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Poseidon Reef, Red Sea, Egypt

An excellent dive site for beginners

Also known by its Egyptian name, Sha’ab El Erg, Poseidon Reef is just a relatively short boat ride north of Hurghada, one of the main hubs of Egypt’s Red Sea tourism industry, and homeport to a large portion of the liveaboard fleet operating the area.

Poseidon Reef is curved almost in the shape of a horseshoe, and lies just beneath the ocean’s surface, even breaking through in some places. It consists of one main reef and a number of smaller reefs and outcrops or pinnacles, separated by a flat, white sandy bottom. Depth only reaches about 49 feet (15m), making this a perfect spot for a first dive of a diving holiday, or for beginners. The relatively shallow waters, combined with the highly reflective sandy bottom, make this a perfect place to take pictures; photographers will rarely want for light or colors. Currents are typically mild, but even when they pick up, the nature of the reef allows divers to seek shelter from the current and complete their dive outside of it.

The reef is covered with corals, as are the pinnacles, and these are home to a host of classic Red Sea marine wildlife: anthias, sergeant majors, trevally, Spanish dancer nudibranchs and much, much more. Moray eels are often hiding in the nooks and crannies of the reef, and can often be spotted free swimming around the reef on night dives. Lionfish also abound on night dives. Divers also frequently spot dolphins here, sometimes in schools of 20 or more.

The site is accessible to dive boats only, as the reef is completely separated from the shore. Day boats do visit, but the location is dived more by liveaboards.

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