Aqaba Dive Site | Ras Al Yamanya

Best Eel Garden

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True name Ras Al Yamanya
Depth 6m to 22m+
Conditions light surge
Visibility varies (10m surface; 20-30m+ at depth)
Platform shore and boat
Level beginner to intermediate
Snorkelling? No
Other names used Eel Garden, The Pinnacle

While ‘Ras Al Yamanya’ is the site’s real name, its popular nickname ‘Eel Garden’ is accurate, too: this site is home to one of the largest known colonies of Garden Eels, living in a wide expanse of seagrass in just 7-10m of water and frequented by several species of moray.

 RAqaba Dive Site | Ras Al Yamanya
Some people call Ras Al Yamanya the “Eel Garden” – it’s easy to see why.

That’s fun for a few minutes, but let’s carry on to the reef – it’s just a little further and much more impressive with coral heads and pinnacles scattered across a sandy bottom. We’ll pass colourful soft-coral growths rising 3m and more from the seafloor, all densely populated with macro life (especially cleaner shrimps), reef fish, anemones, and more.

 RAqaba Dive Site | Ras Al Yamanya
You’ll see a lot more than eels in Ras Al Yamanya’s underwater garden ...

Venturing still deeper, we discover an incredible black coral forest around 20m, and another pinnacle – this one rock – where triggerfish are often sighted. This is a calm, relaxing dive at any depth with a huge variety of life and environments to observe. You could easily spend a tank on just a few pinnacles; each one is unique and offers spectacular photo opportunities.

To experience the Ras Al Yamanya to the fullest, you’ll need careful buoyancy control. The variety of macro life here is astounding if you can get close enough to a pinnacle without damaging it – or kicking up the sandy bottom.

Following the bottom contour back to safety-stop and exit, we’ll have another chance to look for those seahorses – keep an eye out! They can be really elusive.

And if you’ve never been night diving before, we should definitely come back here later – swimming crabs, octopi, and other nocturnal creatures feed here regularly and even the sandy bottom comes alive. It’ll be a great introduction.

... of course, you can expect to see plenty of those, too!

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