For a brief period following the Egypt–Israel peace treaty of 1979, a thriving Israeli tourism trade meant Tarabin (Nuweiba's waterfront beach-camp area) could claim rivalry to Dahab as Sinai’s hippy beach paradise. Unfortunately, the vagaries of the regional politics over recent decades have meant Israeli travellers, for the most part, shun Sinai. While Sharm boomed and Dahab grew steadily into a low-key resort, Nuweiba was left to go to seed.
Nuweiba these days isn't much of a looker. Stretching over 15km, it lacks a defined centre or cohesive ambience, and functions primarily as a port for the Aqaba-bound ferry to Jordan. Both the port and city areas are litter strewn, fly-blown and have an air of serious neglect. Tarabin itself has become ever-more ramshackle, which is a shame because with a little sprucing up it could easily be the mellow beach-camp paradise that Dahab was a decade ago.