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Sharm-El-Sheikh

Introduction

Sharm-El-Sheikh is located on the Sinai. What was once an old fishermen's village has become a famous destination for scuba diving and is now the heart of a vast underwater national park. Naama Bay is located 7 km north of Sharm-El-Sheikh, a bay which is covered with high-standings hotels. Contrary to Hurghada, Naama Bay has a street which links most of the hotels and the harbor. Furthermore, there is a pedestrian walkway between the beach and the hotels, and many restaurants make it an attractive place to walk after the diving. According to certain sources, only 25 % of the visitors of Naama Bay are divers. That suggests that it is possible to enjoy a stay there even without going underwater.

The authorities make a great effort to protect those marvelous sea grounds: buoys are located on all sites (anchoring is therefore strictly prohibited), the number of boats is limited to 3 per diving sites, several places are not accessible anymore (but that's perhaps rather for military reasons)... and it is forbidden to feed fish.

Travel facts

Calendar

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best period
acceptable period
not recommend
air temperature
water temperature

Diving type

Destination
easily accessible
easily accessible
bargain destination
bargain destination
Diving level & type
for beginners
for beginners
for advanced divers
for advanced divers
shore diving
shore diving
liveaboard
liveaboard
Diving Characteristics
pelagics
pelagics
lots of fish
lots of fish
lots of corals
lots of corals
interesting underwater scenery
interesting underwater scenery
Other activities
attractive natural spots
attractive natural spots
gastronomy
gastronomy
night life
night life
beach
beach
snorkeling
snorkeling

Map

map

Diving Sites

  • rating : 4.0
    Jackfish Alley
    rating : 4.0
    depth : 20 m
    visibility : 10-20 m
    description :
    This drift dive begins at the bottom of a cliff by swimming through a cave (entrance at 4 m depth, exit at 6 m). They divers usually go down to 20 meters, where there is coral garden. The first half of it is really interesting, while the second part is less attractive. However, it is still worth crossing it, as it leads the divers to a canyon (grounds on the right and reef on the left) where a bit of current is encountered, and some larger fish can be seen (barracudas).
    This dive site presents an interesting and varied scenery, but there are less fish than on other sites. However, we saw there a white tip shark (from a far distance...), a turtle and a napoleon. Dolphins followed our boat on our way back.

  • rating : 4.0
    Jackson Reef
    rating : 4.0
    depth : 25 m
    visibility : 10-20 m
    description :
    Huge reef in the middle of the strait of Tiran (80 minutes from Naama Bay), whose top is at a depth of approximately 1 meter, and which has almost vertical walls.
    The west part is indeed very interesting, with great corals from 25 to 5 meters (including a red anemone at 25 m). All these corals (mainly soft) virtually cover each square centimeter of the reef, and are surrounded by huge amounts of small fish. Some larger specimen are seen in the blue... as well as 2 large puffer fish right in the corals.
    The part located on the east side is less interesting, slightly more vertical but with less life. The temperature is a little cooler than on the other diving sites.

  • rating : 4.0
    Near Garden
    rating : 4.0
    depth : 5-25 m
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    Site located at the northern point of Naama Bay, about 10 minutes by boat. The dive starts in the bay, where a huge amount of small fish (including 10 parrots under the boat) and some napoleons can be seen. The very good visibility allows the divers to quickly reach the northern part of the bay, and reach the open sea. There, 3 splendid gorgons located at 20-25 meters are easily found. In the open sea, the visibility slightly decreases, but the fishes remain numerous.
    All together, we saw 4 blue-spotted rays (!), 1 large napoleon, about 6 lion-fish, 1 fish-crocodile...
    It is worthwhile to do some snorkeling in this bay, but be careful with the numerous glass-bottom boats that navigate around there!
    This site is ideal for night diving. It is then useless to go deep (12 meters should be fine). One can see scorpion-fish, lion-fish and even an octopus. At the end of the diving, vigorously shake your hands after turning your diving light off: you will see amazing phosphorescent plankton.
          
  • rating : 3.0
    Middle Garden
    rating : 3.0
    depth : 2-12 m
    description :
    As its name suggests it, Middle Garden is located between Near and Far Garden, very close to Naama Bay. On the sand, at a shallow depth, many large rocks full of life : schools of butterfly fish, a half-dozen lion-fish, groupers, napoleons, parrots, ... Good, easy snorkeling.
              
  • rating : 3.0
    Sharks Reef
    rating : 3.0
    level : for advanced divers
    depth : 20 m and m
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    Located in the Ras Mohammed park, at the southern tip of the Sinai, Sharks Reef is one of the world's most famous reefs! It is true that one finds there a huge quantity of fish (whole schools of jackfish and large napoleons) and that pelagic are often encountered along the walls. However, this site is extremely crowded, and the diving is rather difficult there: the vertical wall is swept by currents - some of them being really violent, and sometimes tracking the divers into the depths. It is really a dive that should be reserved for experienced divers, and which can be disappointing if no large fish are encountered...

  • rating : 3.0
    Tower - Sodfa
    rating : 3.0
    depth : 10-30 m
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    At 10 meters of the beach, a narrow canyon goes from the surface to more than 30 meters depth, almost vertically. The dive continues then by swimming along the slope toward Sodfa - the next diving site. There is not so much sea life, but the underwater landscape is interesting with several pinnacles. Sometimes, the current allows to see some pelagic: we thus met a guitar-shark and a turtle.
    This dive should not be recommended to beginners, as here the depth can be very attractive... Depending on the current, this drift dive can also be made from Sodfa to Tower.
        
  • rating : 3.0
    White Knight
    rating : 3.0
    depth : 25 m
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    Located in the north of Naama Bay, at about 40 minutes by boat. Underwater scenery is very interesting, with a canyon running from 12 to 36 meters (and a possibility to exit it at 25 meters), as well as several caves at 12, 22 and 36 m (unfortunately, the last one being too deep for the security rules that apply in Egypt). A lot of small corals, but few fishes (although we saw 1 large napoleon, 2 groupers and a moray eel).

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