Best Diving sites of Sharm El Sheikh & surroundings

Sharm el sheikh is offering great local dive sites and as well as to the Straits of Tiran, 
Ras Mohamed and the wreck of the Thistlegorm. 
We can also dive with you in Dahab at the legendary Blue Hole and the Canyon!

The Straits of Tiran, situated at the beginning of the Gulf of Aqaba, is one of the best sites in the area. There are four coral reefs named after the 19th Century English cartographers who drew the first nautical map of this region: Jackson Reef, Thomas Reef, Woodhouse Reef and Gordon Reef.

These reefs divide the strait into two canals : to the east is the so-called Grafton Passage, which is used exclusively by ships going northwards, while to the west is the Enterprise Passage for ships heading south. East of the island of Tiran and the nearby island of Sanafir, the configuration of the canal floor makes navigation impossible.

The coral reef plateaus are loaded with fish life and the deep wall drop offs offer the opportunity of encounters with hammerhead sharks, pelagic fish and occasional tiger sharks. On Jackson Reef you are most likely to see hammerheads from July to September.


Location: Straits of Tiran
Description: Shark diving
Depth: 19 metres 

Here you will see the best coral garden in Sharm El Sheikh. The site is one of the best and most famous in the Red Sea. It has an amazing underwater landscape. The most dived part of the reef is the southern end due to its calm waters. At 27m lies a Red Anemone, which, in spite of the depth, is bright red. The coral garden is at the western corner of the reef, between 5 and 12m. It resembles a big aquarium, with schools of Black Snappers, Red Tooth Triggerfish and Cornet Fish. The northern part of the reef is dived when the sea is calm, usually in the summer. This dive is done in blue water, to search for a school of Scalloped Hammerheads! On this side you find the wreck of Lara at a depth of between 45 and 120m.



Location: Straits of Tiran

Description: Offshore reef

Depth: 0 - 50 metres 


Thomas is the smallest of the four reefs, but also has some of the strongest currents.

It is possible to dive the whole of this reef if your air consumption is good and the currents are kind. Can be a challenging dive as there are currents and counter-currents here with it being sandwich between Gordon and Woodhouse Reefs. At 35 m there is a canyon but that's another story for tekkies. When the current picks up just let it take you because the counter-current will hit and slow you from 2 or 3 knots to a dead stop. Fin hard and you will get through it for an exhilarating dive. Keep close to the reef and shallow for the last part of the dive around the back and surface for you pick up. 





Location:  Woodhouse Reef Straits of Tiran

Description: Offshore reef

Depth: 0 - 30 metres


The Woodhouse Reef is the longest and narrowest reef in the Strait of Tiran. The most interesting part is located in the northeast and is approximately one kilometer long. Here is a gap which leads to a sandy area at about 30 meters deep. You can spot red anemones here. In the north corner of the reef is often a strong current. During a drift dive you will see hard, soft and black corals. Also, eagle rays, tuna, jack fish and sharks are found here.


Location: Straits of Tiran

Description: Drift reef

Depth: 0 - 35 metres

 

Gordon Reef is the most southern reef in the Straits of Tiran. You'll find shallow plateaus, with the top of the reef sections of the damaged Luilla wreck. This wreck is also called the Lovilla. It sank on September 1981. The vegetation here is mixed. Hard corals are interspersed with a gradual descent of soft corals and huge gorgonians.
Permanent residents of the Gordon Reef are napoleon fish, blue spotted stingrays and trigger fish. On the sandy plateaus you'll also see eels and in the depths sometimes white tip reef sharks swim by.





Location: North of Naama Bay and Ras Bob

Description: Drift reef

Depth: 30 - 45 metres


The name of this site means “Christian Cape” in Arabic. A drift dive that starts on a sandy plateau around 6 meters. The reef cuts away in a series of shallow bays where the sandy flows originates. At 12 meters you can see a lovely red anemone in the middle of an impressive coral garden. This dive is best kept shallow to admire the spectacular coral heads. Ras Nasrani is the ideal spot to find the giant clams, deep purples, blues, browns, being the area with the highest population density in the Red Sea


Location: Straits of Tiran

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 25 metres


Ras Gamila marks the entrance to the Straits of Tiran and is a wonderful drift dive. The dive can be made as a shallow dive between 15-10m or as a deeper dive between 25-30m generally not marked on the dive maps. . As a shallow dive you drift along admiring the coral garden sandy area beneath you with the fringing reef to one side, often Turtles, Butterfly fish and Titan Trigger fish are spotted here. 



Location: Sharm el Sheikh-local

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 30 metres


A small sandy bay leading to a beautiful canyon with a sandy floor that drops down to 30 meters. Once you leave the canyon you can follow the reef wall along to the wreck of Noose One, a diving boat that sank there in 1994 after a fire and that lies upside down at a depth of 15 meters.


 
Location: Sharm El Sheikh-local

Description: Wall / drift
Depth: 1 - 40 metres 

Boat dive on a fringing reef with caves.

Far Garden is located east of Na'ama Bay and The Near & Middle Gardens. It gradually curves around to the north as you round the tip - there can be current here. At the tip of the headland the gentle slop drops away from around 18m and becomes a steep wall. At this point if you descend to 42 metres you will find a small cave. There are some beautiful knotted fan corals and gorgonian fans here. As you ascend up the wall turn back towards the west and head reef to your right shoulder, where there several more small caves worth looking at around the 15m mark. Finally finish your dive on the upper part of the gentle slope whilst enjoying the reef life. 


Location: Sharm El Sheikh-local

Description: Reef
Depth: 6 - 15 metres 


Middle Garden is located east of Na'ama Bay and the Near Garden. Like Near Garden it has a gentle slope which falls away to 20-25m and is a combination of sand and colourful coral formations and outcrops. There are a number of large boulder type outcrops boasting yellow waver coral (which looks like a giant lettuce) as well as raspberry coral and cone coral. A nice way to dive this site is to head east at the deeper part of your dive and then return at around 6m, where there is a proliferation of small fish life.


Location: Sharm El Sheikh-local
Description: Reef / drift / night dive
Depth: 5 - 25 metres

The Near Garden is located northeast of Na'ama Bay (north of Sharm el Shek) and as its name suggests is nearer to Na'ama Bay than Middle Garden (located east) and Far Garden located even further to the east just before the mainland swings back to the west. Near Garden has a gentle slope which falls away to 20-25m and is a combination of sand and colourful coral formations and outcrops. If you head south from this slope it drops away on an increasingly steep curve until you reach 50m and beyond. Current is rarely a consideration here and this makes it ideal for night dives from Na'ama Bay, or safari boats. It really is a colourful dive with shoals of red sea bannerfish, longnose & masked butterflyfish and angelfish crowding the coral outcrops.

Location: Sharm El Sheikh-local

Description: Wall / drift dive

Depth: 5 - 30 metres 


The Tower is often dived as a shore dive, where divers enter the water and go down up to around 5m, where there is a cave which goes through the reef for several metres. The tunnel then opens into a three sided canyon in the reef wall and drops away steeply. This site actually gets its name from a rock formation above the surface and to the south of the shore entrance which is clearly visible from dive boats. There is a stone tower which sits proud of the rocky shoreline. The tower is an impressive dive in terms of topography and also has some great marine attractions. There are several small caves with sweepers and glassfish crammed wall to wall and this also makes an excellent night dive spot


Location: Sharm El Sheikh-local 

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 30 metres



Although ist conformation is similar to Amphoras and Turtle Bay and, indeed, is common to this entire stretch of coast, Paradise differs in the taller coral pinnacles that rise on the slope between the reef ledge and the drop-off. Here these towers look like sculpture pieces with a variety of hues due to the growth of red, pinkish and yellow Alcyonarians (genus Dendronephthya). The overall effect is a magnificent environment that is unique in ist kind. This site extends between the two small beaches on a line with the Royal Paradise Resort. Access can be gained from the shore by asking the diving centre there. However, the classic dive is a drift dive to the south from a boat. After descending for 24-28 meters, near the drop-off area and keeping the reef to your left, you can glide through the pinkish pinnacles that are sometimes crowned with Acropora sp. Other larger table corals grow on the bottom, from which some gorgonians also break loose. By going through this superb marine landscape you will be able to admire a host of reef fauna, from Parrotfish to the large Napoleon fish, swarms of Butterfly fish and the ever-present Anthias, not to mention some beautiful morays that dwell in the gorges of the pinnacles, especially in the southernmost part of the dive.



Location: Strait of Tiran

Description: Drift/shore dive

Depth: 25-30 metres 



Ras Umm Sid is the name of the promontory with a high lighthouse that marks the beginning of the Strait of Tiran on the western coast. The diving site, easily accessible by land, is immediately east of the lighthouse, opposite the famous Italian restaurant El-Fanar. It is renowned for the extraordinary proliferation of gorgonians (Subergorgia hicksoni) that create a veritable forest here, the most beautiful in all the northern Red Sea. Access from the beach, which is facilitated by a small metal ladder, is possible only when the tide is high enough to allow you to swim past the reef platform, which is quite extensive here. The classic dive – weather you choose to dive from the shore or from a boat – is a descent to 25 meters, where you pass through the famous gorgonian forest, and then an ascent to the plateau at 14 meters’ depth.
Here, among numerous coral pinnacles covered with Alcyonarians, there are several reef fish, lionfish (pterois volitans) and parrotfish (scarus sp.). From this point, if you have dived from the shore you can return shallow, keeping the reef to your right at a depth of 5-6 meters to explore the gorges, in particular a small cave populated by a colony of glassfish (Parapriacanthus guentheri) and hatchet fish (Pempheris vanicolensis).

Location: Sharm El Sheikh
Description: Reef / drift / wreck dive
Depth: 36 metres

Two ergs rise up from a vertical wall with a drop off down to 300 metres. The dive begins at shark reef and continues with the current until reaching the cargo of the Jolanda, where the sea floor rises to about 15-25 metres and is strewn with toilets. There are lots of schools of fish and other sea life including stone fish and scorpion fish. Large pelagics may gather beyond the reef, so keep watching the open sea.


The Ras Mohamed National Park is one of the world’s most famous diving destinations; with several of its dive sites consistently ranked in the top 10 dive sites in the world. Created in 1983, Ras Mohamed has been used as a model National Park across the world.

The area can be accessed from both resorts and liveaboard diving cruises. It is said that the name is from a wind-carved cliff in the area, which resembles the features of Prophet Mohammed, believed to have visited here in the 7th century.


Due to its location on the Sinai Peninsula at the juncture of the Gulf of Suez and the Gulf of Aqaba, the combining waters of differing salinity from each gulf has resulted in a spectacular array of reef and pelagic fish, diverse coral reef and luxuriant sea walls; ideal for some unforgettable Red Sea scuba diving on the Sinai Peninsula.

A combination of strong currents, incredible drop offs and mangroves that act as ‘fish nurseries’ have resulted in an unparalleled abundance and diversity of both fish and corals.   A place of beauty for most of the year...


Location: Sharm El Sheikh, Ras Mohammed Marine Park

Description: Fringing Reef dive

Depth: 5 - 30 metres 


The name of this site derives from the white sandy road between the coral ledge bordering the coast and a parallel satellite reef that is often frequented by Jackfish and other predators. Jackfish Alley, which was originally known as Fisherman's Bank, is south of Ras Za'atar.
This is a dive that can be made in several different ways and a drift dive like most of the dives in Ras Mohammed. It can be made from south to north or north to south all depending on the currents, you can stay on the inside reef or for the more advanced divers venture to the outside reef. Its famous for the Jackfish that congregate here, hence the name. Often huge Tuna, Barracuda, Turtles and a resident White Tip Shark can also be spotted. A typical dive here starts from the north and heads south, you descend down a wall to 5m and enter a small cave,(swim through) with fantastic light and ambiance. From the cave you slowly descend down to a sandy plateau with beautiful coral pinnacles  and a drop off to your left, here I have spotted Hammerheads and a Whale Shark although this is a rare occasion. To your right there is a reef called Satellite and as you head south you have the choice to stay close to the fringing reef or venture out behind Satellite Reef. You finish the dive close to the fringing reef. This is an intermediate dive and usually lasts 50 minutes.






Location: Sharm El Sheikh, Ras Mohammed Marine Park

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 30 metres


This is a great little dive and usually done as a third, the light and ambiance make it ideal for photography and I’ve always thought it was better done between 10-15m. Usually you drift from south to north, with the chance to see Jacks, Barracuda and Tuna out in the blue. At 22m there is a pinnacle with a large Table coral on top usually surrounded by Glass fish. Further along the wall heading east there are various cracks and crevices with black and soft coral adorning the wall, as you pass the point and start to head north the wall becomes less vertical  and is littered with small pinnacles Gorgonian fans and soft coral. This is an easy going dive with a 50 minute dive time.

Location: Sharm El Sheikh, Ras Mohammed Marine Park

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 25 metres


Eel Garden is another great drift dive, usually started on the north side and slowly drift south toward Shark Observatory. The entry point has a small cave sometimes home to sweet lips, with a large sandy area descending down to 45m covered with Garden Eels. As you head south the site becomes a wall dive and again best in the morning with direct sun light. The wall has many cracks and crevices with patches of soft coral and black coral. Turtles are often found feeding with Barracuda, Tuna and Jackfish often seen out in the blue. One time I found a Harlequin Ghost Pipe fish here, the only one I have ever seen. This is an easy going dive for intermediate level, usually taking around 50 minutes.

Location: Sharm El Sheikh, Ras Mohammed Marine Park

Description: Drift dive

Depth: 30 metres


Shark Observatory is a wonderful wall dive, this is deep water with no sign of the bottom. It is common here to spot Jackfish, Tuna, Barracuda and Eagle Rays, on occasions Marlin have been spotted as well. This is another drift dive; current permitting you usually start from the north east and head south west. The wall on the east side is best dived in the morning to take the benefit of direct sun light and is covered in an array of different colored soft corals.  Right on the point of Shark Observatory there is the biggest Gorgonian fan coral I have ever seen. The dive is fairly easy going for an intermediate level and usually lasts for 50 minutes

 Location: Sharm El Sheikh, Ras Mohammed Marine Park

Description: Fringing Reef

Depth: 30 metres 


 Ras Ghozlani is a great drift, with a fringing reef sandy coral garden plateau and drop off. The dive can be made heading south west or north eastagain depending on the currents, most of the dive is made at 20m. The top of the drop off is littered with small coral pinnacles, it is a very easy going dive giving divers the chance to spread out and take things easy. There are many photographic hot spots on route including a Clown Fish colony near the point of Marsa Beraka, often Eagle Rays and the occasional Manta are spotted in the blue along with Tuna, Barracuda and Turtles. The dive is finished along the fringing reef and is a beginner to intermediate level, usually lasting 50 minutes.

Thistlegorm

Location: 3 hours boat from Sharm El sheikh-Red Sea
Description: Wreck dive
Depth: 33 metres

The Thistlegorm was discovered in 1956 by Jacques Cousteau and is probably the most famous wreck in the world. It sank in 1941 when it was hit by a German bomb that blew a hole in the port side, igniting tank ammunition that was in the hold. The explosion ripped the roof of the ship backwards, rather like opening a tin of sardines. The stern section of the wreck lies almost horizontal to the sea bed; the remainder of the wreck is nearly upright. Inside the wreckage, tyres, tanks, motorbikes, Bedford trucks, waders and wellington boots can be seen. Penetration is possible around the bridge and blast area. The large prop is still in position and the guns on the stern are in excellent condition. Artillery litters the blast area. A bath tub can be seen towards the bow and a toilet near the stern. The sea life is impressive with possibility of seeing tuna overhead the resident turtle. Expect this to be very busy, especially once the day boats have reached it; it is likely to be chaos both on the surface and under the water.


On the upper level you find on both sides numerous WOT2 Ford Trucks, Bedford 0Y and MW trucks, as well as several Morris commercial CS 8 jeeps. There are also some of them BSAW-M20 and Norton 16 H Motorcycles, some of them with sidecars.
On the port side of the lower level, there are many trailers (almost all of which are empty) and spare airplane wings; on the starboard side there are Bedford trucks containing some Norton HI 16 motorcycles with sidecars and a supply of rubber boots.

Motorbike BSA W-M20in hold number 2

Liveaboard dive site only

Location: Red Sea

Description: Wall, drift, wreck dive
Depth: 20-45 metres

This tiny island is half of the Brother Islands, a popular Red Sea liveaboard dive destination that was named the second-best dive site in the Red Sea
Big Brother also has 2 wrecks, the Numidia and the Aida, lying quite close to each other, which are truly worth exploring.
In these waters divers will encounter the oceanic whitetip shark, schooling hammerhead sharks, gray reef sharks, silvertip sharks, and even the rare thresher shark. 


Dahab-Canyon & Blue Hole

Dahab is characterised by shore diving with depths for all levels amongst the maze of coral islands. Marine life includes reef fish, jacks, snapper, barracuda and perhaps even turtles. There are gentle reef slopes and coral gardens for beginners and some more challenging sites such as the Blue Hole or the Canyon for the more advanced. 
The Blue Hole is a seventy metre diameter hole in a reef table that has an archway in the bottom, leading to open sea. 
The Canyon is a channel that narrows at one end to become a covered tunnel. 

Canyon

The Canyon is Dahabs other jewel, a narrow crack in the sea bed that opens up into a vast canyon the bottom is thirty meters at one end and fifty meters at the other.

The Dahab Canyon is the classic canyon, an essential dive for all fanatics of caves and cavern diving. The Canyon is itself quite a phenomenon.

Canyon

The Canyon dive site offers an easy entry and exit point through a shallow, sandy lagoon. This leads out to beautiful coral gardens inhabited by Butterflyfishes, Unicornfishes, Octopus, Pufferfish and of course Red Sea Anthias, 
which can only be fully explored after several visits

The Blue Hole

One of the most famous dive sites in Egypt. The dark blue sea, reflecting the depth of the mesmerizing depression, attracts divers from all over the world who want to experience a fantastic feeling of a long fall, surrounded by vibrant life: napoleon wrasse, 
parrotfish or barracudas... 

The Blue Hole

A 26-meter long tunnel, known as The Arch,
at a depth of 56 meters (184 feet), connects the hole with the open sea.