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Diving from Sharm el Sheikh | The Red Sea, Egypt

Sharm el Sheikh was once a lonely bay used solely by Egyptian fishermen until it became the Red Sea's first destination for scuba divers. As time has gone by, it developed at a rate of knots. Still the premier dive destination in the country, it has also become a magnet for sun-loving holiday makers.

Sharm can be divided into two main areas: the bay of Sharm el Maya where the port and fishing fleet is located, which has retained some of it's Egyptian flavour with bazaars, supermarkets and restaurants and the larger, more populated Na'ama Bay where most of the hotels and tourists are.

A wide choice of well-known dive sites are easy to reach. The most frequented is world-famous Ras Mohammed National Park. A little further south, the Straights of Gubal reveal a mass of wrecks including the equally famous Thistlegorm. The Straights of Tiran, Gordon, Woodhouse and many other well known reefs are closer to Sharm. Each is full of life, with hard and soft corals supporting a huge variety of marine species.

Common octopus
North Egypt dive photo gallery Scuba diving features

Diving features Napoleon wrasse
Top dive site The Thistlegorm
Seasons All year round
Visibility 10 – 40 metres
Water temperature 20 – 28º C
Deco chambers Sharm el Sheikh
Flights direct charters from from across Europe; scheduled via Cairo
Dive operators & accommodation Most are good, some are not... try to get a recommendation especially before booking liveaboards.

As the planet's most northern coral reef system, the reasons to head to any part of Egypt are obvious. The reasons to go to Sharm are all about what style of dive holiday you want. This is now a very busy resort area so for families or couples who want lively nights and lots of activities apart from diving, it's a great destination. If you want peace and quiet, you won't find that in Sharm.

More diving destinations in Egypt
Complete reports on this area are in
Diving the World.

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Sharm El Sheikh is definitely a top-class destination for divers with many of the ideal conditions that make for a great diving destination. Blistering summers mean that the water temperatures are high, the water is clear and the seas are crowded – mostly with boats and divers. In the winter months, the conditions can be more difficult due to the winds and rough seas but the reefs are much quieter both above and below the waterline.

We spent several diving holidays in Sharm before it became quite so well known and loved it. However, lively beach resorts that attract sun-worshippers are not the type of place we choose to visit any more. Some of our friends have teenage kids – they visit and dive Sharm el Sheikh every year and love it.
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