Another enchanting report from dive guide, Sonia Goggel
Fab photos by guests Mirek, Agnies, Fabio and Thiago - thank you! You can see a big album of their photos on our Facebook page here.
A chatty group from Brazil and an enthusiastic group from Britain, some old returning friends and some newcomers, ruled the scene on Superior this trip. There were also some old friends from Norway, as well as new friends from Poland, Australia and France. We all had a blast enjoying the beautiful wrecks and reefs of the northern Red Sea.
Even though the weather was not ideal, we had a great dive on the Chrisoula K. Underwater, life is invariably better than above … clear water and lots of light created a beautiful atmosphere on the wreck. The field of garden eels seems to be growing and they seem less shy, as they all stayed out for us a generous half a metre or more above the sand. They must be getting accustomed to our admiring visits.
Shark and Yolanda Reefs were magic, as usual. Everybody asked to go back, so we did towards the end of the trip. I never say no to a possibility to dive the Ras Mohamed reefs, it always is world class diving at its very best! This time, too, the large school of snappers was very friendly and the colorful soft corals were all puffed up. The little school of batfish also came by for a visit, as did a few dogtooth tuna. With the current coming from Yolanda, we could get all around the stunning reef, making our way through dense clouds of anthias, marveling at large napoleons, crocodilefish, morays and the various bathroom appliances left behind by Yolanda ;-)
The very packed and huge school of glassfish at the Dunraven was still the highlight of this dive. The Brazilians loved the wreck, especially the scenic bow with its copious soft corals.
Our Old Lady, the venerable wreck of the Thistlegorm is, and always will be, one of the world’s greatest diving legends. No matter how many dives one does on her, she invariably inspires awe with her majestic presence, interesting goodies and magnificent fish life. Especially the two morning dives were big winners as the current was mild and the visibility crystal clear, allowing an overview of the whole wreck on descent and ascent along the mooring lines, as well as a full appreciation of the myriad of fusiliers being chased about by packs of jacks, pushing them into the wreck in dense clusters amongst us … a beautiful feeling! With the current coming bow to stern, it is always a Zen experience to hover just off the impressive bow and winch, looking back onto them, enveloped in clouds of fusiliers … a whole new interpretation of the Kate Winslet Titanic impression :-)
Returning to Ras Mohamed, we dived Ras Gozlani before heading off to the Tiran reefs for the night and next day. I had not been to Ras Gozlani for a while and was impressed by the beautiful pinnacles on the drop off, covered in fans and lush purple, red and pink soft corals, bathed in large schools of glassfish and populated by many manicuring Cave cleaner shrimps. The ascent across the sandy slope with gorgeous pinnacles covered in soft corals and a little anemone city was beautiful, as was the bimble along the shallow coral garden wrapped in chocolate dip chromis, anthias and fusiliers, with jacks and napoleons cruising by.
Day four was highlight day. Jackson with the huge school of schooling bannerfish hovering by the reef amongst us, lush soft corals and fans, clouds of anthias, black damsels, red-tooth triggers, fusiliers and snappers … Thomas with almost no current, soft corals, reef fish and anthias galore … and then the cherry on the cake: the combination of Anemone City, and shallow Shark and Yolanda Reefs is the Red Sea at its most magnificent and producer of big smiles and shiny eyes of our enthusiastic divers. It simply has it all: schooling fish, the best rainbow coloured soft corals in all sizes, fans, schooling fish of many species, large dogtooth tuna, turtles, all the reef fish and more anthias than any heart can possibly wish for … This is one of those dives that invariably makes me feel completely privileged and blessed to be a dive guide.
Then it was time to get back to the other side where we did a night dive on Abu Nuhas reef while a huge orange full moon was rising by Shadwan Island … Luckily, the weather OK so we were able to dive not only the scenic Giannis D, but also the soft corally Carnatic, enjoying both very much.
Congratulations to Joseph for his Advanced and Nitrox certifications and for doubling his number of dives during this trip. Congratulations also to Wayne, Alan, Julio and Mirek for reaching or closing up onto the big 100 and to Marcus and Robert for getting to 200 while on Superior.
A great thank you to our dear guests for sharing the glorious wrecks and reefs of the Red Sea with us with such great enthusiasm. Your smiles made the magic dives just so much better! Thank you very much as well to our photographers, who contributed such superb photos to our Facebook page.
Working with gentle and very experienced Captain Sayed Dousouky, visiting from Emperor Elite, was easy, comfortable and a great experience. Nothing was too much effort and he made all our diving wishes come true. Thank you for navigating us around safely in quite rough seas. Our superb Emperor Superior Crew took very good care of us again in and out of the water, thank you so much!
It was brilliant seeing you again and meeting you!! Please do visit us soon again soon! Safe travels home and always happy bubbles!
“A family for a week!”
Reviewed 7 September 2014 NEW
Second time on Superior (Get Wrecked 22 august) and I just can’t wait for the third!
Guides Sonia and Amr were very professional, knowledgeable and always willing to give us the best of each dive. Very attentive in the first days, soon understood the needs of each one of us and answered accordingly.
Big heart Amr gave his best to rescue an almost dead stork and he succeeded! Lovely Sonia asked “Who wants to snorkel with the dolphins?” and off we went for 20 magic minutes! A once in a life experience!
All the crew was so professional, friendly and good mood always with a joke and a smile in the face! Food is wonderful and you can even choose how you want your morning eggs, but my top are those amazing fresh juices right when you arrive from the dive! A blessing!
The boat was always tidy and in order wherever you may go! Captain Ahmed Omran sure knows how to run Superior! The dives? Well the dives one must thank to that amazing Red Sea with water temperatures of 30ºC, visibilities up to 40 meters and the most fabulous wrecks I know!
We’ll be back, Superior!
Rather cleverly offering a one week liveaboard, or two weeks seamlessly back-to-back, Emperor Divers Maldives has two new routes offering a magical mix of eight Atolls.
These special itineraries have been chosen to run when the manta are most prolific between August and October.
‘Manta, Whaleshark & Wrecks North (outward trip)’ visits Gaafaru Atoll, Lhaviyani Atoll, Noonu Atoll, Baa Atoll whilst ‘Manta, Whaleshark & Reefs South (return trip)’ visits Baa Atoll, Thodhoo Atoll, Rasdhoo Atoll, North & South Ari Atolls.
Explains Mike Braun, Emperor Divers General Manager, “These two new routes are designed to give our guests the best chance of seeing mantas and whalesharks. Our liveaboard Emperor Atoll offers great value diving and is perfect as a 'liveaboard taster'. And with no more than 12 guests on-board, diving centres and small groups are able to charter the boat exclusively for themselves.
Both routes take in Baa Atoll, home to Hanifaru Lagoon where you can snorkel with the manta and whalesharks that come to feed on the plankton. Baa Atoll is also home to many pinnacles, overhangs and alternative manta sites.
Both trips start on 01 - 08 August, 2015 and cost just £1098 including a flight to or from Male/Daravandhoo, shared cabin, 7 nights/6 days diving, 3 meals a day, afternoon snacks, 1 BBQ dinner on uninhabited island, unlimited drinking water, tea, coffee, 17 dives (inc 1 night dive), guide, tanks, weights, free Nitrox, return airport transfers and excluding international flights.
Superior's dive guide, Sonia Goggel, shares the joys of yet another happy trip ...
A brimming photo album is on our Facebook page here. Our thanks to Frederico Pereiram, Sara and Carlos for these simply fabulous photos.
With our dive deck densely occupied by oxygen and helium tanks, twin sets and bail-outs, we moved up north for some technical diving. Cat and Chris from Tekstreme, in charge of technical diving and courses, had six disciples with them. I was the lucky guide of the very VIP number of five recreational divers. Luckier even, they were all excellent divers. Looking very promising, we headed up to Um Gamar Island for our first tek and rec diving.
The tek group consisted of British, Swiss and Dutch divers; my recreational group of five was a mini UN, again: Spanish, Portuguese, British and Australian. We were all one tank bubblers except for Ricky, the Australian, who had just finished his rebreather course with Cat.
Going slowly, we explored the soft coral and glassfish pinnacle of Um Gamar and enjoyed the anthias swimming in the current, and some really large free-swimming morays.
After a great Gubal Barge night dive, we did Bluff Point as an early morning dive. As opposed to the last trip, when the first glassfish cave was a bit empty, this trip was full with a very large school of tiny glassfish. The second crack was still full with glassfish and had the same school of about forty lionfish hovering about on the inside and outside, a truly stunning sight! We visited our yellow-mouth moray friends again, and found beautiful Flabellina rubrolineata and Risbecia pulchella nudibranchs. There were also clouds of fusiliers streaming along the reef, coloring everything a vibrant blue.
The tekkies had a lot of studying and planning to do while the “rekies” were diving, sleeping and reading, actually having a real holiday ;-)
Two dives on the Rosalie Moller were next on the wish list. Strong wind made it all a bit rough, so we had to tie a few lines on the wreck to stabilize the boat and make diving easier. The bow, covered in glassfish and cardinals was gorgeous, as was of course the aft mast, with all the huge soft corals, glassfish, silversides and cardinals, a magnificent sight! We also had our mouths and hands thoroughly cleaned by Cave cleaner shrimps.
After the Rosie we crossed the shipping channel and slept at Beacon Rock, to be ready to dive on Shark Reef and Yolanda early morning. We descended right into the large school of twin-spot snappers and stayed with them for quite a while before drifting gently along the magical wall of soft corals of Shark Reef, passed a large school of big-eye jacks, and on to Yolanda, where we had a wonderful time amongst clouds of anthias and more soft corals … another bliss dive at Shark and Yolanda Reefs!
Jackson was next, with us “rekies” doing the southwest point, while the tekkies went visiting the deep bits of the wreck of the Lara. We all enjoyed the magnificent reef and wreck, with hardly any current, so lucky!
The deep Thomas Canyon was next for the tekkies, while we drifted gently along the superb reef, with its glorious soft corals and fans, and its tons of fish, truly a perfect dive!
It was back to Ras Mohamed’s Ras Zaatar after that. We enjoyed the impressive topography of chimneys, shallow caverns filled with glassfish and deep overhangs, everything covered in soft corals and fish… always such a beautiful dive!
As the tekkies had not dived Shark Reef and Yolanda yet, we went back again, but the “rekkies” jumped in at Anemone City this time, and had again the absolutely best dive of the week … a gentle drift along Anemone City with tons of anthias, three-spot dascyllus and lovely anemonefish, then shallow onto Shark Reef, were we sat amongst the twin-spot snappers for ages, so close… batfish, big-eye jacks and yellow-dotted trevallies also swam by. To finish the dive we crossed the saddle to Yolanda in the shallows, finding a crocodilefish, a napoleon and a huge free-swimming moray, and ended up on the South-Eastern side of Yolanda, where we hovered in the dense anthias layer, reaching all the way from the surface to eight meters … heavenly!
We hope Tekkies and “Rekkies” had a great time diving with us, deep and shallow, wrecks and reefs. It was great to meet you and to share the marvels of the Red Sea with you! We hope you will come visit us again soon! Thank you so much for choosing Emperor Superior and Tekstreme for your Red Sea diving holiday and technical courses!
A great thank you also goes to our superb Captain Ahmed Omran and his hardworking Crew! Thank you for taking us there and back safely and for carrying all those extra tanks ;-)
Wishing you a safe journey home and happy bubbles, always!
“South & St Johns with Emperor Elite”
Reviewed 3 September 2014 NEW
The Elite is an excellent example of a high quality Red Sea liveaboard, I did the South and St John's itinerary in mid August and couldn't have asked for a better experience. In particular I must highlight the extremely hardworking and helpful boat and dive deck crew who never seemed to stop smiling and who were always there to offer assistance and in one case even joining in a good natured water fight on the dive deck after a dive!.in short a great bunch of people. I'd also like to add that our Dive guides for the week, Ahmed S and Ahmed T were great, highly knowledgeable, always helpful and in combination with the boat captain they chose some exceptional dive sites over the weeklong trip.
To put my comments in context I will say that I have been on quite a few liveaboards, from the Coral sea and the Maldives through to the Bahamas and Caribbean. and I would rate the Emperor Elite amongst the best I've been on.
Great trip, Great people and I'll definitely be back
Come and dive the Maldives with us on any one of our four itineraries on a great choice of liveaboards.
Here's a brief overview for you so you can see it a glance what's waiting to be discovered.
Rasdhoo Atoll, North & South Ari Atolls, Vaavu Atoll, North & South Male Atolls.
Rasdhoo Atoll, Baa Atoll, Rasdhoo Atoll, North Ari Atoll, North & South Male Atolls.
South Male Atoll, Vaavu Atoll, South Ari Atoll, Meemu Atoll.
North & South Ari Atolls.
Dennis is back! Over the last month, the team at Emperor Marsa Alam has been seeing Dennis regularly at Abu Dabab.
Measuring in a little smaller than Dyson, you can see he has a lot of marks and scars as he's much older.
"He's been somewhat elusive over the last few years at Abu Dabab so it's great to have him back there again," says Bernie and the team.
Visit Dennis (no promises) and the team in Marsa Alam soon - discover more here.
Emperor Superior en crucero de los famosos cinco … Tiburon martillo super cerca, la raya aguila y el pez guitarra mas grandes del mundo, y … un TIBURON BALLENA!
La vida es perfecta con tiburones martillo en ella!! El martillo que reside sobre la Numidia fue mas amable de lo normal, visitandonos varias veces, dos de ellas tan de cerca, que pensamos que nos atropellaria, tristemente no lo hizo, pero se acerco de frenta, lentamente, girando solamente al llegar como a un metro de distancia … que maravilla y que suerte!!
Despues de una visita a la siempre interesante pero triste Salem Express, navegamos en direccion Brothers durante la mayor parte de la noche.
Con el mar totalmente calmado, salimos a bucear en los monticulos del sur-este del Isla Brother Grande, iluminados por el sol de la manana y con todos los corales blandos saludables y abiertos. Nos visitaron algunos tiburones grises, al igual que un napoleon y algunos atunes. Un escorpion grande y rojo descansaba en la misma cama de corales blandos que hace dos semanas … debe de ser un puesto agradable!
La Aida, siempre bella, y la deriva a lo largo de la pared sur-oeste, espectacular. Nuestro mejor buceo del dia fue la Numidia … no solamente tuvimos el encuentro super cercano con el tiburon martillo, tambien vimos tiburones grises y un tiburon zorro, al igual que una cantidad gigantesca de anthias en la esquina del arrecife despues de la Nudmidia … un buceo fantastico!!
El Brother Pequeno no fue tan generoso con los tiburones, pero igual vimos algunos grises y un cardumen de barracudas. Ademas, todos apreciaron muchisimo la densidad y calidad de los corales blandos y de las gorgonias a lo largo de la paredes oeste, sur y este. Los Brothers realmente ofrecen buceos magnificos!!
El numero tres en nuestra lista de los cinco famosos fue Ras Mohamed. Cuando la corriente viene del lado de Yolanda, la concentracion de peces en Shark Reef es un poco menor, pero permite darle la vuelta a toda Yolanda, gozando de la cobija gruesa de anthias y de los corales blandos preciosos, a todo su alrededor. Tambien nos encontramos con un pez piedra, tres crocodilos, napoleones y una tortuga. El momento mas emocionante del buceo fue cuando la raya aguila mas grande que yo haya visto jamas, nos paso por encima, la cabeza del tamano de la de un oso y de al menos dos y medio metros de punta a punta … que experiencia !! Otro buceo perfecto en Shark Reef y Yolanda.
La Dunraven estuvo hermosa como siempre, con su gran densidad de peces cristal en la parte central. Tambien nos proporciono un encuentro muy especial y poco comun: un pez guitarra como de tres metros de longitud, increible!! Fue el suertudo de Mark quien lo vio primero. Siempre estuvo presente cuando vimos algo espectacular…
Como tuvimos que compartir la Thistlegorm con otros siete barcos, nos metimos al agua con la salida del sol, y pudimos aprovechar este estupendo pecio privadamente para Superior, cubierto de fusileros y sardinas minusculas, con caranguidos persiguiendolos, muchos murcielagos y los residentes nudibranquios Tambja affinis, en los almacenes, un buceo espectacular!!
Aunque nuestro ultimo buceo de los cinco famosos hubiera debido ser la Rosalie Moller, el viento se hizo fuerte durante la noche y todos prefirieron buceos mas tranquilos, poco profundos y bellos en su lugar. Siyul Kebir, Um Gammar y Giftun Pequena fueron una gozosa opcion: jardines preciosos cubiertos de peces, muchas morenas de todos los tamanos y colores, gambas varias, nudibranquios, anemonas, tortugas, peces piedra y escorpiones, y muchas bellezas mas …
Cuando pensamos que ya nos habiamos gastado nuestro cuota de maravillas subacuaticas, un tiburon ballena juvenil nos paso de largo en Erg Somaya, que suerte mas fantastica!
Una variedad de nacionalidades compartieron los Famosos Cinco con nosotros durante esta semana. Buzos felices de Espana, Inglaterra, Alemania, Suecia, Dinamarca e Italia. Gracias por sus sonrisas y por gozar del Mar Rojo con nosotros!!
Felicitaciones a Daniele, Rickard, Magnus y Jonas por completar su curso de nitrox.
Nuestro Capitan Ahmed Omran y mi adorada tripulacion de Superior de nuevo trabajaron estupendamente durante este crucero, navegandonos con seguridad desde el norte hasta los Brothers y de regreso, consintiendonos en todo momento.
A los que seguidamente participaran en cruceros sobre Asmaa y Elite, les deseamos cruceros bellisimos, y para los que se van a casa, un retorno seguro.Esperamos verlos pronto de nuevo y les deseamos burbujas seguras!
Abrazos de mar
The team at Marsa Alam has received some heartfelt reviews via TripAdvisor recently - so we wanted to share the love :-)
“Fantastic dive centre”
Reviewed 17 August 2014
We first dived with Emperor Divers Marsa Alam in 2010 and have since returned 4 times and are about go back again for the 2nd time this year. We have been so impressed every time we have dived with them that we have taken friends and family with us on our return visits and they have all had a great diving holiday too.
The dive guides and boat crews cannot do enough for you and all go that extra mile to make sure each and every one of your dives is a great experience. The dive briefings are 2nd to none! The boats are well equipped, immaculately clean and it is so worth the extra few euros for unlimited soft drinks and the lunch which is better than the food provided at some hotels.
Being less "commercial" than other resorts in Egypt means the reefs are pristine and the marine life is truly amazing.
Can't recommend Luke and the team enough. Really looking forward to seeing you all again in 4 weeks :))
London, United Kingdom
Reviewed 17 August 2014
A brilliant company. They are well organised, staff are friendly and helpful, equipment is of good quality. Boats are amazing, dive sites are inspiring... Cannot wait to go back and do my first weeks live aboard! Advise you to book with them and book your hotel through them, also they do free collection from hurghada airport in air conditioned taxis. Excellent.
My husband and I have been diving with this company twice a year for 6 years now and have me always been well looked after.
Breda, The Netherlands
“Geboekte padi referral duik opleiding”
Reviewed 17 August 2014
Ik ben een padi duikcursus gestart in Nederland en zou hem referral afmaken in Egypte lekker mooi weer en mooie zee om de buitenduiken te maken. Heb alles geboekt bij de emperor Diving in marsa alam. Bij de laatste zwembad duik in Nederland kreeg ik last van mijn oren en kort daarop zijn we naar Egypte gegaan daar aangekomen kon de referral niet door gaan
Maar vanuit emperor is alles goed geregeld en alles werd netjes terug gestort echt super behandeld.
Als we terug gaan naar Egypte ga ik zeker gebruik maken van de emperor divers.
"Amounts padi dive training referral"
I am a padi diving course started in the Netherlands and would finish his referral in Egypt nice warm weather and beautiful sea to make the dives. Booked all the emperor Diving in Marsa Alam. At the last pool swim in the Netherlands, I got problems with my ears and shortly after we went to Egypt arrived there could not go through the referral from Emperor but everything is well organized and everything was neatly deposited. Really super treated If we go back to Egypt I will definitely use the emperor divers.