What to Expect Scuba Diving in Egypt—and How to Plan a Trip There
From history enthusiasts to scuba divers to beach chasers, Egypt is a bucket list destination for almost everyone. Especially for divers, The Red Sea offers perfect diving conditions and is the best place in the world for liveaboard dive trips. There is something special about scuba diving in Egypt. See what makes divers flock to it, what to expect, and how you can plan to dive there, too.
Scuba Diving in Egypt And The Red Sea
DIVE Magazine readers voted The Red Sea as the third-best scuba diving destination in the world in 2018, beaten only by Indonesia and the Philippines. Yes, that means it beat out the Maldives, the Galapagos, and the Great Barrier Reef. What’s so special about diving in Egypt? First of all, the weather and water conditions are nearly perfect all year round.
The temperature of the water rarely falls below 71 degrees Fahrenheit / 22 Celsius, even in winter months. In the summer, the Southern region of the Red Sea climbs to 86 Fahrenheit / 30 Celsius. There’s no need for a wetsuit at those temperatures. Plus, the water is crystal clear, making for perfect visibility. Divers have reported visibility distances of up to 130 feet / 40 meters.
Flora & Fauna
If the weather and water conditions aren’t enough to sell you, the Red Sea is home to spectacular flora and fauna. Its reefs are still stable and healthy while many other major systems like the Great Barrier Reef are suffering. The Red Sea has more than 220 unique species of coral, which play host to over 1,110 species of marine life. What’s more, roughly 20% of the marine life found in the Red Sea is nowhere else on Earth.
If perfect weather and a diverse ecosystem aren’t enough to sell you, the Red Sea is also home to some of the globe’s most iconic shipwrecks. Many of them are world-famous, and there are several from World War 2. One of the most notable, the SS Thistlegram, is continually ranked in the world’s top 10 shipwrecks. If you’re planning a dive trip but feeling a bit rusty, it’s recommended to take a refresher course.
Liveaboard Dive Trips
The thing the Red Sea is most famous for is its abundance of highly-rated liveaboard dive trips. PADI listed the Red Sea as the number one place in the world for liveaboard diving in 2018. Liveaboard trips are highly recommended for people who want to get the most out of their diving trips. Spending a few days to a few weeks aboard one of the many liveaboard dive boats is the best way to get the full Red Sea diving experience.
Tourism in Egypt has taken a dip due to safety concerns in recent years. Right now, there is no official travel ban from the US to Egypt. The travel advisory as of July 2, 2019, was a Level 2, which means to exercise increased caution. It’s not advisable to go to the Sinai Peninsula, except for traveling to dive haven Sharm El-Sheikh by air. Americans can fly to Cairo and then travel to the Red Sea by land or domestic flights. Americans need a tourist visa to enter Egypt. The cost of the visa is $25, and you can purchase it online ahead of time. Because of safety concerns, dive resorts and scuba certification courses are more affordable than ever. Tourists should take precautions and be aware of their surroundings, but reputable dive resorts are safe.
To Wrap Up
Scuba diving in Egypt and The Red Sea should be an item on everyone’s bucket list. Perfect weather, pristine water conditions, and a huge variety of marine life and historical shipwrecks make it a top-rated global diving destination. Like anywhere you travel abroad, always take precautions and be aware of your surroundings. Visit our blog for more tips and resources, and when you’re ready to dive in The Red Sea, book your trip here! Also, if you need to learn scuba diving, brush up on scuba diving skills or learn more about diving locally in this area before diving in other areas, we are here to help.