Dahab is a great base from which to explore some of Egypt’s most spectacular diving and snorkelling. Predominantly a Bedouin enclave at its heart, Dahab is also the preferred base for organising sand boarding, rock-climbing, and guided trekking and camel excursions into the interior deserts, as well as to the lofty heights of Mt Sinai.
The best reefs for snorkelling are Lighthouse Reef and Eel Garden, both in Assalah. You can hire snorkelling gear from all the dive centres and many other places in Masbat for about LE25 to LE40 per day. Keep in mind that some of the reefs have unexpected currents – drownings have occurred in Dahab – so keep your wits about you.
Note that despite the intimidating reputation of the Canyon and Blue Hole dive sites as danger zones for careless divers, the tops of the reefs are teeming with life, making them fine snorkelling destinations when the sea is calm. Most tour companies in town organise half-day Blue Hole snorkelling trips for between LE50 and LE120.
Camel & Jeep Safaris
This is one of the best places in Sinai to arrange camel safaris into the dramatic mountains lining the coast, especially the spectacular Ras Abu Gallum Protectorate. Further afield, the desert area around Nuweiba is home to some of the South Sinai coast's most interesting sights, including the Coloured Canyon. Jeep safaris to the canyon from Dahab cost between LE300 and LE500 per person.
Choosing An Operator
Nearly all hotels, dive centres and travel agencies offer jeep and camel safaris. When choosing who to go with, check to see if the tour operator works with the Bedouin. Local communities unfortunately have been generally excluded from the tourist industry, which tends to be dominated by migrants from the Nile Valley.
If opting for a private, custom-made camel or jeep safari rather than an organised trip, be sure that the guide registers with the police before beginning the safari.
The lagoon area is Dahab's water-sports centre and a top spot for learning to windsurf and kitesurf.