Free Dive the Sardine Run with Andy Coetzee from Soweto Style Experience – http://sowetostyle.co.za/.
Packages available to dive the Wild Coast of Transkei.
Your guide is Ocean Advocate, Author and Adventurer, Andy Coetzee.
Andy is a cultural explorer and experiential facilitator for Soweto Style Experience and passionate freediver well versed in the Sardine Run. Andy holds the equivalent of a B.Sc Honours (Nature Conservation) Pretoria Technikon and is a Qualified PURE APNEA freedive instructor with current 1st Aid qualifications.
Contact Andy for pricing
- Web Site: http://sowetostyle.co.za/
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Telephone: +27 (0)82 547 5554
Sardine Run Package:
Over 6 nights – 5 days (at sea for 5 full days) weather dependent.
Our base and accommodation is at Transkei’s iconic Hole in the Wall. This Wild Coast hotel is ideally situated for the sardine run as there is less boating pressure from other operators and by all historical accounts the water clarity is usually better in this area, making for better photographic memories of this unique Migration of the Biggest shoal on Earth.
Our typical itinerary is:
- Arrive in afternoon of first day , check into rooms and supper and briefing with Captain Cassie and Adventurer Freedive Instructor Andy Coetzee
- Check your freediving / snorkeling equipment eg Wetsuits, booties, fins, gloves , cameras.
- Breakfast early at 0600 to depart on boat by 0630
- Take packed lunch and board rubber duck in wetsuits and wind cheater/ jackets, (bring your own thermos if you want your own brew of coffee – Transkei has little to offer (Ricoffy and Cremora yaaay!) Bring your own little personal snacks too (like little choccies/biscuits etc.)
- Launch through surf in 8m rubberduck with 2 Yamaha outboards and Captain Cassie at the Helm.
- Spend day at sea searching for Gannets diving , common dolphin pods, whales (both Humpback, Southern Right, and Brydes). Look for Sharks, and game fish all feeding on the sardine shoals.
- When we find the action, Andy will get in first to assess the situation and then clients to follow.
- Safety protocols are to stay as a group in like a half moon around the baitball which then allows the dolphins, whales etc to access the baitball from the other side , which makes for great pictures too.
- You, as the participant don’t have to be freedive qualified, but must be a snorkeler and competent/comfortable swimmer. Those that can dive down to 5m is great but all the action is on the surface actually. So just floating on the surface, keep together and enjoy this wonderful phenomenon.
- Wetsuits can be 5 mm full body with hood , gloves and booties and weight belts with weights (or we can supply), Don’t bring long freediving fins as they are difficult to get on and off the boat all day – which you will do many many times as we go from bait ball to baitball wherever the action takes us.
- If you feel cold or have had enough excitement for the day, you are welcome to jump back on the boat as Capt Cassie will always be within 10 m from us.
- Return around 12h00-14h00 depending on group and sardine action and weather.
- Andy will take a few video and camera pics of clients but our main focus is your safety and maintaining the best placement for you to see the action.
- Relax, have a warm shower and a stroll on the pristine beaches.
- Prepare for the next day , download pictures, charge batteries etc
- Supper by 18h00.
- Rinse and Repeat the next day – Same time, same game, same place.
- 5 days consecutive (if very bad weather does blow in then Captain Cassie will make the call) to launch or not.
- No refund on non launch days unfortunately .
- The surrounding area is a wonderful part of the Transkei Wild Coast, and its wild for sure.
Pricing is based on:
- Accommodation (Bed and Breakfast, Packed lunch, 5 days at sea, including non launch day if it happens, all fuel, Captain, boat, hosting, guiding by Andy and Cassie.
- Max 6 pax on sharing accommodation – Cottage has 2 rooms with shared ablution so ideal for 2 people or a family of 4
- Single supplement, we put singles into cottages with 3-4 rooms (own ablutions in each room) shared kitchen for coffee and lounge area.
- Otherwise with a couple they get a cottage with kitchen and en suite
- Minimum of 4 pax
Andy Coetzee grew up in Pondaland, Kwazulu Natal, and having a knack for languages can speak Xhosa and Zulu fluently. He grew up in rural areas immersed in the diverse local cultures, and has an in depth understanding of the traditions and mythologies of his fellow Africans. Andy’s company runs trips to Soweto where he teaches patrons about the local culture of one of South Africa’s most interesting and exuberant communities.
Andy has an Honours degree in Nature Conservation and a good knowledge of local flora and fauna. He worked in Maputoland for The Department of Development Aid, in conjunction with the University of Grahamstown, focusing on how to correct fishing methods by combining local knowledge with western techniques. He was later employed by Wilderness Safaris to assess who benefits most from nature conservation – the conservation authorities, the private sector, or local communities.
Andy is professional fly fishing guide, and takes clients salt-water fishing all over the world. He is also an international triathlon athlete, and his health and energy compliment his bubbly and optimistic personality. Describing himself as an energetic, passionate, enthusiastic conservationist, he believes; “Energy follows thought. If you can think it, energy will follow it. It’s all about enthusiasm and the value set of our lives – love, trust and integrity. What you give out is what you get back”.
He has published a book entitled: “Fly Fishing Yourself Single” and has spent the last fifteen years writing for local and international fly fishing magazines.
You may also consider a Soweto Style Experience:
Soweto Style Experience opens up the diversity of South Africa, as epitomised by Soweto. You will find families who have lived in Soweto for generations, as well as those who moved in yesterday from far-flung rural villages. There are immigrants, investors, gangsters, students; all adding to the colourful, throbbing beat that is Soweto. This is the heart of South Africa.
Your guide on this journey of discovery is Andy Coetzee, cultural explorer and experiential facilitator. Through Soweto Style Experience he provides the opportunity for you to meet the friendly residents of Soweto and to open your hearts and minds to the people and places of South Africa.
Andy grew up in the diverse regions of rural South Africa and has an in-depth understanding of the traditions and customs of his fellow Africans. Over the years, Andy has participated in a wide variety of indigenous cultural rituals and lifestyles, spending time with the Khoi san, experiencing Zulu rites of passage; and participating in Xhosa ceremonies to name a few. His role as a documentary film presenter has enabled him to explore some of the most intimate of cultural ceremonies. His migration to the city, with his knowledge of African languages and understanding of the people; widened his circle of friends to include urban residents and he is greeted with affection in both the rural areas and the big cities. He and his friends from many backgrounds and cultures will lead you to the warm heart of Africa.
As the bridge between rural traditionalism and the westernised commercial world, Andy provides unique and exclusive access to diverse markets, people and communities, affording, unparalleled insights for you, his fellow explorers. This bridge extends to true reconciliation and transformation, following Andy’s own personal journey from his rural upbringing, to officer in 1 Parachute Battalion, into township life and business. Andy stands comfortably with his feet in dual worlds, offering you the unique opportunity to connect to the exuberant world of Soweto.
Immerse your team in Soweto with its exciting traditional and cultural challenges that take you out of your comfort-zone and test your assumptions about the world. Participating in these challenges develops trust, cohesion and confidence in your colleagues, providing insights and understanding that will build your workplace team into a formidable unit.
Soweto Style Experience also arranges opportunities to safely overnight in Soweto. This adds an entirely different dimension and cohesion to group dynamics, encouraging your team to explore the boundaries of their life experience.
Collected at your workplace by local taxis, you embark on a journey of discovery and trust with your team-members. The unique shared experiences that follow create lasting personal transformation and powerful workplace bonds. En route time is set aside during the activities to debrief and assimilate learning’s.