Situated at the point where the Red Sea flows into the Indian Ocean, the small, stable country of Djibouti offers divers an incredibly diverse range of marine life. The absence of mass tourism is a large part of its appeal, ensuring the pristine dive sites remain unspoilt.
Encounters with Whale Sharks:
From mid October to February plankton ‘blooms’ develop in an enclosed bay near Djibouti town called the Goubet al Kharab (the Devil’s Cauldron). Although Whale Sharks can be seen throughout the year, encounters are especially common from October to February.
These plankton-rich waters attract many of the great pelagic species into the area surrounding Djibouti. Recent research has recognised the particular importance of the bay in the development of juvenile Whale Sharks, which stay within the safe confines of Djibouti’s coast line.
Siyyan has individual departures and full boat charters service over this period that are timed to maximise the likelihood of diving and snorkelling with these gentle giants.
Whales, Sharks and Dolphins:
The rich feeding grounds that make up Djibouti’s coastal waters attract a range of different species. Alongside Whale Sharks, divers can encounter Manta Rays, Beaked and Pilot Whales. Most species of Dolphin are represented in numbers off Djibouti’s coast, and are often seen ‘running’ the bow wave of your boat. Where there are Dolphins there are invariably Sharks. Grey and Nurse Sharks are the most commonly encountered species, whilst both Tiger and Blue Sharks have occasionally been seen.
Spectacular Corals and Reefs of The Seven Brothers:
There are over 200 recorded species of coral, some of which are endemic to the region. The lack of any rivers, combined with the volcanic base to many reefs, has prompted extremely healthy coral growth. Extensive reefs cover much of Djibouti’s coastline. Marine species that are regularly seen off Djibouti are largely similar to those found in the northern Red Sea. However, it is the sheer abundance of life that is so impressive, with dense shoals of fish being a feature of most dives. Large schools of Barracuda, Jacks and Snapper are often seen feeding off the reef and add excitement to many dives.
M/Y Lucy is offers all the creature comforts and the chance to dive these spectacular reefs.
The Crack, Lake Ghoubet North:
It’s always nice to do a dive that’s a bit different rather than just corals and fishes and this one ticks all the right boxes. One for the log book, this site is literally the crack in the earth between continents caused by the movements of the earth. This site is an underwater prolongation of the ‘falaise de Ghoubbet’, the crack that marks the separation between the African, Middle Eastern and Indian Ocean tectonic plates. It’s an amazing feeling to sink between the rock walls and discover the many swim-throughs and caverns or glide above and see the earth split beneath your fins. The scenery and the special atmosphere of this site will captivate you.
Ghoubet al Kharab/Devil’s Goblet:
The Ghoubet al Kharab, also known as the Devil’s Goblet or Devil’s Cauldron, is a large bay that is connected to the Gulf of Tadjourah and the open sea by a narrow channel. Geologically it marks the start of the Great Rift Valley and the junction between the African and Arabian continental plates. It is surrounded by mountains and cliffs over 600 meters high, and the water is very deep, plunging to depths of 200 meters. Marine life at Ghoubet al Kharab includes sharks and large fish that are ushered in by the strong Gulf currents.
In the center of Ghoubet al Kharab lie two majestic domes called the islands of the devil. These islands are actually volcanic, and surprisingly beautiful to see. According to ancient beliefs–which locals still hold to this day–the place is haunted. Therefore, only tourists venture to these dark jewels of nature.
Moucha Islands consists of a group of small islands located approximately 11 kilometers Northwest of Djibouti City (the capital of Djibouti). The island to the west is called Maskali, and the larger island is called Moucha. Here, there are currently four named dive sites, two of which are limited to expert divers only. The depths range from 8-33 meters. The site called Moucha’s Balise is a highly rated dive that is 15-30 meters in depth and a great dive night dive site. Visibility is excellent and advanced scuba divers may choose the site for good underwater photography. The wreck of La Bouee Coulee lies off Moucha Island, and there are dive training opportunities here as well. La Feon is also a wreck dive, and even though visibility is reduced to 5-10 meters, it just calls for a closer look at the site’s abundant marine life.
Other Dive Sites:
More expert and advanced dive sites in Djibouti include the wrecks of Le Boutre, Musha, Arthur Rimbaud, and Salem, as well as dive sites known as “Shark Teeth” and Ras Eiro.