The southern coast of the Gulf of Aqaba, between Tiran Island and Ras Mohammed National Park, features some of the world’s most amazing underwater scenery. The crystal-clear waters and incredible variety of exotic fish darting in and out of the colourful coral reefs have made this a scuba-diving paradise. Purpose-built Sharm El Sheikh occupies a prime position here, devoting itself solely to sun-and-sea holidays offering a family-friendly vibe and resort comforts, with world-class diving thrown in.
That said, Sharm isn't everyone's cup of tea. The relentless sprawl of megahotels along the coastline here has led to pressing issues of sustainability and environmental degradation. Since the downing of Metrojet Flight 9268 in 2015, the legions of European holidaymakers who flock here on all-inclusive tour packages have petered out because of the lack of direct flights from Europe.
Many independent travellers prefer the lower-key and more backpacker-friendly town of Dahab.