Diving Overview for Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia is the largest country on the Arabian Peninsula with the Persian Gulf to the Northeast and the Red Sea to the West and some of the most pristine, untouched dive sites in the world.
Boiler wreck is Saudi Arabia’s most popular dive site; you dive down over the coral encrusted reef wall towards the old coal-fired wreck (which sits in only 18m of water), swim up towards the bow and enter the reef through a coral tunnel into a series of pools and caves –what more could you ask for in just one dive!
There are several wrecks around Saudi that are worth exploring, the Staphonos is one of the most intact, this cargo ship sunk in 1978 and is now full of aquatic life. There is a resident guitar shark near the bow and plenty of reef sharks, snappers and goat fish near by, visibility is usually excellent so don’t forget your camera!
The Farasan Banks on the West coast have a reef system full of gullies and canyons that attract a wealth of marine life. Try Redmah Wall –an excellent place to see soft corals, or Ala’s Reef which attracts some larger pelagics including Bumpheads, rays, barracudas and several different sharks. The fringing Central Reef is surrounded with beautiful fish, colourful nudibranchs and coral formations.
Diving is possible all year round with water temperatures ranging from 23°C in winter to 30°C or warmer in summer. Visibility can be hard to predict and is sometimes only 10m, the sites furthest from the shore tend to be much clearer. Some sites have strong currents but there are also plenty of sheltered sites to cater for those less experienced divers, liveaboards are a popular option.
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