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The Calypso Star Charter story

Calypso Star Charters was founded in 1990 by Captain Rolf Czabayski. Rolf was an avid game fisherman who had tagged and released many Great White Sharks before their protection in 1997. Rolf holds the final World record ever issued for the capture of a White Shark, 599Kg on 15kg line class, a fine achievement.

Fishing to cage diving

Over time, Rolf’s attention turned from fishing for Sharks to cage diving charters. On his 35foot Bertram vessel Rolf could take 3-4 guests on charters for 3-5 days. In those days there were several locations for Shark Cage Diving including the Neptune Islands, Dangerous Reef and several Islands in the Sir Joseph Banks Group to the North of Port Lincoln.

Cage diving specific vessel

As the business gradually grew, Rolf made the big decision to upgrade his beloved Bertram to the custom built ‘Calypso Star’ in December 2000. This vessel offered a level of comfort not seen before in Shark Diving in South Australia. Shark cage diving remained a ‘hobby’ for Rolf, his family home and other business interests were in Adelaide while the boat was in Port Lincoln. The 3-4 day itinerary was the core business and in 2002 Andrew Wright became Rolf’s first full time deckhand.

New owners

The business changed hands in 2006 with local business identity Ron Forster and crew member Andrew Wright taking over ownership from Rolf. The 1 Day Shark Cage diving charters were introduced in January 2007 and many thought ‘it could never be done’. With increased promotion the popularity of Shark Diving increased rapidly. By 2009 demand was such that Ron and Andrew began the process of building a bigger boat to cope with the demand. A vessel was purchased in Western Australia and an extensive refit was completed in Port Lincoln and Adelaide. In September 2011, Hon John Rau MP launched our magnificent vessel MV Calypso Star 2 at a ceremony in Port Lincoln.

Tours with technology & comfort

The MV Calypso Star 2 surpasses it predecessor and the competition! Wifi Internet and live footage streamed from the cage to the saloon are major advancement with this vessel.

With a capacity of 45 and an energetic crew of 5 the Calypso Star 2 offers a level of comfort not matched in South Australia. Its huge bridge deck offers the perfect vantage point for shark spotting and our 8 person shark cage (the largest in Australia) offers complete safety not only to divers but to sharks also.

Why choose us?

  • Calypso Star Charters is fully licensed by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources. 
  • We’re also privileged to be the only one-day shark cage diving operator who is permitted to use natural fish berley to attract the Great White Sharks to our boat at the Neptune Islands Marine Park. 
  • Being permitted to berley provides you with the best possible chance of a shark sighting and productive interaction close to our vessel and cage resulting in a memorable encounter and wonderful photographic opportunities.
  • We only use locally sourced, natural fish product to attract the sharks, our tethered baits are attached by natural fibre twine.  We do not condone placing un-natural objects in the water to visually stimulate or attract sharks.  If a shark were to consume any part of a synthetic object (decoy) it could certainly harm them. Our practices are conducted with the utmost respect to the welfare of sharks.
  • Along with this license, we are proud to be Advanced Eco Certified and our Captains’ are Eco Certified Guides. Receiving this certification provides us with the recognition that we conduct our operations in a way that are environmentally conscious and sustainable whilst also providing an educational component.
  • Our Great White Shark sighting history is displayed day by day on our website since January 1st 2011 to assist guests in choosing the best time to visit, we are proudly the only company to offer this honesty and transparency to guests. We also provide daily updates across our social media platforms of current sightings and continue this service at times of low or no shark sightings.
  • No Minimum Passenger Numbers. If you're the only person booked we will still go!
  • More Departures than any operator. We operate on every available Activity Day and during the summer we operate a twilight charter giving us 2 departures on the same day. The benefit of this is that if your travel plans are disrupted for any reason we are may be able to swap your booking for the next available departure. It also gives us the most comprehensive data set of when sharks have been sighted at Neptune Islands. Currently due to Government regulation there are 4 designated Non Activity Days per fortnight with all operators adhering to the same schedule.
  • Our vessel Calypso Star 2 is fitted with a gyroscopic active stabiliser, which has reduced the rolling motion of the vessel by up to 80%. If you are susceptible to seasickness do not compromise with a non-stabilised vessel.
  • Generous No Shark Policy. If you are unlucky and miss seeing a Great White Shark underwater you will be offered a refund of $100 if you booked as a diver (back to the spectator price) and receive a voucher of $200 off your next tour with us, this can even be redeemed on our Swim with the Sea Lions tour which operate regularly from September to May. After a second unsuccessful trip your 3rd and subsequent trips (if you're really unlucky) are for priced at $100 each to dive. If sharks other than Great Whites are sighted and productively dived with on the day, the No Shark Policy will still apply.
  • Largest vessel means fewer cancellations due to bad weather. The trip out can be rough but the Neptune Islands give us good shelter from the waves. Our vessel can accommodate up to 45 guests across 2 decks with ample seating in air-conditioned comfort. 2 hot showers are also provided onboard.
  • Actively support SARDI, CSIRO and Flinders University in their ongoing research into the Great White Sharks and their movement patterns around Neptune Islands. We provide logistical support and positions on board our vessel for researchers to conduct observations and tagging.
  • 100% Safety record. With over 25 years experience you are in good hands.

MV Calypso Star 2

The pride of our fleet and ensures that our guests have the ultimate adventure whilst on our Shark Cage Diving Tours. 

MV Calypso Star 2 was acquired in 2010 and underwent an extensive refit to transform her into the magnificent vessel she is today.

In 2013 we installed a state of the art Seakeeper Gyroscopic Stabiliser to reduce vessel roll whilst travelling and at anchor which greatly minimises seasickness and increases comfort throughout the day. We are the first vessel in South Australia to have one installed and the largest commercial vessel in Australia to utilise this technology. 

With a covered upper deck and a gyroscopic stabiliser fitted, there is no vessel more comfortable!

See the Features >

  • Largest one day shark cage diving vessel
  • Length 19.95m (65′), Beam 6.2m, Draught 1.85m, Weight 45 tonnes
  • Seakeeper M26000 Active Gyroscopic Stabiliser, Roll reduction of up to 80% which greatly minimises seasickness and increases comfort. 
  • Fully enclosed, spacious saloon, lounge style seating with Reverse Cycle air-conditioning
  • Full galley, meals area and bar
  • Partially covered main deck. Shark cage is carried on the swim platform.
  • Huge upper deck just perfect for shark spotting!
  • Covered outdoor seating on upper deck
  • Flat screen TV’s and DVD’s, sound system. 
  • Licensed Bar
  • Espresso coffee machine
  • 2 Fresh HOT water showers open onto main deck (3000 Litre per day) plus 2 full flush toilets
  • Cage cameras that live stream action back to a screen in the saloon area for live underwater viewing
  • WIFI on our Ipads for use
  • GoPro camera hire
  • Souvenir shop
  • Huge swim platform to carry our huge 8 person shark cage. The largest shark cage in Australia!
  • South Australian Survey 1C to 30 Nautical Miles
  • All weather capable vessel with the latest navigation and communication system
  • Up to 5 Crew, Skipper, Engineer, Host and Deckhand
  • Powered by CAT C32-1450Hp, 30Kva & 35Kva Gensets for electrical requirements
  • Cruise speed of 13.5 Knots. 
  • Plenty of 240v power, don’t forget your camera charger.
  • Complies with all EPA & Department of Environment waste water requirements


MV Calypso Star 

MV Calypso Star was launched in 2000 and was purpose built for our Shark Cage Diving Charters. She offers the best safety, comfort and performance. With the launch of Calypso Star 2, the Calypso Star is now used for our Swim with the Sea Lions tours, Twilight Shark Cage Diving and Combo tours.

See the Features >

  • Cruise speed of 17 Knots
  • The fastest vessel to Neptune Islands.
  • Length 18.8m
  • South Australian 1C and 2B surveys
  • All weather capable vessel
  • Powered by twin 625HP 60 Series MTU Engines 19KA Genset for 240v power
  • 2 Hot showers and full flush toilets
  • Full galley and licensed bar on board
  • Spacious saloon with reverse cycle air-conditioning
  • Lounge style seating
  • Large main deck and Fly bridge decks- Great views
  • 4 bunks for a snooze while travelling
  • GoPro camera hire
  • Souvenir shop
  • Espresso coffee machine
  • Flat screen TV and sound system
  • 4 person tender vessel for sea lion tours
  • Complies with all EPA & Department of Environment waste water requirements
  • Plenty of 240v power, don’t forget your camera

Meet the crew

Andrew Wright - General Manager/Skipper
Andrew Wright
General Manager/Skipper
Simon James - Skipper
Simon James
Skipper
Dan Harvey - Skipper
Dan Harvey
Skipper
Dave Clayfield - Skipper
Dave Clayfield
Skipper
Shanan Whitty - Coxswain
Shanan Whitty
Coxswain
Jack Burgess - Coxswain
Jack Burgess
Coxswain
Rob Harding - Coxswain
Rob Harding
Coxswain
Michael Ward - Coxswain
Michael Ward
Coxswain
Thomas O’Halloran - Coxswain
Thomas O’Halloran
Coxswain
Daniel Sparrow - Coxswain
Daniel Sparrow
Coxswain
Jacinta Harders - Hostess
Jacinta Harders
Hostess
Cris Buckland - Hostess
Cris Buckland
Hostess
Jodi Hayes - Hostess
Jodi Hayes
Hostess
Emma Luscombe - Hostess
Emma Luscombe
Hostess
Brooke Taylor - Hostess
Brooke Taylor
Hostess
Ellie Bender - Hostess
Ellie Bender
Hostess
Jamie (Yook)  Coote - Deckhand
Jamie (Yook) Coote
Deckhand
Alex Wright - Deckhand
Alex Wright
Deckhand
Nicol Wright - Social Media Manager
Nicol Wright
Social Media Manager
Marina Osman - Office Supervisor
Marina Osman
Office Supervisor
Charon Birch - Accounts
Charon Birch
Accounts
Jesse Kourakis - Booking Officer
Jesse Kourakis
Booking Officer
Tara Duncan - Booking Officer
Tara Duncan
Booking Officer
Kyra Dickson - Booking Officer
Kyra Dickson
Booking Officer

Contact us

Contact our Office on:

Telephone +61 (8) 8682 3939

Email info@sharkcagediving.com.au

Fax +61 (8) 8682 6877

Office Location 3/10 South Quay Boulevard, Port Lincoln SA 5606

Postal PO Box 2058, Port Lincoln, South Australia, 5606

Dive Locations - see a Google map of our Dive Locations

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 9:00am - 5:30pm

Saturdays & Public holidays 9:00am - 3:00pm

Sundays CLOSED*

PLEASE NOTE OUR PHONE IS AVAILABLE 24 HOURS

+61 (8) 8682 3939

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Shark Cage Dives