Dive Site

Shaab Maksur

  • Current: N/W in the morning, N/E at midday
  • Visibility: J, F, M, A: 25–35 m; M, J, J, A: 30–60 m; S, O, N, D: 50–80 m
  • Temperatures: J, F, M: 22–23°C; A, M, J: 26–28°C; J, A, S: 28-31°C; O, N, D: 28-25°C
  • Depth: 100 m

Overview

This is one of the most northeastern reefs in Sataya. "Maksur" means "crack" or "crevice" and this can still be seen in the south. Shaab Maksur is more or less a drop off reef and reminds on the east side of Elphinstone. In addition there is one of the most beautiful lagoons in the Red Sea.

Description

It is 350 to 400 m long and has three plateaus, one of them - untypical for an outer reef - on the west side. The currents are similar to Elphinstone, as both reefs have almost exactly the same orientation.
The south plateau actually consists of two levels. The first ranges from 18 to 35 meters, the second from 35 to 42 meters. Both have a length of 50 to 60 m and a width of 40 m. At the end, the reef drops steeply to 80 m and then turns into a slope to 120 m before disappearing completely into the depths.

The west side has something special, because bordered by a coral garden and a block at the end, there is a small lagoon in the middle of the plateau, which is very nicely embedded with a depth of 13-16m and a width of 20m. Here lie some wreckage of an old safari boat that hit the reef after 14 days in service. The superstructure was thrown overboard and the hull was taken to the shipyard for reconstruction. In the meantime the reef around the wreck has grown very nicely.

The eastern area is a steep wall and to the north is another plateau at a depth of 20 to 37 meters, where there are smaller mounds and a coral garden. Here, as everywhere on this reef, fall currents can occur. At the northernmost point there are two more pinnacles, separated from the reef by a gap 8 meters deep.

Hotspots

  • Sea anemones: A colony of sea anemones is located on the western plateau at a depth of about 12 meters. Between colorful tentacles we might find some clownfish eggs!
  • Lagoon: In the lagoon we discover morays, glass shrimps, cleaning station for barracudas, torpedo rays and, if we are lucky, even a whitetip reef shark.

map Dive Plans

To the north plateau

It is best to start from the Zodiac a good 30 m after the end of the reef at 10 to 15 m depth, because here you have a good overview. Deeper there is often current from the north. Behind one of the big hills you will find shelter to look around for sharks at the front edge. At least a few tunas or barracudas should cross your way. If not, there is a chance for a nice drift dive.<br/>In the morning hours you have the best light when ascending on the east side.

To the south plateau

The boat is usually located south of the reef. There is also the first special attraction, as two large blocks are located very close. Dive further south across the plateau, past the cleaning stations, to the end. On the left there is a small coral block. Continue towards the large coral garden. From there back in the shallow area. In 5 to 7m depth you can still see the gap that gave the reef its name. With the reef on the right shoulder we go back to the boat.

To the west plateau

Here it is best to start at the single block that reaches the surface. On its north side in 12m depth lives an anemone colony, where you can often find eggs of the small clownfish. From there further into the inner part of the lagoon, even young whitetip reef sharks can be found here. If you have seen enough, you can dive over the coral garden into the outer area and back to the ship.