Scuba Diving in The Red Sea from Hurghada Egypt
This website tells my family's first hand experiences in Egypt.
|Home | Sri Lanka | Egypt | China | New York and Niagara | Yellowstone & Montana | Turkey | Bosnia|
Tell others about Egypt
Recommend this page on Google
Scuba Diving, Snorkeling & Try Dives in Hurghada
None of the family had been diving before but we just couldn't miss the experience of diving in the red sea. The Iberotel Aquamarine has a PADI centre on site so it means you can book lessons, or just do a try dive. This was our first time diving and we learned a few good lessons for next time - see our first time diving tips.
Our youngest, Tom was 8 years old when we stayed in Hurghada and was not allowed to do open water diving. However, he could do a beginners course in Scuba diving in the swimming pool. I was a little skeptical that he would find this exciting enough given the the rest of us were going to do open water diving but he loved it. It was a bit more expensive that the Try Dives the rest of us did - about £90 but well worth it.
The course lasted about 2 hours and was held in one of the main swimming pools with a qualified instructor. There was only one other child taking the same lesson so Tom got a lot of personal attention. He go kitted up in his wet suit and the the full mask and cylinder. The cylinder was very heavy but once in the water he had no issue.
He finished the course with a certificate and a PADI card to show he'd completed the basic course. Courses were also available for adult but were more expensive and generally held over a couple of days with open water diving as well as the swimming pool. However we weren't in Hurghada long so decided to opt for the one day try dive.
We set off early (about 8am) from the Iberotel for our try dive. All five of us went together and although Tom could only snorkel it did mean he could claim to have snorkeled in the Red Sea and didn't feel left out. Lisa also decided to just stick to snorkeling. It was about £25 for this.
After a short drive to a nearby harbour we got our wet suits and boarded a large boat. There were an extraordinary number of people also on the boat and it felt a little over crowded. After a little hitch with the boats engine which at one point looked like it would prevent us from leaving, we set sail and headed towards the first dive site (we were due to complete two dives at two different sites).
On the way our instructors introduced themselves and asked who had dived before. As none of us had, the three of us who were planning to dive had a short lesson on what to do and what not to do. It seemed a pretty scant lesson but we were going down with an instructor and in retrospective the things they taught us were definitely the essentials - and we used them! The one thing I don't think I really appreciated was the impact on my breathing (although they did warn us). You really have to be prepared to breath slowly because drawing a breath is slightly more difficult - it is easy to feel like you're hyperventilating if you start to panic for any reason, you have to keep calm and breath steadily.
The process of getting into the water was very chaotic. There were lots of instructors and lots of people diving at the same time. Callum and Kate went first. They were found masks and cylinders. They had tohave considerable help to get the cylinders on and then had to be helped into the water (in reality they were practically thrown in!). On the first go, Kate was fine but Callum panicked and couldn't continue. However one the instructors said he would go the second time with him and help him. On the second go, with a little coaching he made it and had a great time.
Then it was my turn. And what a fantastic experience it was. It was amazing to be so close the the wildlife and the coral. We were so pleased that we paid to have underwater pictures taken. We had taken our own disposable underwater cameras but these were a bit useless in this situation and the photos we got were amazing.
The day was great and I would recommend it. However we learned a lot about doing diving the first time in a foreign country and would add a few notes of caution. Click here to read our first time scuba diving tips.