Best Diving sites in Dahab

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If you have dived in Dahab before, please share your experiences: Dive spots you would recommend, which Dive Center you used, Fishes & Diving, Visibility, Currents, etc. Please post your comments in the section below, by doing so you will help fellow divers to plan their next trip ;)

Dahab offers great scuba diving opportunities and is world famous for the Dahab Blue Hole dive site. It is mostly coral reef gently slopping down as well as shallow coral gardens. Most of the dive sites are easy, making Dahab a great place to learn scuba diving. In fact, there are over 50 dive centres just in Dahab so you have plenty of choice!!!

Dahab Blue Hole

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mattkieffer/2375663872/

They all offer various Padi and CMAS courses from beginners to very experienced divers with Tech and deep diving courses. However they don’t have the same standards on quality and safety and you should choose carefully your dive centre!

In this page you will find more detailed information about scuba diving in Dahab.

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The marine life is fantastic with all the usual reef fishes of the Red Sea and pelagic fishes like barracudas and jacks. Turtles can also be spotted. However it is rare to spot Sharks in this part of Red Sea.

The coral is beautiful but has been heavily damaged in the shallow parts of the reef by mass diving and by careless divers (tut tut!)… However if you go to protected areas such as Ras Mumlach or Ras Abu Galum, you can still find superb and vibrant hard and soft coral.

But what really makes famous Dahab, is the world famous Blue Hole dive site! It is a large 70 m wide hole within the coral reef going down to 80 m and with a 30 m long arch going to the open sea on its bottom. It is a great dive site for all divers with nice coral and reef life but Deep divers and Tech divers from all over the world come to Dahab to dive under the Blue Hole Arch.

Unfortunately some divers who are less experienced also try to dive this very difficult spot, hence why the Blue Hole is now known as the “Most Dangerous Dive Site in the World!”. There are about 28 divers killed each year on this single spot!

So please DO NOT attempt to dive the Blue Hole if you are not a very experienced diver with Deep Diving and Mix gas training experience!!! You can watch this Video on the Blue Hole Tragedy:

Freedivers also come to the Blue hole to try to swim through the Arch.

Another fantastic dive site in Dahab is called the Canyon and consists of a kind of underwater tube going down to 30 meters. This site is reserved to experienced divers as well. This spot, along with the Blue Hole, can become VERY crowded with dozens of divers underwater at the same time!

Dahab doesn’t have any wrecks to dive and it is not the best place if you like underwater macro photography. If you are looking for incredible Macro and Muck Diving, try the Lembeh Strait or Wakatobi in Indonesia and Mabul Island in Malaysia!

There are about 20 dive sites around Daha. The best ones are:

  • Dahab Blue Hole
  • The Bell
  • The Canyon
  • Eel Garden
  • Lighthouse reef
  • The Islands

Where to stay?

I usually use this website to book in advance my hotels in Dahab as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because it's free to cancel and change the dates.

Best time to dive in Dahab

It is possible to dive all year round. However the water temperature does vary a lot.

  • From July to September, it is the hottest month with a water temperature of about 28°C.
  • The coldest month is February with a water temperature of about 21°C.
  • From October to November, you can expect from 25°C to 27°C.
  • From March to June, the water is warming up with temperatures ranging between 22°C to 25°C.

Hot Tip

  • There is not really one single “best diving season” in the Red Sea but if you don’t like crowded dive sites, try to avoid the high season from July to December! If you do go during the busy period, you should book your hotel well in advance.

Scuba Diving conditions

The sea conditions are generally excellent in the North of Red Sea.

Visibility: You can expect very good visibility all year round. It usually ranges from 20 m to 30 m depending on the dive site. At some places you can have up to 60 meters!

Water temperature: Varies a lot around Dahab. The coldest month is February where you can experience a rather chilly 21°C. December and January also have water temperatures around 22°C. From October to November and from March to June, you can expect around 26 °C. If you prefer warmer water, between June and September has an average water temrperature of 28°C.

Current: Generally gentle but there are also great drift dives!

Snorkelling in Dahab

The best snorkelling spot in Dahab and maybe in the whole of Egypt is at Blue Hole. Many operators offer snorkelling tours to Blue Hole so the site can get VERY crowded!

The Lighthouse Reef and Eel Garden are also popular snorkelling spots. You can also directly jump in the water on the sea shore and follow the reef but entry and exit can be a problem!

The coral and the reef life is beautiful. However on many spots, the coral is unfortunately damaged.

Be careful, due to the wind, it can be dangerous to snorkel by your own and there can be strong currents! And always be careful of the windsurfers passing by!

Dahab is also famous for freediving and now lots of dive operators offer freediving courses.

Dahab Camel Desert

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/yours_truly/3061430338/

Diving Safety

If you are planning an upcoming dive trip or travelling to Dahab, it is a really good idea to invest in travel insurance for scuba diving, because you never know what could happen and when you might need it (because accidents do happen!). I recommend this diving insurance as they offer worldwide coverage and focus on providing scuba divers a quality insurance and medical assistance service.

Travel Guide

Now that you know all about the underwater world, you might want to start planning your scuba holiday! Check out our Dahab Travel Review for information about how to get there, activities and excursions, where to stay, and more.

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The Dahab Blue Hole is one of the most famous and best dive sites in the whole World! It is a dive site located 10km Nor...

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8 dive logs in “Dahab

  1. Hey there, my names David from Australia, I am currently in the process of organising to do 6 weeks in Dahab to do my EFR, Rescue and my DM. I have spoken to a few places and all the rates seem on par however one that really appeals to me is Desert Divers because of the freediving, rock climbing and trekking components which are 3 things I’m majorly in to. Can you advise me on A. If you know anything about these guys and B. any more recommendations ie, better companies to go with, what to look out for, where to stay etc, every bit of info helps.
    Cheers mate
    Dave

    • I’ve been diving with Penguin divers for 3 weeks, good prices, good staff, great restaurant and cheap rooms. Dahab is nice but I was there 5 years ago and tourist kinda hit it….colored canyon and white canyon rock!

  2. I am going to be in Dahab (Le Meridien resort) for two weeks in November – what are the best places to see (to dive)? Whilst I have been to Marsa Alam several times its my first time in Dahab

    • The bells, blue hole and the canyons are awesome or that’s what they were 5 years ago. I’m curious what you think of Dahab since you’ve been in Marsa alam before. I was in Dahab and went to Marsa last week :)

    • I have dived Dahab three times, it’s my favourite all-round place to be (so far!). While you are there, try to get to South Dahab (20 mins by jeep) for a day’s diving in the most amazing chilled out surroundings. Also, my fave site is called “The Islands” just off the lagoon in Dahab. It’s a series of three rocky outcrops, max about 25m IIRC, but it’s teeming with life and seems quite a special place. Rarely visited so you could be completely on your own…

    • The beautiful thing about Dahab is that the question of best places to dive is irrelevant.
      The Eel Garden is a great site with some shallow coral that is breath-taking in colour and fish life.
      The Islands is a maze of corals that grow from a depth of 15m up to 5m from the surface. Some have been knocked over by a tremor and you can see the whole structure is coral and not rock with coral on the top.
      Bannerfish Bay is a delight for experienced divers as they can find so many little things if you allow a little time to explore. For the less experienced it is a forgiving area where you can improve your skills and see turtles and morays etc.
      The Canyon is not so much a tube as a hole in the floor that takes you into a cave. It’s different to most things you come across. The bottom is at 30m. There is a tunnel going deeper for tec divers.
      The Blue Hole has an exaggerated reputation based on people referring to different aspects of the dive site. Recreational divers do a dive called the Bells to Blue Hole. The Bells is like a 3 sided chimney that you descend down and then come out of the fireplace at 26-28m. You then swim along a wall that drops away to who knows what depth. You then come to a saddle, which is actually the lip of the Blue Hole. Recreational divers cross into the hole at 7m. Hardly dangerous. You can swim around or across the Blue Hole to the exit point. It is tec divers that go to the Arch. Recreational diving is perfectly safe here if you stay within your limits.
      Southern Oasis is an area of dive sites; Golden Block, Moray Gardens, 3 Pools, Um Sid, The Caves. These are good sites for novice divers in experienced hands.
      Ras Abu Galum is a camel ride away and offers some great diving, particularly Big Rock (or Triggerfish Alley depending on who you talk to).
      Gabr El bint has pristine coral just a boat ride away. This makes a great day out. The currents are stronger which means more fish and more chance to see the bigger stuff.
      There are still more sites that I haven’t listed. Each has its own flavour.
      I work in the office of Poseidon Divers and I believe a big difference in these sites is the guide. A good guide can make an average site into a treasure by knowing where to look, what to show and keeping you safe. A poor guide will just drag you around from the start to finish in as quick a time as possible and leave you to get out of it what you like.

  3. I spent a year and a half in Dahab and have some advice for anyone travelling there. While it is only my opinion I think The Islands is the best dive site in Dahab. The Blue Hole and The Canyon can be a great days diving as long as you keep an eye on your NDLs. The Eel Garden is fantastic for giant puffer fish and “South” is great for lion fish and has barely any current most of the time so its great for DSDs or inexperienced divers. Ras Abu Galum is also a fantastic site, but it does take a few hours to get there, either by camel or boat.

    As for dive centres I would recommend Desert Divers, Mirage Divers, Dive Urge and the Nesima Resort. These are all in the main area of Dahab and offer good service. They also treat their staff well!

    As for places to avoid, the Lighthouse is the most used dive site in the city and was very busy, with not an awful lot to see there. It was a few years since I’d been there but Black Rock and its owner had a bad reputation with many other dive centres and their ex staff. It is part of the Coralia resort – the biggest hotel in Dahab – so if you are staying there I would recommend going into town for your dive centre.

  4. Scuba diving in Dahab has many benefits. As it is predominantly shore diving we can pick and choose when we dive in relaxed manner. Hand picking the time of the day based more on the wind or tides for the particular dive site you would like to dive. No boat schedules or 6am wake up calls (unless you really want them).
    Diving here is relaxed, holidaying here is a pleasure and you end your vacation chilled and with great memories of fantastic dives.
    At Scuba Seekers Diving Center we can offer you the very best and most up to date in training and equipment for recreational, technical and sidemount diving. We are a full TDI, SDI, PADI facility and also we welcome and can facilitate GUE divers. We explore new sites in Dahab but will also take you to the favorites here.
    Abu Telha and Abu Helal are two of the best dive sites here and often overlooked. Both offer beautiful reef gardens and for technical divers there is a deeper canyon here that covers over 1km.
    Another not so usual site is Tiger Reef (close to the Blue Hole) which has a sloped coral garden and then a nice drop off great for rec and tec divers.
    From the daily boat I would also recommend Shuggarat (small trees) and Shoab Sayed. Most trips just go to Gabr el Bint (which is very nice) but if the weather is good both these other sites are excellent. Shuggarat has amazing gorgonian fan coral and a deep canyon and drop off. Shoab Sayed is like ‘The Islands’ big brother. A beautiful garden rich with huge coral pinnacles you can swim round and up and over and a cheeky little shallow swim through at 6m.
    Islands dive site can be done in a number of different profiles rather than just the normal loop. There is a third island not many people know about plus the seagrass area is rich with seahorses and shrimp. Also you can explore each side of the reef outside the islands area in seperate dives too. At least 6 different profiles for this site alone.
    The Blue Hole does not deserve the reputation it has for being dangerous. Conditions there are usually very good all year round and the site boasts many benefits that making diving easy, safe and more fun including easy entry and exit points and wall diving which means that divers can easily move up shallower if they find they are getting low on air. The problem with this sites is some divers doing dives beyond their experience and training who are ill-equipped and make bad judgements. There is an arch at the side of the Blue Hole which is at around 55m (depending on the side) and 26m long. The max limit for all recreational divers is 40m. Divers who try to do the arch without proper training are subject to problems to not having enough gas to breathe (single tank divers) and not used to the gas narcosis at this depth so make bad judgements that lead to accidents. The arch dive is beautiful but it’s essential to do it the proper way (with the right equipment and training), not only for safety but so you really get to enjoy the wonderful dive. The Blue Hole can also be dived as a recreational diver (adv divers and above) but without the arch. For recreational sites you can either enter from the Bells (a chimney with a straight descent from the surface to 27m looking out into the blue). Or you can just dive in and outside the blue hole itself.
    Another site people forget is Mashraba (south of lighthouse) Here is a beautiful garden and as its not so popular you often get the site to yourself. For technical divers or those deep certified there is also a beautiful swim-through at 40m.
    Dahab is full of wonderful sites with plenty to offer and my advise is that if you have run out of new sites to try something new, dive the site a different way, take some more training so you can extend your bottom time or increase your depth. The same site can be completely different at varying depths or dived in a slightly different profile. For more information about what we offer here feel free to contact me but you can use this advise for wherever you dive and whoever you dive with.

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