Big Brother Island certainly counts as one of the most beautiful and popular dive sites in the Red Sea. The 480 m long island is located 61 km northeast of the town of El Quseir in the middle of the sea, where it rises from a depth of 800 m to an elevation of 10 m above sea level. Because of its location, it is exposed to the wind and waves and is surrounded by strong currents, which
carry a vast amount of plankton and nutrients to the reef walls leading to a great wealth of fish and a remarkable diversity of corals. Its exposure and considerable depth also give rise to difficult diving conditions and requirements, even by law, an amount of diving experience of at least 50 logged dives. In the past, some incautious divers have been carried into the open sea by the currents, which is why night driving is now prohibited at the site. The island, with its lighthouse, is surrounded by a narrow fringing reef, whose walls plunge into the deep. To the northwest, the reef forms a 300 m long plateau A densely covered with corals, which slants to a depth of 10 m before dropping to the seafloor, and to the south, a drop-off leads to a small ridge A at a depth of 30 m, which is an ideal place to find sharks. Few other places in the Red Sea have reef walls A as splendidly overgrown as here. Sea fans and hard and soft corals grow close together surrounded by countless fish, such as anthias and surgeonfish, while barracudas and shoals of jacks and snappers swim about in the blue. However, this site has even more to offer: nowhere in the Red Sea is the chance to find sharks as great as here at the northern and southern tips of the island. Magnificent shipwrecks top off the dives at this site: the Numidia A (see 1-1-3) on the northern tip and the Aida A (see 1-1-2) on the southwestern wall. Furthermore, Karim 2 A, which sank on 5 June 2004 near the southern tip, now lies here at a depth of more than 70 m and is only accessible by technical divers.
Duration: about 60 min. Difficulty: tt Go by RIB to the area above the Numidia A and quickly descend to the wreck and seek shelter from the current Sharks are often found here in the blue. After exploring the Numidia, ascend along the wreck to a depth of 20 m and swim back towards the boat. Since the current usually flows to the west, dive along the western side A keeping it on your left shoulder. Depending on your air consumption, you may even reach the mooring. If not, return
Duration: about 50 min. Difficulty: *** Go by RIB to the point above the Aida A. Dive to a depth of 30 m and briefly explore the wreck. Then dive along the reef A back to the mooring keeping the reef on your left shoulder
Duration: about 60 min. Difficulty: *** Go by RIB to the east of the northern plateau Dive to a depth of 30 m and swim with the reef on your right shoulder Because of the current, you should manage to reach the boat to the south. If not, return by RIB
Duration: about 35-40 min. Difficulty: *** Enter the water directly from the liveaboard and dive along the reef wall towards the south. At a depth of 30 m, you will reach the southern plateau A. At its southern tip, keep a lookout for sharks in the blue. Always stay close to the reef. otherwise the current will sweep you out into the ocean. Afterwards, return to the boat.
Dive Routes A Route A: the Numidia
D Route B: the Aida -southern side (afternoon
Route C: northern side (mornin
Route D: southern plateau
Tips / Hazards
Flora / Fauna • Oceanic whitetip shark • Grey reef shark • Hammerhead • Barracuda • Snapper • Tuna • Sea fan • Hard and soft corals
• Shark sightings at the northern A and southern tips A • Steep walls—watch your depth. Strong currents-always stay close to the reef • The Numidia A is one of the most beautiful shipwrecks •