We were approached by one of the divemasters after our first dive asking where we would like to go next. Dive 2 would give us a total of 20 dives in the Red Sea and we were keen to explore new sites but mindful of time and other customers’ needs, so we redirected the question to the experienced Divemaster on board “whatever is a favorite of yours, preferably somewhere we have not been.” Good call!
Dive sites in the Red Sea revolve around the shallow plateaus that emerge from depths that can easily reach 100 meters. After lunch, the instructor approached us for a quick brief on the second dive. When we went to flip open our ‘Red Sea Dive Guide,’ he smiled and remarked “it’s not on the map.” The briefing included potential dolphin sightings.
Eager but skeptical we jumped in and upon descending immediately spotted a beautiful Bull Ray. Camera out we followed him until he lead settled down beside an Indian Walkman, who had his yellow pectoral fins out for display.
Keeping the pinnacles on our left and current on our right, as instructed, it was hard not to digress towards all the beautiful coral which flourished more so than all the mapped dive sites. Even the parrot fish were shy towards divers. My buddy and I were tossing the camera back and forth, attempting to capture everything we saw; white moray, scorpion fish, skate, box fish, coral eel (favors a sea snake but white with brown polka dots and a suction cup as a mouth) and to our great surprise, a pod of 8 dolphins in the distance! Disregarding any sense of direction, I attempted my quickest and most discrete swim towards the shadows and was able to get within 5 meters before they surfaced. Overwhelmed with ecstasy, winded, and a bit disoriented we turned back and meet another buddy team we recognized from our boat. They were waving us over to see a huge ray with a bulbous body, stubby tail and radius of almost 2 meters. However it was only moments later before the dolphins returned for a closer look!
The pod was split into 2 groups; the youngest one stayed a few meters further away accompanied by 3 adults, the other four swam within arms reach and what appeared to be the adolescent (based on size) wove playfully between us and the largest dolphin. Eye contact was made and a sense of mutual curiosity was felt. They allowed us to swim alongside for what seems to be ages until they needed to breach for air. We were getting low on air as well with the current gaining significant strength, so we redirected ourselves towards the boat and ended the dive with big smiles and bragging rites!
‘Dolphin Dive! Hurghada, Red Sea’ was written by Hannah