‘Sudan Shark Special’ Liveaboard Diving Holiday
12-20th February 2017
We have been given the green light to run an exclusive, first ever ‘Sudan Shark Special’ liveaboard with Blueotwo from 12-20th February 2017.
The trip would be accompanied by Elka, aka The Shark Lady’, to some of the most exciting and unexplored dive sites in the world.
The trip includes a night in Dubai with hotel before flying to Sudan the next day for a 7 night liveaboard.
Speaking to Mark Evans, SportDiver Editor at LIDS, he reckons this is the best diving destination he’s ever been to.
The trip coincides with the best time of the year to see Mantas, big schools of hammerheads, Oceanic White Tips, Silkies, Silvertips, Blacktips and Grey Reef sharks.
Dive sites include the legendary Angarosh, the infamous Shambaia, and the notorious Wingate Reef and the Umbria Wreck.
Launched in October 2004 from the most prestigious shipyard in Alexandria, M/Y Dolce Vita, meaning the “sweet life”, provides spacious accommodation for divers wanting to cruise in comfort and style. This beautiful liveaboard is ideal for long range cruising and its special attention to detail makes this vessel a great choice for divers wanting a relaxed and memorable diving liveaboard trip to Sudan.
At 38m long, M/Y Dolce Vita can comfortably accommodate 20 guests in its seven spacious twin cabins and three double cabins, all of which offer en-suite facilities and individually controlled air-conditioning.
This lovely vessel boasts separated dining room and saloon area which is equipped with a bar and a TV/DVD/Stereo. There is also plenty of external space with two large sundecks and a fully equipped dive deck providing guests with all the space you could need for an enjoyable diving trip exploring the stunning Sudanese waters.
Due to a history in difficult access, there are very few liveaboards operating in this region; meaning that dive sites have remained beautifully pristine and divers are able to explore them in practical solitude.
Sudan is well known for a rich diversity of marine life; not only are the coral reefs untouched, you can also see huge numbers of schooling fish along with moray eels and sea turtles to name just a few. Large pelagics such as hammerheads, reef sharks and mantas are also common. Aside from the abundance of stunning marine life, the Sudanese waters are also home to the WW2 wreck ‘The Umbria’ and Cousteau’s Conshelf II making Sudan the perfect destination for any diver looking for a real adventure.
Itinerary – Sudan One Way
WINGATE REEF & THE ‘UMBRIA’ WRECK:This reef lies right in front of Port Sudan harbour and can be reached within 15 minutes. This massive reef offers a few dive sites which would be excellent for a “check dive”, but its main attraction lies sheltered at its core: the wreck of the “Umbria”. The wreck is one of these jewels you rarely dive and is considered one of the top 10 wrecks in the world. You could call it the “Thistlegorm of Sudan” but the comparison stops there. This Italian cargo ship, on its way to the actual Eritrea, was stopped by the British authorities, which were controlling Sudan at that time, in 1940. Its cargo mainly consisted of ammunition, detonators, bombs and construction materials and was supposed to be delivered to the Italian troops stationed in the horn of Africa. This was troubled time and, when its captain heard first that Italy had declared war, he decided to organize a “rescue exercise”. Little to say that he and the crew had sabotaged their own boat to avoid the cargo falling into enemy’s hands. The wreck now lies on its side at a maximum of 36m and a minimum of 3m and is completely intact (Thanks Captain!). One dive allows you to explore it entirely, but it would be a shame to stop there. The holds are easily penetrated and the cargo (from ammunition to cars, passing by good Italian bottle of wines) is still there to be explored.
SHAAB RUMI & ‘CONSHELF II’:
If you come to Sudan, this is a reef on your “to-dive” list!
Lying north of Port Sudan, the reef offers a sheltered lagoon for mooring at its centre, plateaus at its tips and sheer drop-offs on its side: a perfect combination!
On the plateaus, healthy and colourful corals are setting up the scene for schools of jackfish, snappers, trevallies, anthias and other species and numerous sharks can be seen patrolling around. On the South plateaus it is very common to see schooling hammerheads!
Shaab Rumi also is a special place for the history of scuba diving and scientific deep-water oceanography. It was on its west side that Jacques Cousteau and his team set up an underwater village to study the effects of long term underwater stays of a diver once he was fully saturated with all the gases in his body. The experiment might sound crazy nowadays, but in 1963, no data existed and this successful operation paved the way for the conquest and exploration of deep waters.
The remains of this expedition, called ‘Précontinent II’ (Conshelf II in English), can still be seen some 40 years later. Nature has taken back its rights, but divers are still able to see the coral-covered remains of the village: the hangar which used to store a bathyscape and looks like an urchin, shark cages, sheds for tools and abandoned structures elements left behind.
The price is £2,099 which includes return flights, transfers, one night in Dubai, 7 night liveaboard escorted by Red Sea Shark Trust, all meals on board, tank & weights. (Not included and payable in resort: Visa $115, Tourist Tax €177, Service Tax €40, Fuel Surcharge €60, Nitrox €70.
Divers will also need a torch (for night dives), dive computer and SMB. We will be renting out regs, BCD, fins and boots at £75/week if you take it from the UK.
How to Book Your Place
There are only 18 places available and they will be awarded on a first come first serve basis! To book your place we require a £525 deposit. The balance of payment is due 14 weeks prior to departure (November 2016). Minimum age 18. Credit card payments will incur an additional 2.5% bank charge. There is no fee for debit cards, cheques or bank transfers.
To pay by card call 0800 699 0243 or 07920 516006
To pay by bank transfer send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org confirming that you wish to come on the trip. We will then send you an invoice.
To pay by cheque send an e-mail to email@example.com with your details and we will send you an invoice with our details.
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.
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 Melvin.
What if I haven’t done 50 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, there is 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!
What if a friend/partner wishes to come but they don’t dive? No problem they can soak up the sun on the top deck.
When do I need to book by? As soon as possible. There are only 24 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.