Most resorts offer a range of water sports, including sailing, windsurfing, parasailing, pedalos and glass-bottom boats. Camel rides to ‘traditional Bedouin villages’ can be easily arranged with most hotels. Expect to pay €25 to €35 and to be part of a large group. Several top-end hotels and tour operators also offer horse riding from about €22 per hour.
Snorkelling & Diving
It’s something of a tragedy that Sharm’s truly exquisite diving has been overshadowed by unfettered tourist development; however, if you're not a resort fan, the offshore dive sites in both Sharm and the adjacent Ras Mohammed National Park are easily accessible by liveaboards, or even on boat trips departing from Dahab.
Snorkelling in the waters around Sharm is excellent. While there are some easily accessed reefs in central Na’ama Bay, it’s better to head to the more impressive Gardens or Ras Um Sid reefs.
Most resorts have beach access – either their own stretch of waterfront or by agreement with another resort. Check when booking, as if you've booked a non–seafront hotel (in the Hadaba neighbourhood for example), beaches can be fairly distant (up to 10km) from the hotel itself and can only be accessed via shuttle. Nearly all hotels allow day-access on their beaches.
The Tiran Islands Handover
As well as hosting some of Sharm El Sheikh's best dive sites, the Straits of Tiran in the Red Sea are also home to the two small islands of Sanafir and Tiran, uninhabited except for a military base. The islands have been claimed as sovereign territory by both Egypt and Saudi Arabia since the break-up of the Ottoman Empire, but since the 1950s (excluding between 1967 and 1982 when Israel occupied the Sinai Peninsula) both have been under Egyptian administration after an agreement between the two nations.
In April 2016 during a visit to Cairo by Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz, President Sisi announced that both the Tiran and Sanafir Islands lay within Saudi Arabia's maritime boundaries and Egypt would hand administration back to its neighbour. The announcement resulted in a public backlash with protests against the handover, and the Egyptian court in June 2016 ruling to nullify the transfer. Despite this, in June 2017 President Sisi ratified the handover and officially passed sovereignty over to Saudi Arabia. The decision remains deeply unpopular and controversial with Egyptians.
Those coming to Sharm El Sheikh specifically to dive the famed Straits of Tiran dive sites will be relieved to hear that away from the rights or wrongs of the handover deal, diving in the waters surrounding the islands remains unaffected. A proposed bridge project linking Saudi Arabia and the Sinai, crossing over Tiran Island and the surrounding strait, has so far raised significant environmental concerns the affect on the area's delicate coral reefs. The project has yet to get the green light for construction to begin.