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. There are two marine
parks in the Dahab region: Ras Mumlach, a seventy metre wall covered in hard and
sot corals, and Ras Abu Galum, a wall with drop offs to over ninety metres.
The Blue Hole
It is one of only 3 'blue holes' in the world, and Dahab's most famous dive
site, opening to the Red Sea through a 26-meter long tunnel known as the Arch.
The roof of the Arch lies at a depth of 52 meters, and the base of the Arch
rests at 120 meters after which it plunges to 1000 meters.
The Canyon is a natural crack in the reef plateau, which descends to 54
meters, and its walls are 15-20 meters high. In shallower areas along the reef
there is the possibility to see the rare Red Sea walkman, sea moths and garden
eels. This dive is conducted either as an extended range or trimix dive.
Eel Garden takes its name from the countless garden eels that carpet the sea
floor not far from the entry point of the dive. After walking over the reef
plate to the entry spot which is a nine meter canyon, it then broadens into a
large sandy area that slopes down gradually. After diving along a jutting reef
that lies perpendicular to the main reef the eels slowly come into view, waving
to and fro in the current like synchronized swimmers who vanish back into the
sand as you approach.
At Napoleon Reef you have a good chance of seeing the majestic Napoleon wrasses.
But this quiet dive spot also offers nice table corals and giant puffer fish
that hide underneath the table corals. Napoleon Reef has a maximum diving depth
of around 30 meters and is suitable for all divers. The average visibility is
10-20 meters, and access to the dive site is by boat, where the current carries
you along a sandy ridge with many hard and soft corals. Fish abound, Eagle Rays
make their quick appearances, Scorpion fish lurk and returning to the boat will
go far better than Waterloo.
An underwater Garden of Eden, two sizable coral islands grow from an unequaled
myriad of corals among a dense assortment of such an overflow of sea life that
one can find barracuda, clown fish, groupers, Moray Eels, Blue Spotted Rays and
much more in the same labyrinth passageways.
The dive site follows the reef round, with pinnacles and reefs providing a good
variety of life, and it also makes a nice shore dive at night. It’s a very
peaceful and quiet reef with all the beautiful reds that can’t be seen during
Golden Blocks is a mix between coral gardens and sandy areas with almost all
coral species represented. It has a coral slope with three sandy alleys in it.
The first one starts at 10 meters and drops down to 30 – 40 meters. The second
slope is like a small canyon with a beautiful little island of corals. At the
third slope you will find an impressive gorgonian fan at 22 meters and beside it
is a small cave. Shallower you have sandy areas with the 'Golden Blocks'. These
are large coral blocks that go from 10 meters to the surface and are covered
After an easy entrance through three sandy patches sunk into the coral, one
finds a gently sloping expanse of hard coral stretching away into the blue. Fan
corals rise up gracefully further down the slope below 20 meters. With little
current and little obstruction it's easy to explore the corals cape and gaze at
the inhabitants to your heart's content, or at least until your DM heads you
back to the exit.
With no real coral platforms the two large caverns lie just beneath the rocky
shore. Both feature black and other soft coral growing in the caverns, even
hanging from the ceiling. A variety of fish swim among the corals, some even
performing occasional acrobatics by swimming upside down along the ceiling -
tipping is not necessary and feeding forbidden either way.