At a certain point in your life, while swimming in the deep blue sea, you’ve probably thought to yourself “dear god, I hope that there are no sharks here..”
Well, we spent our last week in Egypt mostly thinking “dear god, we hope that we will spot some sharks here..”. And we found them !
“Shark diving in Egypt happened to be one of our most amazing experiences so far.”
Egypt is an amazing and magical country. Everyone who has been there certainly knows why. Those who haven’t, well, they are missing out.
And while the land has many unique and breathtaking moments (pyramids, ancient cities and landmarks, etc.), in the opinion of many, the Red Sea represents the biggest Egyptian treasure – and this is probably true.
The magical Red Sea
Even though we didn’t do any shark diving before, we have been scuba diving for some time now. We’ve had an opportunity to explore the hypnotizing and unbelievably beautiful underwater life from all around the world. But our first Read Sea diving expedition just left us speechless.
We were also well surprised with how the local authorities and guides treat and care for their sea. The local scuba diving regulations are quite strict and it’s obvious that everybody’s trying to keep the Red Sea as clean and as preserved as possible.
We wish we could say the same about, let’s say, Thailand or Bali – which are a light year back in their efforts to keep their seas clean.
The Red Sea offers such an incredible diversity in each and every aspect that, practically, any scuba diver may and probably will find everything to his liking.
We would like to note that all photos that have the “h20” logo were made by our scuba diving instructor, Tanja, from the h2o scuba diving school.
The Red Sea “locals”
It’s interesting how the Red Sea stands in strong contrast with the Egyptian land. One of the most diverse and rich underwater natural parks in the world facing one of our planets most desolate lands. The strong winds of the dessert whisper the tails of Egyptian ancient & modern times while the Red Sea, much younger than the land, tells it’s own mysterious tale – the one we came to unravel.
The Red Sea marine life is just out of this world. As soon as you start to descend it immediately feels as if you were in some kind of a hi-budget underwater documentary.
It’s like you’ve steeped through a portal – from naked and unbelievably hot wasteland into a magical world of creatures still unknown to many.
However and in spite of all this amazing beauty, we came to the Red Sea in search of one particular type of marine life that many find to be straight out of nightmares. You’ve probably guessed it – sharks.
The Egyptian Hammer Head Shark
You may try to rationalize the upcoming encounter with sharks, try to tell yourself that you’ll be ready for them…but when they actually approach you it’s almost impossible to not get blown away.
And when they start to observe and analyze you, the experience progresses even further into the field of incredible and unforgettable.
Such amazingly intelligent and ancient creatures they are, the true apex of predator marine life and elegance.
As they were circling surround is, it felt like we were floating in a deep blue dream.
Moments like these make you realize that you are, in fact, living a dream.
Shark diving may sound quite scary but don’t let the media scare you.
Many species are quite shy and harmless to humans. This especially goes for Egyptian hammerhead sharks. You can have quite a hard time in finding these beauties but this time we were lucky!
Ain’t she a true beauty ? 🙂
THE BEST WAY TO DO SHARK DIVING IN EGYPT?
It almost goes without saying that liveaboard diving is the best way to do diving in Egypt.
The Red Sea offers many beautiful locations for shark diving in Egypt, but it’s almost impossible to find sharks unless you’re doing liveaboard diving. Your best chance of spotting these beauties is far away in the open sea, around distant coral reefs of unimaginable beauty.
If you haven’t tried liveabord diving before, you should definitely consider it. And here’s why:
- you will have an opportunity to reach the remote and untouched parts of the sea.
- you will gain an incredible amount of diving experience due to many frequent dives per day.
- you will get to meet a lot of interesting and “crazy” people (especially if you’re doing shark diving)
- you will be safe from the tourist legions
- you will get the chance to experience the profound tranquility of the open sea
We were a part of liveboard diving expedition organized by “Discovery Divers” and our local scuba diving school H2o skola ronjenja. You’ll be able to find all the dates, prices and other details on Discovery Divers website.
We had a wonderful time with Discovery Divers. The crew was incredibly welcoming and helpful and the boat was just perfect. We are quite glad that these guys introduced us to the shark diving in Egypt and we would highly recommend them to scuba divers of all levels.
During our Red Sea diving expedition, which was in August, the sea was really warm which, unfortunately, meant that sharks, especially hammerheads, where usually 40m+ deep. This also meant that we didin’t had that much time to hang around in their presence due to increased air consumption.
It’s also recommended to use nitrox (EAN) during these types of diving expeditions.
Nitrox is recommended primarily due to a large number of deep dives per day (35-45m) thus preventing large nitrogen concentration within ones body – which can lead to the infamous nitrogen narcosis underwater and dizziness on the surface.
THE BEST PLACE TO DO SHARK DIVING IN EGYPT?
We did The brothers tour and the dive sites that we visited during this diving expedition were: Marsa Shoona, Ras Trombi, Big Brother, Little Brother, Daedalus, Elphinstoun, Abu Dabab3.
We have already mentioned that successful shark diving usually happens around coral reefs far of in the open sea, so we will skip dive sites such as Marsa Shoona, Ras Trombi and Abudabab (which are also incredibly beautiful and rich in marine and coral life) as these sites are located near the shore and are quite shallow – which means low possibility for spotting any sharks.
Located 88km northeast of Port Ghalib, this island with it’s almost vertical coral reef is a perfect place for shark diving.
Constant currents bring plankton rich water to feed the numerous kinds of corals. On the southeast part of the island there is an extensive plateau (35-40m deep) and this is a great place to observe different types of sharks. Here it is possible to see Grey reef sharks, silvertip reef sharks and with a little luck, fascinating hammerhead sharks.
Like we’ve mentioned before, we were lucky !
Even though you know that this species isn’t among the ones potentially dangerous to humans, upon seeing them for the first time you may still think: “dear god, is it possible that I was stupid enough to actually do shark diving. But shortly after you realize that the sharks are more scarred of you than the other way around. They cautiously examine you from a safe distance, and if you are REALLY lucky, they may approach even closer. Seeing them was like looking into past, into a life form that existed long before we came to be. It’s just one of those experiences that leave you speechless.
“Seeing the hammerhead sharks as they were elegantly swimming around us felt almost alien like.”
The first contact with the Egyptian Hammerhead Shark !
About 1,5km southeast from Big Brother lies Little Brother. The coral reef of this island especially on the east side of the island is quite possibly one of the most beautiful we’ve seen so far. The huge Gorgonian corals give the true underwater forest impression as you slowly get carried by the current while being surrounded by many endemic forms of marine life.
Similarly to it’s neighbor, Big Brother, Little Brother also has an underwater plateau located in the northern extremity of the reef (42-45m deep). This plateau is said to be one of the best places for shark diving in Egypt. Here it is possible to meet small groups of grey and silvertip sharks. Same goes for the hammerheads which will usually approach for more detailed examination of us newcomers.
And it’s quite interesting when you realize that they are observing you as much as you are observing them.
Scary ? Not at all.
This small island is located 147 southeast form Port Ghalib which is almost halfway to Saudi Arabia. A lighthouse marks the reef and is the only thing standing above sea level. The reef slopes are almost vertical an covered in coral colonies that stretch form the surface into the depths. Even though this location is also said to be perfect for observing sharks, unfortunately, we didn’t spot any. And that’s absolutely fine also. What we love about the Red Sea diving is that all these dive sites are a perfect example of natural beauty and diversity, and even if you don’t spot any sharks you are still going to see a ton of other interesting things and have a great time, this we promise.
This was the last stop on “The Brothers” diving expedition and our last chance to see some sharks.
The reef is quite similar to the other reefs that we’ve previously visited and we wanted to increase our chances of seeing any sharks by waiting in the deep blue near the southern plateau. It had seemed that we were out of luck this time also but then few Longimanus came out of nowhere to bid us farewell. These guys often surprise divers, especially near the main boats. They seem to enjoy teasing the divers with simulated attacks and causing excitement. This can be loads of fun when you are with a group of 5-10 divers, but when you are alone perhaps not so much, he he…
Anyway, we couldn’t have wished for a better farewell and we concluded this unforgettable Red Sea diving expedition smiling ear to ear.
IMPRESSIONS ABOUT SHARK DIVING IN EGYPT?
Upon finishing this one week adventure we just couldn’t express the level of happiness and gratitude to the amazing crew that made this whole and unforgettable Red Sea diving expedition possible.
We have learned a ton of new and useful things about scuba diving and we had also experienced a whole new way to do scuba diving, the liveaboard, which is definitely our new favorite and we just can’t wait to be back aboard!
One of our favorite parts of this expedition (besides unforgettable diving experience) was during the night time.
Many of us would lay down on top of the boat, talk deep into the night and marvel upon the Milky Way – which was really clear since we were located in the middle of the Red Sea, miles and miles from any sign of civilization and light pollution. While we were doing dives far in the open sea, at some point we even didn’t have tel. signal nor the INTERNET (for whole 3 days), so we had to talk to each other, imagine that !
We truly hope that the majority of mankind will at some point realize just how lucky we are to be organically alive and conscious on this amazing planet we happen to call home…how lucky we are to be able to experience and to learn about all these different and incredible lifeforms among which many are facing extinction due to our destructive influence.
And expeditions such as these can offer the knowledge and the experience that may bring us closer to this realization which we need now more then ever.
See you out there 🙂