Although it is a coastal dive site, we have also included Shona in this diver’s atlas. Many liveaboards from Port Ghalib make a stop here whether to do check dives, to end their diving safari with a pleasant and easy dive, or to pay its resident manatees, the dugongs, a visit. Since the dugongs here have occasionally had unpleasant encounters with RIB propellers, part of the bay has now been closed to ships (see the dotted red line on the satellite map).
The 360 m wide bay is located 8.5 km south of Ras Ghalib and is even accessible by land because of its location right next to a road. It is, however, difficult to cross over the fringing reef to the dive site, which is why piers are being planned from the hotel compounds to facilitate the dives. Shona cannot be considered a highlight of a diving safari. However, diving here at the beginning or end of a tour is certainly worthwhile because of its easy diving conditions, the dugongs and turtles found here, as well as the chance to find interesting marine life, such as sea slugs, crocodilefish and stonefish. Furthermore, because of the bay’s large size, it is rarely crowded with divers, who spread out over the entire reef.
Reasonable depth for the dives is between 10 to 15 m since most sights are found here. You can also dive along the outer edge of the fringing reef near the seabed at 30 m, but the sights here are rather unvarying. In fact, it is more interesting to dive around right under the boat
a RIB drop you off to the north, from where you can then dive back to the liveaboard. Unfortunately, the visibility in the bay is at times somewhat limited because of the tides.
Although Shona is a suitable night mooring and a good site for night dives, most visitors are only in transit and do not do so here.
Route A: outer reef-mooring Duration: about 50 min. Difficulty: *
Go by RIB about 200 m to the north along the outer reef . After descending, dive along the reef back to the mooring 3, keeping the reef on your right shoulder. The underwater landscape consists of the sandy seabed lined with coral rocks A, which creates an enchanting atmosphere, especially when the sun is low. However, keep in mind that a weak current that mostly flows to the south may be present here. It may at times be difficult find the right point to turn west into the bay, since you may loose sight of the reef wall if the visibility is limited and continue straight ahead instead. Therefore mind your depth; if you dive at a depth of no more than 20 m, the topography of the site will automatically lead you around the bend and back into the bay. Furthermore, diving deeper than 20 m is also not recommended since little of interest is found below this depth.
Route B: within the bay Duration: 30-50 min. Difficulty: *
Simply explore the reef directly from the boat 1. As at the outer reef, the sandy seabed here is also lined with coral rocks A, where many interesting things can be found if you take a closer look.
Tips / Hazards
• A good place to go snorkelling among the dugongs • Keep an eye out for hidden marine life • It may be difficult to find your way because of the