the dive sites
Small Giftun is an amazing dive site with around 6 great individual dive for recreational divers and also a few technical dives as well including deep canyons, Black Coral forests and amazing tunnels!
Dive depths vary from 6 to 130 meters and at Small Giftun you can find a dive weather you are a seasoned tech diver or still finishing you Open Water Course.
The shallower areas are home to thousands of species of fish and corals and is well known for it's friendly Napoleon Fish and many Moray Eels.
Small Giftun is also an amazing place to spend the night due to the vast enclosure provided my the huge island.
Ras Mohamed is an old fabled dive site where millions of divers have had their dreams come true.
Especially true in the mating seasons when hundreds of species a of large fish congregate there.
Although it can be a little crowded, no diver has ever left here disappointed.
Also a hop and a skip from the Great Tiran Island and Jackson Reef!
El Akhawein is the Arabic name for these two islands which means just the same “The two Brothers”. This is one of the classic dive sites that everybody is talking about. In the middle of the ocean, from great depth two tiny islands emerges, encircled by a reef so pristine it takes your breath away. As this would not be enough the chances of shark encounter top the list and you can dive two of the absolute best wrecks in the Red Sea.
Conditions can be fierce here. Anyone who’s got a little brother knows what they are like and this one is no exception. Wicked currents, strong wind and waves that easily drag you on top of the reef if you don’t know what you’re doing are a few things that dictate the dive plan. It is essential to make a good current check in order to know where to start the dive. Find the split point and hang there for a while, look at all the sharks and then follow the wall with the current.
One good spot for shark encounters is the north plateau. Though, it’s not so much a plateau as a bump in the wall pointing north. Here you often find thresher sharks (left) circling the bump together with grey reef sharks that come in to take advantage of the cleaning-station. They can often be seen in an almost vertical position with jaws wide open and cleaning wrasses whisking about, brushing up teeth and gills.
A few fin kicks south-west from this cleaning station you find shelter from the current in a narrow canyon. Here you’ve got front-row seats to another merry-go-round of grey reef sharks.
October to January is season for oceanic white tipped sharks whereas May, June and July is the time to look for silky sharks, both often seen circling boats just under the surface and to a depth no greater than 8 to 10m.
For the first dive of the day it’s best to take the east side because of the sunlight. You spend the time you want at the cleaning station and then you follow the northern wall to the east. All along you find the reef profile going in and out, giving you shelter from the current. As you approach the east end the wall gives way for a slant stretching south. In this area huge gorgonians cover the wall at 20m and deeper. Here is another place where you often see grey reef shark but mainly in the afternoon and if the current is strong enough.
Second dive of the day is likely to be at the south side. Here the reef is rapidly slopes deep and soon out of reach for recreational diving but the area above the “bottleneck” at 40m is beautiful and most of the time the current weakens somewhat in this area though it sometimes can be ripping here as well. The main wall is covered with soft corals and makes a perfect back drop for photographs. Large napoleon wrasses linger majestically along the wall and thresher sharks often patrol at around 40m. At the west corner where the current is likely to pick up grey reef sharks circle in the blue. For people who are tiered of bumping around in a zodiac a dive from the boat, along the plateau to the gorgonian forest on the east corner, starting at around 20m is an excellent choice. Here also the grey reef sharks sightings are common and it’s easy to swim back to the boat again.
Further down south-west you may meet hammerheads patrolling the wall or a group of dog-toothed tunas chasing schools of sardines. When rolling in from the Zodiac, do not make the mistake thinking that the plateau is stretching out as an extension in the same direction as the top of the reef. Then you will end up on the south-west side. The plateau is heading straight north from the top end of the reef (see birds view diagram). With a strong current this dive can be finished in 10 minutes so use the reef profile to slow down the speed if this is the case. There are a few “bays” and sticking-out overhangs along the wall that suits perfectly for this.
For third dive of the day an alternative is to jump from the boat and explore the deeper part of the south end as you on the previous dives probably have been reaching a shallower depth at this point. There is not as much of a plateau here as a slight interruption in the steeply sloping reef. As you descend you start heading towards the east corner where you will find a few ridges from the depth of 20m slanting down towards deep water. In this area a virtual forest of gorgonians sway in the water movement and grey reef sharks often circle just outside. Threshers also hang around in this vicinity and in the winter time you can spot the distinctive silhouette of the oceanic white tipped shark above you. When it’s time to turn around, you go progressively shallower with the reef on your right shoulder. On your way back you’re likely to meet a huge napoleon wrasse that normally hangs around the south end. If you’ve got NDL time and air left head out to the west corner and check for more grey reef sharks and spend your safety stop under your SMB next to the reef.
Normally it’s a good idea getting back to a shallow depth after a visit to either of the two plateaus right away. For nitrogen level related reasons as well as air consumption. Make sure you spend your safety stop- and surface under an SMB and try to stay out of the area with the most mooring ropes. There it’s difficult for the Zodiac to pick you up, especially in rough conditions. Another reason to stay out of there is that Zodiac drivers don’t always pay attention to bubbles and if the wind change or one boat is leaving there is mayhem of propellers right above you.
Abu Nahas is famed by here main 5 ship wrecks which are easy to dive and arel an amzing experiance. One of the great things about this site is the 4 wrecks are all of complely different origin and time of build making it a time warp if you will. The Name Abu Nahas means: "The Brass One", because ships normally represent a lot of brass :)
Abu Nahas also offers divers an excellent enclosure in which to settle between dives making it an excellent second day to any Safari.
The Wrecks of Abu Nahas:
The second half of the eighteen hundreds was an era when tall ships ruled the trade routes, beautiful slender vessels that overlapped the time of sail and the time of steam. The Carnatic was one of those proud ships. With 34 passengers she was trafficking the route Suez – Bombay – china for The Peninsula & Oriental line under the command of Captain P.B. Jones and his 176 members of crew. The cargo was cotton bales, copper sheets, Royal Mail and £40.000 of Spices.
Just after midnight September 12th 1869 The Carnatic hit the reef of Shaab Abu Nuhas. The night was tranquil and the brakes over the reef didn’t give its position away until it was already too late to correct the course. The Carnatic ran aground and was firmly stuck on of the reef. However, the situation seemed safe and Captain Jones was sure that the pumps would be able to rid the inflowing water. He trusted the P&O liner Sumatra, that was due to pass shortly, would be in time to help. For more than 48 hours he was right but before The Sumatra steamed into sight the reef ate through the iron hull and The Carnatic broke in two. The aft section was ripped off, rolled over and sunk followed by 5 passengers and 26 of the crew. This caused the bow to re-float, roll over to the port side and disappear beneath the waves. The remainder of the passengers and crew saved themselves into the lifeboats that came off as The Carnatic sunk and went for safety on Shedwan Island. All the £40.000 worth of specie was recovered and the myth of “half the treasure still waits to be found” is just that; a myth.
This wreck is likely to be one of the most beautiful in the Red Sea. The wooden deck is long gone and the metal framing is covered with soft coral offering exquisite photo opportunities. The stern-section is resting on port side with the rudder and propeller screw in 26 meters of water. The mid section is collapsed but still an interesting part of the dive. Here you find the boiler, funnel and the two masts that are reaching out over the sandy seabed. Like the stern, the bow is a framework of metal incrusted by one hundred and fifty years worth of coral growth. Where the bowsprit once was attached a peeping hole now opens for a classic and world famous camera angle.
Once the wreck was full of wine bottles but years of souvenir-hungry divers have deprived The Carnatic from this treasure. Now all you can find is a few broken bottles here and there. See but not touch is the rule here.
Type: Steam/Sailor Passenger/Cargo -ship
Built: 1862 in London
1776 ton – 89.8m x 11.6m
Engine: 4 cylinder compound inverted
Sank: Sept 14th 1869
Depth: 26 meters
West – south axis
The Giannis D:
The Giannis D, a 100m general cargo vessel built in Japan but under Greek ownership, hit the Abu Nuhas Reef at full tilt on 19 April 1983. The ship, laden with timber, sank to 24m with the stern and bow still intact but amidships is now a crumpled mess. The engine room at a depth of 13m offers easy and superb penetration through clouds of glassfish.
You can investigate the multilevel rooms and passageways here for octopus and giant moray eel. The bow mast extends out horizontally from the boat, creating a great spot to search for scorpionfish, gobies and nudibranchs. To end your dive you can simply climb the main mast up to the shallows at 4m and perform your
The Kimon M:
The Kimon M is the deepest of the Red Sea wrecks within recreational diving depths here. Its stern lies on the seabed at 32m, with its bow shallower at 15m. This 120m German cargo vessel sank on 12 December 1978, laden with lentils. Initially the boat sat upright on the reef but later currents and wind pushed the ship into deeper water on its starboard side. Much of its cargo and engine were recovered after its sinking. The wreck harbors several different species of pipefish.
The Chrisoula K:
The Chrisoula K was a 98m Greek registered freighter that sank on 31 August 1981, laden with floor tiles. The ship lies with its stern and propeller at 26m and its bow in shallow water at only 3m. It sits more or less upright but the stern is slowly separating. The wreck offers plenty of swim-throughs and penetration diving opportunities but beware of the numerous obstructions such as fallen beams and poles. Its superstructure is now encrusted with a layer of hard corals, and is home to flatworms, Lion Fish, Arabian Picasso triggerfish, and clown sand wrasse. Dolphins also pass by here occasionally
The Sea Star:
The Seastar is the 5th shipwreck at Abu Nuhas, but since it lies in water 90m deep, it is not frequently dived, and certainly not by recreational Red Sea divers.
Thistlegorm is one of the worlds most famous ship wrecks mainly due to it's amazing history and brave crew. The dive is an amazing experiance and a strong testament to the horros of war. Dive here with respect to our grandparents!
Below is some data about Thistlegorm excerpted from Wikipedia:
The SS Thistlegorm was a British armed Merchant Navy ship built in 1940 by Joseph Thompson & Son in Sunderland, England. She was sunk on 6 October 1941 at Shaab Ali.
Tonnage: 4898 gt
Length: 128 m (419 ft)
Beam: 18 m (59 ft)
Installed power: three-cylinder, triple-expansion, steam engine, 365 hp (272 KW)
Propulsion: single screw
Armament: 4.7-inch (120 mm) anti-aircraft gun
The SS Thistlegorm was built by Joseph Thompson & Sons shipyard in Sunderland for the Albyn Line and launched in April 1940. She was powered by a triple-expansion steam engine rated to 365 hp (272 KW). The vessel was privately owned but had been partly financed by the British government and was classified as an armed freighter. She was armed with a 4.7-inch (120 mm) anti-aircraft gun and a heavy-calibre machine gun attached after construction to the stern of the ship. She was one of a number of "Thistle" ships owned and operated by the Albyn Line, which was founded in 1901, based in Sunderland, and had four vessels at the outbreak of World War II.
The vessel carried out three successful voyages after her launch. The first was to the US to collect steel rails and aircraft parts, the second to Argentina for grain, and the third to the West Indies for rum. Prior to her fourth and final voyage, she had undergone repairs in Glasgow.
She set sail on her fourth and final voyage from Glasgow on 2 June 1941, destined for Alexandria, Egypt.
The vessel’s cargo included: Bedford trucks, Universal Carrier armored vehicles, Norton 16H and BSA motorcycles, Bren guns, cases of ammunition, and 0.303 rifles as well as radio equipment, Wellington boots, aircraft parts, and two LMS Stanier Class 8F steam locomotives. These steam locomotives and their associated coal and water tenders were carried as deck cargo and were for the Egyptian Railways. The rest of the cargo was for the Allied forces in Egypt. At the time the Thistlegorm sailed from Glasgow in June, this was the Western Desert Force, which in September 1941 became part of the newly formed Eighth Army. The crew of the ship, under Captain William Ellis, were supplemented by 9 naval personnel to man the machine gun and the anti-aircraft gun.
Due to German and Italian naval and air force activity in the Mediterranean, the Thistlegorm sailed as part of a convoy via Cape Town, South Africa, where she refueled, before heading north up the East coast of Africa and into the Red Sea. On leaving Cape Town, the light cruiser HMS Carlisle joined the convoy. Due to a collision in the Suez Canal, the convoy could not transit through the canal to reach the port of Alexandria and instead moored at Safe Anchorage F, in September 1941 where she remained at anchor until her sinking on 6 October 1941. HMS Carlisle moored in the same anchorage.
There was a large build-up of Allied troops in Egypt during September 1941 and German intelligence (Abwehr) suspected that there was a troop carrier in the area bringing in additional troops. Two Heinkel He-111 aircraft were dispatched from Crete to find and destroy the troop carrier. This search failed but one of the bombers discovered the vessels moored in Safe Anchorage F. Targeting the largest ship, they dropped two bombs on the Thistlegorm, both of which struck hold 4 near the stern of the ship at 0130 on 6 October. The bomb and the explosion of some of the ammunition stored in hold 4 led to the sinking of the Thistlegorm with the loss of four sailors and five members of the Royal Navy gun crew.
Mr. Rejda single-handedly saved most of the sailors by swimming into the wreck and towing them to safety. The survivors were picked up by HMS Carlisle. Captain Ellis was awarded the OBE for his actions following the explosion and a crewman, Angus McLeay, was awarded the George Medal and the Lloyd's War Medal for Bravery at Sea for saving another crew member. Most of the cargo remained within the ship, the major exception being the steam locomotives from the deck cargo which were blown off to either side of the wreck.
The Rosalie Muller is an excellent wreck dive if only for the amazing artificial reef she has created. Some divers actually opt to stay here for a couple of days to make sure that they have seen everything they can while most are content with just the one dive.
Another great thing about Rosalie is her location! Just 15 minutes by boat, we can visit an EXTREMELY friendly pod of Dolphin who simply LOVE divers!
"Deep Voyage dives the Rosalie Muller totally different than anyone else simply because we recognize how much of an awesome dive it is!!!
Let us take you for an amazing dive on this amazing reef... and YES I said REEF!!!... She has been given a new life under the sea as a living reef" ~ Ahmed Adly
Below is an excerpt about Rosalie Muller:
This wreck is of small historical value but makes for an interesting little dive... Especially after it caved in and made the penetrations hard as hell!
Spend a short while on this wreck and then enjoy the rest of the dive in the awesome coral garden that seems to have been untouched!
This natural masterpiece is home to just about everything!
From a gigantic current swept plateau hosting soft corals and reef fish to a steep wall hosting pelagic fish with a twist of small gullies and caves… Abu Kifan is a treat to for everyone!
Panorama Reef is one of the Red Sea's jewels!
Be sure to dive on this site as many times as possible on each visit since the surprises simply never stop.
Steep walls, coral covered plateaus and an unimaginable variety of marine life await to please all visitors.