On the 31th of Dec 2015 we wish you a Happy New Year with “Our biggest adventure of the Year” Come with us to the Marsa Mubarak and read our Dugong story!Marsa Alam is famous about its rich underwater life, you may meet here huge sea turtles, rare fish, dolphins, sharks and even a dugong if you are lucky. Earlier the Abu Dabbab Bay was recommended if you wanted to see this endangered marine mammal. Unfortunately we read that the people see him pretty rarely there nowadays, but there is an other bay where you may spot with bigger chance, this place called the Marsa Mubarak.
This December we were in search of the dugong, we went to Marsa Alam personally to check where lives this unique animal.
How to get to the Marsa Mubarak
The Marsa Mubarak is a bay not so far from the Marsa Alam International Airport (7 km), also called as Turtle Bay. It is a famous bay, many snorkellers and divers come to this area to meet the huge sea turtles and the dugong.
Most tour operators and dive centers organize Marsa Mubarak day trips regularly, ask their assistance if you want to visit this place. As it is an open area, you may come here private aswell, for example with a taxi. The best is if you stay in the Three Corners Fayrouz Plaza Beach Resort, because the Marsa Mubarak is in walking distance from this hotel (we have stayed in the Fayrouz Hotel, it was perfect, detailed post is coming soon!).
It is a sandy beach with easy access to the water. You can leave your personal belongings simple in the sand for free of charge. If you need sunbeds and beach umbrellas, there are some available for rent.
The biggest attraction of Marsa Mubarak – Dyson the dugong
We hoped that our dream will come true and we meet the resident seacow here at least one time. We were luckier, we saw him five times in one week 🙂 Our plane landed at 1:40 pm at the Marsa Alam Airport, we checked in the hotel around 3 pm, and at 4 pm we were swimming with the dugong right away on our first day, it sounds perfect, isn’t it ? So yes, we can state, a dugong lives in the Marsa Mubarak! We got the info from the divers that his name is Dyson and he is the territorial male of the Marsa Mubarak.
When is the perfect time to see Dyson the dugong? We think, there is no perfect time, we met him in the morning and in the afternoon aswell. The locals say the chance to spot him is higher in the afternoon. He enjoys playing in the shallow water, in the left side of the bay and eating seagrass. If you don’t find him in the shallow area, start to swim towards the orange buoy in the middle of the bay and search him. As we mentioned, Marsa Mubarak is a famous place and sometimes it can be crowded. If there are many snorkelers in the water, they gather if there is a big attraction underwater, if you see excited groups , you may bet they see the dugong or a huge turtle, so swim there! As the dugong and the turtles come up for air, if the sea is calm you may see their head from the shore aswell, it is easy to locate them.
Dyson, the dugong is really a huge marine mammal, it is a lifetime experience to see him. He is such a peaceful creature and it seemed us he enjoys when people photograph and film him. If he is tired of tourists simple moves away in deeper water. Please always leave enough room for him to come up to the surface for air and don’t touch him! Feel yourself lucky if you could see such a rare, endangered animal, protect him and warn other people to do the same!
What else can you see in the Marsa Mubarak underwater?
The most interesting creature is definitely the seacow, but there are many other beautiful animals and things here!
Huge sea turtles are also residents of the bay. They are as big as an adult man, search them in the shallow areas on the left side or around the orange buoy. They are eating seagrass peacefully, sometimes they are also accompanied with remora fish.
We also saw leopard rays, eagle and cowtail ray, calamari here. Many people photograph guitar fish aswell, unfortunately we did not find him.
There are some smaller reef on the left side and in the middle of the bay, where you will see different type of reef fish (anemonafish, parrotfish, bannerfish, damselfish etc…) blue spotted rays and even baby moray eels.
As you see, the Marsa Mubarak os full of life. We hope our review and photos will inspire you to visit this amazing place and get to know the marine life here. And once again, please never touch the dugong and sea turtles and protect the sealife!