Breaking News: Our Red Sea, Egypt, and Lebanon Retreats for 2020 have officially been rescheduled for 2021, and there are a few spots left. More details at the end of this post!
Here, I’m recapping my travels in 2019, including my Wander Women Red Sea trips in September.
In my last post, I recounted the magic that took place above sea level on our overnight glamping excursion to Ras Abu Galum, the culmination of an incredible week at Wander Women Red Sea. Today, I’m taking you into the blue with us, where we found all kinds of undersea inspiration.
First, though, in case you missed my last post or need a reminder of what makes Ras Abu Galum so special right from arrival, here’s a quick refresh on how we get to these world-class dive sites. Not by boat, and not by foot — well, not our feet, anyway.
We get there by the four hoofs of our camels.
I’ve had a few requests for a blog post on the ethics of camel riding, something I researched heavily both before my own first trip to Egypt and again while planning these retreats. There is a definitely scarcity of conversation around this topic compared to say, elephant riding (an ethical no-no) or horseback riding (widely accepted when done right), so I’m eager to share what I’ve learned.
It’s coming, pinky promise! But in the meantime, needless to say, I would never include anything on my retreats that I didn’t feel comfortable and responsible taking part in myself.
Upon arrival, we trade saddles for scuba tanks. While there are no dive shops at the remote outpost of Ras Abu Galum, the camps are incredibly accommodating and happy to let us create pop-up ones within their sprawling thatch-roof structures.
Seriously, can you imagine a more glorious gear set up? With music popping, hair blowing, and good vibes flowing, I’ve never smiled bigger while struggling into a wetsuit.
Ugh, have I mentioned how much I love diving with a badass group of girls by my side? Getting close to the conclusion of these retreat recaps is making me nostalgic, and these two groups were my dream team — and moments like these are the reason I created Wander Women Retreats!
Ras Abu Galum is surrounded by beautiful dive sites in all directions — on our overnight adventures, we tackle my favorite two of them.
I can’t think of a more special place to celebrate our final underwater moments of this epic dive and yoga retreat! With healthy lush coral, dramatic topography, abundant sea creatures, and waters all to ourselves, it’s a true culmination of the best of the trip.
Read more about the dive sites of Ras Abu Galum in the blog post from my first trip there.
And I think the incredible underwater photos in this post from our retreat photographer Jenny Lord show the transformation that took place throughout the retreat as everyone embraced their inner mermaid.
Some of the most consistent feedback we receive on our retreats is how much confidence and comfort for guests gain in just one short week — assessments that leave us glowing with pride.
Another thing we’re delighted by? Bringing together groups of divers of all levels, and seeing the way they support and lift each other up.
Our experienced divers pair off and bond over their past adventures and current dive obsessions, while and also give tips and a sense of community to our brand new divers, some of whom were certified especially for our retreats — and who also cheer each other on. It’s a true sisterhood.
Back on land, some of the girl cracked me up with wanting to capture their quite literal interpretations of our camel diving safari. Yoga managed to get involved too!
I can’t tell you how proud it makes me to see my dream of creating women’s dive retreats that both lift up women in the male-dominated dive industry and create a warm and welcoming environment to introduce this ocean activism inspiring activity to so many realized.
We’ve had over a dozen women get Open Water certified just to come on a Wander Women Retreat, and facilitated nearly a hundred continuing education certifications while on them. We’ve hired all-female dive teams, created one of the most lucrative pay-structures in the industry, and given back to female-helmed conservation and ocean advocacy groups. We are always striving to make our trips greener, our guests happier, and our staff the most supported.
Normally I’d blush to write something like this, but it’s not an accomplishment I alone can claim credit for — it’s shared by all our team members past and present, every guest who has ever been part of the Wander Women family, and anyone who has ever cheered us on with a comment, like or share.
I can’ thank you enough for helping me make my underwater dreams come true.
And that’s (almost) a wrap! With the diving done, we had just one more day of fun…
Intrigued by Egypt? Our 2020 retreats have been rescheduled to 2021, and there’s a few spots left in each. We’ll be holding Wander Women Lebanon: An Adventure + Yoga Retreat from August 21-28th (waitlist only!), Wander Women Egypt: An Ancient Adventure and Yoga Retreatfrom August 28th-September 4th (waitlist only!), and Wander Women Red Sea: A Dive + Yoga Retreatfrom September 4-11th (four spots left!)
This sounded so great! Wish I could join your future dive retreats! ❤️
You should join us someday for sure 🙂 It’s hard for me to go back to diving any other way — they are the best!
Wow makes diving sound exciting a great post
Thanks Jo! Diving is the best 😉