Northern Red Sea Dive Liveaboard: Reefs & Wrecks

These dive liveaboard voyages take you to the varied reefs and wrecks of the Northern Red Sea, home to Ras Mohamed National Park, the Straits of Tiran, the Thistlegorm wreck, pristine coral reefs and abundant marine life including dolphins, sea turtles, batfish, parrotfish and plentiful macro life. You can expect a mix of reef and wreck dives, hard coral walls, soft coral gardens and pinnacles - all with abundant and diverse marine life.

Marine life highlights here can include many of the classic species you would expect to find in the Red Sea: from nudibranchs, pipefish and other macro critters; to colourful parrotfish, snapper, batfish, grouper, and wrasse, tuna, barracuda, jacks, trevallies, eagle rays and turtles to bottlenose dolphins and several species of reef sharks.

Some of the famous sites that you can hope to visit throughout include perhaps the most famous wreck in the Red Sea, the SS Thistlegorm, which was bombed in 1941 whilst transporting armoured vehicles, airplane parts, motorcycles, jeeps and even Wellington boots. The wreck is now an artificial reef home to a huge variety of marine life with large schooling fish, all hunted by giant tuna and snappers.

Of reefs sites, the coral garden at Shaab Umm Usk has many hard and soft coral species with table and antler formations and abundant reef fish.

Shaab el Erg, also known as ‘Dolphin House’, descends to some lovely coral gardens.

Woodhouse is the longest reef in the Straits of Tiran, home to reef sharks and eagle rays.

Gordon Reef offers a shallow plateau and drop-offs with a huge variety of reef fish and the potential to spot sleeping whitetip reef sharks.

With a range of dive sites in this area, our itineraries are suitable for experienced as well as new divers. Dives at the Straits of Tiran are suitable for intermediate to advanced divers, since the narrow sea passages between the Sinai and Arabian peninsula, which separate the Gulf of Aqaba from the Red Sea, are often subject to strong south-westerly currents.

Experience Needed:

Minimum of Open Water qualification but Advanced Open Water recommended (courses available onboard). Must be comfortable in currents and drift dives.

Inexperienced divers may be asked to skip certain dives unsuited to their experience level.

Snorkellers:

We can offer a special departure suitable for snorkellers which takes a more relaxed pace and explores shallower sites ideal for new divers and non-diving partners. Please contact us for a detailed itinerary

Number of dives: Up to 21 dives (8-day voyages) including several night dives where possible
Embarkation Point: Hurghada
Dates: Year Round

 

Itinerary

Dive Sites in the Northern Red Sea

Some of the dive sites you may visit include:

SS Thistlegorm: The SS Thistlegorm is the most famous of the Red Sea wrecks. The English cargo ship (423ft (129m)) was bombed by German aviation on 6 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 MG vehicles, motorcycles, jeeps, trucks, rolling stock, airplane parts, stacks of rifles, radio equipment, munitions, and a plentiful supply of Wellington boots. Now the wreck is an artificial reef on a sandy bottom at 104ft (32m) depth and is home to an enormous variety of marine life with large schooling fish. The wreck provides a hunting ground for giant tuna and snappers.

Rosalie Moeller: The Rosalie Moeller is the sistership of the world-famous SS Thistlegorm. This former 357ft (108m) long cargo ship, transporting coal, was bombed and sunk in October 1941 by a German air attack during World War II. Now the wreck lies in 180ft (55m) depth on a sandy bottom. The main deck is at 114ft (35m) depth, and the mast rises up to 60ft (18m) depth. In the deeper parts of the wreck, the huge rudder and propeller are found as well as the ladders and handrails all along the main deck. Hard and soft corals cover the hull. This artificial reef attracts an interesting variety of marine life including barracudas, tunas, jacks, trevallies, glass fish, scorpion fish, and groupers.

Shag Rock: At the northern side of Shag Rock is a small wreck on the sandy seabed at 50ft (15m) depth. Kingston was a British cargo ship and sunk in February 1881. Exploring the ship starts at the stern, the rests at 50ft (15m) depth. The dive route continues into the hull, easily accessible as the wooden bridge is gone, and the area is well illuminated by sunlight. The remains of the engine room with the boiler still intact are still visible whereas the bow area situated at 13ft (4m) depth was destroyed. The fauna here is particularly interesting and includes surgeonfish, nudibranchs, jackfish, groupers, snappers, sea turtles, whitetip reef sharks, and eagle rays. Pods of dolphins are sometimes spotted in this area as well.

Dunraven: The Dunraven was a Victorian steam and sail ship carrying spices, cotton and timber from India. Dunraven hit the reef during a dispute between the Captain with his wife and his First Mate and subsequently caught on fire. It sank in 1876 beside the reef, upside down, and broken in two parts. Inside the wreck are schools of yellow goatfish and giant morays. The hull is covered with corals and full of marine life, including schools of batfish, nudibranchs, pipefish and the rare ghost pipefish. The wreck rests at 50 - 95ft (15 - 30m) depth.

Ras Mohamed National Park: The park is located at the tip of the Sinai Peninsula. It was declared a protected area in 1983. The jewels in the crown of this national park are Shark Reef and Yolanda Reef. Shark Reef offers the chance to dive with grey and blacktip 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, at 32 - 82ft (10 – 25m) depth, are scattered remains of toilets and baths. Anemone City is a wonderful shallow dive at 40ft (12m) depth. The Shark Observatory is awesome with plenty of whitetip reef sharks and huge barracudas. The dive sites in Ras Mohamed offer an abundance of reef fish, scorpion fish, multiple macro critters, as well as 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 corals are present in different forms such as antler, table, and spreading formations. There is an abundance of parrotfish, snapper, wrasse, emperor, butterflies, angles, fusiliers, surgeons, and big groupers –the usual spectacular, colorful reef assemblage of fishes. Night dives here provide the potential to meet curious cuttlefish and squid. The lagoon is also popular with bottlenose dolphins. This dive site is at 65ft (20m) depth.

Siyul Kebira: Siyul Kebira is a varied reef composed of dense coral patches with lots to explore. The undulating reef face has furrows, valleys, and depressions. The north side of the Siyul Kebira reef is covered in corals, and both sides of the reef feature 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. Nurse and leopard sharks are sometimes spotted on the sandy bottom. This dive site is at 72ft (22m) depth.

Abu Nuhas: 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. The following wrecks are found there:

Carnatic was on the way from Liverpool to Bombay with 27 crew members, 203 passengers as well as a cargo of cotton, copper and 40,000 pounds Sterling in gold. She ran aground in the night 13 September 1869. Now the wreck lies at a depth of 65 - 88ft (20 - 27m). The hull is covered with hard and leather 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 19 April 1984. The rear half of the wreck lies on the port side. At the front the funnel is the large letter “D” signifying 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 lead into the engine room. The mid-ship area resembles a scrap heap where steel girders are bent and torn up, and the side panels lie caved in on the bottom. Crocodile fish, scorpion fish, parrotfish, and groupers call the vessel home. This wreck is at 30 - 88ft (10 - 27m) depth.

Chrisoula K started her last trip on 30 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 at 16 - 80ft (5 - 25m) depth.

Shaab el Erg: Shaab el Erg, also known as “Dolphin House”, is famous for dolphin sightings. The reef drops down to a coral garden at 40ft (12m) deep with marine life like nudibranchs, tunas, trevallies, jacks, scorpionfish and sea turtles.

Carless Reef: Carless Reef is well-known for gorgeous hard and soft corals, spectacular marine life, and a large population of moray eels. The plateau is at 52 - 82ft (16 - 25m) depth and has two large pinnacles covered with hard and soft corals. The reef attracts an interesting variety of marine life like barracudas, tunas, trevallies, jacks, groupers, scorpionfish, nudibranchs, and sea turtles. The wall slopes down to 130ft (40m) depth and is covered with soft corals, some fan corals, and longnose hawkfish. The dive site is also well-known for encountering sharks.

Jackson Reef: Jackson Reef is the northern most reef in Tiran and is well-known for the Cypriot cargo ship The Lara that sank in 1985; some remains of the wreckage can still be seen on top of the reef. The west site has a forest of spectacular gorgonian fan corals at 65 - 100ft (20 - 30m) depth as well as many different kinds of reef fishes. The most spectacular and colourful coral garden is at the southwest site in 50feet (15m) depth. It is possible to encounter sea turtles, whitetip and grey reef sharks.

Woodhouse Reef is the longest reef in the Strait of Tiran and home to both reef sharks and eagle rays. At the southern part of the reef is a wall at 100ft (30m) depth covered with coral from the top all the way down. Along the reef is a canyon at 82ft (25m) depth that spreads out into a coral garden with sand alleys.

Thomas Reef is the smallest reef in the strait. The reef’s ends are vertical walls with a large plateau at 82ft (25m) depth on the southeastern side. This plateau is covered in colourful coral and has a fence of gorgonian fans longnose hawkfish can be found.

Gordon Reef is the most southerly reef of the four islands and has a different topography from the others offering both a shallow plateau and drop-offs. There is a huge variety of reef fishes and the chance to see sleeping whitetip reef sharks on sandy patches. At 13 - 16ft (4 - 5m) depth, there is an eel garden. The top of the reef, with its lighthouse, is also home to the wreck Louilla that lies almost parallel to the wreck on Jackson Reef.

 

 

Dates

Enquire / Book 12 Mar - 31 Dec 2022 - from US$ 2,555 US$ 1,299

Special Wreck Diving Itinerary from just $1,299pp!
Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Monthly departures available
Red Sea Aggressor II
Limited offer - contact us for details

Enquire / Book 07 May - 24 Dec 2022 - from US$ 2,555

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available
Red Sea Aggressor II

Enquire / Book 11 Nov - 02 Dec 2022 - from £ 1,045

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks and Wreck Diving Itineraries 
Weekly departures available
Emperor Superior

Enquire / Book 16 Dec 2022 - 06 Jan 2023 - from £ 920

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available 
Emperor Elite

Enquire / Book 05 Jan - 02 Feb 2023 - from £ 910

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available 
Emperor Elite

Enquire / Book 03 Feb - 07 Apr 2023 - from £ 849

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks and Wreck Diving Itineraries 
Weekly departures available
Emperor Superior

Enquire / Book 25 Feb - 23 Dec 2023 - from US$ 2,555

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available
Red Sea Aggressor II

Enquire / Book 18 Mar - 30 Dec 2023 - from US$ 2,555 US$ 1,299

Special Wreck Diving Itinerary from just $1,299pp!
Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Monthly departures available
Red Sea Aggressor II
Limited offer - contact us for details

Enquire / Book 07 Apr - 29 Sep 2023 - from £ 950

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks and Wreck Diving Itineraries 
Weekly departures available
Emperor Superior

Enquire / Book 06 Oct - 01 Dec 2023 - from £ 1,045

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks and Wreck Diving Itineraries 
Weekly departures available
Emperor Superior

Enquire / Book 01 - 08 Dec 2023 - from £ 849

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Emperor Superior

Enquire / Book 08 - 22 Dec 2023 - from £ 910

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available 
Emperor Elite

Enquire / Book 22 Dec 2023 - 05 Jan 2024 - from £ 1,105

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available 
Emperor Elite

Enquire / Book 17 Feb 2024 - 04 Jan 2025 - from US$ 2,760

Hurghada - Hurghada (8 Days)
Reefs & Wrecks Itinerary
Weekly departures available
Red Sea Aggressor II

Notes

Red Sea Aggressor II

Prices relate to Deluxe Twin cabins (lower deck). Upgrades to Master and Suite cabins are available. Please contact us for details.

Included: all meals and snacks onboard, fruit juices, soft drinks, iced water, iced tea, coffee and a small selection of local beer and wine, tanks, weights and weight belt, standard airport transfers on voyage start/end dates

Not included: international flights, insurance, dive kit rental, dive courses, NITROX, bar drinks, tips, non-standard airport transfers, Port Fee of $50, Marine Park Fee of $100

Notes: a 14% VAT will be added to all onboard purchases including port and park fees. All divers must have a completed Diving Medical History Form with a doctor’s certification if required


Emperor Superior, Elite, Echo & Asmaa

Prices relate to standard lower deck cabins. Upgrades to Upper Deck & Main Deck Cabins are available. Please contact us for details.

Prices include: full board accommodation onboard, soft drinks, red wine with dinner onboard, diving, tanks, weights, NITROX for qualified divers, WiFi onboard, standard local transfers, environmental tax, Marine Park fees and port departure fees

Not included: international flights, insurance, dive kit rental, dive courses, tips, alcoholic and premium drinks, non-standard airport transfers

Please note: a 14% VAT will be charged on onboard purchases. This can be avoided on dive rental gear and courses by booking in advance. All divers must have a completed Diving Medical History Form with a doctor’s certification if required


Red Sea Blueforce III

Prices include: full board accommodation onboard, water, tea and coffee onboard, diving, tanks, weights, standard travel insurance, standard airport transfers in Hurghada,1 post-voyage hotel night in Hurghada (5* hotel on a Half Board basis)

Not included: international flights, dive kit rental, dive courses, tips, other alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, non-standard airport transfers, tourist visa, route & port taxes (€190pp), service tax (€70pp), drinks and lunch at Hurghada hotel

Please note: a 14% VAT will be charged on onboard purchases. This can be avoided on dive rental gear and courses by booking in advance. All divers must have a completed Diving Medical History Form with a doctor’s certification if required. Taxes may be subject to change without notice.
 

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