Red Sea Diving Safari
The perfect getaway for yogis with a sense of adventure
Red Sea Diving Safari is the southern Red Sea's leading tourism and diving destination. it is also a pioneer in sustainable tourism development – as well as a great place to do yoga. Then there's the diving! The Red Sea area is considered one of the best spots in the world to immerse yourself in the magical subterranean world.
"We have been very lucky to create unique yoga retreats in this stunning destination," says Eva Kristlova, who has been bringing yogis to the area for over a decade with Yoga Life Studio. "There is nothing quite like it and if you are after retreating away from the business of the world, drama and stress, this is definitely a place for you."
During Yoga Life retreats there are two yoga classes per day, one in the morning before breakfast and another in the late afternoon/early evening.
"There is nothing better than feeling the sand under your feet and sun on your face as you begin your sun salutations in the morning and witness the most beautiful sunsets in the evening. We often enjoy our yoga sessions in the Bedouin Lounge, overlooking the sea, in the quiet presence of our Bedouin friends preparing their traditional coffee. The desert is the perfect place for an evening practice, surrounded by complete peace and silence, as we watch the sun setting and the moon rising."
The Red Sea Diving Safari consists of three villages along the southern Red Sea coastline: Marsa Shagra, Marsa Nakari and Wadi Lahami. If you've never visited the southern Red Sea before, Marsa Shagra is definitely the place to begin.
Perhaps the most-well known destination in Marsa Alam, a town in south-eastern Egypt, it was established more than 30 years ago as a diving camp and occupies a stunning location with one of the region's most beautiful house reefs. Although the village has changed a lot since 1990, the concept and atmosphere remains the same, offering the chance to experience the incredible natural resources the Red Sea has to offer, both on land and under the water. The village is centrally located for exploring Marsa Alam's highlights which are all focused on nature-based enjoyment. Access to Marsa Shagra is exclusive and limited to the number of people that the house reef can tolerate.
A range of accommodation options are available, from traditional beach tents, which let you experience Marsa Shagra as it used to be, through to superior deluxe chalets with air conditioning, en-suite bathrooms and unbeatable views of the sea and mountains. Meals are served in an iconic buffet restaurant which caters to all tastes. There is no better way to start your day than with breakfast overlooking the house reef! Then, end your day with a traditional Gabana or beer at the Bawadi Bedouin Cafe, surrounded by friends, new and old.
Scuba divers and snorkelers enjoy unlimited use of the house reef which is accessible from the beach taking you directly to the underwater world. The house reef stretches over 2km to the north and south and zodiacs are available during daylight hours to allow you to explore every corner to it. As well as the house reef, world-famous dive sites such as Elphinstone and Abu Dabab reefs are just a short distance away. Many also choose to take excursions which offer the chance to free dive with dolphins and dugong, through canyon, and on wrecks. The marine life is breathtakingly rich and beautiful – like being in an aquarium.
Marsa Nakari is one of Marsa Alam's best-kept secrets. A village in a quiet location 18km south of Marsa Alam, it has a rustic charm, giving a truly natural feel, in keeping with its surroundings, away from mass tourism.
One of the highlights is the marine protectorate of Shaab Samadai (Dolphin House) where snorkelers and divers have the opportunity to encounter spinner dolphins in the wild, all in an environment that is regulated and controlled for the protection of the marine population. The coral reef system of this offshore reef and the dolphins that inhabit its lagoon are one of the southern Red Sea's most popular attractions. Gain exclusive access to this beautiful site by speedboat in just 20 minutes.
The marine life at Marsa Nakari is particularly diverse. As well as the dolphins, turtles are not uncommon and a school of the open-mouthed Indian Mackerel patrol the inside of the bay constantly. The quality and diversity of the fish and coral life here is astounding.
With a maximum of 120 guests, the team at Marsa Nakari are dedicated to providing a very personal service. If you want to experience Marsa Alam's true heritage away from the tourist hordes, then Marsa Nakari will not disappoint.
Wadi Lahami is one of the last signs of civilisation before the border to Sudan which lies approximately 300km further south. It is the smallest of the Red Sea Diving Safari villages, and offers a unique way to experience the beauty of the terrestrial and marine wildlife of the area. It has been developed following the same sustainable tourism model as the other two villages, allowing only a limited number of guests and guaranteeing exclusivity of the facilities and services.
Wadi Lahami is secluded, simple but comfortable, with a warm team waiting to welcome you. Experience all of your favourite activities but in the most natural environment possible: kite surf, scuba dive, snorkel, bird watch or simply relax close to nature.
Satayah Reef (Dolphin Reef) is a three-mile long, world-famous reef, less than an hour's boat ride from Wadi Lahami. It is regularly visited by spinner dolphins who use its shallow lagoons as a sheltered area in which to rest during the day after a long night hunting for food. It is not uncommon for there to be 80-100 dolphins or more in the pod, and they are usually content to share their space with snorkelers and free divers, as long as guests are respectful and quiet in their approach. An encounter with the dolphins at Satayah Reef is something truly special, providing memories that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Kite surfing at Wadi Lahami is also unlike anywhere else. The Red Sea is famous for its perfect kite surfing conditions – shallow lagoons and year-round wind make it the ideal playground for experienced kiters and a great learning space for beginners.
The protected mangrove area to the north of the village is one of the largest in the Middle East and is home to many species of birdlife. It is common to see nesting ospreys, herons and sometimes the spoonbill, as well as smaller birds such as swallows, stone chats, pipits, wagtails and kingfishers. It is a birdwatcher's paradise!
To learn more about Red Sea Diving Safari visit: redsea-divingsafari.com