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Late Availability – Straits of Tiran, Red Sea with 3 Turtles Diving Centre

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The Strait of Tiran and North cruise allows you to take in some of the most iconic wrecks and reefs the northern Red Sea has to offer as well as the pristine coral reefs of Tiran.

The Tiran dive area is found in the entrance to the Gulf of Aqaba and is made up of four main reefs that form the top of an underwater bridge. These reefs, named after British cartographers (Jackson, Woodhouse, Thomas, Gordon), are world famous for their extraordinary diversity of corals and strong south westerly currents make them home to many large pelagic fish.

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QUALIFICATION NEEDED: You must be a PADI Open Water diver or equivalent to join this safari. Please note that although the qualification needed for this itinerary is Open Water; Tiran is not for beginners and there can often be strong currents.

Itinerary Checklist

Common sightings: Dolphins and turtles, lovely reefs. Maybe something big in Tiran!
Reefs: A mixture of shallow reefs and drop-offs
Wrecks: Limited, but will include SS. Thistlegorm
Night dives: Most nights but not guaranteed
Experience required: Suitable for all divers
Amount of travelling: Short distances between dive sites

Sample Itinerary:

interary-map**PLEASE NOTE** the itinerary below is an example of the planned route and dive sites cannot be guaranteed. All dives sites are subject to weather conditions and the final route taken is at the absolute discretion of the captain and dive guides. Adverse weather can affect this route which includes one or two overnight sailings.

This itinerary departs from and returns to Hurghada. Please note that ports are subject to change.

Day 1

Start the week with a check dive before heading north for an afternoon and night dive.

Days 2-5

Spend four days cruising the northern Red Sea. Normally you will have the opportunity to make three day dives and a night dive each day. The exact itinerary and order of dive sites will vary depending on the conditions but you can expect to visit plenty of wrecks including SS. Thistlegorm. There is also some fantastic reef diving including the Ras Mohamed and Tiran marine parks, Sha’ab El Erg (famous for dolphin encounters) and the island of Gubal.

Day 6

Enjoy two relaxed morning dives close to Hurghada allowing you to cruise into harbour in the early afternoon. Take advantage of an evening onshore to purchase souvenirs and enjoy Egypt’s famous hospitality before your journey home the next day

Itinerary Highlights:

Strait of Tiran

Only accessible by boat, this dive area is found in the entrance to the Gulf of Aqaba and is made up of four main reefs that form the top of an underwater bridge. These reefs, named after British cartographers (Jackson, Woodhouse, Thomas, Gordon), are world-famous for their extraordinary diversity of corals and strong south westerly currents make them home to many large pelagic fish.

Jackson Reef is the most northerly reef and on its northern edge lays the wreck of a freighter serving as a stark warning to ships in the narrow straights. Dives are usually conducted from the moorings on the south side which is sheltered from the main swell and currents. Moving northwards you will come across a forest of spectacular gorgonian fan coral at about 20 to 30 metres as well as many different kinds of reef fish. This site can also be done as a drift dive heading from the mooring towards the East with the reef on the left where it is mostly wall diving with excellent corals. Diving the back of Jackson in late summer can give you the chance to see the resident hammerhead sharks.

Woodhouse Reef is the longest reef of the four in the Strait of Tiran. Home to reef sharks and eagle rays, it is dived as a drift dive usually from south to north. Jumping at the southern part of the reef is a wall to about 30m covered with coral from the surface all the way down. There is a canyon going along the reef at about 25m which spreads out into a coral garden with sand alleys.

Thomas Reef is the smallest reef in the strait and diving here is governed by conditions as there are potential strong currents. The ends are vertical walls with a large plateau at about 25m on the south eastern side. This plateau is covered in colourful coral has a fence of gorgonian fans where you can find longnose hawkfish.

Gordon Reef is the most southerly reef of the four and has a different topography from the others offering both a shallow plateau area and drop offs. There is a huge variety of reef fish and the chance to see sleeping whitetip reef sharks on sand patches. At 4 to 5 metres there is an eel garden area along with coral encrusted drums. The top of the reef, with its lighthouse, is also home to the wreck Louilla which sits almost parallel to the wreck on Jackson Reef.

Thistlegorm

Probably the most famous of the Red Sea wrecks. The 126.5m English Freighter was bombed by German aviation on 6th October 1941. Today she creates an artificial reef on a sandy bottom at 32m max depth. She is home to an enormous variety of marine life and is especially popular with large schooling fish.

Ras Mohamed – Shark & Yolanda Reefs

This is a world renowned dive site, situated at the tip of the Sinai. Two small ergs are joined by a vertical wall dropping into the abyss. At Shark Reef the current allows you to drift along the wall, rich with colourful corals. Moving towards Yolanda Reef you reach a plateau scattered with small ergs and coral outcrops. Continuing around the reef you will come upon the scattered remains of the wreck ‘Yolanda’ complete with its cargo of toilets and baths. The whole of this area is big fish territory so keep an eye on the blue!

Gubal Island

At the gate of the Straits of Gubal is ‘Bluff Point’, which gets its name from the turbulence created by strong currents that beat the eastern wall of the island. The wreck of the ‘Ulysses’ lies on the reef 300m north of the lighthouse, starting at 5m and sloping to 25m. ‘The Barge’ wreck, south of the lighthouse, provides divers with a fun and unusual night dive. The wrecks skeleton creates protection.

Private Guides

If you are not too comfortable diving independently in a buddy team, or this will be your first trip to the offshore marine parks and you are not a super-experienced diver; why not give yourself peace of mind and book an expert 3 Turtdles private guide for the trip? They will be there every step of the way to make sure you get the best out of your diving!

ONLY 900€ (EURO) per person

What is included?

Visa and airport welcome, Transferts Airport / Marina / Airport, 7 nights on board full board, 16 dives minimum, Non alcoholic drinks, Tank 12 l Air or Nitrox, Tips for crew and dive guide, Reef and harbor taxes.

Flights, Diving Equipment, Private Guide or Level 1 Guiding, Alcoholic Drinks, Espresso are not included.

For more information or to book your last minute place visit

http://www.3turtles-red-sea.com/english/contact-us/

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Lee has been in the marketing industry for the last 15 years and now specializes in teaching marketing techniques to people in the scuba diving industry. He is founder of Dive Media Solutions which, in addition to providing complete marketing, media, communications and IT solutions exclusively for the scuba diving industry, also produces The Scuba News. You can connect with Lee via Twitter by following @DiveMedia

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