Sharks in Basque Country
tiburones-cantabrico
tiburones-bermeo

MAKOPAKO

After several years in the making, MAKO PAKO emerged in 2013, it was born from the passion for the sea and for the sharks. In the beginning it involved the investment of many resources in and the exploration of places along the Basque coast, sometimes up to 30 miles offshore. It was a process of constant experimentation and over time it came to exceed all the initial expectations, managing to discover the wonders of the Cantabrian Sea hitherto unknown.

As time went by, there was also the desire to share the incredible experiences that the Cantabrian Sea offers. Diving enthusiasts and people passionate about the ocean began to take an interest in the project. It became part of the outings, to give rise to the important work that can be carried out with these outings, being a responsible way of interacting with nature and having an active role in favor of the environment. Making sharks known as part of our fauna, bringing them closer to the population and explaining the delicate situation they are in, so that people become aware and care about these animals that are so threatened. The result of this is that we find more and more destructive fishing methods, in addition to the already high level of contamination and other pollution factors in land. All of them influence the state of the seas and oceans.

For all these reasons, it is important for MAKO PAKO to collaborate with other entities and associations, contributing to everything that is possible from our excursions, in order to work in favor of these animals achieving their protection.

This is the meeting point to connect with people who really love the ocean.

THE EXPEDITIONS

Small groups, big experiences

Bermeo, in Biscay, is the starting point of our adventure.  Departures are held every day during the months of July, August and September, usually in the afternoons.

We will use the parking at the end of the breakwater as a meeting point before departure, where we will meet and receive the briefing on how the activity will take place.

Arriving at the time of departure, we will ride on the boat and we can go to the point where the interaction with the sharks will take place, the boat has space to leave your belongings, it is equipped with a medicine cabinet, it also has water and free snacks. We recommend that everyone bring their towel, cap/hat, sunglasses, sunscreen and a rain jacket / windbreaker, depending on the conditions of the day.

During boat trips, and sometimes even while we are in the water with sharks, there is the a possibility of seeing other types of fauna such as dolphins, Pilot Whales, different types of jellyfish, salps and ctenphora Comb Jellies, swimming crabs, sunfish, tunas or other species of fish and also different species of seabirds such as the yellow-legged gulls and lesser black-backed gull, depending on the season we could also see Petrels and even gannets among others.

Once in the place we will stop the engines and we will only have to wait for the day to be propitious (favorable in order for the sharks to approach the boat) and the sharks begin to approach the boat. At the moment when the first shark appears, a shark diving guide will enter the water to check the shark’s behavior, they are usually quite elusive animals, so it is advisable to carry out this contact, so that the shark takes confidence and not perceive us as a threat, after 5-10 minutes, when the divemaster considers it, it will give way for people to go into the water, one by one and calmly.

From then on it is time to enjoy the vision of these spectacular animals while they swim in front of you, the divemaster will take care that you are comfortable and assist you with anything you need, until the activity is over and they will be the last to come out of the water

The water temperature during the summer months is 22ºC, a 5 mm wetsuit is ideal for these conditions, and visibility varies between 8-15 meters depending on the conditions of the day.

Ideally, if you have your own equipment you should bring it with you, you will always feel more comfortable if you use your own equipment, in that case the recommendation is the use of dark equipment, avoiding white or yellow equipment, as well as bright things that can emit reflections or flashes (rings, earrings, etc …)

To avoid dizziness on the boat, the recommendation is to take motion sickness medicine at least half an hour before riding on the boat. MAKO PAKO cannot supply medication, you should consult your doctor or a pharmacist about it.

TOURS

STANDARD TOUR

180€/person, 5 hours duration.

PRIVATE TOUR

1200€, Tour duration, 5 hours. Maximum 6 people,

Hire the tour for yourself or your group alone, it is the best option. Also if you are 3 or 4 underwater photographers or videographers, to be able to create the opportunities and to achieve the best images.

CATAMARAN TOUR

1800€

Tour duration 8 hours. Maximum 8 people

Enjoy a full day at sea, enjoy a relaxing catamaran ride to sea (round trip), to the point of immersion with sharks

OTHER PRIVATE TOURS

If you are thinking of making a tour more adjusted to your needs and tastes, alone with your group of friends, of a different duration than the standard tours, or with any special requirements you may have, contact us and we will customize your tour.

INCLUDED

  • Shark diving guide.
  • 5 hours (standard & private tours) 8 hours (catamaran tour).
  • Free photography service (bring the photos of your tour totally free).
  • Professional photographer.
  • Water, fruits and snacks on board.
  • Collaborate collecting sightings data in the “CITIZEN SCIENCE” project for MEXICO AZUL

NOT INCLUDED

  • Water activities insurance, mandatory, if you do not have insurance we will manage it for you the day of your departure, an additional € 5.
  • Equipment rental (wetsuit, mask, tube and fins) € 5 additional.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

  • The objective of MAKO PAKO is the sighting of sharks and to enter the water with them. However, they are wild animals with pelagic habits, so the sightings are NOT GUARANTEED on any of the tours. Currently the percentage of sightings is 85%.
  • Safety is the priority for divemasters and they maintain the right not to let clients/tourists in the water or cancel the activity at any time.
  • We make use of the best skills and experience in shark diving but they are wild animals and sometimes there are factors that we cannot control.
  • This experience is an activity open to all audiences for what is done in snorkeling / apnea. The minimum age for snorkeling is 10 years old, with authorization signed by parents or guardians.
  • It is necessary to be familiar with the use of the snorkeling equipment. (Mask, tube and fins).
  • The price of the standard tour is € 140 per person (insurance and equipment rental are NOT included) and it has an average duration of 4-5 hours.
  • There is the possibility of doing the private tour, which fits a little more to the client’s requirements.
  • The departures cannot be guaranteed 100% until 48 hours before, since we depend on the state of the sea and the weather.
  • To book, it is necessary to have the data of all the participants.
  • A 30% deposit is required to formalize the reservation (in case of cancellation by MAKO PAKO the total deposit will be returned)
  • It is mandatory to have insurance of aquatic activities, and sign the document of exemption from liability.

CANCELLATION POLICY

All departures are subject to cancellation by the organization if:

  • They do not meet the minimum occupancy.
  • Bad weather conditions.

In these cases, 100% of the advance will be returned.

The money will not be returned in the following cases:

  • If the customer doesn’t show up at the place and time agreed on the day of departure.
  • In case of not seeing sharks or their behavior does not make it possible to enter the water with them.
  • In case of dizziness, for those who are going to take anti-dizziness pills do it an hour before boarding (Mako Pako cannot supply pills for this purpose, we recommend asking your doctor)

SHARK SPECIES

Blue shark (Prionace glauca)

It is a shark of the family of carcharhinids, pelagic life, lives throughout the ocean making large migrations, in its youth phase we find it in our waters, which is a nursery area and remains here until becoming an adult and goes out to the open waters.

Stylized and elongated body, it has an intense blue color for the spine by which it receives its name and is white by the belly. It is a fairly prolific shark compared to other species so it can be found relatively easy. The specimens we spot are generally one meter long, but there are also specimens from 60 cm to almost 2 meters. They feed primarily on fish, although squids are also on their menu, including plankton.

They usually have a rather shy behavior, being quite elusive, only after staying for a long time with them in the water without being disturbed will they begin to lose their shyness and can get closer.

Mako shark (Isurus oxyrhinchus)

Of the Lamnids family to which the white shark also belongs to, physiologically it looks like this in broad strokes but with some differences, it is also a pelagic shark that lives by the open waters of the ocean.

With a robust body, it is a powerful swimmer, it is the fastest shark that exists, dark blue on the spine, a metallic tone on the sides and white on the belly. It is a lonely shark and difficult to see, its appearances are not usually very long, in case it appears normal it is fleetingly without staying long in the area. It is a very scarce shark, with a very low reproduction and very threatened by overfishing. It feeds mainly on fish and its swimming speed allows it to hunt fast prey such as tunas, swordfish and sailfish.