Manta, hammerhead, barracuda!

We have had beautiful sunny weather all week long. It was pretty windy the first three days and because of this, we had change the order of the diving plan. We started diving at the southern sites in the itinerary and we were able to follow the entire North itinerary this week too. The water temperatures are rising week by week and visibility is also improving.

Tour date: March 9-16, 2013
Itinerary: Sudan North
Air temperature: 30-35C
Water temperature: 26C
Visibility: 30m

Not having such strong currents this time around, we did not expect to see that much but it seems the constant inhabitants of the hunting grounds just keep on cruising in the direct vicinity of their areas as there was no shortage of sharks this week either and as a bonus, thanks to the calmer waters, we even saw a manta!

Day 1: Sanganeb West; Sanganeb South Plateau; Sanganeb jetty (night dive)
Day 2: Sanganeb South Plateau; Shaab Rumi South Plateau; Precontinent; Precontinent
Day 3: Shaab Rumi South Plateau, Shaab Rumi South Plateau; Shaab Rumi West wall; sailing to Gota Shambaia during the night
Day 4: Abington; Angarosh; Merlo South; Gota Shambaia
Day 5: Qita el Banna; Shaab Suedi Blue Belt; Umbria; night dive in the lagoon
Day 6: Umbira; Umbria

Barracudas and grey reef sharks at Sanganeb – check. Grey reef and hammerhead sharks at Shaab Rumi – check. At Abington 2-3 hammerheads cruised by us in the blue. And at Angarosh we marvelled at the colour grandeur of the pristine coral reefs, nowhere else to be seen in the world. From tiny clown fish to butterfly fish, we were greeted by fish of all possible colour and size. On our way back at Quita El Banna, one of our groups spotted a group of hammerheads and even a manta.

The wreck of Umbria is still ranked among the most beautiful wrecks in the world. Protected by the Wingate Reef, she lies not far from Port Sudan, free of currents, in calm waters. This time around visibility was perfect and thanks to the sun rays shining into the wreck, she was even more mysterious and more beautiful than ever before. We were able to explore the wreck inside and out.

A new week, new hopes. We will be back next week again and report to you.

If you have missed the events of the past weeks, you can catch up here:

“The Sharks Winked Back”
Angarosh, the “Mother of Sharks”
A Perfect Start in Sudan!
Fish parade in the month of Pisces!

A perfect start in Sudan!

All beginnings are difficult – they say – but luckily, in our case this phrase is not true…The first week of our 2013 season began on February 9. It was a bit cloudy all week but warm and except for a couple of days, no wind at all. The biggest surprise of the week was the giant school of hammerheads showing up at Shaab Rumi but this was not the first surprise of the week!

Tour date: February 9 – 16, 2013
Itinerary: Sudan North
Air temperature: 28-30C
Water temperature: 25C
Visibility: 20m

Just when you think you are an old salt, you must face that fact that the sea never shows the same face twice, it never really goes by the book. Of course, you can expect the usual and you can estimate what the next dive site will bring but the statistics are modified by almost every dive.

Which is exactly what happened last week on our first Sudan tour this year. Our briefing was relatively brief but we were secretly hoping for some extraordinary sightings and since the Sudanese waters rarely disappoint, the things we saw this past week were the top!

We were able to visit all the sites of the planned itinerary:

Day 1: Shaab Sued, Gotta Shambaia, Gotta Shambaia
Day 2: Angarosh, Angarosh, Merlo, Gotta Shambaia
Day 3: Quita el Bana, Blue Belt, Shaab Rumi – Precontinent, Shaab Rumi Lagoon
Day 4: Shaab Rumi South Plateau (3 dives), Precontinent
Day 5: Shaab Rumi, Sanganeb, Sanganeb, Umbria
Day 6: Umbria, Umbria

We were pleasantly surprised at all shark sites! We counted 20 hammerheads at Angarosh, 1-2 large specimens at Quita el Bana but at Shaab Rumi everybody got a huge jolt! We were swimming among 50 hammerheads and at times, we saw the sharks already at 15m. Aside from these sightings, we ran into huge schools of jackfish and barracuda at Shaab Rumi and at Sanganeb as well. While the other boats were still back at Port Sudan this week or sailed out later in the week, we barely saw anybody during the week. We only had company for 2 dives at Shaab Rumi and that was it.

We wish more of such sightings and great surprises for our guests in the coming weeks and months. 🙂 To be continued next week…

10 things you may not know about us

1. That’s right! Our divers’ safety in the water is ensured by our Nautilus Lifeline diver search and locate system.

2. Another crazy thing – we have a unique shisha room waiting for our guests where complimentary shisha and coffee is served.

3. Our uniquely designed pretty claret coloured boats have charming honeymoon suites – not to miss!

4. In the spring of 2014 we are awaiting our guests already with TWO boats in Port Sudan- woohoo!

5. Our guests may fly to Port Sudan via Cairo or Dubai.

6. There are free WIFI services onboard (with 3G coverage, of course).

7. Our daily offer is also quite hefty – we offer at least 4 dives every day (except for the first and last days).

8. This is sensational too! – our most northern dive site is at Angarosh and the most southern site is near Eritrea! Have you looked it up on the map yet?

9. And another specialty of our – our guides communicate in Italian, Russian, English and German, besides Arabic and Hungarian, of course.

10. An exciting event approaching – our latest offer, our 2-week tour to the Deep South which will include the absolute best dive sites from Port Sudan all the way to the Eritrean border.

+1 No scams, no gimmicks – we do not charge extra for the dive sites!

Are there any real reasons why not come to see us in Sudan? We don’t think so. So, how about it?

Digital Underwater Photography Workshop

The first Digital Underwater Photography Workshop onboard Cassiopeia with Daniel Selmeczi.

Here’s your chance to pick up photo pointers from a pro and improve your underwater photography at our Digital Underwater Photography Workshop. No previous knowledge is required!

Find out how to get the best from your digital underwater camera. The scuba diving safari will be full of hints and tips regarding settings and technical features. No camera is too big or too small!

Date: 14 – 21 July 2010.
Liveaboard: Cassiopeia
Route: From Hurghada to Hurghada (wrecks and Safaga) / Egypt

Underwater photo workshopIf you are thinking of buying, upgrading or perhaps buying lenses or flash units, this will also be a great chance to check out the latest products.

Places may have to be limited depending upon the uptake, so please book early.

We hope to see you there! For any further details or with your booking requests, please e-mail us. Thank you very much.

That it is for know… join your dives!

Until next time happy bubbles és safe travels! All the best!
To learn more about Egypt: http://cassiopeiasafari.com/egypt/