The SS Thistlegorm Wreck is one of the best dive sites in the world and is actually considered by many as THE best Wreck dive in the World! The SS Thistlegorm is a World War 2 ship wreck located in the North of Red Sea in the Strait of Gubal. It is a former 128m long British transport ship sunk in 1941 after a German air attack.
What is really great on the SS Thistlegorm Wreck are the artefacts that you can see underwater. There are 2 locomotives, 2 tanks, Army Trucks, jeeps, Motorbikes, Boots, stacks of rifles, and various spare parts for planes and cars. It is like diving within a piece of History! There are so many things to see that you need at least 2 dives to explore the entire shipwreck! It is really the perfect spot if you like wreck diving! Penetration is possible into the holds to discover the various items. You can also still see the ship anti aircraft gun.
The SS Thistlegorm Wreck lies now in 30m of water. The deepest point is the prop, about 32m deep and the shallowest part is only 16m deep. Current can sometimes be quite strong on this spot and can make the dive quite challenging. The visibility is often good but can be reduced by the silt in the water depending on the current and weather conditions. This dive is reserved to Padi Open Water Advanced and CMAS 2* because of the depth below 20m.
The marine life around the Wreck is really great and you can encounter Batfishes, a resident turtle, Barracudas, Snappers, schools of Jacks and all the usual reef fishes of the Red Sea.
As it is the most famous dive site in the Red Sea, it can get VERY crowded meaning it the same underwater with various dive groups in the same spot. So try not lose your dive buddy amongst the crowds!
The best is to explore the SS Thistlegorm during a Liveaboard tour. You will be there early in the morning before all the day trips boats from Sharm El Sheikh arrive. If you dive this wreck from Sharm El Sheikh, you will need to get up very early as it takes about 4 hours to reach the dive site! Day trips usually include 2 dives on the shipwreck before heading back to Sharm El Sheikh. Night diving is also possible if the conditions are right.
I usually use this website to book in advance my Liveaboards in the Red Sea as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because they have an easy booking system.
The SS Thistlegorm has been constructed in 1940 in Sunderland in UK. She was used during WW2 to transport various war supplies and armed with a Gun. She made 3 trips to America, Argentina and Dutch Antilles before her final voyage. The 6th of October 1941 she was hit by two bombs and rapidly sunk killing 9.
In 1952, Jacques-Yves Cousteau re-discovered the SS Thistlegorm Wreck after following fishermen’s information. In 1956, the National Geographic made a first documentary about this wreck. You can watch this amazing video of one of the first dives on the SS Thistlegorm in the 1950’s just after it was discovered by Cousteau.
In 1991, Sharm El Sheikh became a popular scuba diving destination and soon the dive operators began to explore again the shipwreck.
You can dive SS Thistlegorm Wreck all year long. Access: from the Shore. See the map of SS Thistlegorm Wreck on the right for the exact location.
Fishes you may spot while diving SS Thistlegorm Wreck
... and more fishes & sea life, Dogtooth Tuna, Jack
Napoleon Wrasse FishPhoto by Jihye Lee
Trevally Schoal DiverPhoto by Yann Hubert
Crocodile Fish RestingPhoto by Jihye Lee
TurtlePhoto by Yann Hubert
School TrevallyPhoto by Jihye Lee
Crocodile Fish Komodo IslandPhoto by Jihye Lee
TrevallyPhoto by Yann Hubert
Trevally RangiroaPhoto by Yann Hubert
Turtle Playing With DiversPhoto by Matthieu Billaud
Turtle Swimming Back ViewPhoto by Matthieu Billaud