Diving in Aqaba is one of the musts on a trip to Jordan!
This city, in fact, is located in the northern part of the Gulf of Aqaba, a branch of the Red Sea. Aqaba is strategically located: it is only a few kilometers from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Israel. Aqaba is an autonomous territory: this allows you to enter Jordan without applying for a visa. I had already been to Aqaba on occasion.Of my 2015 trip to Jordan.: going back there for diving was a great idea!
Diving in Aqaba starts directly from the beach. Therefore, the ideal place to stay is South Beach, a resort area. Personally, I chose Aqaba Adventure Divers and I was very happy with them! I did a package of six dives and two nights at a price of about 250 euros, including all the equipment needed to do the dives.
The most famous dives in Aqaba are to see a plane, a tank and a boat, the Cedar Pride. All of these vehicles were deliberately submerged a hundred meters from the coast by decision of the Jordanian government, which thus wanted to pay tribute to the divers.
Of all the dives, the visit to the Cedar Pride boat obviously stands out for its beauty. This giant ship was inaugurated in Spain in 1964, and was bought by Lebanese Cedar Pride in 1978. In July 1982 the Cedar Pride arrived in Aqaba and suffered a fire, which cost the lives of two sailors. After three years of various discussions about what to do with the ship, the Jordanian king himself decided to have the Cedar Pride submerged in the vicinity of South Beach. The Jordanian king, as a good diver, realized that the wreck could bring tourists to Aqaba, which until then was little known!
Beautiful corals can be seen in Aqaba. I was also able to admire a beautiful ‘Spanish Dancer,’ a mollusk that owes its name to its fantastic sinuous movements:you can see a video of the mollusk in action here. Other admired fish include moray eel and lionfish.
The other three dives, all very nice, were Japanese Garden, Gorgon One and Rainbow Reef.
I did all the diving with Padi Open Water: I found no particular problems, as the area generally has few currents. Aqaba is therefore perfect for those who want to have an underwater baptism! The best season is from September to November and from March to May.
To enter Jordan you need passport, molecular swab (maximum 72 hours before departure), travel insurance. To return to Italy you need another pad (made directly at the hotel, at a cost of 28 dinars, no more than 48 hours before departure), the green pass and theEU declaration – PLF
. I went in and out of Aqaba, which, being an autonomous entity, does not require a visa. I recommend, of course, to check the updated information on safe travel.