Dives in the Red Sea

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.

Red Sea Coral
Red Sea Coral - Soma Bay House Reef

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.

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Dive sites of the Red Sea

Map of Diving in the Red Sea
Red Sea Map

Covid-19 Measures

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.

Red Sea Books

Our pick of the Red Sea books.

Shipwrecks from the Egyptian Red Sea
by Ned Middleton, Hardback, Immel Publishing, 196 pages, 2006.
The author spent over 8 years engaged in dedicated research into the many shipwrecks which are found in this part of the world. There are nineteen major featured shipwrecks - including two which are only recently discovered. These are followed by brief details of another eighteen vessels which were too small to be classified as ships - tugboats, barges etc. Finally, there are brief details of approx. 250 additional vessels that are either not yet discovered, far too deep for scuba divers or never even existed.
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Coral Reef Guide Red Sea
by Ewald Lieske and Robert Myers, Collins, 384 Pages, Paperback (2012)
Coral Reef Guide Red Sea covers all common species of underwater life of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, you are likely to see while diving or snorkelling. Each species is illustrated with a full-colour photograph and the text gives details of range and characteristic behaviour. A map of good dive sites appears on the inside front cover. Includes jellyfish, corals, nudibranchs, starfish, sea urchins, fishes and turtles. An excellent sea life guide which I always take to the Red Sea

Red Sea Contents

Diving Egypt

Diving Saudi Arabia

Diving the Red Sea

Diving Jordan

Diving Djibouti

Diving Sudan

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Your Comments

Great website! I’m an AWO diver, but my wife only snorkels because of ear problems. Can you recommend an area to dive from a live aboard that would have easy access to shallow coral? 1M? She's very advanced, but open water with 3M coral is not very interesting. She likes to take lots of photos. Thanks
Greg Mockford, 5 May 2021

Thanks for getting in touch. An Emperor fleet boat might be your best bet - they offer free snorkelling kit to non-divers and so should be able to recommend good areas and cater to your wife.
SCUBA Travel Team