Emperor Asmaa – South & St. Johns

Dive into colorful coral gardens, along steep walls and under overhangs. Expect to see turtles, sharks, macro, schools of glassfish, snappers, butterflyfish and barracudas.
Travel period
All year round
Boatdiving, Rebreather diving
Starting at
8 days from €1195,- p.p

Emperor Asmaa: South & St. Johns Liveaboard

A liveaboard diving vacation in the Red Sea is a great way to explore Egypt’s diverse underwater world. The Red Sea is known for its clear waters and beautiful corals, making it a popular destination for divers around the world. The Emperor fleet sails several ships on the Red Sea. Departing from Marsa Alam, the Emperor Asmaa sails the South & St. Johns route.

St. John’s/South is a great destination for divers looking for beautiful overhanging caves and colorful reefs. This route covers the southernmost tip of the Red Sea and is known for its diverse marine life, including colorful fish, turtles, dolphins and seahorses. We at EWDR find this route most suitable for beginning divers as conditions are often calm and dives fairly shallow.

Best travel time: Diving in the Red Sea can be done year-round. Usually the sea is slightly calmer between September and May, and visibility is best then.

Level of dives: You must be at least Open Water certified. Convenient, but not required, is also to have your Advanced since many dives are under 18m. We recommend you have a minimum of 20 logged dives and you should be comfortable diving in drifts and currents.

Rebreather diving: Emperor supports rebreather divers on all its boats with a rebreather dive package: unlimited sofnolime, cylinders & oxygen. At all times, the maximum dive time is 60 minutes and diving is within recreational limits.

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Average Temperatures

Wetsuit advice for the Red Sea

In the summer months a 3 mm is sufficient, but in the heart of winter a 7 mm is wiser. In between, a 5mm will suffice.

What will you experience on this trip?

View itinerary here

Day 1 - Travel to Marsa Alam

At the end of the afternoon, on the Friday, the Emperor Asmaa will start from Marsa Alam her South & St. Johns route. This means you can either arrive on the day itself or if more convenient one day in advance. Of course, we will find a suitable flight for you. Flying to Marsa Alam is possible from many airports in europe. Flight time from Amsterdam to Egypt takes about 5 hours. The exact duration may vary depending on factors such as flight path, airspeed and stopovers. At the airport, you will be picked up by Emperor’s crew.

In the evening, the Emperor Asmaa departs for the first dive sites. Below is an example of the sailing schedule of the South & St. Johns route. This sailing schedule may vary due to weather conditions, among other things, or because it is very busy at one dive site, for example. Then the captain throws around the schedule so you get the most out of your liveaboard.

Day 2 - Abu Dabbab & Shaab Sharm

Today begins the first day of diving on the beautiful dive sites of Abu Dabbab. Abu Dabab has a collection of 7 reefs. This is a perfect location for our first check dive. In this region you will see reef sharks on the southern outer reefs, there is also the chance of spotting a manatee and you will probably spot a few turtles. There are also many swimming passageways and caves.

After Abu Dabbab you will continue sailing south and we will stop at Shaab Sharm. Shaab Sharm is undoubtedly one of the highlights of Marsa Alam’s coastal reefs. The exposed reef lies 12 km off the Egyptian coast and is 700 m long at its longest. The steep walls descend stepwise to a depth of more than 200 m, allowing water to flow freely around the reef, leading to rich coral growth and occasional large fish swimming by.

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Day 3 - Fury Shoals

Early this morning you arrived at the famous Fury Shoals area. One of the most popular dive sites at Fury Shoals is the Shaab Claudia. The site is known for its beautiful coral gardens, filled with a variety of fish and other marine life. The highlight of the site is a beautiful coral garden with a large population of anemonefish, as well as blue-spotted rays, moray eels and moonfish. Divers can also explore a series of passages and tunnels where they can spot schools of barracuda and snappers.

You will also dive at Abu Galawa Soraya has a fantastic coral garden and a wreck of a private sailboat populated with glassfish.

You will make about 3 to 4 dives at Fury Shoals.

Day 4 to 6 - St. Johns

For the next 3 days, you will dive in the Deep South on the dive sites of St. Johns. St. Johns Reef is known for its diversity of drop-offs, tunnels and dramatic hard cora formations. The reef formation at St. Johns is not the only thing that will leave a lasting impression on you.

Dive sites we want to dive on include:
Gota Kebir – This is a huge reef, famous for its tunnels and south plateau, where jacks and barracudas can be seen and the occasional manta ray. The tunnels are ideal for novice cave divers.
Gota Soraya – One of the best wall dives in the Red Sea, with protrusions and cracks in the reef wall filled with glassfish and sweepers and an abundance of corals, gray reef, silver tip sharks and hammerhead sharks.
Habili Ali – This dive offers giant gorgonians and black corals, while gray reefs, silvertip sharks and schools of hammerhead sharks can be found on the west side.
Habili Gafaar – A mass of soft corals filled with schools of snappers, butterflyfish and barracudas. Manta rays, gray reef sharks and silver tip sharks can be seen in the blue.

Day 7 - Elphinstone

Yesterday evening, the boat already started its journey back north. Today we will stop on a number of reefs and hope to make at least one dive on Elphinstone. The Elphinstone Reef is 300 meters long with steep walls richly covered with colorful pink and red soft corals and elegant red gorgonians descending to about 40 meters. Other parts of the reef have nearly vertical cliffs, protrusions, small caves and drop-offs up to 100 meters. Elphinstone is known to experience strong currents that attract many different species, including barracuda, angelfish, groupers, Napoleons, moray eels, reef sharks and large schools of dogtooth tuna and jacks. Occasional sightings include dolphins, turtles, oceanic whitetip sharks and hammerhead sharks. After Elphinstone, we sail back to the port of Port Ghalib near Marsa Alam.

Day 8 - return home or extend trip

Around 10:00, on Friday morning, you will leave the boat. Depending on what time your flight to the Netherlands is, we can arrange a day’s hotel. It is also possible to extend your diving vacation with a stay in a (diving) resort or to take a beautiful cultural tour of Egypt. For example, visit the pyramids at Luxor or sail down the Nile on a traditional felucca (sailing ship).

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The liveaboard

The stay on board

Emperor Asmaa Liveaboard

The Emperor Asmaa Liveaboard is a beautiful ship, which is slightly smaller than usual for liveaboards. It has two decks, a sun deck and a large dive deck. The double cabins and salon are air-conditioned. The 10 cabins are all en-suite and include 2 towels per person. Length: 28 meters. Free Wi-Fi on board.

With 10 cabins, the ship is small in size, making it ideal for groups. Feel free to ask us about the possibilities of renting the entire boat your diving club or group of friends.

Travel costs

What is included

This travel package is €1195 per person based on two people in one cabin. The trip can be extended as desired. A number of things are included by default in this travel package.

Prices are subject to price changes, increases or changing exchange rates. Flights are always based on the cheapest possible booking class.

Want to know more about the possibilities? Get in touch with us!

Included in this trip, from €1195, - p.p.

Attention! It is important to book the items below in advance. Upon arrival in Egypt, these optional items are often no longer available AND also the prices are higher locally.

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