Unlimited House Reef Diving? Yes please!
Having a house reef means you can enjoy the Red Sea whenever you want!
So obviously when we made the decision to move to a new dive centre, location was one of the main considerations and whether we would have direct access to the sea or not. Thankfully we can see the sea from the dive centre and better still we can be in it in around a 30 second walk; but what can you expect from the house reef and is it worth diving multiple times? Read on to find out……
The main access to the sea from Monte Carlo beach is via the small jetty that stretches out over the reef which has railings on either side and then at the end has a large opening in the centre you can use for your giant stride, with 2 sets of ladders for ease coming back out again. Once in the water you can make a slow descent down a gentle slopping wall that starts from the surface and continues on to depths of around 40m at which point there is a steep drop-off.
Being that we do the dive as a shore dive, a current check at the beginning to determine the direction of your dive is required. Normally if there is current it is running from right to left so you’d start the dive with the reef on your right and this is a pretty nice direction to take. You’ll find as you make your way along the reef, several pinnacles forming from 20m/23m, each covered in colourful soft corals, with Anthias fish, and sea fans. If you continue deeper down, you’ll still be able to see the bottom which turns in to a plateau at around 45m…past this, we haven’t quite explored yet! On your return, shallowing up you’ll find many colourful fish and a hard coral bottom with blues, purples and pinks before reaching the bright green salad coral at around 8m. Despite the fact that the visibility is so good that you can see the jetty from a distance, if by some chance you can’t look out for a small opening in the reef at around 6m just big enough for a diver to manoeuvre in for a photo then carefully glide back out again (note: check for any lionfish before you entre). Then you’re back at your entry point!
Given that the current (if there is any) can change from morning to afternoon, you’ll have the opportunity to dive the left side of the reef. Here you’ll find the massive Porites coral covered in Anthias fish making a great position for observing the marine life during your safety stop, but we’re just getting started with the dive so onwards and downwards we go.
On the left of the jetty you’ll find more sandy areas where feather tail, blue spotted and torpedo rays can all be spotted. You’ll find on this side the reef meets a steep drop at around the 25m mark which at this point you should have a look out in to the blue to see if you can see the resident eagle ray cruising by. Continuing on you’ll find some huge pinnacles, covered in more anthias, glassfish and soft corals, take your time to look over these in details as you may also find a hidden nudibranch or pipefish a passing glance wouldn’t notice.
Once you hit the 100 bar mark it’s time to turn around and shallow up, on route bag to the jetty you’ll notice another couple of openings in the reef wall, one in particular which is large enough for 2 divers at a time to enter and enjoy the light penetrating down from the funnel which leads to the top of reef. And then you’re back, you dived the house reef but like all dive sites all over the world it changes and constantly offers different experiences so there’s no harm in diving it again on a different day to see what other encounters you may have……….and if you want some really beautiful diving, try out a night dive here, it’s fast becoming our favourite spot with octopus, shoals of baitfish and the elusive Spanish Dancer!
Unlimited diving on the house reef is available for £45/50 euro per day. Unguided dives are also possible after an initial dive with one of our guides, divers must have a minimum of Rescue Diver certification and be diving with a buddy.
Night dives can take place at any time and do not require a minimum number of divers - £35/40 euro per dive.