Our colleague John Butland recently enjoyed a trip to Marsa Alam in the Red Sea which he has shared with us in a previous Blog. Here he shares some more highlights:
On my recent trip to Marsa Alam I also spent a very nice day with the team at Oasis Dive Resort. A location that's all about making the most of the great diving in the area, plus comfortable accommodation and good food. A tour of the rooms showed them all to be spacious and all with nice views over the sea.
The diving options include their lovely house reef, or trips by road to dive sites to the north and south. The minibus pulls up to a beach with all your dive kit already laid out on a big rug to keep the sand away. This type of diving is perfect for those that don't want to be out on a boat all day, or on and off a RIB. A leisurely kit up and you can walk straight into the water.
So, the first dive of the day was a very special one for me, my 500th dive. I learnt to dive in May 2002 and was immediately hooked. To say my life started to revolve around diving is an understatement, then even more so when I joined Regaldive in 2012. Certainly learning to dive was one of the best decisions I ever made.
The dive at Oasis was in a bay with reef either side and sea grass in the middle. They do have a resident Dugong there and I was hoping he would show up to help me celebrate my special dive, but I think the party invitation must have got lost in the post. I was lucky enough to see the one that lives up near Port Ghalib on dive 499 though, so close enough for my first Dugong. There was a very big Green Turtle munching away on the sea grass though and he posed nicely for some pictures and video.
Then we finished with a pleasant meander around the pretty reefs nearby to check out all of the usual Red Sea life. Those pesky Pipefish never stay still long enough for you to get a decent picture, I often wonder how some people get those close up pictures that you see.
So, it was an enjoyable end to a great week in the Red Sea and here's looking forward to the next 500 dives!
The Oasis Dive Resort is an intimate, appealing hotel with a rustic and friendly feel. Ideally suited for divers and for those seeking tranquillity, it has a rural location on a long beach just north of Marsa Alam. The hotel has 49 chalets arranged around the main building in the form of a pretty Bedouin village with small alleyways and winding steps of fossilized coral stone. The resort stands out with its unique architecture and intimate ambience. The views from the terraces are fantastic.