Scuba Diving in Sudan

The Republic of Sudan is a state in East Africa. It is washed by the Red Sea from the northeast. Gray reef and hammerhead sharks inhabiting the clear blue sea waters are the first to meet divers. Although meeting these frightening fish in Sudan is not thought of as something surprising, it is the hammerhead sharks that have become the calling card of diving in this country.
The waters of the Red Sea hide plenty of sunken ships, unusual caves, and a rich world of flora and fauna. Diving safaris are also very popular in Sudan during which dives to various dive sites are made. And if you are lucky with the weather, the dive boat will sail to the Shark Triangle, comprised of the Merlo Reef, the Abington Reef, and the Angarosh Reef (or southern reefs). However, visibility is always unpredictable near the farther reefs. The duration of a diving safari is up to two weeks.

Reasons to Visit

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Where to go
in Sudan?
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Sudan is one of the most interesting places for diving in the Red Sea. Being especially beautiful, it attracts divers from all over the world. You'll see precipices, steep walls, mysterious caves, and reefs formed by hundreds of coral. Angarosh is the reef to which divers flock in order to see the diversity of sharks species. Here you'll come across hammerhead, tiger, blacktip and silvertip sharks as well as oceanic whitetip sharks.
Diving in Sudan may attract both beginners and professionals. The Red Sea here is rich with hammerhead sharks, which is the reason they mainly come to this place. This place is notable for untouched reefs, sunken ships, caves, lush coral, octopuses, huge barracudas, and many other things. All this is well preserved, since diving in Sudan is underdeveloped and people haven't destroyed the beautiful seascapes yet.
Shaab Rumi is famous all over the world. This is the exact place that Jacques-Yves Cousteau chose to create the underwater settlement of Conshelf-2 in 1963. After the experiment, the houses and equipment were evacuated. However, part of the facilities still remain at the bottom. For example, a hangar that looks like an inverted saucer. Pens for fish as well as a tool storeroom are also preserved there.
Reefs and atolls are the calling card of diving in Sudan. They are in excellent condition which is what attracts the underwater tourists. Angarosh ( literally “Mother of Sharks”) is the most famous reef among them. Its name reflects the main feature of this place- a large number of sharks. A lot of predators the among coral is the main highlight of the reef that attracts extreme diving lovers. Another interesting adventure is a shallow water dive to the sunken ship Umbria. You can explore the ship both inside and out, since it is perfectly preserved.
Mass diving in Sudan is only starting to develop, however, underwater safaris are becoming more and more popular among divers. It is a great opportunity to see the main underwater attractions of the country's coastal waters. The duration of a diving safari may be up to two weeks. During this time, you will dive to different dive sites. The routes are coordinated and prepared in advance, or are offered by the dive shops from ready-made options.
Memo Notes
Currency SDG - Sudanese Pound

Dive Shops in Sudan

Sudan is the most popular country for diving, which Jacques-Yves Cousteau discovered here in the 1960s. There are a lot of dive shops in Sudan, but due to the lack of tourist infrastructure the main service is the dive safari. English and Arabic are spoken here.

Сlimate & Seasonality
Spring

In March, sunny and dry weather prevails. The air is very hot- it’s temperature rises up to +43 ˚C. The water temperature is +26-27 °C. In May it becomes cloudy. The air temperature fluctuates between + 37 and 42 °C, while the water temperature is + 28-29 °C.

Summer

In June, the air temperature is +43 °C, and the water temperature is +29 °C. In July, there may be slight precipitation, and the water warms up to +30 °C. In August, the rains become more frequent, and the air temperature drops to +35 °C.

Autumn

In September there are intermittent rains. The air heats up to +39 °C, and the water in the sea warms up to +30 °C. In October, the rains almost come to an end, and in November there is no rainfall. The air temperature stays at +40 °C, and the water temperature is +29 °C.

Winter

In December, the weather is hot and sunny with no rainfall in Sudan. The air temperature fluctuates between +28 and +34 °C, and the water warms up to +27 °C. In January and February, the weather is cloudless, but the water temperature drops to +25-26 °C. Wind speed is 7-8 m/s.

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The Best Dive Sites

Shaab Rumi is the place Jacques-Yves Cousteau's experiments to create the Conshelf-2 underwater village were conducted. There are a house and other facilities at a depth of 9 m.
The sunken Italian ship Umbria is the most famous wreck in the waters of the Red Sea. The ship carrying ammunition was flooded "voluntarily" by its captain in 1940. The maximum depth is 36 m.

Health & Safety

You may be required to have a medical certificate with vaccination marks during the sanitary inspection upon arrival in Sudan. Therefore, you should get a vaccination against hepatitis A and yellow fever before the trip. Gastrointestinal tract medications, as well as sunscreen are recommended to be in your first-aid kit. Health care isn't free, but its quality leaves much to be desired. We recommend purchasing insurance.
Recently, the amount of crime has been growing, so money and valuables should be left at the hotel. There are some places such as Darfur, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile (Al-Wustá) which tourists should not visit. There is a high risk of terrorist attacks and hostage-taking in the country. Sudanese are Muslims, so tourists should follow local norms in wearing clothes and behavior. This especially applies to women.

Dangerous Marine Life

Hammerhead sharks are considered to be potentially dangerous, but they almost never attack people. Moray eels can attack in self-defense, so you should not swim up very close to them. It is not recommended to put jellyfish in your hands. You also need to be careful not to cut yourself on coral or step on a sea urchin.

Eat & Drinks

Sudan is a former colony, so the local cuisine has absorbed the habits of the French, British and Italians, seasoning the dishes with a special Arabic flavor. Main dishes of the cuisine are roasted and boiled vegetables. For example, okra is something in between zucchini and asparagus. As for meat, you can choose lamb or chicken. You should definitely try the Arab bread Hubz or Kisra, the local flat bread. And do not forget about coffee- it is traditionally drunk after dinner from small cups, poured from a coffee pot called jebena. Since tap water here may be unsafe to drink, it is advised to consume only bottled water.