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Dive Review of Sinai Divers/Amwaj Resort in
Red Sea/Sharm el Sheik

Sinai Divers/Amwaj Resort, Jun, 2010,

by Paul H Causey, CA, US ( 1 report). Report 5561.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Palau, Yap, Phillipines, Indonesia, Fiji, Belize, Bonaire, Aruba, Canada, California, Cabo, Cozumel
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, dry Seas calm
Water Temp 84 to 86 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 25 to 75 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 60 minute time limit
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks 1 or 2
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 1 stars Large Fish 1 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 2 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 1 stars Shore Facilities 1 stars
UW Photo Comments No camera buckets on boats had to use the shower sprayer to rinse the camera after each dive, lots of small fish but very limited fish larger than 6 inches - a disappointment. Nothing exceptional to cater to the photographer. I took about half of the pictures that I usually take on a week long dive trip - lots and lots of the same stuff from dive to dive. Boat guys did hand cameras to you in the water if you asked them to but basically as a photgrapher you were very much on your own in this area.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 2 stars
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 2 stars
Comments To begin with we had to take several van rides and transfers to get to the dive locations - as one diver said "there is way too much overhead per dive here" and I agree - we were shuttled through two separate dive shops to get to the boat harbor with lots of lost time until our coordinator was able to negotiate a direct transfer to and from our hotel. The dive operation required a "check-out" dive to start the week and we were required to carry all equipment about a quarter mile in the hot mid day sun and then we were required to walk out on a very rickety jetty of plastic squares tied together fully geared up in 100 degree weather for a nice easy dive that was completely unnecessary other than to check weights - no exceptions to this rule by the shop - even though we had been diving in Palau just 2 months earlier and the group had lots oif dive experience - no exceptions. At the end of this joke dive we received very conflicting directions regarding our equipment - first we were told to leave it all at the entry point on the jetty and it would be brought across the jetty to us and then while we waited on shore for the gear we were told we had to go back out and get the gear as we weren'ty supposed to leave it on the jetty - after a short negotiation and much complaining the shop did go and get the gear and return it to us. Not many happy divers after this exercise in futility.

After this all diving was on a very comfortable large boat and crew help only if requested otherwise you were on your own to get in and out of the water. No on board water or snacks unless you paid in advance for cold water. If you brought your own it had to sit out and was very warm within minutes of arrival on the boat and stayed that way all day - should have invested in our own styrofoam cooler for our water. No camera facilities for photographers and lots of slow steaming to the distant dive sites. Sharm requires that all boats leave within an hour in the morning and they are not allowed to return to the harbor until late in the day - makes for a long day on the water unless the group decides to do three dives per day and therefore no boat is in any hurry to get anywhere except when it means they might miss thier afternoon mooring and then we cut dives short to be sure and make the time. Boat personnel were friendly and helpful after being asked but the divemasters did not do much in the way of locating and showing anything during the dives. It felt very much like they were down there to get the group into the water, along the reef and back to the boat safely.

Safety - wow what a boating zoo and a divers nightmare - crazy speed boats, jet skis, snorkelers, military craft, dive boats and large water craft all competeing for surface space and with little regard for divers under the water - sometime the noise was deafening and clearly surfacing was risky at best - fortunately no accidents but clearly one needs to stay very close to your group or run the risk of a clammity on the surface. Always lots of dive boats aroound and you needed a special surface signal so your boat knew who you were and where you were - interesting challenge for most divers!

The dives were average with lots and lots of little fish but nothing really unusual or much out of the ordinary from most other areas of the world we have visited. The books claim lost of small nudibranks, etc but our entirte group of seven divers only saw three total during the 13 dives. We did see one whale shark in the distance and were attached by a couple of mating Titan Trigger fish but other than that the dives passed generally the same each and every day. Coral was nice with much color but there also was lots of sand on most walls and some very gray reefs which limited the viz on some of our dives. Not sure why the Red Sea is considered such a great place to dive - not even close to tops on our list of dive locations around the world I am sad to say.

Divemasters gave great briefings but then the dives generally did not live up to the expectations discussed in the briefings. Under water divemaster simply led the dive and told us when and where to surface not much was identified underwater by these guides. The weather was very hot and the wind when returning from Ras Mohammed was brutal in the high heat. Over all I would say this was an average okay dive experience but not impressive enough to get me back to Sharm again to dive. Been there, seen it and lots of other exciting places to go to or to return to in the world before the Red Sea.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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