Yes, you read it right! Shark Tank!
I was really curious when Viocean from Dive Club Maldives told me about it. I instantly typed the term on a search engine and to my surprise, nobody has ever written about it. Just some odd reviews on DCM’s Trip Advisor profile. Guess that made me more intrigued and interested in the experience.
I made it to Maldives for the second time in two months. It is so beautiful here – the people, the waters, the weather – everything is just so good! This time, I was to stay here for 2 weeks for some dives and work.
On the very first day, I went to meet people at Dive Club Maldives and they asked about my diving experience so far. Though I am a certified rescue diver, my dive experience is limited to 16 dives which fall under the category of a less experienced diver. Shark Tank needs a lot of experience as it is a deep dive without any reference.
Hence, they asked me to go for more dives and gain experience before heading for the Shark Tank. Dive Club Maldives has some really interesting dive sites near Hulhumale to choose from. Ask them to give you dive site details, so you can choose as per your interests.
And then we have Shark Tank. One of the most unusual and interesting dive sites where you can see about 7 kinds of sharks in one place. That’s where it gets its name from.
Tiger sharks, hammerhead sharks, guitar sharks, bull sharks, silver tip sharks & spinners – you name it! They can be seen just near the harbour of Hulhumale. Surprising, right? There is no such dive site so proximate to a city anywhere.
It was discovered about 10 years ago by some local divers but was commercialised only at the beginning of this year. Yet, Dive Club Maldives takes only a select few for this dive. They take a lot of precautions to make sure it is a safe dive, for it indeed is a risky one.
Keep reading to know my experience!
Experiencing Shark Tank with Dive Club Maldives
I started with some regular dives with Dive Club Maldives and realised I needed more diving experience for doing a tough and deep dive.
We hopped on islands and did around 10 dives within a span of 7 days. That’s when I realised I was comfortable underwater in different scenarios. I wasn’t overwhelmed with new encounters & was good with using supplementary air.
Reaching out to Viocean, I informed him I was ready for the Shark Tank dive and he literally said, “we are ready to get you baptised here”. I was really thrilled, nervous and excited.
Meeting the team for Shark Tank
Coming back to Hulumale, I met Arun, Hussain, Mark & Emilio. Arun, a passionate Indian Diver, works with Dive Club Maldives and briefed me about the dive site, their plan for the dive, things to keep in mind and what not to do. And Mark & Emilio told me about their experience so far at the Shark Tank. Both of them have over 100 dive experience of this dive site. I was ready to be blown.
The group was super strong. We had 4 Dive Instructors, 2 Divemasters and 2 Rescuers including me, so I was sure I was in safe hands. And we began the baptism journey. 😉
We reached the dive site just in 5 minutes, did the buddy check and got in the water. Now the scary part. Shark Tank has no reference point, just dive in the blue and there is nothing above and nothing below.
I tried but I kept going deep exceptionally fast due to no reference as per my understanding. Yet, I was calm and had full faith in my team and myself.
While there are high chances that you get to see so many types of sharks in just one dive, there are some unlucky days when you don’t see anything at all. For the first 10 minutes, we didn’t see anything. We touched 30 m, or more I guess, but no sighting of sharks.
Then the luck played its role and bam!!!
The water was really murky and cold. But then, we saw a hammerhead! Wow! It came from behind us, did a round and passed. A big fat hammerhead. In the rush, I forgot to press the shutter of my GoPro properly. Nonetheless, it was the best moment of my diving journey so far.
In 35 mins I’d used 50% of my air. I knew I had only a few more minutes to witness more sharks. And to my surprise, in the next 20 seconds, it was literally a shark tank! Tiger sharks circled us, and then there were guitar sharks just below us. About a dozen of spinners went around us, hundreds of stingrays, and another encounter with the hammerhead shark!
I was so happy and overwhelmed that I started breathing heavily. I signalled Arun about my air tank and we started ascending slowly. We made a safety stop at 5mts for 3 min while the others still looked at the beautiful show by the sharks at the shark tank.
I came out and could not speak for a few minutes. I was just blown by what I had experienced there!
First thoughts after the Shark Tank Dive
I was in awe, with smile on my face. But I had a question in mind. Why do these Sharks come here?
The team told me that a fishing company has been dumping fish waste here. But is it ethical?
The answer may be subjective. Nobody is feeding the sharks in person and neither is it for personal reasons. The company that’s dumping the waste can’t really keep it anywhere else. What do we do in such a case? Let the ecosystem face its backlash? For now, the Shark Tank is home to a 100s of sharks, big fat sharks of different kinds. Some of these species are rare to spot too. My suggestion is to be cautious and enjoy this incredible dive site.
Why choose Dive Club Malidives?
While there are many reasons to choose Dive Club Maldives, my two main reasons are Furuba Beach and their Dive Center here. You can chill before & after the dive. They have set up the entire place keeping co-working aspects in mind. Wifi & beautiful view of the ocean, what else do you need to get you work done!
The second being their new venture called Scuba Culture Maldives, where they focus on sourcing authentic and sustainable products. Like their After Dive Tanning Oil, it is vegan, natural & reef friendly. I mean, what if we all become that caring towards our mother nature.
Apart from the above, The Dive Club Maldives has very experienced dive instructors for the dives, their equipments are good quality and ofcourse, the Shark Tank. You must not miss it!!!!!
Drop in your comments if you have any questions about The Shark Tank.