop at Ensenada took about 10 minutes all while I was eating breakfast (no one gets off the boat). We arrived at Guadalupe Island before dawn the following day and then the non-stop shark viewing began. Horizon does a nice job keeping it organized. Two groups of eight rotate in/out of the shark cages on one hour intervals so you’re assured at least 4 hours of cage time on each of the full days there.
The white sharks were spectacular. I believe we saw at least a dozen different white sharks ranging from 6′ to 17′, and they are around the boat all the time. I’d guess the longest lull we had in shark activity was maybe 20 minutes. If you’re not in the cage looking at sharks, you’re on the deck looking at sharks. It was truly overwhelming. Visibility was incredible being able to see at least 100′ (you can clearly see the anchor line from the cages). Being able to spot a shark approaching or watching it descend is very cool. What surprised me the most is that I never felt scared. I found the whole experience very peaceful.
In the evenings once the dives are done for the day, you can look through binders of photos/names of all the known white sharks and try and identify those you saw that day. Husker was my personal favorite. The shark crew did a great job with everything. Food/drink was great and plentiful, ship was clean, we were well informed along the way and safety was always emphasized.
The trip to and from the island was a little rough on me at times. I did use the motion sickness patch for the first time which helped with nausea but also gave me side effects of dry mouth, mild disorientation and discolored vision. Obviously not the fault of the Horizon but just a heads up to others if you’d also be using a patch for the first time.
Accommodations were tight but we really only used our room for sleep and storage. The mess had more than enough seating for all guests on board so mealtime was always comfortable and enjoyable. There is also a table on deck as well as a large cushioned area to lay out on the upper deck so you have places to spread out.
Bonus experience: On the way back we were visited by a huge pod of dolphins (like an absurd number of dolphins) that followed us for at least an hour. We also saw a few humpback whales spouting, slapping tales and one breach. Very, very cool.
It’s been only a little over a month since our trip and we’re already talking about when we can fit a repeat trip into our travel plans.