Northern Red Sea, Ras Mohamed & Straits of Tiran
The Northern Red Sea and Straits of Tiran provide some of the most historic wrecks like the Thistlegorm, Rosalie Moller, and Abu Nuhas. Ras Mohamed National Park is full of pristine coral reefs as well as abundant marine life. The Straits of Tiran are the narrow sea passages between the Sinai and Arabian peninsulas which separates the Gulf of Aqaba from the Red Sea. These reefs, named after British cartographers (Jackson, Woodhouse, Thomas, Gordon), are world famous for their extraordinary diversity of corals and pelagics.
The SS Thistlegorm is the most famous of the Red Sea wrecks. The English cargo ship (423 ft/129 m) was bombed by German aviation on 6th October 1941 in the area of Shaab Ali. She was transporting supplies destined for the British fifth army based in Alexandria, as well as armoured MGs vehicles, motorcycles, jeeps, trucks, rolling stock, aeroplane parts, stacks of rifles, radio equipment, munitions, and a plentiful supply of wellington boots. Now she is an artificial reef on a sandy bottom at 104 ft/32m and home to an enormous variety of marine life with large schooling fish and providing a hunting ground for giant tuna and snapper.
The Rosalie Moeller is the sistership of the world famous SS Thistlegorm. This former 357 ft/108m long cargo ship, transporting coal, has been bombed and sunk in October 1941 by a German air attack during the World War 2. Now she lies in 180 ft/55 m on a sandy bottom. The main deck is 114 ft/35m deep and the mast raise at 16 ft/18m. In the deeper part of the wreck are the huge rudder and propeller as well as ladders and handrails all along the main deck. Hard and soft corals are covering the hull. This artificial reef attracts an interesting variety of marine life with barracudas, tunas, jacks, trevallies, glass fish, scorpion fish and groupers.
At the northern side of Shag Rock lies a small wreck on the sandy sea bed at 50 ft / 15 m. Kingston was a British cargo ship and sunk in February 1881. The exploration of the ship starts at the stern at 50 ft /15 m. The route continues into the inside of the hull, easily accessible as the wooden bridge is no longer there and the area is well illuminated by sunlight. The remains of the engine room with the boiler are still nicely visible whereas the bow area situated at 13 ft/4 m is destroyed. The fauna here is particularly interesting and comprises of surgeonfish, nudibranchs, jackfish, groupers, snappers, turtles, white tip reef sharks and eagle rays. Schools of dolphins are regularly spotted in this area.
The Dunraven was a Victorian steam and sail ship carrying spices, cotton and timber from India. Dunraven hit the reef whilst a dispute of the Captain with his wife and his First mate, and caught on fire. It sank in 1876 beside the reef, upside down and broken in two parts. Inside the wreck are schools of yellow goat fish and giant morays. The hull on the top is covered with corals and full of marine life, like schools of bat fish, nudibranchs, pipe fish and the very rare ghost pipe fish. Depth: 50 - 95 ft/15 - 30m
Ras Mohamed – National Park
The Ras Mohamed National Park is located at the tip of the Sinai Peninsula. It was declared a protected area in 1983. The jewel in the crown of the National Park is Shark Reef and Yolanda Reef. Shark Reef offers the chance to dive with grey and black tip reef sharks. It is also home to huge numbers of reef fish and some larger pelagics such as tunas. Yolanda Reef is named after the shipwreck. On the plateau 32 – 82 ft/10 – 25 m are scattered remains of toilets and baths. Anemone City is a wonderful shallow dive 40 ft/12 m. The Shark Observatory is awesome with plenty of white tip reef sharks and huge barracudas. The dive sites in Ras Mohamed offer an abundance of reef fish life, scorpion fish, multiple macro critters, hard and soft corals. The whole area is a big fish territory.
Shaab Umm Usk
An awesome coral garden with many different soft and hard coral species. Acropora is present in different forms, such as antler, table and spreading formations. There are an abundance of parrotfish, snapper, wrasse, emperor, butterflies, angles, fusiliers, surgeons and big groupers – in other words, the usual colourful reef gang. If you do a night dive you will probably meet cuttlefish and squid. The lagoon is also popular among the bottlenose dolphins. Depth: 65 ft / 20 m.
Siyul Kebira is a very varied reef, composed of very dense coral patches, and with lots of different things to explore. The undulating reef face has furrow, valley and depressions. The north side of the Siyul Kebira reef is covered in corals, and both sides of the reef features a mix of different coral species, hard corals as well as soft ones. The fish life is vibrant and diverse, and Siyul Kebira attracts larger pelagics as well as colorful reef species. Nurse and leopard sharks are sometimes spotted on the sandy bottom. Depth: 72 ft/22 m
Also known as 'Ships graveyard', Abu Nuhas is located close to the busy shipping lanes of the Gulf of Suez. Four wrecks are lying in a chain on a sandy bottom of a steep sloping reef covered with table corals.
Ghiannis D was on the way from Rijeka to AI Hudayda at the southern end of the Red Sea, when the bow ran aground on the reef on 19th April 1984. The rear half of the wreck lies on the port side. At the front the funnel with the large letter “D” the name of the shipping company: Danae. In front of the funnel is the bridge deck with different areas, an enormous winch and the bollard. Narrow portholes are leading into the engine room. The mid ship area resembles a scrap heap, steel girders are bent and torn up, and the side panels lie caved in on the bottom. Crocodile fish, scorpion fish, parrot fish and groupers call the vessel home. Depth: 30 - 88 ft/10 – 27m.
Carnatic was on the way from Liverpool to Bombay with 27 crew members, 203 passengers as well as a cargo of cotton, copper plates and 40,000 pounds Sterling in gold. She ran aground in the night of 13th September 1869. Now she lies in a depth of 65 - 88 ft/20 - 27 m. The hull is covered with hard and leather corals.
Chrisoula K started her last trip on 30th August 1981 loaded with cheap Italian tiles. Chrisoula K ran aground due to a navigation mistake of the captain and sank in the same night. The wreck lies in 16 - 80ft/5 - 25 m.
Shaab el Erg
Shaab el Erg, also known as ‘Dolphin House’ is famous for dolphin sightings; it is not uncommon to have a school of dolphins joining the dive. The reef drops down to a coral garden at 40 ft/12 m with marine life like nudibranchs, tunas, trevallies, jacks, scorpion fish and turtles.
Carless Reef is well known for gorgeous hard and soft corals, spectacular marine life and the large population of moray eels. The plateau is in 52 – 82 ft/16 - 25m and has two large pinnacles covered with hard and soft corals. Carless Reef attracts an interesting variety of marine life like barracudas, tunas, trevallies, jacks, groupers, scorpion fish, nudibranchs and turtles. The wall is sloping down to 130 ft/40 m and covered with soft corals and some fan corals - look for the long nose hawkfish. The dive site is also well known to encounter sharks.
Jackson Reef is the northern most reef in Tiran and is well known for the Cypriot cargo ship “The Lara” which sank in 1985; some remains of the wreckage can still be seen on the top of the reef. The west site has a forest of spectacular gorgonian fan coral in 65 – 100 ft/20 t- 30 m as well as many different kinds of reef fish. The most spectacular and colorful coral garden is at the southwest site 50 ft/15 m. It is very common to see turtles, white tips and grey reef sharks.
Woodhouse Reef is the longest reef in the Strait of Tiran and the home to reef sharks and eagle rays. At the southern part of the reef is a wall to about 100 ft/30 m covered with coral from the surface all the way down. Along the reef is a canyon in 82 ft/25m which spreads out into a coral garden with sand alleys.
Thomas Reef is the smallest reef in the strait. The ends are vertical walls with a large plateau at about 82 ft/25m on the south eastern side. This plateau is covered in colourful coral and has a fence of gorgonian fans where you can find longnose hawkfish.
Gordon Reef is the most southerly reef of the four islands and has a different topography from the others offering both a shallow plateau area and drop offs. There is a huge variety of reef fish and the chance to see sleeping whitetip reef sharks on sandy patches. At 13 – 16 ft/4 - 5 m) there is an eel garden. The top of the reef, with its lighthouse, is also home to the wreck Louilla which lays almost parallel to the wreck on Jackson Reef.
1st Dive Shaab el Erg
2nd Dive Abu Nuhas (wrecks)
3rd Dive Abu Nuhas (wrecks)
4th Dive Abu Nuhas (coral garden)
1st Dive SS Thistlegorm (wreck)
2nd Dive SS Thistlegorm (wreck)
3rd Dive SS Thistlegorm (wreck)
4th Dive Shaab Mahmoud (Dunraven)
5th Dive Shaab Mahmoud (coral garden)
1st Dive Ras Mohamed
2nd Dive Ras Mohamed
3rd Dive Tiran Islands
4th Dive Tiran Islands
5th Dive Tiran Islands
1st Dive Tiran Islands
2nd Dive Tiran Islands
3rd Dive Ras Mohamed
4th Dive Shag rock
5th Dive Shag rock
1st Dive Rosalie Moeller (wreck)
2nd Dive Rosalie Moeller (wreck)
3rd Dive Siyul Kebira
4th Dive Shaab Umm Usk
5th Dive Shaab Umm Usk
1st Dive Carless Reef
2nd Dive Carless Reef
***Sailing to Hurghada Port approx. 1 hour***