Dahrat Abid, Darraka, Miyum… wonderful untouched reefs, pulsing marine life and plenty to see! There are grey reef sharks, silky sharks, white-tip sharks, barracudas, hammerheads, dolphins, turtles… Every dive is an awesome experience! Our dive suits can be left on the boat and wear only our shorties in the 30-degree water. We take in all the non-touristy sites of the Red Sea during our 2-week Deep South diving safari trip. We always find an abundant marine life unparallel to anything we had seen before.
The Blue Bell (sometimes spelled Blue Belt) was sailing from Jeddah to Port Sudan with her cargo of Toyota vehicles and spare parts (hence her other name, the “Toyota wreck”) when she struck the reef in 1977, about 75km north of Port Sudan. The huge, 103m long wreck lies overturned on the reef wall at a 30° angle, her keel facing upwards and her bow pointing toward the reef.
Since Port Sudan used to be one of the most important ports in the world, there are numerous exciting wrecks waiting to be discovered. One of them is Umbria, a large Italian vessel that lies on the sea bottom about 1 ½km from Port Sudan. She lies at 25m at about a 45-degree angle and in low tide the tips of her two masts even peek out of the water for an easy dive. About 18 tons of ammunition and explosives lie still in her cargo holdings along with half a million of Maria Teresa coins. Originally she was on her way to Eritrea with her cargo but she happened to set anchor in Sudan when Italy proclaimed war with the country. The British occupied the boat and they were about to order the Italians off Umbria when they got the news that she was sinking.
This reef lies 48km from Port Sudan and surrounds a gorgeous lagoon which can be accessed through a narrow strait having been blasted by Cousteau himself. Outside of the lagoon, just 100m from its entrance is where in 1963, Cousteau built Precontinent II – his futuristic world. Here he conducted his underwater experiments and today the Precontinent provides an insight into the lives of those who had lived under the water in futuristic looking buildings and conducted research on marine life. The cages used for shark feedings still lie where they used to in Cousteau’s time. Sharks still come here as they did decades ago.