Scuba diving at The Brothers
Scuba diving at The Brothers
Scuba diving in The Brothers is the stuff divers’ dreams are made of, the two tiny islets of Big Brother and Little Brother offer some of the best of Red Sea scuba diving. The Reefs are both spectacular in their own rights, with rich coral and excellent marine life. Diving in The Brothers also offers large numbers of pelagics attracted to the steep drop-offs and two shipwrecks within recreational diving limits. The islands are around 67 km apart, a short drive by boat. This means that if you come to The Brothers scuba diving you should have the opportunity to dive both islands.
The Brothers are both offshore reefs around 70 km from the shore at Al-Qusayr, Egypt. They are beautifully isolated volcanic cone shaped reefs that reach up from the depths of the Red Sea. Both are tiny above water but huge under the surface. The Big Brother was a hazard to shipping until a lighthouse was installed in the 19th Century. This wasn’t enough to save the ships of the Numidia and the Aida which are both wrecked on the reef and today make fantastic dive sites.
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Marine Life in The Brothers
The main reason to go scuba diving in The Brothers is the fantastic marine life that can be found on every part of the reef. After the few meters of shallow reef there are steep drop-offs on both islands. These walls are covered in hard and soft corals in a rainbow of colours. The reef is also home to plenty of interesting fish and sharks, both blacktip and whitetip reef sharks can be found patrolling around the reef.
Sharks are one of the main reason to go scuba diving at The Brothers. There is a chance to see not only reef sharks but silvertips, oceanic whitetips and even hammerheads. The edge of the steep drop-offs are the best places to watch for sharks passing by. The oceanic white tips are particularly curious about divers and might even come in a little closer to see you when you are diving at The Brothers. If you are very lucky, there is also a small chance that you will catch a glimpse of the huge but shy thresher shark as well.
Best Dive Sites in The Brothers
Big Brother is thought to be one of the best dive sites in the Brothers for diving with sharks. The South East side of the island is where you can expect to see the most sharks especially oceanic whitetips and hammerheads. It is fair to say that Big Brother reef is not just one dive spot though, there are also two shipwreck that are dive sites in their own right. The remains of the Numidia lie covered in corals and full of reef fish and the Aida stretches beautifully from near the surface to 30 meters deep. The deeper end of the Aida is also one of the top dive spots to see sharks from.
Little Brother is also home to a host of sharks with a huge plateau at around 40 meters where you can dive with silvertips, oceanic whitetips and even hammerheads. The walls to the East of Little Brother are also a spectacular sight with beautiful corals and huge gorgonians. This wall is an ideal photography spot and really good for macro lovers too.
Best Time to Dive in The Brothers
Like most Red Sea scuba diving sites the best time to dive The Brothers depend on what you want to see. Shark lovers can choose between visiting in the summer, when hammerheads and oceanic whitetips are around in greater numbers. The hammerhead season in The Brothers is May to June but thresher sharks who prefer colder water are more frequent in the winter months. There is a slight difference in temperature between scuba diving in The Brothers in winter and summer of about eight degrees.
Experience Level for Diving The Brothers
Most Egypt scuba diving is open to all levels of divers but the Brothers experiences strong currents and deep drop-offs. Diving at The Brothers is really only for experienced divers as it is offshore and the conditions can be quite rough on the surface of the dive sites as well as underwater.
How Do I Get to The Brothers
Getting to The Brothers is quite easy, Egypt liveaboards to take you scuba diving in The Brothers are available from Hurghada and Marsa Alam resorts. Both resorts have their own international airports with flights from major European airports. It is worth noting that most liveaboard dive tours that take in the Brothers also include stop-offs at Daedalus and Elphinstone reefs as well.