Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Underwater Heaven of the Red Sea

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The underwater heaven of the Red Sea can never be described by words, in fact words do not start to explain the thrill that awaits a person, exploring it is the one and only way to find out, the amazing diving spots are almost endless, each distinguished by its own natural beauty, event the process of diving or snorkeling is the same, but from one spot to another its just an experience of its own.

The "Blue Hole" is just north of Dahab. It is an excellent day trip and perfect place to snorkel. It is a natural phenomena of a massive hole created in the reef plate dropping down to untold depths, either. Swim inside the perimeter of the hole, or zip over the outside lip and snorkel on the outer reef, but if you are up for the most spectacular experience, it would be to drop down through this pool into the blue, you will emerge on the reef wall at about 12 meters. The groove continues down to a deeper depth of 28 meters. The bottomless open water here is some of the clearest, deepest most intense blue you will see in the world.

The "Dahab Canyon" is the classic canyon, an essential dive for all fanatics of caves and cavern diving. The Canyon is itself quite a phenomenon. A narrow crack in the seabed at 18m marks the main opening into the canyon, which depths reach over 30 meters inside. Snaking its way up from the depths, it emerges in a glorious, glassfish filled coral dome, the Fish Bowl, the opening of the Fish Bowl lies around 12 meters, below that is another large bowl, opening at 18 meters, and at greater depths there are a number of smaller openings. From the outside and inside, the canyon has the appearance of the fluted mouth of a clam shell, and is by all means a sight not to be missed.

The Canyon dive site offers an easy entry and exit point through a shallow, sandy lagoon which leads out to beautiful coral gardens and drop off, which can only be fully explored after several visits. The Canyon itself is positioned approximately five minutes north-east from the exit of the lagoon.

"Ras Mumlach" is a dive site in the Abu Galum National Park, reachable from Nuweiba in an hour by jeep safari, which is spectacular as well if you like deserts. Known foe very nice pieces of fan coral, table corals, soft corals, of course also known for fish and other sea animals such as turtles, napoleons, groupers and many species of reef fish. Bigger fish such as barracudas and jacks pass by in the blue of the Gulf of Aqaba. Further more it has ravines, walls, caves, hills and chimneys, which suit all level of divers. Technical divers will have fun on stunning deep walls and at a coral plateau at 50 meters deep. One can also book 2-3 day safaris to Ras Mumlah Camp.

At a Bedouin camp north of Nuweiba is a dive site called "Ras Shetan" or Devils Head. Its highlight is without doubt its incredible mountain scenery as you get the feeling of diving through canyons and superb mountain ranges. It is also famous for its amount of anemones; species you will see are red, green and purple anemones. It is possible to experience deep diving here as there are some excellent pinnacles and beautiful coral formations at depth deeper than 40 meters. In short a stunning mountain range, very nice coral and marine life is vivid.

Now that you know some of the best diving and snorkeling spots of the Red Sea, you should be ready to take your self under the waves to experience the thrills of an underwater adventure unlike anything else.

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The Red Sea, Egypt
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