Red Sea 2019, Brothers, Dedalus & Elphinestone (BDE)
Red Sea 2019 Brothers, Daedalus & Elphinstone September 7th - 14th 2019
Red Sea Adventure 2019
September 7-14, 2019
$1695 p/p Single Occupancy Rate Lower Cabin
Please call 855 OTA DIVE/682-3483 for more details and the most current pricing and special package pricing with tours.
Join Outside The Asylum Diving & Travel on an exciting adventure to explore some of the most thrilling diving in the Red Sea!
Brothers Islands, Daedalus Reef & Elphinstone Reef
This route takes us to some of the most spectacular offshore reefs aimed at giving us some heart-pounding, big pelagic action!
The Brother Islands are a world famous scuba diving destination. It offers some of the best diving in Egypt and in Red Sea. These 2 small Islands (Little Brother and Big Brother) are famous for their wonderful pristine coral as well as being one of the best places in Egypt to dive with Sharks!
Here you can encounter the Oceanic Whitetip Shark, Schooling Hammerhead Sharks as well as Grey Reef Sharks and Silver tip Sharks! The Thresher Shark can also sometimes be spotted.
In addition, the Brothers Islands are home to fantastic reef life with myriads of colorful reef fishes, pelagic fishes such as Barracudas, Giant trevally, Tunas and even the magnificent Manta Ray!
Diving with sharks is just one of the mind-blowing fish encounters you can experience while diving at Brother Islands in the Red Sea. With amazing vertical walls covered with corals and spectacular fish population, diving at the Islands is definitely unforgettable!
Little Brother Island
Little Brother Island is really great for amazing walls covered by unspoiled hard and soft Coral. The underwater scenery is really breathtaking and diving there is just mind-blowing. Hammerhead Sharks, Grey Reef and Silvertip Sharks are often spotted there. The sandy bottom is at 47m and the top of the reef is quite shallow and makes a great spot for your safety stop!
Big Brother Island
Little Brother Island is the best for Coral but for the big fish action, it is best to dive around Big Brother Island. It is a great spot to encounter the very curious Oceanic Whitetip Shark! Other shark species like Hammerhead, Grey, Silvertip and even the very rare Thresher Shark can be spotted too!
Daedalus is a remote outpost of a reef, less than a kilometer wide and marked by a lighthouse, some 80 km offshore from Marsa Alam. Its isolation means it is only visited by liveaboard and this, together with its marine park status, means its reefs are in top condition and it's one of the best loved scuba dives in the Red Sea.
As with the comparable Brothers, strong currents tend to run from north to south along the steep walls of this outcrop and winds can cause surface swells and waves to lash the reef. However, the incredible action below the surface can make the challenging conditions seem all seem worth it.
Diving at the north point of Daedalus can be the toughest when strong currents are running since the currents tend to split here. But it's these same conditions that almost guarantee you some predator action, so find yourself an eddy in the currents, hide out and wait. Schooling hammerhead sharks frequent the area, particularly in the summer months, as do silky sharks and other large pelagic fish such as manta rays, trevally and tuna.
It's best to dive the eastern wall in the morning and the western wall in the afternoon. Again, both walls make drift dives to the southern point and are thickly overgrown with fans and soft corals but its the western wall that has more variety. A ledge at 10m provides home to countless anemones and their residents, endemic Red Sea Anemonefish and Dottybacks. There are some huge Porites hard coral formations on the wall and the crevices provide homes to moray eels. Cleaning stations are plentiful, where wrasse attend to queues of Bluespine Unicornfish and Groupers.
At the southern point of Daedalus Reef, keep an eye out for a special appearance from resident Thresher Sharks.
This is a cigar-shaped reef running north-south and over 400 meters in length, located in the southern Red Sea, close to Marsa Alam. It was named after Admiral George Elphinstone, a British naval commander who served in Egypt in the Napoleonic wars at the beginning of the 19th century. Marked at the sea's surface by just a few small breakers, its healthy marine life and underwater landscapes make it one of the best Red Sea diving sites.
The northern and southern tips of Elphinstone have 100m wide plateaus between 20-40m deep, covered with soft corals, huge gorgonians, sponges and sea whips. Diving at the Northern Plateau, it's best to drop in further to the north and drift onto the finger-shaped plateau. Here you'll find purple Dendronephthya, brown soft corals and crowds of Redtooth Triggerfish, fluttering in the current. Giant trevally and great barracuda often hunt here and reef sharks are common. This is also location where you are most likely to spot hammerhead sharks at Elphinstone, although they remain a very elusive sighting.
As you swim closer to the shallows you'll join up with the wall covered in gorgonian fans and intricately carved with overhangs and cracks. This majestic underwater tapestry of Elphinstone is brightly colored by purple and orange Anthias, Angelfish and Emperors go about their daily business, and Flutemouths move stealthily through the shallows.
No strangers to Elphinstone's Southern Plateau and frequently spotted are Oceanic White Tip Sharks, seemingly always accompanied by pilot fish. These sharks seem curious of scuba divers and often return for a surprise second look. Oceanic Whitetips are rare sightings elsewhere in the world so this fish, perhaps more than any other, has come to represent what's so special about diving in the southern Red Sea. Best time for an encounter: September until the end of December.
Wreck of the Numidia
The Numidia’s maiden voyage was on 28 February 1901 departing from Glasgow under the command of Captain John Craig and sailing to Calcutta, making the return trip soon afterwards. The voyage, by all accounts was uneventful. The second voyage of the ship would, however, prove to be her last.
At 0210 on 20th July 1901 the Captain was rudely awakened in his cabin below by the sound of his ship running aground on the northern plateau of Big Brothers! Rushing to the Bridge, he found that not only had the ship run aground on Big Brothers, but that his ship was lying almost directly below the lighthouse!
After spending 7 weeks having her cargo salvaged she finally slipped off the reef and sank. The bow now lies at 8-meters, with the rest of the ship descending at a steep angle to a depth of approximately 80-meters making it suitable for divers of all certification levels.
Wreck of Aida II
This 75m long Egyptian ship was build in France and launched in 1911. It sunk September 15th, 1957. Her bow is at 25m and her stern at 60m.
In a big storm in September 1957 a captain decided to ignore all warnings and bring the Aida to Big Brother. Back then she was a supply ship for the Egyptian Army. The captain tried to moore her on the south east cost of Big Brother. The storm took her against the reef and she began to sink rather quickly. She looks like somebody put her down like that on purpose. If it wouldn't be for the hole from the impact with the reef she is in very good condition. A lot of corals and exposed to currents, like all of the dives at brother island.
7 night’s accommodation with up to 3 to 4 dives per day as allowed by Egyptian law and weather conditions.
3 meals a day, plus snacks
Oceanic Whitetip shark experience! - While nothing is guaranteed, this is one of the biggest reasons to go on this route.
Nitrox – Other boats charge for Nitrox
All marina/port fees, fuel surcharges, taxes and transfers to and from the boat – This is a huge extra charge on other boats. With OTA you get the "No Surprise Bill on the Boat Guarantee". Everything on the boat is included except alcoholic beverages, Espresso and Tips*
*****4 Guides***** - Most boats only have two guides for up to 24 people. By having 4 guides on the boat and reefs that come all the way to the surface (on most dives) ensures that everybody gets to see everything there is to see and do on all the dives regardless of experience and air consumption!
Example of Itinerary
Day 1: Arrival and transfer
from the airport to the boat
Day 2: Leaving after
approval by the coast guard
approx. 09:00 am, check
dive and 1 or 2 dives at
other diving spots, crossing
to Big Brother overnight.
Day 3: 3 dives in Big Brother
Day 4: 3 dives in Little
Brother, crossing to
Daedalus Reef overnight.
Day 5 and 6: 3 dives in
Daedalus reef, crossing to
Elphinstone Reef overnight.
Day 7: 2 dives in
Elphinstone Reef (or other
diving sites), entrance in the
harbor approx. 04:00 pm.
Day 8: Departure, check-out
and transfer to the Airport.
Airport: We will be flying into Hurghada International Airport (HRG) to begin our trip. OTA prefers Turkish Airlines because they offer easy as well as flexible booking options from Houston (our home) as well as many other major cities to most of the Egyptian tourism destinations, which is good if you are adding on a tour. For example, if you wanted to see the Pyramids, you can fly into Cairo (CAI) with Turkish Airlines. Then, when ready, do an quick 45 min EgyptAir flight to Hurghada (our meeting point) to transfer to the boat. When you are ready to head back home you can catch your Turkish Airlines flight back home from Hurghada with no penalty charges for multi-leg flying. OTA can help guide you through all your choices and hold your hand if need be to make sure you book the correct dates. OTA will even make the arrangements to have our passports sent to Houston, so we can obtain our Egyptian Visas before leaving the US if you so desire.
Luxor Tour Sept 14-15 $325 per person dbl occupancy/Sonesta Nile Hotel
- Duration: 2 Days / 1 Night
- Type: Private Tour
- Pick-up Time: 05:30 am from boat
Day 1: Boat /Luxor Sightseeing Tours
- Tour representative will pick you up from your hotel in Hurghada by air-conditioned modern vehicle to Luxor, where you will be accompanied by your own Egyptologist to visit the famous Karnak temple the largest place of worship ever built. Its ancient name Ipet-isut means “the most sacred of places.” The temple, or, more correctly, the complex of temples, was built over more than two thousand years by generation after generation of pharaohs. Within the complex, the great “Hypostyle Hall” is an incredible forest of giant pillars.
- On the way you will enjoy lunch at quality restaurant and then you will be accompanied by your tour guide to visit the majestic Luxor temple which was built by Amenhotep III and Ramses II for ritual and festivals and dedicated to the god Amun with some free time for shopping in Luxor.
- From there will be driven to your hotel for check in, leisurely free time in Luxor with optional evening tour to attend the fabulous sound and light show at Karnak temple in Luxor.
- Overnight in your hotel.
Day 2: Luxor Sightseeing Tours/ Hurghada
- Early morning, enjoy a relaxing breakfast in your hotel in Luxor and then you will enjoy visiting the West Bank of The Nile River you will be visiting the two colossal statues of Amenhotep III (Colossi of Memnon), and then visit the Valley of the Kings, where the magnificent tombs discovered, those tombs were carved deep into the desert rock, richly decorated and filled with treasures for the afterlife of the pharaohs, you will visit 3 tombs Continue the tour to visit the Hatshepsut temple at El Deir El Bahary, this impressive temple dedicated to the Queen Hatshepsut the only female pharaoh rises out of the desert plain in a series of terraces and merges with the sheer limestone cliffs that surround it, and then you will be transferred to your hotel/airport in Hurghada.
*Prices do not include:
Tips: Budget at least 15 to 20 dollars per day (as you see fit of course)
Diving insurance (mandatory)
100 cu/ft (15L) tanks
Espresso or any Espresso based drinks
Alcoholic Drinks: Beer and Wine available on board for purchase
- Luxor tour with 4 day Nile Cruise:
Cost is $800 per person double occupancy
-transfer from Marsa Alam to Sonesta Moon Goddess Nile Cruise Boat (4 hours)
- Sonesta Moon Goddess Nile Cruise (described below) Luxor to Aswan cruise
-Hot Air Balloon in Luxor – Optional Add $125
-Luxor Tour/Edfu/Kom Ombu Temple Ruins
-entry to all sights listed below
-Flight from Aswan to Cairo
-all transfers, taxes, and fees
-connect to flight home or add time in Cairo.
(Cairo option outlined below $450 p/p 3 nights 2 day tour, transfer, etc)
Itinerary with Nile Cruise:
Sept. 14: Marsa Alam – we are all getting picked up and transported to Luxor.
Embarkation before Lunch Sat. Sept 14
- Lunch on board
- Visit Karnak Temple & Luxor Temple
- Afternoon Tea
- Belly Dance Show
- Dinner on board
- Overnight in Luxor
Meals: Lunch, Dinner
Day 2: Sunday
- Hot Air Balloon over Luxor (4am) Optional $125
- Breakfast on Board
- West Bank visit: Valley of the Kings & Hapshetput Temple
- Sail to Edfu
- Lunch on Board
- Afternoon Tea
- Captain's Welcome Cocktail
- Dinner on board
- Overnight in Edfu
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3: Monday
- Wake-up Call
- Breakfast on board
- Visit Edfu Temple
- Sail to Kom Ombo
- Lunch on board
- Vist Kom Ombo
- Sail to Aswan
- Afternoon Tea
- Dinner on board
- Galabia Party—this is an Egyptian Toga Party
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Tuesday
- Breakfast on board
- Disembarkation at 08:00 am
- Visit the High Dam the Granite Quarries and the Temple of Philae
- Transfer to Aswan Airport
Sept. 17 Fly to Cairo transfer home
- or Cairo Tour: $499 double occupancy
- Transfer to hotel Le Meridien Pyramids
- Sept 18: Giza Pyramids, Memphis and Sakkara tour & Egyptian museum
- Sept 19: Citadel, Old Cairo and Khan Khalili Bazaar
- Sept 20: Day to pack, relax, get ready for departure. Tour leader will reconfirm with you about pick up times.
- Sept 21: check out and transfer to airport.
***OTA TIP****: Liquor choices are limited in most Duty Free Shops both in Egypt and in the US so bring your own! Duty Free is not as inexpensive as it used to be and Egypt allows you to bring up to two liters of spirits per person duty free.
Not enough? No worries, there are additional duty-free shops in all of Egypt's International Airports, as well as in the cities of Cairo and Hurghada where you can purchase 2 more liters, per person, as well as other duty-free goods within 48 hours of landing in Egypt. See…. you haven't even booked yet and we are looking out for you!
**(Hotel and prices are subject to change based upon availability. If the hotel mentioned is not available a comparable or better hotel will be substituted)