Egyptian Red Sea - Safaris
The Red Sea
The Egyptian Red Sea is the most popular diving destination for European divers. And for good reasons: It is only a short flight, the sun is always guaranteed, Egyptians are renowned for their hospitality and friendliness, and the Red Sea boasts some of the best reefs and wrecks in the world. The reefs and fish are beautifully colored, and big fish are guaranteed at the offshore reefs. So it is a real heaven for underwater photographers and videographers.
The Red Sea is home to over 1,000 invertebrate species and 200 soft and hard corals and is the world's northernmost tropical sea. The Red Sea is a vibrant and diverse ecosystem. More than 1100 species of fish have been recorded, and around 10% of these are found nowhere else. This also includes about 75 species of deep-water fish. The diversity is in part due to the 2,000 km (1,240 mi) of coral reef extending along its coastline; these fringing reefs are 5000 to 7000 years old and are largely formed of stony Acropora and Porites corals.
The reefs form tables and sometimes lagoons along the coast and occasional other features such as cylinders (such as the “Blue Hole” at Dahab). These coastal reefs are also visited by pelagic species, including some of the 44 shark species that include hammerheads, oceanic whitetips, silvertips, grey reefs, whitetips, blacktip reef sharks, and thresher sharks. Occasionally a tiger can also be seen.
The Egyptian government, who set up the Ras Mohammed National Park in 1983 and more recently Dolphin House National Park, recognizes the special biodiversity of the area. The rules and regulations governing this area protect local wildlife, which has become a major draw for tourists, in particular for diving enthusiasts.
Diving Destinations: Brother Islands, Daedalus and Elphinstone
The Brother islands are located in the middle of the Red Sea. The Brothers are considered to be among the best dives site in the world. Steep vertical walls with fantastic coral growth and rich fish life means great diving. Two beautiful wrecks - the Aida and the Numidia rest on the slopes of El Akhawein (Big Brother). Thresher sharks, grey reef sharks, whitetips, hammerheads, oceanic whitetips (Longimanus) and silky sharks are the most common sharks to encounter at The Brothers.
Next to The Brothers, Daedalus is another top place for scuba diving. The Daedalus reef is also located in the middle of the Red Sea. A long boat ride to the lighthouse of Daedalus island will give you another opportunity to meet all kinds of sharks, but in particular hammerheads. Unspoiled huge corals, big schools of fish, mantas and even the majestic whale shark can be seen here.
Elphinstone is likewise a unique experience. The East and West walls are covered in soft corals and encounters with morays, napoleons and at shallow depth scorpion fish are very likely.
All diving and freediving are done from a live-aboard. These boats can sail to somewhat remote areas to encounter sharks, especially the oceanic whitetips. Dives take place three times a day; daily lectures begin in the late afternoon hours until dinner.