Second in a three-part blog from regular Dive Travel Adventures contributor Sean Chinn about finding time for both family and scuba diving on a trip to Fujairah and Dubai in the UAE…
Our week in Fujairah was mainly spent entertaining our daughter who loved spending all day in the pool playing. Other than that it was indulging on the all inclusive package we had on our trip. Amazing food and attentive staff meant I came back half a stone heavier but hey what are holidays for?
However I did manage to sneak off and get four dives in while I was here. With my first two dives we boarded the boat from the beach. An interesting adventure with the waves that come in along Al Aqah Beach. Timing was essential, as was good agility and fitness. It wasn’t long before this changed though as the waves sunk one of the boats the day after my first dives! The boat was luckily recovered but it meant my second two dives were just a short 5 minute mini bus journey round to the marina for a much more comfortable step onboard the boat.
The diving was very pleasant although the visibility wasn’t great. Unfortunately I think it is a common trait with diving here but I wasn’t here for hardcore diving. It was a family holiday where I could also enjoy getting back underwater and enjoy some tropical marine life. I have to say there was a lot of life to see as well. I started with a dive at Inchape 1 where the vis was the worst of all the dives I’d done but the soft coral and life on the wreck was stunning. A short dive as the wreck is at 30 metres with only entry and exit from the mooring line. However I got the sense with better vis it would be even more enjoyable to explore.
The lion fish were actively swimming around the wreck on this dive. There is a big temperature drop from the surface of around 30.c to below 5 metre. It drops rapidly and on this dive I got a reading of 23.c. I was in rash vest and shorts which was fine for the number of dives I was doing but anymore repetitive I’d look to get a wetsuit on.
Dive 2 saw us go a little shallower to another artificial reef. This dive turned out to be the real highlight amongst all the dives. Again a lot of soft coral and life engulfed the artificial structures and old wreck. I had my macro lens on as I’d been told a seahorse is regularly spotted here. Apart from pygmy seahorse I’ve saw in Philippines, the more common type of seahorse has always remained elusive, even on dives we’ve specifically gone to look for them. So this really was the jackpot for me when the guide directed me to some soft coral and there was a beautiful seahorse around 6-10 inches in length.
Seeing something new and getting a new experience underwater always makes the dives more special. It was a site that also provided cuttlefish, moray eels, lobster and my first electric ray. An amazing dive all round.
Check back for Part 3 tomorrow…
Find out more about Sean, his photography and his hosted trips at: www.greatwhitesean.com