In this post, we take to the sea, specifically the Gulf of Tadjoura. The gulf is one of the few reasons tourists actually visit Djibouti, and you will see why. To find the most pristine beaches and crystal clear water, you must make your way several kilometers out of Djibouti City by car or boat. I prefer boat, because the road to Tadjoura is very dangerous.
1: After an afternoon of relaxation on the beach, we are aboard a skiff headed back to the Deli, a 26m Turkish style gulet operated by Dolphin Services. The boat is available for day trips to various locations around the gulf, and periodically they offer overnight sleep aboard trips.
2: The Deli docked at a dive site. There are plenty of places around the boat to hang out, and it is fully equipped to accommodate a dozen scuba divers. It also has a galley where they cook delicious meals, including freshly caught fish. They also have a drink cooler stocked with free water, and St. George beer from Ethiopia and Coke are available on the honor system.
3: The Deli viewed from Maskali island. If you just want to just hang out on the beach, you can have a skiff drop you off for a couple of hours. Normally I would dive in the morning, and hang out on the beach after lunch.
4: When I tell you the water is clear, I mean it. This water is deeper than it looks. There is nothing else remarkable about this photo other than to prove this point.
5: If you’re lucky enough to visit during whale shark season, you may catch a glimpse of one of these magnificent creatures, though there are no guarantees. I went on three trips before successfully catching a glimpse of one, and this was the best photo I could get. Whale sharks are massive creatures weighing up to 20 tons.. While technically a shark, they are very docile, and also filter feeders, so they only eat plankton.
6: Djibouti has softened its immigration policy as of late in a bid to attract more tourists. This sculpture was erected to commemorate one of it’s top draws, whale sharks. The sculpture itself is a misrepresentation of reality, because you are not actually permitted by most dive shops to scuba dive near them. Under normal situations you are just snorkeling in their vicinity hoping to catch a glimpse.
7: Sable Blanc (White Sands) is a great resort in the city of Tadjoura accessible by either car or boat. You can go there for a day trip to enjoy the reef and a nice lunch, or you can stay the night in their small resort.
8: Here I am about to descend into the depths. You can also get an idea of how crystal clear the water is, and it’s so warm too!
9: Besides the seasonal whale sharks, there is plenty of marine life to experience year round. This is a masked puffer fish. I took a wild guess at what it was called and got lucky and found him by Googling “puffer with a mask”. Could you honestly think of a more appropriate name for this little guy?
10: This beauty is a Sohal Surgeonfish. This fish is endemic to the area, and a popular fish in large saltwater aquariums of 150 gallons or more. I had to do a bit more searching to find him. I was able to find him using “red sea reef fish”.