Ras Abu Galum Ras Abu Galum is situated approximately 8 kilometres North of the Blue Hole with which it is connected with a path along the shoreline. Access can be made from the Blue Hole by either Camel or on foot. Alternatively, you can travel by boat from Dahab Marina. Ras Abu Galum can also be reached by car (remembering that it must be a 4 wheel drive) following the track which leads from the Nuweiba Road and through the very long and splendid Wadi Rasasa. The sites here have fantastic underwater landscapes of hard and soft corals and an abundance of colourful fish, including Snapper, Butterflyfish, Angel and Glassfish, to name just a few. Stay overnight if you wish and enjoy the hospitality of the Bedouin Fishermen, sleep under the stars, lay back and enjoy the peace and quiet.
North Ras Abu Galum This dive is probably the most beautiful and interesting you can do at Ras Abu Galum. It allows an opportunity to observe a fantastic underwater landscape with huge hard coral blocks, table corals and soft corals.
South Ras Abu Galum South Ras Abu Galum is situated close to the Bedouin village of El Omeyid, at the end of the track connecting it with the Blue Hole. A great abundance of Salad corals, massive pore corals and madrepore await you on this dive. The visibility is tremendous in this shallow dive with a maximum depth of 15 metres.
El Bells and The Blue Hole El Bells is a spectacular dive situated just a short walk North from the famous Blue Hole. Your entry is through a crack in the reef with a straight vertical descent through an ancient volcanic fissure, which widens and narrows leading to the shape of Bells and thus, the name of the site.
Sunlight pours in through the fissure making this a truly spectacular entry to a dive. At 30 metres, you exit the fissure into â€˜The Blueâ€™ and drift dive alongside the wall towards the direction of the Blue Hole, gently ascending as you go, before arriving at the saddle of the Blue Hole. The clarity and the colour of the water are always amazing, with a great abundance of Star Coral, Brownish colour and bordered by Gorgonians, Soft corals, Black corals, Anemones with their colourful Clown fish. On occasion, looking out into The Blue, from the wall, divers have been lucky enough to spot the Giant Manta Ray as they glide and swoop majestically.
After approximately 30 minutes, and at a depth of around 7 metres, you reach the saddle that allows entrance to the inside of the Blue Hole, with a colourful coral garden teaming with life. At this point, just skirt the Blue Hole and observe big sponges called â€˜Elephant Earâ€™ before exiting the water to the western part of the Blue Hole.
The Canyon The Canyon is approximately 1 Â˝ kilometres south of the Blue Hole. The access to this site is very easy over the shingle beach. You need to cross the reef platform before you reach the lagoon that then opens to the sea. It is best to start this dive at high tide to avoid damaging the reef. The sandy lagoon has an average depth of about 3 metres and is inhabited by a rich fauna comprising of Goatfish, Butterflyfish, Dominos and Pullers. On itsâ€™ western point there is a saddle serving as an exit and entry point to the sea.
Swimming on, you will pass a colourful coral garden to your left. This you will view on your return from the Canyon. As we approach the Canyon itself, air bubbles pour miraculously from the sea bed. This is a wonderful site and compare to swimming through Champagne! Descending down into the Canyon, you will reach a sandy bottom, approximately 28 metres below you admiring the light effects caused by the sun rays in a surreal world. The Canyon itself drops back behind you to a depth of 54 metres, but we head north where a cave opens up at a depth of approximately 17 to 18 metres which accommodates a dense school of Glassfish. As you look up, the light glistens off the fish, making this a truly magnificent site !
Light glistens off the fish
The descent into the canyon
Ras Abu Helal
Ras Abu Helal which means ‘Cape of the Growing Moon’ is approximately 3 kilometres south of the Canyon. From the shore entry to this site, you descend to a sandy lagoon with a semi circular shape at a depth between 7 and 12 metres, keeping the reef to your left, explore the underwater promontory with its’ beautiful coral garden which represents the true interest of this dive site.
The western side descends into the blue and at a depth of approximately 30 metres is ploughed by a straight split that gave this site, the nickname ‘Small Canyon’. It should be noted however, that exploring this canyon is not only dangerous, it is not particularly interesting. It is best to stay on the surrounding coral garden that extends into a second immersed bay with a sandy sea bed, from where you make your exit. The fauna in this area is immense. Within the coral garden you will discover, Lionfish, Groupers, Triggerfish, Unicornfish, Butterflyfish and occasionally Turtles.
Eel Garden is just as the name implies. A population of hundreds of Red Sea garden eels. The site is situated 1 Â˝ kilometres north of Lighthouse in the Assalah bay to which it is connected by a pedestrian walkway. The reef platform here is approximately 60 metres wide and as always it is wise to enter the water at high tide, so that you can swim over the reef rather than walk on it.
Leaving the reef via a winding channel you skirt a promontory on your left. After a few metres, you enter a white sandy slope where hundreds of garden eels come out and wave with the waters. Approach too close, or too quickly and the eels retreat into the sand. On looking back towards your exit, there is a great abundance of Pore Corals, Butterflyfish and Grey Morays.
Red Sea Garden Eel
Lighthouse is situated on the Northern point of the Assalah Bay, in the area known as Masbat. The entrance is easy in all sea conditions and is from the beach. The site embraces the extreme point of the bay descending into the Blue to a depth of more than 25 metres creating two huge inlets. The western side has a sandy bottom with many hard coral towers. Whilst the eastern side follows the edge of the reef undulating over and through cracks caused by the earthquake back in 1995. This whole area is colonised by Puffers, Parrotfish, Lionfish and Groupers with the occasional Octopus taboot!
The Islands This extraordinary site is south of Mashraba to the sea side of the Lagoona. Once again the reef platform is relatively wide, so it is best to enter the sea at high tide. A series of three hard coral pools with a sandy bottom situated after the small reef edge greets the diver. This area consists foremost of massive Pore Corals. Here you can get easily and enjoyably lost, whilst admiring the rich fauna of the place. This area too, was damaged by the earthquake in 1995, but in such a way, that it has created a labyrinth of pools and valleys. Highly populated with fauna, Parrotfish, Snapper, Groupers, Black Spotted Pufferfish, Angelfish. On occasion Eagle Rays lay on the sandy bottom and glide majestically up and away from you. This site is probably the prettiest site in Dahab. A resident school of Yellow Tail Barracuda swim in the current. Donâ€™t forget your camera !!
Yellow Tail Barracuda
Napoleon Reef Napoleon Reef is situated at the Lagona in the area known as the ‘Spit’. Best reached by boat or zodiac as it lies approximately 450 metres away from the beach. This huge Madrepore Tower is separated by a channel from the half submerged reef. It comes up from a sandy sea bed at around 20 metres and is frequented by plentiful fauna and some Napoleonfish, to whom the site owes its’ name.
Moray Garden and Golden Blocks To the south of Dahab, you will find Moray Garden. If you want to have a really great dive and check out some beautiful Morays, then this is the dive for you. The entry is easy from the shore or by boat. The undulating sea bed with itsâ€™ Broccoli coral, stalked Alcyonarians and Gorgonians, Sea Anemones and abundant Clownfish make this a pleasurable and colourful dive. Keep an eye out for the Giant Moray and once again donâ€™t forget your camera!
Three Pools Going south from Moray Garden, approximately 300 metres. The dive site known as Three Pools has itsâ€™ easy entry. Itsâ€™ name derives from the three natural pools formed in the reef plate, that have a sandy bottom with a depth between 3 and 4 metres, aligned one after the other. This dive once again is best commenced during high tide and is ideal as a second or third dive of the day, due to the shallowness of the water
Three sandy pools interconnected by saddles of coral form the entry and exit point for this dive. Outside of the third pool a young resident napoleon fish might catch your eye just before you descend to the deepest point of the dive by following a sandy alley with brain corals, pipe corals and salad corals along the sides. The alley brings you to a coral garden with pinnacles. A resident turtle often patrols the area. The later part of the dive is a shallow area where sand and coral blocks seem to compete to catch a bit of sun, showing wonderful red coloured details. Crocodile fish and scorpion fish try to hide in the sandy parts, while octopuses blend in wherever they go, but divers with an eye for detail will spot them for sure.
The Caves The Caves is the last of the series of sites of El-Qura bay, approximately 2 kilometres south of Three Pools. The entry is in front of a small Bedouin Restaurant at a crack in the reef plate a giant stride off the ledge and into the deep blue. The Caves are best dived in calm conditions as jumping off the ledge can be quite tricky when there are waves crashing on the shore. Once in the water the cave is directly below you and on both the left and right side you will find a shallow reef. The reef that circles the cave is just as attractive as the cave itself with both soft and hard corals being abundant. Here you will often spot large groupers, scorpionfish and morays and a tiger shark has been spotted on a number of occasions. Enter the cave and swim to the back then turn and watch the light shine through the swarms of anthias and bannerfish swimming upside down on the ceiling of the cave! After the exit from the first cave in the right direction you'll find the red anemone with its clownfish, which is one of few on Red Sea dive sites. Next back through the cleft or small canyon to reach the sandy slope with a depth of 30-35m. You can then stay on the sandy slope and wait for a few minutes for the eels to appear.
Dive around the sandy slope and get shallower reef to see the great gorgonians and the trigger, soft and hard coral, and many different species of marine life in that spot. Return with the rocky part of the wall again to enter the 2nd and 3rd caves to see the glassfish group, stonefish, lionfish, many anemones and clownfish of all sizes. Great Gorgonians
Gabr el Bint Gabr el Bint. The name meaning ‘Tomb of the Girl’ is some 7 ½ kilometres south of the caves. This site is only accessible by camel or boat from Dahab marina. The site is absolutely stunning, being part of the protected area of Nabq. The site has not been affected by tourism and with its’ impressive mountainous surroundings and pretty much intact coral reef, the site is truly one to experience. The boat ride takes approximately 60 minutes from Dahab marina and is well worth the trip. The site offers two dives; the dive to the North of the buttress is the more interesting. The landscape is fantastic both below and above water level, dominated by a splendid wall that descends into the Blue. Decorated with Table corals, Fan corals and Black corals. The right side, also known as the dark side, features a steep wall that drops down to about 60m cut by numerous chasms, sandy ravines and overhangs. The drop-off is adorned with healthy table corals. The left side is a far more colourful featuring a virtual forest of gorgonians. Usually drop down to about 20-25m swimming along massive boulders protruding from the drop-off which attracts dense shoals of Anthias and Glassfish. Keep a good eye on the blue where you will see Trevallies hunting on the shoals of Fusiliers. After about ten minutes you will find some of the healthiest Gorgonian Fan Corals in the Red Sea. Here you start to ascend to about 10m and cross the saddle then start to head back along a sandy ledge which parallels to the shore. The ledge is riddled with exquisite coral heads that attract numerous reef species, including swarms of Anthias, Scorpionfish, Parrotfish, Crocodilefish, Surgeonfish, Triggerfish, Trumpetfish, Puffers, Stingrays and very often a Turtle. At the end of the ledge usually is home to a shoal of Bblack and White Snappers and Twinspot Snappers hang here between 5m and 10m. This dive site should not be missed and is certainly worth more than one visit!
A Shoal of Fusiliers
Squid at Night
Blue Trigger Fish
Black Spotted Sweetlips
Sergeant Major Fish
Red Sea Grouper
Clownfish Anemone City