Shipwreck expedition in the Egyptian Red Sea

Location: Unnamed Road, Hurghada, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt

Season: July 3, 2024 to July 18, 2024

Session Dates: July 3 - 18, 2024

Application Deadline: December 31, 2023

Deadline Type: Rolling


Program Type:
Field School

RPA Certified:

The Shipwreck Survey

Project Director:
Ruud Stelten, Ph.D.

Project Description:

The Red Sea is one of the most amazing places in the world to dive. It is teeming with marine life and vast coral gardens. It has also been an important crossroads for thousands of years. As a result, this vital stretch of water, linking North Africa to the Arabian peninsula, contains an astonishing number of historical submerged sites. When the Suez Canal opened in 1869, it became one of the most popular sailing routes in the world. The Red Sea’s many shallow coral reefs and other navigational hazards caused countless ships to wreck in subsequent decades, each with their own fascinating story.

This expedition is aimed at diving some of the most spectacular reefs and wrecks in the Egyptian Red Sea, from nineteenth-century steam ships to incredible WWII wrecks. The educational trip will comprise a 16-day program during which we will dive the best the Red Sea has to offer. This includes numerous historic shipwreck sites, such as the world-famous Thistlegorm, Carnatic, Kingston, Giannis D, Krisoula K, Dunraven, Numidia, and Aida. In addition, we will visit remote coral reefs teeming with marine life such as turtles, dolphins, and exotic shark species at Brothers, Daedalus, and Elphinstone Reef. Participants will be completely immersed in the history of the Red Sea and each shipwreck we visit.

The liveaboard vessel Red Sea Explorer will be our base during this trip. At the start of the trip, you will learn about the maritime history of the Red Sea. On board, there will be daily presentations on the history of the shipwrecks we’ll be diving. In addition, we will organize heritage management workshops and discussions whereby you learn about the challenges facing these wreck sites and how these can be managed by heritage professionals. For those interested, we will provide private underwater photography and videography workshops. You will have a chance to use professional underwater camera equipment to capture the beauty of the Red Sea. This is a valuable skill to learn for aspiring underwater scientists.

Period(s) of Occupation: Nineteenth century - WWII

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 16 days

Minimum Age: 18

Experience Required: Diving in the Red Sea can be challenging due to depth and water conditions such as strong currents. Therefore, we require participants to hold an Advanced Open Water certification and have dived within a year of the start of the program. You are more than welcome to sign up for the program if you do not yet possess the required dive experience and certifications, as long as you meet the requirements at the start of the program.

Room and Board Arrangements:
Accommodation on the first night will be in a hotel in Hurghada or Port Ghalib. During the expedition, we will spend 14 nights on board the Red Sea Explorer liveaboard vessel. The Red Sea Explorer is a luxurious and spacious boat measuring 43 meters in length. Its steel hull makes it a very stable vessel. Staterooms are spacious and each has its own bathroom. The boat features two sun decks, a large common area with TV, and a spacious dive deck. The staff on board is very friendly, helpful, and safety-oriented. Wifi is available on some days of the trip, when we are within reach of a cellular network. We believe that good food is key to a successful and productive project. Food and drinks will be provided for the duration of the trip. When in Hurghada, we will be going out to dinner or enjoy the hotel’s meals. On board the Red Sea Explorer, food is amazing. Three delicious meals will be served each day, with plenty of snacks in between. Meals on board usually consist of meat and fish, rice, potatoes, pasta, vegetables, salads, and delicious desserts! There are plenty of vegetarian options too. The total course fee is USD 4,550. This includes: 14 nights liveaboard dive trip; 1 night hotel accommodation in Hurghada or Port Ghalib; food and drinks based on three meals per day; airport transfers; presentations and workshops; all diving activities; nitrox fills; port fees, marine park fees, fuel surcharges

Contact Information:

Ruud Stelten

Road to English Quarter


St. Eustatius

Phone: +31642311256

support Us

The AIA is North America's largest and oldest nonprofit organization dedicated to archaeology. The Institute advances awareness, education, fieldwork, preservation, publication, and research of archaeological sites and cultural heritage throughout the world. Your contribution makes a difference.

Post a Fieldwork Opportunity