‘Lisa, why does it have to be Egypt? Can’t you guys travel somewhere else?’ I can still hear my mom’s voice in my head. I am sorry but yes it had to be Egypt. It is said to be one of THE dive locations in the world. This expectation had us extremely excited. If only I had known to which extent my expectations were to be exceeded. Hurghada, Marsa Alam, Dahab and Sharm El Sheikh are the four major dive locations in Egypt. We chose the latter simply because we found an amazing offer on ‘Urlaubspiraten’. 460€ per person including flights, accommodation and all inclusive board. I m not a fan of package tours at all. Considering we would be under water the whole time though I made an exception this time haha. Let’s go Sharm El Sheikh. Let’s go Egypt.
Arriving safely in Sharm El Sheikh
I had just returned from my big adventure trip in the Caribbean. I could have not been more excited that I got to go diving again only two weeks later. There was a conflict going on inside of me though. My internal drive to explore as much as possible would have had to be a bit more controlled this time. Egypt is a beautiful country but also a conflicted area. When I was planning the trip I was thinking about all the trips we could build our diving trip around. Hearing my mom’s voice in my head again ‘…please Lisa don’t!’ I chose the safe way and decided against exploring more than the underwater world, at least for now. And yes, when we arrived the first action were several passport controls that were followed by checking with a mirror device if there was a bomb mounted under our car etc. Taking into consideration that I am a tall blonde European didn’t make the whole situation any less critical. So yeah, I guess it was a good choice to have our focus on diving. We chose Turkish Airlines which I can highly recommend. I flew with them for the first time and it’s definitely one of the better airlines I have flown with (amazing entertainment selection, good food and tasty red wine).
Sharm Scuba Services – Bellissima, Bellissima
Gosh those guys. Sharm El Sheikh you didn’t disappoint. Who would have thought that we would end up in the middle of Italian ‘madness’ when traveling to Egypt. I mean it in all warm-heartedness that I can express. I think we found one of the funniest and open-minded dive companies in the world, Sharm Scuba Services. We didn’t book anything ahead of time, not even my friend who was going to do her OWD Certificate. It worked great for us. The dive shop was located at the coast right down from our hotel Coral Beach Tiran. We were a bit lucky though as apparently a week after us a big group of Italians arrived and took over the entire boat. Our dive guys brought such a pure positive vibe to our day and my friend and I were in a constant ‘Ciao’, ‘Bellissima’ and ‘Grazie’ mood. And as we found out later, my friend’s instructor even was a very famous Italian diver. What an honor to have been diving with famous dive personalities like that.
Scuba Diving around Sharm El Sheikh
Diving Sharm El Sheikh I guess is comparable to diving the other famous dive locations in Egypt…it is purely insane. I have been diving famous locations like Australia Great Barrier and Hawaii before. But Egypt is just crazy. At the end of my first dive I wouldn’t even shut up about how amazing the dive was. I have never seen so many colors, corals, school of fish and all other kind of exciting things at once. Several lion fish were hanging out around big rock formations while a Giant Murray Eel was swimming by. It is called ‘giant’ for a reason. I have never seen such a freaking big Murray Eel. This was just before a ‘Giant Barracuda’ came swimming by. I had to pinch myself as I couldn’t believe the size of that guy (1 meter). I was already performing my dive dance under water trying to somehow process my excitement. Ras Mohammed National Park is a real stunner and worth the daily extra charge of 6€.
Who I didn’t meet though was Mr. Shark. I was really hoping I would see a hammerhead…well, I would have also been fine with any other shark. I did get dolphins instead. Not under but above water as they were dancing around our boat. Apparently those guys love loud noises so the whole boat was screaming and cheering for the dolphins. Such a weird yet awesome scene out on the ocean. We always stayed out the whole day from 8 in the morning till 5 in the afternoon. Being out on the ocean is such a vibrant feeling of empowerment and intense feeling of being alive. It’s beautiful for so many reasons. There is no way I would exchange this for let’s say relaxing at the beach for a full week. Don’t get me wrong there is nothing wrong with that. It just isn’t for me. I need my moments of relaxation and I can easily spend a day hanging out doing nothing. But then my inner drive hits and I need to either do something productive or adventurous. For me, this works in a beautiful way as it satisfies me in the deepest possible ways.
Wonderful Sharm El Sheikh Memories
I got to spend my time in Sharm El Sheikh with one of my oldest friends. We never have much time together as our relationship has always been long-distance. Last time I took a flight together with her was 10 years ago when we were both in New Zealand and were going to Australia for vacation. By the way, for those who have been following my stories, that’s how I met these Australian guys who I later visited and spent Christmas during my Around the World Trip with. Egypt with my friend was even more special for several reasons now. And such a refreshing time since I normally oftentimes travel solo.
I always like to define my friends by quality attributes. So, you know these ‘friends who say they will come visit and in the end they really do’? Well, that friend definitely belongs to that category. She came visit me in New Zealand at my Au-pair family , she came visit me during my internship abroad in Cyprus and she didn’t disappoint to come visit me throughout my semester abroad in Copenhagen as well. Talking about dedication, that level of commitment is definitely something that has kept our friendship alive for over 15 years now. I think there are a lot of people out there who know what I am talking about. But I figured it can never be stressed enough that these things in life don’t come easy. They require both people wanting to invest a lot of energy into each other. And I am glad she is one of these people who appreciates the energy I invest. I very much respect you for it and definitely don’t take it for granted.
Love, Rosie….ehhh Lisa!
(Sorry a little insider as we were watching the amazing movie ‘Love, Rosie’ on our last night under the starry sky while waiting for our pick-up to the airport for our 3.30 am flight…yay!)