Habili Gaffar. (sometimes pronounced “Jaffar”) lies just 1.3 km. east of Umm Arouk .and is also at the heart of St. John’s reefs. The habili rises from a depth of over 100 m .and forms a ledge at 70 m before rising steeply to 3 m below. the surface, where it has a diameter of about 30 m. Because of this small size, Habili Gaffar. offers no shelter from the wind and waves and can, therefore. only be approached during calm seas. It also only has one mooring 2, so the boats must be aligned to moor here, and since it is excellent for early morning dives, several dive groups are often found here underwater in the early morning.
The habili’s rugged walls .are densely overgrown with corals and plunge from the reef flat.to a depth of about 70 m. In the blue, you find shoals of barracudas and snappers, and jacks hunt for food around .the reef. To the north, the wall forms a small protrusion at 40 m. where the current splits, which is an ideal place to look for big fish .such as grey reef sharks. The reef flat is a suitable place to make a safety stop .at the end of the dive, and it is covered with a myriad .of soft and hard corals .and is surrounded by shoals of anthias and fusiliers. However, there is always quite a strong surge. can push a diver up to two metres away, so always keep a sufficient distance from the corals.
This dive site. can only be recommended to experienced. divers because of its depth and often strong currents. If you do no stay close enough to the reef, you can easily be swept by the current into the open sea. Nevertheless, Habili Gaffar is undoubtedly a highlight among St. John’s reefs.