Shaab Claudio lies in the heart of the Fury Shoals, 13 km off the Egyptian coast. Though the site consists of two bank reefs, the dives here are carried out only on the southern reef and exclusively during the day. This site rightfully counts as one of the most beautiful and popular dive sites in this area. The diving conditions are very easy, since the seabed is no deeper than 20 m around the whole reef, and the currents are rare and typically weak The southern part of the reef has a small, but easily explorable cavern system A, whose entrances (A and B) are located in the reef wall at 7 and 8 m, and whose exit (C) is hidden behind corals to the west at a depth of 4 m A. The caves themselves are wide and branched out only a little. You, therefore, cannot get lost here. A hidden passage leads through the entire reef but is narrow in places and therefore not shown on the map. On the western side of Shaab Claudio, you can admire a massive coral garden A. Behind it another cave entrance lies at a depth of 4 mA and leads to a smaller cavern. Also, this entrance is hidden behind corals and difficult to find at first glance (see photo A). The coral garden extends over the entire western side before opening into the channel A between the reefs. Here, the partly overhanging reef walls are covered with corals and huge groupers hide in their crevices. At the eastern exit of the channel, there are two nicely covered arouks A and shortly before them you will find a colony of anemones on the reef wall A. Though the eastern side behind it does not feature a coral garden, it does have an overall interesting coral growth.
One disadvantage of Shaab Claudio is, without doubt, the high density of divers. Because of the many charms of the reef, many boats stop here making it somewhat cumbersome to dive through the caverns. There are days when you would wish for traffic lights and one-way signs to coordinate the mass of divers.
Descend directly from the liveaboard, but do not dive straight down to the sandy seabed at 18 m, because the entrances to the caverns lie at 7 and 8 m. Entrance A lies behind corals but is not hard to find. It lies just below a prominent indentation in the reef flat as seen from the boat. Follow the caves A, in which you cannot get lost, and leave the cavern system through western exit C. Then head right to the north and dive around the large boulder corals to reach the entrance to the second, smaller cave system at 4 m A. By following the course of this cavern clockwise, you will make a small round before reaching the entrance again. Then continue across the coral garden A, keeping the reef on your right shoulder, and follow the course of the reef. This will automatically lead you to the channel A between the reefs, where you will encounter the colony of anemones A on the reef wall to the right at 10 m right in front of the two big arouks A. One option here would be to turn around and dive back the way you came from. However, if you wish to explore the interesting but not quite as magnificent eastern side, then continue along the reef, keeping it on your right shoulder, back to the boat 1. It is unnecessary to dive deeper than 15 m during the whole dive, since all of the reef’s attractions are found at shallow depths. However, if you wish to explore the interesting but not quite as magnificent eastern side, then continue along the reef, keeping it on your right shoulder, back to the boat. It is unnecessary to dive deeper than 15 m during the whole dive, since all of the reef’s attractions are found at shallow depths.
Tips / Hazards
• Varied and easy dive site • The caves and caverns are easy to explore • The entrances are hidden behind corals • Pay attention to your buoyancy inside the caverns