Rocky - St John’s: Rocky Island - Zabargad - St. Johns - Elphinstone

This dive cruise will bring us first - on the way to Rocky island - to Shaab Sharm. Overnight travelling will give us the morning at Rocky Island and Zabargad for hopefully superb diving with hammerheads (at the north tip), manta rays, grey reef sharks and white tip reef sharks and a wreck dive of a Russian cargo boat, for the next two days.

The next days will bring us to the reef system of St John’s (with dives at Habili Ali, Gota Kebir and Habili Gaffar, with manta rays most of the year), and Fury Shoals (with dives at Sha’ab Maksour, Gota Soraya, El Malahi and Shiriniat) to mention the most important ones. The last day – after sailing during the night - we will end this magnificent week at Elphinstone.

Note: Minimum of 50 logged dives requested and no night dives permitted in the Marine Park area by Egyptian Law. These are challenging dives, with strong currents, so not for inexperienced divers. Long overnight sailing is required in order to do all the dives. All the dive sites are subject to weather conditions. Only two dives and one night dive are achievable on some days due to the travelling distance.


Dive sites Rocky - St John’s tour

Elphinstone

Elphinstone Reef, with its sheer walls plunging into the blue, is one of the most beautiful reefs in the Red Sea. It is richly decorated with soft and black corals, sponges, gorgonians and fans. Sharks often swim over the plateaus at the North and south of the reef. The east and west walls offer an excellent drift dive. Frequent sightings of Hammerheads and Oceanic White Tip sharks.

El Malahi

El Malahi (part of Fury Shoals) is a bit like a Disneyland Paradise underwater. Magical, mystical, the most gorgeous coral formations of hard corals, gigantic boulders and swim throughs make this a unique dive site. It has the most gorgeous blue and pink shades of staghorn corals, towering boulders with dramatic formations, with soft pink corals lining the walls. Large groups of banner fish and goatfish congregate in the midst and again, fantastic for photographic opportunities.

Habili Ali

Habili Ali (part of St John’s) offers a steep wall with giant gorgonians, blue stag horns and black corals whilst Grey Reef, Silvertip and schools of Hammerhead sharks might be found on the west side together with huge napoleons and the rare hump head parrotfish. The north side has a lot of caves and overhangs especially between 5-18 metres where there are lots of beautiful soft corals. The south side has a lot of cracks and overhangs, but is much shallower at 5-8 m.

Gota Kebir

Gota Kebir (part of St John’s) is a massive reef, famous for its tunnels and south plateau, where jacks and barracudas can be seen and the occasional manta. The tunnels are ideal for novice cave divers. The dive takes you to a wall which drops off to about 20 metres to a plateau followed by another steep drop-off.

Gota Soraya

Gota Soraya (part of Fury Shoals) is rated as possibly one of the best wall dives in the Red Sea, with overwhelming boulders, coral formations, amazing table corals and cracks in the reef wall, full of glass fish and sweepers and an abundance of corals, Grey Reef, Silvertips and Hammerhead sharks.

Rocky Island

Rocky is a small island with deep wall dives all around. Hammerheads can often be seen at the northern tip. Manta rays, Grey Reef sharks and White tip Reef sharks can be encountered around the whole island.

With a profile ranging from inshore coral playgrounds to sheer walls and open plateaux exposed to raging currents, and a range of inhabitants from glittering tiny reef fish to massive hammerhead sharks, this site promises an amazing dive, and almost always delivers.

A quick Zodiac ride takes you beyond the southeast point of the island, from where you can drift back down the east coast. Alternatively, a five-minute swim from the mooring point on the south coast takes you past rich coral shallows to Rocky’s southeast corner, the setting for some amazing big fish encounters. At 25m (80ft), a shelf juts from the reef wall, forming a natural ‘shark theatre’. Hovering over this shelf, you have an excellent chance to see sharks of all species. But sharks are not the only attraction. There is a whole range of reef and pelagic species to be spotted here.

Coral growth here is lush and varied, and in a pristine state of preservation. Soft corals and delicate branching forms are particularly beautiful in the inshore shallows between the mooring point and the southeast corner. Through the site you will find a range of stony corals, including plate and cabbage corals, Acropora and fire coral, and Xenid and Dendronephthya soft corals.

Rocky is a small island with deep wall dives all around. Hammerheads can often be seen at the northern tip. Manta rays, Grey Reef sharks and White tip Reef sharks can be encountered around the whole island.

With a profile ranging from inshore coral playgrounds to sheer walls and open plateaux exposed to raging currents, and a range of inhabitants from glittering tiny reef fish to massive hammerhead sharks, this site promises an amazing dive, and almost always delivers.

A quick Zodiac ride takes you beyond the southeast point of the island, from where you can drift back down the east coast. Alternatively, a five-minute swim from the mooring point on the south coast takes you past rich coral shallows to Rocky’s southeast corner, the setting for some amazing big fish encounters. At 25m (80ft), a shelf juts from the reef wall, forming a natural ‘shark theatre’. Hovering over this shelf, you have an excellent chance to see sharks of all species. But sharks are not the only attraction. There is a whole range of reef and pelagic species to be spotted here.

Coral growth here is lush and varied, and in a pristine state of preservation. Soft corals and delicate branching forms are particularly beautiful in the inshore shallows between the mooring point and the southeast corner. Through the site you will find a range of stony corals, including plate and cabbage corals, Acropora and fire coral, and Xenid and Dendronephthya soft corals.

Sha'ab Maksour

Sha'ab Maksour (part of Fury Shoals) offers a nice wall dive together with pinnacles. The more experienced once they can try a cave that starts at the edge of the wall at 30m and emerges at 40m via a short swim through.

Sha’ab Sharm

Sha’ab Sharm gives you steep walls and a remarkable large eastern plateau at about 30m where you will find a lot of diversity on this reef. There is always the possibility to encounter Manta Rays, sharks and other big fish, as well as beautiful soft corals and schools of fish over the plateau.

Shiriniat

Shiriniat (part of Fury Shoals) gives you an overview of the different kind of fish you may find in the Red Sea, another paradise for photographers.

Zabargad Island

Zabargad (also known as St. John's Island) is the largest of a group of islands in Foul Bay. It covers an area of 4.50 square kilometres (approx.). It is a quaternary volcanic island, slightly north of the Tropic of Cancer and three sea miles north of Rocky island. The highest point on the island is 235 metres.

This spot offers similar conditions to Rocky island and is well know for is encounters with mantas! It offers some pretty coral pinnacle diving, and good night dives.


Mirette Hotel, Villa n°1
Hurghada, Red Sea
Egypt


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