The Straits of Tiran is located at the mouth of the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea. Is bordered on the west by the coast of Sinai and on the east by the island of Tiran, and is only 5 kilometers wide. In the middle of this channel we find four beautiful coral reefs, very appreciated by divers who take the northern liveaboard route of the Red Sea. These reefs are named after the English cartographers who drew the first nautical map of this region in the 19th century: Jackson Reef, Woodhouse Reef, Thomas Reef and Gordon Reef.
The strong currents that flow through the strait are loaded with plankton and other nutrients that feed the corals, which grow in extraordinary ways. In this strait we find some of the most beautiful, healthy and vibrant coral gardens in the Red Sea.
The good health of these reefs provides an ideal habitat for a large number of small and medium fish of all colors, which also attracts large pelagic fish such as barracudas, jacks, eagle rays, tuna, pilot whales, turtles and especially sharks, which are very present in these reefs.
The Strait of Tiran has everything a scuba diver is looking for: healthy and colorful corals, beautiful and varied reef life, and a little adrenaline from large predators and strong currents.
Straits of Tiran, life and color, lots of color
The reefs of Straits of Tiran
Jackson Reef is formed by steep walls full of corals, some of the best in the Sinai region and possibly in the entire Red Sea. Hard and soft corals, gorgonians, anemones, sea whips, black corals... Besides the huge variety of reef fish, the main attraction of this site is the concentration of sharks, from hammerheads to guitar, tiger, gray or leopard sharks, especially during the summer.
Woodhouse Reef is a long and narrow reef with impressive coral formations, including black coral from 22 meters. Exceptional reef species such as surgeonfish, triggerfish, butterflyfish and angelfish share space with pelagic species such as tuna, turtles and jacks.
The upper part of Thomas Reef is an explosion of color with some of the most exquisite soft corals in the entire Sinai region and where we can find large gorgonians, excellent hard corals such as table corals or elkhorn. A visit to the sandbanks where numerous white tip sharks, spotted rays and leopard sharks coexist is a must.
The orography of Gordon Reef and the diving practiced there is very varied, with irregular sections, sand plateaus and a beautiful coral garden. In the middle of the slope there is a very interesting area with a sandy bottom that is very appreciated by divers for the great variety of shark species that can be seen.