I’ve always heard about the blue holes around the world: Bahamas, Belize, Malta … and Dahab. I was super excited to go to Dahab, the main purpose of the trip was of course diving, but also work: I had in mind to do some instructor upgrades for Global Underwater Explorers, and it happened that the blue hole is there!
So I booked all my flights, organised all travel logistics and there I went. After more than 16 hours of travel from Madrid to Dahab, including a 7h layover in Istanbul, I arrived at Oriana Hotel, where Scuba Seekers, our host, is located (but not for a long time).
As the Red Sea is quite special regarding salinity, when you arrive, the dive center usually recommends to do a check Dive on the first day, to ensure that all your gear is working properly, you are properly weighted, and that everything is ready to start your full diving trip. So one of my buddies and me went off the site called “The Light house” for this check dive. This is a really easy dive, shore entrance, where you have a platform going down slowly up to 6 meters, when you encounter a drop off, down to around 40+ meters, being the perfect site for training. When you drop down below those 6 meters, you encounter a very healthy reef, with the normal fauna from the red sea: Snowflake moray eel, Lionfish, several butterfly fish, angel fish… And as usual, I loved the dive!! Lots of corals and wonderful colours, with a crystal clear blue water. I couldn’t imagine how great would be the dives on the Canyons, where everybody was diving before and didn’t stop talking about how amazing it was.
So, What’s on the menu for the following days? Documentation diver class, Instructor upgrades, and more diving diving diving!!
Day 2: I woke up super excited, a new GUE class starting!! And I was going to be both student and instructor at the same time, yes, excitement for sure. This was a Documentation diver course with JP Bresser, which I was sure I would love it, since I really enjoy working underwater on maps, photos, videos, 3D and all the survey and documentation tools.
Our host was Scuba Seekers, and we were lucky to be the first ones teaching on their new dive center, close to the Light House dive site. We had lots of lectures in the morning, project management, how to deal with projects underwater, and what’s better, how to start them.
Lunch and… yes!! water!! we were going to scope what would be our playground for the following days, the dive site called “The Canyon”. Our goal was to document it in some way, so the students need to decide what do we need and how/when we need it, with the tools given.
We moved all our gear to the dive site, where we prepared and went in the water. The dive site was completely AMAZING!!! perfect spot for a project, which is what the GUE Documentation diver is all about. And we had all the tools in our hands: video, photos, measurements, survey, 3Ds…
All the dives were so much fun, and I had the luck to know now that dive site as my own house, as we all did, with the awesome video that we got from the dive:
Ok… What’s next? Now it is the turn of instructor upgrades, which were super fun with Richard Walker, pretending doing some rescue, navigation, DPV fun…
But, to put the cherry on top: It was my birthday, which happened to be on the same day as we had a Bedouin dinner in the middle of the dessert, only with the stars on top of us, and… A DIVE IN THE BLUE HOLE!!! Thank you so much Sameh and Scuba Seekers!!!
I was super excited, we drove to the site, around 30 minutes north of Dahab, and it was completely full of free divers, this is a Mecca for them, reaching a depth of more than 100 meters, within 20 meters of the shore. As divers, we had a few options to dive it, from the bells, or directly from the blue hole, going out through the arch and then dive the reef around.
So we took the second option, we went through the arch at -51 meters, and dove the reef around the blue hole, to finish up again on it when we were doing the deco.
We had the luck at the beginning to see some people training, and disappear below us at 50 meters, witch was quite impressive.
Being in the crystal clear Red Sea water, the light at 50 meters was amazing, and when I could see the arch, my jaw didn’t drop, because I had a regulator on my mouth, but almost… That grandioseness of walls, light, the blue hole itself and going out of it, I am still speechless.
Something else that really surprised me was the change in corals and marine life from one side to another of the arch, being inside the blue hole or on the reef outside, you could clearly see where the sunlight was hitting, with lots of formations out of hard coral, soft coral, and the usual suspects.
Another amazing fact of this dive site is that you can get any depth you want (up to 150 meters on the outside) to surface, so you can do all your deco stops actually on the reef, enjoying your dive, taking photos or simply relax with the surrounding life.
Of course, after the dive, we couldn’t skip our Fankoush, which would be the best drink in Egypt, being now one of my favourites, made of lime, orange, ginger, mint and cinnamon, with honey optional. SOOOOOOOO DELICIOUS!!!!!