Ras Abu Galum, paradise in the Sinai Egypt
January 8, 2016
Sometimes you arrive at a place where you’ve never been before, still it feels like coming home. For me Ras Abu Galum located on the Red Sea in the Sinai in Egypt is such a place. I am diving in Dahab when my buddy tells me I just have to dive and camp in Ras Abu Galum. ‘You will love it there,’ he says. He is right. It’s one of the most magical places I have ever been.
From the Blue Hole in Dahab you take a camel for the last five kilometres to the marine and wildlife reserve Ras Abu Galum. The camelride is epic. The terrain is rough, but confidently the camels follow invisible rock paths. Many times I want to tell my camel to be careful or to go more to the left since he is stepping on cliff edges right over the waves. But ofcourse the camel knows what he is doing. He seems more mountain goat than camel. Rocking on the back of the camel, I can’t believe my eyes. Nature is overwhelming. Two months after my first trip to Ras Abu Galum I am lucky to go there again. This time I choose to walk. Ofcourse we need camels again to carry our scuba tanks and equipment, but I want to walk to be able to take pictures. Taking pictures sitting on a camel who acts like a mountain goat is almost impossible. Hiking I take over a hunderd photos. It’s stunning to see how the mountains and the sea meet. Gently the waves kiss the desert sand. Different worlds come together in perfect harmony.
In Ras Abu Galum the sea is incredibly blue. I take a dozen pictures from all shades of blue of the Red Sea. We are welcomed by the Bedouien family living here. We move into a small shelter and set up our gear. We enjoy a nice lunch before we do our first dive. After a beautiful second dive, a tasty bedouin dinner and a nightdive, it is time to go to sleep. Spending the night in this reserve is amazing. We have the beach to ourselves. It is just me and my buddy and, except for the bedouin family, there is not a living soul for miles. There is nothing here: no running water, electricity or mobile signal. In this peaceful place the silence prevails. With the sea in front of me and the mountains in my back I only hear the sea sing. Lying on the beach I count the shooting stars. Next morning I don’t even have to leave my sleeping bag to enjoy a beautiful sunrise. I have found paradise!
Before breakfast a pickup, driven by a nine year old (one hand at the wheel, one hand out of the window) brings us to an even more remote dive site. After breakfast we do another great dive before it is time to load our equipment on the camels. On the way back to Dahab I have the feeling to be kicked out of paradise. Rocking and bumping on my camel I can’t keep my eyes off the coastline: nature is beautiful. The Blue Hole comes in sight. For a precious moment I enjoy the breathtaking view on the equally famous and infamous dive site before I step into the real world again. But one thing I know for sure: the magic of Ras Abu Galum will never leave me.