Sheba TourismKamaran Island located at 15.35° N 42.5667° E is the largest Yemen-controlled island in the Red Sea. The 108-km² (42-sq. mile) island is 18 km (11 miles) long and 7 km (4.5 miles) wide and is strategically located at the southern end of the Red Sea.It is a \"shelf island\"
located in the shallow waters of the Arabian peninsula's continental shelf with coral reefs surrounding three sides of the island.
History : Kamaran had been inhabited for centuries when the Portuguese established an outpost there in the 16th century. The island was occupied by the Ottoman Empire in the 19th century and used as a quarantine station for pilgrims conducting the hajj to the Ottoman-controlled Muslim holy city of Mecca.
In June 1915, during World War I, the British seized the island with troops from Aden and started appointing Commissioners to administer it, but did not declare formal possession. In 1923, the Treaty of Lausanne, which divided up the defeated Ottoman Empire, declared an end to its sovereignty over the island and that its future was to be \"settled by the parties concerned\" without specifying those parties. Britain continued
to occupy the island despite the objections of Yemen and administered it from the Colony of Aden. In 1949,
Britain formally declared the governor of Aden to be the governor of Kamaran but the island did not become
a part of the colony. On 30 November 1967, Kamaran became a part of the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen) upon its independence from Britain, but was seized by the adjacent Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen) in 1972 and
became a part of a unified Yemen in 1990.
Diving on Kamaran :
There are a lot of dive sites to explore around Kamaran! This is an excerpt of our Dive Log.
Ogban Island :
Explored Ogban Island's south tip and found a wonderful coral area about one km out in open water.
Goes down to 10m, so it's typical for Kamaran's shallow coral beds that extend from the shelf islands. Great for beginning divers.
Zubayr Island :
| Ed's Hope | N 15 12'31.5\" | E 42 03'31.5\"
Haycock, the northernmost island of Zubayr. Little more than a lava rock, we were able to circle it (almost) in one dive. Sandy bottom at 22m. Similar to Peace, with great underwater landscape, but less spectacular coral. Saw barracudas, turtles, and big snappers.
| Peace | N 15 10'17.1\" | E 42 07'05.1\"
The most spectacular coral area that we have found so far. You enter the water at 7m on the eastern wall of Rugged Island. The
bottom is reached at 15m. Endless cruising through a maze of coral cuts and channels, down coral walls, and into caves. The site
was named \"Peace and Development\" in honor of UNDP's efforts in Yemen, but veteran divers just call it \"Peace\
| Shark Reef | N 15 06'30.8\" | E 42 06'17.6\"
A small half-moon-shaped rock with heavy surf just south of Saddle Island. Under water a large area of big rock, lava and broken
reef. Sandy bottom at 26m. Visibility was not very good here, but we did see the shark chewing the nylon net!
| N 15 40'32.2\" | E 42 18'16.0\"
The island northwest of Ogban, about half an hour further on. Diving there is very similar to Ogban. This is the best diving near to
Kamaran, and one can combine Kutamah and Ogban for a full day of diving (two to three tanks) and have lunch on the beach.
| Bongo Bay | N 15 22'02.7\" | E 42 37'36.3\"
This is the little sandy bay just south of the camp, anchorage for the boats. One day the bay will be ideal for \"pool\" training and
open water scuba practice when PADI training starts (end of 2002).
| Barracuda Slopes | N 15 04'01.3\" | E 42 08'19.1\"
Our first dive at Zubayr. Just picked a spot at random. Entered the water off a lava cliff at 20 m depth. Sandy and rocky flats
broken by small patches of reef, gently sloping outwards. Groups of large barracuda watching us. Very clear water.
| Volcanic Bay | N 15 00'49.4\" | E 42 10'04.3\"
Our second dive at Zubayr. Reached the bottom at 20 m off a steep lava cliff. Exceptionally clear water. Spectacular rock and lava
formations, channels, caves, all overgrown by coral, including some soft coral, that looked very much alive. As Stan said: \"That's
what we dive for.