Project Shark: Best of the Red Sea Liveaboard
Daedalus, Zabargad, Rocky Island, Elphinstone
31st August - 7th September 2018
This itinerary combines one of the greatest reefs for spotting large pelagics and one of the most unspoilt reefs in the Red Sea, which is where it gets it's itinerary name 'Best of the Red Sea'.
You’ll discover deep drop offs and the chance to see schooling hammerheads, spinner dolphins and get away from the crowds at these remote off shore reefs. This is a dive trip for thrill seekers!
Guided by our old friend Elke Bojanowski Ph.D, known to many as the Red Sea Shark Lady she will hopefully point out various species of sharks including grey reef sharks, scalloped hammerheads and possibly some even a Manta or two.
The reefs further South offer a very good chance of encounters with Dolphins, on a visit there in August 2014 we managed to swim amongst a pod of 100 or so for around an hour – simply breathtaking!
For this trip we will be aboard the fabulous Blue Melody, winner of the prestigeous 2012 Diver award for 'liveaboard of the year' and SportDiver 2013 'Best Liveaboard'.
If you've never dived with sharks before it can be quite daunting the first time you enter the water. As soon as you see your first shark the adrenalin kicks in but very quickly you soon realise that they are not the blood thirsty creatures portrayed by the media and fictional books. In fact once your heart stops thumping like a racehorse, you soon realise that they are fascinating creatures, often very shy and is an experience that you will never forget.
We will be joined by the Marine Biologist Elka Bojanowski, otherwise known as the 'Shark Lady'. She runs the charity 'Red Sea Sharks', and is one of the top experts in the Red Sea on shark behaviour. Her talks are fascinating and she has a secret talent for knowing exactly where the sharks are going to be.
Our motor yacht for the weeks is Blue Melody, which is everything you would expect from a 5* diving motor yacht. It benefits from a large dining area, separate sky lounge with state of the art entertainment system, and double and twin cabins all benefiting from en-suite facilities, air conditioning and personal entertainment systems. A spacious dive deck also makes kitting up and getting in the water a stress free experience!
This huge tear-drop shaped reef rises from the sea bed in the middle of the Red Sea, 80km offshore and more than 300km south of Hurghada. Easily recognised by its zebra-striped lighthouse, this reef offers some of the most amazing dives in the Red Sea. The sheer walls are covered in over-grown hard coral formations and a variety of reef fish. Napoleon wrasses and turtles are often cruising by, but make sure you keep your eyes open on the blue! Daedalus is one of those places where anything can happen... oceanic white tip, grey reef and thresher sharks are often sighted, but Daedalus is most famous for its scalloped hammerhead sharks which can often be seen in large schools out in the blue during the summer months. The sheer size of this reef means that you can do several dives here and never get bored!
An enormous mountains reaches out of the sea which is surrounded by a turquiose blue lagoon and circling reef. There are a few wrecks and a huge variety of corals and reef fish.
A fringing reef encircles a the entire perimeter of the island with steep drop offs making for exhilirating drift dives. At 25m deep a shelf juts out from the reef wall which makes for a natural shark theatre. In the blue anything can cruise by including reef sharks, hammerheads and Mantas.
A Red Sea legend; a finger shaped reef, with north and south plateaus covered in hard and soft corals, unpredictable and exciting this truly is an awesome reef where hammerhead sharks are regularly spotted in the summer and oceanic whitetip sharks often congregate in large numbers during late autumn.
The Boat: Blue Melody
The Blueotwo fleet operate some of the most luxurious liveaboards in the Red Sea. As anyone who came on the trip last year how great the food, accommodation and staff were.
This liveaboard is everything you would expect from a 5* diving vessel with large dining area, separate sky lounge with state of the art entertainment system and double and twin cabins, all benefiting from ensuite facilities, air conditioning and personal entertainment systems. TV's in the communal areas are also equipped with an Apple TV and a hard drive containing movies and TV series. A spacious dive deck also makes kitting up and getting in the water a stress free experience from this beautiful Red Sea liveaboard!
We are also extremely proud that this superb vessel is currently the holder of the prestigious Diver 2012 award for 'Liveaboard of the Year' and the Sport Diver 2013 'Best Liveaboard' award.
The boat sleeps 26 people and includes 3 double cabins at an £150pp additional fee, all cabins have en-suite bathrooms, in-cabin entertainment, sky lounge, bar, sun deck and chillout deck.
QUALIFICATIONS NEEDED: You must be a PADI Advanced diver or equivalent with a minimum of 30 logged dives to join this safari. If you are not at this level yet - don’t worry, you can complete your Advanced course in one weekend with us and with a few more weekends of pleasure diving you’ll have plenty of dives too! Many of the dives will be from a RIB.
You will be require to have your own dive computer, SMB and reel.
The week will offer the opportunity to:- Enjoy fantastic diving on some of the most unique Red Sea reefs - Experience potential close encounters with sharks, Dolphins and fingers crossed and Manta Rays.
**PLEASE NOTE** the itinerary below is an example of the planned route and dive sites cannot be guaranteed. All dive 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 several overnight sailings.
This itinerary departs and returns to Port Ghalib. Please note that ports are subject to change.
Day 1 - Visit a dive site local to Port Ghalib for a check dive before heading south for your afternoon dive on the way to the marine parks.
Days 2-3 - We normally plan to spend two days at Rocky and Zabargad Islands.
Day 4 - After two days in the marine parks, enjoy a relaxed day of four easy dives at Fury Shoal.
Day 5 - A day at the famous Daedalus reef hoping to encounter some hammerhead sharks.
Day 6 - After an early morning dive at Elphinstone, enjoy a relaxed dive local to Port Ghalib 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.
Price: £1,399 + £30 VISA Speedy Visa, Meet & Greet-EU passport holder only
Price includes return economy flights from London Gatwick to Hurghada, transfers, 7 nights’ accommodation in a twin/double room, all meals and soft drinks (with the exception of Schweppes tonic, soda and lemon), tea and coffee, 12 ltr cylinder and weights. Not included in the price – crew and dive guide gratuities, on-board merchandise, alcoholic drinks, diving equipment hire. Divers will also need a torch (for 1-2 night dives), dive computer and SMB. We will be renting out regs, BCD, shortie wetsuit, fins and boots at £95/week if you take it from the UK. A double suite is available for an additional fee.
How to Book Your Place
There are only 26 places available and they will be awarded on a first come first serve basis! To book your place we require a £350 deposit. The balance of payment is due 14 weeks prior to departure (May 2018). Minimum age 18 unless accompanied by an adult.
To pay by card call 0800 699 0243 or 07920 516006
Frequently Asked Questions
What sort of people will be going on the trip?
There will be people of different sexes and dive experience. Our customers tend to be good fun, are not ‘diving geeks’, can be any age (as long as they are fit enough to dive) and have a sense of adventure. There is normally a fairly even split between men and women.
What are the other costs? Your trip includes flights, accommodation, transfers, guides, tanks, weights, all meals and soft drinks. The only additional costs are alcohol, Nitrox (optional at £70 per week) and sometimes we go out for dinner on the last night but you can eat on the boat if you prefer.
Will I get eaten by a Shark?
No*. There are very few shark attacks in the world. In fact the most dangerous part of the holiday is travelling on the M25 to the airport! If you are scared of Sharks then feel free to hide behind one of our instructors.
What if I haven’t done 30 logged dives?
No problem. Just join us for a few of our weekends away. Lets say you have only done 4 open water dives and therefore need another 31. If you do 4 dives in a weekend then it will only take about 8 weeks
Will there be any other single people there? The majority of people on the trip will be travelling alone. We will happily put you in a cabin to share with someone of the same sex and similar age/mindset.
What do we do when we’re not diving? There is a great sun deck, a TV, DVD’s and plenty of books to enjoy. There is also plenty of room if you wish to escape for a while and sit and listen to your i-pod. Most people hang out on deck and enjoy the banter.
What if a friend/partner wishes to come but they don’t dive? No problem but there is no price reduction unfortunately.
When do I need to book by? As soon as possible. There are only 26 places and they are on a first come first serve basis!
Do I need a VISA? It is your responsibility to check that you have the correct visa. Blueotwo will provide temporary visas for people with EU passports which can be collected at the airport in Hurghada.
If you have any other questions please call 0800 699 0243 / 07920 516006.