Protea Banks diving
Protea Banks is located about 7.5 kilometers off Shelly Beach on the east coast of South Africa. It has a reef system that is suitable for experienced and adventurous divers. Protea Banks has gained a reputation of being home to many kinds of big fish. It is highly recommended as a shark diving destination, different species of sharks inhabit its dive sites like Zambezi, tiger, hammerhead, blacktip, ragged-tooth, bronze whaler (copper shark) and sometimes the Great white shark. The depths vary between 98 to 131 feet (30 to 40 meters) depth, it's a suitable spot for drift diving.
Always dive according to your level of training.
Never enter the water without checking with the local dive center for safety, additional information, level required for each dive site and without being accompanied by a professional.
All the information provided is purely informative for our readers and shouldn't be used as is to plan your immersion.
Average Water surface temperature: From 19 °C to 24°C (66 °F to 75°F).
Average visibility: 15 to 131 feet (5 to 40 meters) depending on the tied.
Best time to dive the Northern Pinnacles between June to November.
Best time to dive the Southern Pinnacles during April & May.
Possible to dive all year round.
Protea Banks is home to many kinds of sharks. These large shy animals became the main attraction at its dive sites. If you come to Protea Banks any time of the year, regardless of the season it's most likely that you will see sharks; for example grey nurse sharks come here during spring months from August to September, in November you may see Zambezi known as bull sharks. Tiger sharks are often seen in summer and in June/July you will get to see copper sharks as they follow the migration of the sardines, the hammerheads may be seen any time of the year. The area is also inhabited by numerous other creatures, like ribbon tail skates, moray eels, spotted eagle rays, manta rays and large schools of pelagic fish. You can also spot dolphins and whales depending on the migration seasons.
Protea Banks may be divided into two sections, The Northern Pinnacles and The Southern Pinnacles. The Northern Pinnacles depth ranges from 108 to 131 feet (33 to 40 meters). It has great scenery with its rare pink soft coral and lots of fish and aqua life. Its two cave systems attract a lot of of big fish and is home to the ragged-tooth sharks during mating season in the winter; sometimes it is hard to see the bottom of the caves because of the huge crowds of ragged-tooth sharks who inhabit the caves. Other kinds of sharks, like the hammerheads visit this area and make it very interesting for diving.
The Southern Pinnacles are at a depth of 92 to 131 feet (28 to 40 meters). They are a refuge for the Zambezi sharks that can be seen from October to May. Hammerhead and tiger sharks as well as plenty of game fish are there during summer months. If you are really lucky you may get to see Great white sharks passing by. The caves of this area provide a habitat for various aqua life, including potato bass, kingfish, kaakap, sea pike tunny and more. The current often reaches 4 or 5 knots, which is suitable for drift diving.