It might be chilly, it might be rough,
there might even be sharks, but those who dive the Cape’s waters
enthuse about it and claim that there’s no diving locale that
beats it – anywhere!
One such enthusiast is Brandon Broodryk of Bubble Blowers, a Cape
Town-based dive school and dive charter company that have an
intimate knowledge and great passion for everything that the
Cape’s waters have to offer the diver. According to Brandon,
Cape Town has something for every diver, regardless of experience
and confidence level, regardless of passions and interests.
For those divers whose first love is the
natural world, Cape Town has coral reefs and kelp forests.
The experience of swimming through a kelp forest says Brandon, is
like walking though a forest – kelp trunks waving around you,
whilst a canopy of fronds shades you from above.
Sunlight slants down into the water, catching the silvery flashes
of the numerous fishes that glide past you.
If its colour and detail that fascinate you – and more photo
opportunities than you’ll be able to take!
- you’d be well advised to explore the Cape’s reefs.
All along the shores of the Peninsular you’ll find rocky
outcrops studded with jewel-like nudibranches, corals and sea
fans, as well as sponges that can dwarf a diver.
The kelp forests and reefs are home to numerous fishes, from the
territorial Red Romans (who can always be found at one particular
spot) to Musselcrackers,Cuttlefish, White Stumpnose and our
national fish, the Galjoen.
And if you’re lucky, you might even
encounter one of the Cape’s toothsome sharks!
Sounds like your worst diving nightmare?
Well according to the Bubble Blowers boys, there’s really
nothing for divers to be concerned about – sharks don’t choose
to eat people, and most sharks are shy and timid, retreating long
before you’re aware of them.
So a chance encounter is truly a privilege!
But it’s Cape Town’s wrecks that most
often excite the diving community, sitting on the seabed as
ghostly reminders of Cape Town’s stormy past.
From the historical wrecks in Table Bay to the more recently
scuttled Smitswinkelbaai wrecks, wrecks have a fascination for and
a hold over divers.
Understandable, but be careful when exploring them, says Brandon
– make sure you’ve got the right level of skill and
qualification, check out the conditions and most importantly,
ensure that you’ve got absolute confidence in your dive buddies
and dive master.
Once you’re confident with your chosen partners, there can be
nothing more thrilling than slipping down a buoy line into the
blue as a sunken shape slowly looms up towards you.
Sometimes there are ‘treasures’ to found – porcelain on the
Maori, golden coins off some of the older wrecks and excitement,
wherever you find yourself.
However beautiful the Cape’s seas appear
on a calm day, it still poses a number of challenges for any
diver: predicting the weather conditions, deciding on where, and
when, the best spot to dive is, and then locating it, because
sometimes even finding the most enticing spots that Cape Town has
to offer is something of a challenge!
To overcome these and other diving challenges, you’d be well
advised to call on the advice and expertise of someone who has an
intimate knowledge of the Cape’s diving conditions. But more
than that, to get the most out of what Cape Town diving has to
offer, ensure that whomever you call on, has a passion for
everything that lies beneath the seas calm surface.