The Red Sea has world class diving. The water is warm, never falling below 22 oC even in winter and reaching 28 oC, or even more in far south.
The best time to dive the Red Sea? Low season is December to February because of the cooler water, and June to August because of the heat, which makes for quieter dive sites. In the winter months you are also more likely to see Oceanic White Tip sharks in Egypt and hammerhead sharks in Sudan. Likewise for the Djibouti whale sharks when the best time to go is from November to January. Warmer water in summer lures the hammerhead sharks further north into Egypt. September to November is the time to see manta rays in Sudan, and thresher sharks in both Sudan and Egypt.
The Egyptian authorities have advised that all arrivals into Egypt will be subject to health measures. You will need to complete a monitoring card with personal details, and will need to provide confirmation of valid health insurance policy to airport authorities. From 1 September, everyone arriving from overseas will be required to present a negative PCR (polymerise chain reaction) test certificate on arrival. This must have been conducted no more than 72 hours prior to flight departure. Passengers arriving from London Heathrow only are permitted to have their PCR test conducted no more than 96 hours prior to flight departure. Children under the age of 6 are exempt. You should check with your airline to confirm time frames for undertaking PCR tests and what proof of testing needs to be presented before you travel.
If you arrive at a Red Sea airport without evidence of a negative PCR test you can undergo testing on arrival for USD30. After testing you will be required to self-isolate at your hotel until you receive your test result. The Egyptian authorities will be in touch and will advise whether you need to continue self-isolating. Test results are expected to become available within 12-24 hours.
If your test result is positive, the Egyptian authorities are likely to ask you to self-isolate for up to 14 days in a separate room allocated for quarantine within your hotel.
Our pick of the Red Sea books.
Diving Saudi Arabia
Diving the Red Sea