Thursday, 23 May 2013

Wadi El Gemal National Park

Wadi El Gimal, Represents an integrated land and sea ecosystem containing a wide variety of habitats. Wadi Gimal National Park covers an area of about 4,770 Km2 of land, in addition to about 2,000 Km2 of marine waters. The Park reaches from the jagged ridges of the Eastern Desert through a network of sheltered wadis to the aquamarine depth of the Red Sea.

Prime Minister, declared Wadi El Gemal National Park (WGNP) in January 2003, making it the 24th national park that be declared in Egypt to that date. south of Marsa Alam.
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad  - Copyright © 2009
The Sunrise over the Wadi El Gimal National Park - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad  - Copyright © 2009
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Commercially named " Sharm EL Luli" The original name is Marsa Honkorab, Known to be one of the most beautiful and relaxing beaches on the south of Red Sea - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012

Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Wadi el Gimal coast - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Accaccia Tree - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2009
A large Ghost Crab, seen at Marsa Honkorab - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2012
White - Eyed - Seagull - Wadi El Gimal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2009
Reef Heron ( Egretta gularis ) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2012
White - Eyed - Seagull - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010
Abdalla's  fishing boat - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2009
Diving and Snorkeling daily boat- Hamata Islands - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2013
Known to be the Oldest Mangrove Tree in the Red Sea - Qula'an - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2013
The park's mangrove stands, although small, are considered one of the best ecosystems throughout the coast -  Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010
Happy Camel - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010
Western reef ( Egretta Gularis) - Hamata Port - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012

Sharm el Lulli - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
The Wadi Gimal Island hosts the world’s largest known nesting colony of sooty falcon. The coral reefs found here are among the most spectacular in the world in terms of abundance of life and diversity of species. 

Prince of the Red Sea - The osprey (Pandion haliaetus) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010

The evening lights in Wadi El Gimal - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010

Diving boats in The Siyal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2013
Wadi Gimal watershed, over 1,400 Km2, is one of the largest drainage basins and probably the best vegetated Wadi in the Eastern Desert. The area is inhabited by pastoral people, The Ababda who maintains their traditional lifestyle. 

Shamahty anchoring his boat - Wadi el Gimal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Where kids dance with swords - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2012

Taisser - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2013
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Osman with one of his Camels - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Ayman - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2009
Ayman again - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2010
Handicrafts - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2012
In contrast to the teeming coral reefs, the landscape of the Eastern Desert may appear empty and uninhabitable. But this starkly beautiful region was well known to the Pharaohs, who based their great wealth on the treasure mined in these remote mountains. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Roman, Arabs, and others sailed the Red Sea and established overland routs to the Nile and beyond. During the Ptolemaic period, elephants captured in Africa were brought north through the Park for use in military campaigns. These land routes were vital, as it was difficult to sail north against the Red Sea’s prevailing winds, and hazardous to navigate its coral reefs and shoals. The traders and travellers of the region left a legacy of  unique antiquities, many of which are still being discovered today. 
Mooring system in almost all dive sites - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2009
Dahara Wadi el Gimal - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012

The Ababda, the dwellers of this region, are an ancient people with a rich and colorful heritage which is also endangered. - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2009
Wadi el Gimal house reef - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Marsa Honkorab - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2013
Fishing boat - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2013
There are five island in WGNP. Wadi El Gemal Island is located 5 km off Ras Bughdadi at the north end of the Park. Extending northeast from Hamata is the Qul’an archipelago-sometimes called the Hamata Islands. The archipelago consist of four islands: from north to south, Siyal, Shawareet, Umm al-sheikh, and Mahabis Islands. A fifth, small islands lies off the Hamata mangrove, which is periodically connected with the mainland at low tide.

Satallite image of Wadi el Gimal Island - NASA 2011
Northern side of Wadi el Gimal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Satallite Image of The Hamata Islands - NASA 2011
Shawareet Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2013
Siyal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Umm el Sheikh Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Birds Watching in Hamata Islands - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
South East side of the Siyal Island -  Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Southern side of the Siyal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
The island range from 3 to 7 km from the mainland. They are low-lying with sandy beaches and raised fossil reefs, with fossilized coral and carbonate rocks. The entire region around the islands is a shallow  water area with rugged bottom morphology, and is surrounded by well-developed shallow fringing coral reefs bordered by a sloping sandy bed. Beyond the shallow reef-flats and intertidal areas the reef slope drops away and is replaced by sand, sand with seagrass, or sand with coral patches.

Spinner Dolphins (Stenella longirostris) - Wadi el Gimal Island - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2011
Soft Corals - Photo copy rights reserved to / Marco Di Santis
Turbo pethalatusWonderful patterned, beautiful chocolate brown shell with darker bands around it and lighter almost pinkish patches. A very shiny shell, catches your eye immediately. Usually seen on the bottom of the Sea near a reef. Pleas be considerate of others who also love the beauties of nature, Leave it in its place - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad - Copyright © 2011
Due to its relative isolation from other oceans, about 17% of the marine life is native to the Red Sea. Some 450 species of coral and over 1,200 species of fish create a living paradise for divers and snorkelers.Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
This is a remote part of the Red Sea to visit. Divers who opt to stay here swap nightlife and shopping for silence and wilderness. The resorts are experiencing a steady and healthy growth in tourist development, however, so there is excellent hotel accommodation on offer as well as a raft of activities in and out of the water. 

The Sea Cow ( Dugong dugon ) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
The Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Napoleon Wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2010
Gorgonian Hydroid ( Solanderia ) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2011
Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Coral blooms after dark, absorbing nutrients from the water around it and looks truly beautiful - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
Feather Duster Worm ( Sabellastarte indica ) Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
The Spanish dancer (Hexabranchus sanguineus)  - The Spanish dancer (Hexabranchus sanguineus) is typically red and it is one of the largest nudibranchs - many over 40cm in length.These brightly colored, undulating swimmers are found throughout the tropical Indo-Pacific and Red Sea.  They were given the name Spanish dancer because their swimming movement (often referred to as dancing) resembles the movement of a Spanish flamenco dancer's dress. Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012

Turbo radiatus (Gemelin, 1791) - Photo by/ Ahmed F.Gad -  Copyright © 2012
 Photo copy rights reserved to / Marco Di Santis 2012
Wadi el Gemal is one of the most celebrated and thriving national marine parks in Egypt and lies just to the north of Hamata and Berenice. It is well protected by a series of strict environmental laws and conservation organisations. The dive sites, once the realm of liveaboard divers only, are now easily reached by daily diving boats from Hamata and Wadi El Gimal. These sinclude the Hamata Islands, Sha'ab Makhsour, Sha'ab Ossama, Sattaya and Sha'ab Claude.

6 comments:

  1. Yet another scoop of your great photos. Thanks for sharing.
    This is one of my favourite parts of Egypt.
    I was in that place in December 2009.
    btw Could you, pls, reply to my gmail address, Ahmed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Marchin, Thanks for following my blog and for the feedback! i haven't got any email from you so far, pleas email me at: ahmed.redsea@gmail.com

      have a good day

      Delete
    2. I did. Still no response, though.

      Delete