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The Tigers of Aliwal

Sharks evoke an unexplainable fascination in their human admirers. From their large gaping jaws, lined with rows of razor sharp teeth to their sheer strength and agility. It’s no wonder why these impressive creatures are the apex predators of the ocean.

Lying 5km off the small diving town of Umkomaas in KwaZulu Natal is Aliwal Shoal, an underwater paradise blessed with the warm Agulhas current. Due to the warm Indian Ocean current that runs through Aliwal, there is a large variety of sealife attracted to the area, making it the perfect hunting grounds for large predators. Rated as one of the top ten dive sites in the world, Aliwal Shoal offers unparalleled opportunities to dive alongside many species of sharks, including the formidable tiger shark. The thrill of a close encounter with a tiger shark, known for its volatile and occasionally aggressive nature, is the ultimate adrenaline filled diving experience, sure to get your blood pumping.

With its many caves and gullies, Aliwal Shoal is also home to a seasonal residence of hundreds of ragged-tooth sharks. Diving during the ragged-tooth shark season provides an excellent opportunity to see the crooked smile of the ragged-tooth shark up close. Other sealife that can be found on Aliwal Shoal include sting rays, manta rays, dolphins, turtles and even pods of whales during the months from June to December.

For a change of scenery, Aliwal Shoal also boasts some excellent wreck diving opportunities. It is the final resting place for three shipwrecks that were ripped asunder, all of which now lie dormant as they rest along the sandy ocean floor, waiting to be explored.

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