|Egypt - Red Sea|
[Last updated: 22-Jul-2018]
When I started planning my adventure around the world (in 1993), Egypt was going to be my first destination. However, that soon changed in favour of Hong Kong - after I learned that the then British government was going to hand the state back to China. More recently, during my holiday in the the Maldives (Oct/Nov-2017), a few fellow divers mentioned (and suggested) that diving in the Red Sea was amazing. So, early in 2018, I decided to visit the Egyptian Red Sea in August, but it soon became clear that seven or eight months was a long time to wait. At the beginning of March, I contacted Blue O Two, and asked if there were any places available on the Red Sea 'Deep South' adventure in April. Much to my delight, there was! [Six spaces, as it turned out.]
The following YouTube video features M/Y Blue Horizon and some activities that I can look forward to (excluding the wrecks!).
Blue Horizon and the Red Sea (YouTube)
[3 minutes, 16 seconds]
It has been suggested by some that the name given to the Red Sea comes from the reddish granite mountains that border it, while others say it refers to a bloom of red algae that periodically appears.
A week before my departure, I received a phone call from Blue O Two. I wondered if there was a change to my upcoming trip. Well, I was right, there was! However, I didn't expect what followed. I was asked if I would like a free upgrade to a King Suite, as there is one free? I really had to think long and hard about that! Actually, no I didn't! I was very happy to respond with "Yes please"! Wow! That was a pleasant surprise that literally came out of the blue (O Two!). [Was there no couple that could benefit? I'll soon find out. (Update 19-May-2018: Everyone onboard was married, but unaccompanied; their "other halves" were at home!)]
I went to the Maldives wishing to see a Manta Ray and Whale Shark; which I did. For the Red Sea, my wish was to see a Hammerhead Shark.
To start my second visit to the African continent, I had originally thought about travelling to the airport (London Gatwick) by train, but when I was informed of the early time of the departure, I knew that I would not be able to get to the airport in time; plus the return flight was scheduled to arrive after the last train to Reading had departed. The next best choice was to drive on the day, but that would have meant leaving home no later than about 04h30. I finally decided to book myself into a local hotel for the night. Fortunately, the hotel has car parking facilities for its guests while they are away, plus a Meet and Greet arrangement upon their return. It was a no-brainer!
I was told that the South Terminal is about 10 minutes (on foot) from the Marriott Hotel. So after checking in at the hotel, I went walkabout, to familiarise myself with the area. Sure enough, after about 10 minutes, I was at the South Terminal. I returned to the hotel for an early night, as I wanted/needed to get up early tomorrow.
If you want a bird's eye view of the dive sites, copy and paste the GPS co-ordinates (where mentioned) into Google Earth.
Note: When filming underwater, red is the first colour to disappear from the visible spectrum. This results in videos being green/blue in colour (as mine are unfortunately - very disappointing!). To alleviate this scenario, red filters can be fitted to some underwater cameras; but not the one I used. However, for the short-term, I have used Apple's iMovie White Balance colour correction option in an attempt to improve the colour; which I think it has.
I have also had permission to use the video clips of another diver on the same adventure (John Carroll, suitably indicated), where he used a red filter on his camera; so the difference in colour quality is a lot better than mine! His video clips are as he took them; i.e., they are unedited, apart from one or two, where I have selected the interesting parts.
19-Apr-2018 (6 photos, 0 videos)
20-Apr-2018 (3 photos, 1 video)
21-Apr-2018 (0 photos, 7 videos)
22-Apr-2018 (1 photo, 3 videos)
23-Apr-2018 (3 photos, 2 videos)
24-Apr-2018 (4 photos, 3 videos)
25-Apr-2018 (16 photos, 0 videos)
26-Apr-2018 (9 photos, 0 videos)
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