This was my first time in Egypt so I had to make a pit stop to see the majestic Pyramids of Giza and the mighty Sphinx. Uber works in Cairo so getting around was very easy and affordable. However, Uber was not available in Marsa Alam.
The Marsa Alam International Airport is about 15 minutes away from Port Ghalib Marina. I lodged at a nice hotel called the Marina Lodge. My room was clean , spacious and quiet. Unfortunately, I did not take any pictures inside the room however it was a traditional arabic style. Breakfast and lunch at the main restaurant were both good. And I had dinner in the main section of the port outside of the Marina Lodge. The main section is located on the other side of the port from the Marina Lodge – which requires a $3-4 USD quick boat taxi from the Marina Lodge. The main section of the port hosts most of the liveaboards, restaurants, bars and shops. If I were to return, I would stay at a hotel in the main part of the marina. There are just more options from a dinning perspective.
The Red Sea Aggressor does not travel where the Dugongs dwell so I hired a local private dive guide to help me find them. I wrote about my experience in an earlier post. This was my first day of diving. The remaining days of diving were all aboard the Red Sea Aggressor I. Please note, the Red Sea Aggressor I is no longer in operation. My trip was before the tragic event.
On embarkment day, I arrived to the Red Sea Aggressor I a little after 3pm. The Red Sea Aggressor’s staff member picked us up from the Marina Lodge by the yacht’s dinghy. The crew was making some last-minute repairs so we were not able to settle into our cabins immediately. So, I found the bar on the sun deck and chatted with the other arriving divers.
Once the repairs were completed, we entered our cabins. My cabin was decently spaced with two port holes, one in the main sleeping area and another in the bathroom. There was also plenty of space to store bags underneath the bed. Also, there were USB and electricity ports near the head of each bed which made movie watching very easy in between dives and before retiring for the night. I’ve been on a few of the Aggressor yacht’s and so far, this ship was my least favorite. My favorite liveabaord in terms of living space is the Oman Aggressor.
The Red Sea Aggressor I, has two routes. This week we followed the southern route which covered dives sites from Elphinstone and Daedalus to St. Johns. During the week, the air temperature was around 82 degrees and the water temperature was about 77 degrees. I dove in a 5mm wetsuit and was quite comfortable. And during night dives, I added a 3mm hood/vest. There were 21 dives offered throughout the week. I didn’t miss a dive.
Each dive site offered a diverse array of marine life throughout the day and night. We encountered Spanish Dancers, Flatworms, Jellyfish, Stingrays, Unicornfish and Napoleon Wrasses to name a few.
Here’s a list of the dive sites we visited during the week – Marsa Shoona, Shaab Abu, Dabab, Daedalus Reef, St Johns reefs Paradise, Caverns, Abu Deab, Sataya, Shaab Claudia, Malahi, Gota Sataya, Elphinstone Reef, and Abu Dabab
I shot all of these images on either a Gopro Hero 6 Black or Sealife DC2000. Here’s a link to my current underwater camera set-up.