Travel Guide Africa Egypt Sinai Dahab



Dahab Sunset Nov 2004

Dahab Sunset Nov 2004

© Rraven

Dahab is a town in southeast Egypt in the Sinai Peninsula, situated alongside the Red Sea. It is popular amongst tourists for its excellent diving, snorkelling and wind and kite surfing surfing opportunities, but nearby Mount Sinai also makes for excellent climbing, as do the the local mountains and canyons. The town is a popular choice also for free divers which is becoming increasingly popular in recent years.

Since January 2011 the nightlife has become almost non existant, with a few bars offering weekly parties. But Dahab has no real nightclubs, so people really wanting to party can head to Sharm el-Sheikh which is just one hour away. Dahab is more suited to the more relaxing traveller, or the lovers of water sports for which Dahab has become so popular in recent years.

The scenery is truly exhilarating, with barren mountains overlooking the Red Sea. Dahab has views of Saudi Arabia across the Red Sea, as well as the stunning local mountains that are surrounding the area.



Sights and Activities

El Mashrabe Street

The main part of Dahab which is the most happening one is the El Mashrabe Street (sharae). This is the street where all the low cost budget hostels are located as well as the scuba diving centres etc. The Corniche connects the lighthouse to these hostels most of which are located on the Corniche or are approached by it.

Snorkelling and Diving

Dahab is a base for scuba diving where one can do introductory dives. Summer is incredibly hot in Sinai, so the best time to go is about April-May and October-November, also winter is possible. The diving around the lighthouse is not as great, due to the pollution. The Blue Hole is a favorite spot for snorkelers and divers. The sea life and corals are amazing here and unspoiled. One should keep in mind not to go near the corals as it could damage them. While swimming, you should avoid getting close to the rocks because if the tide is strong then there have been instances where injuries have been reported due to people colliding with the rocks. There are about 20 dive sites in Dahab and endless places for swimming. In Egypt the law requires you to have a local guide. This is not very well enforced and won't be a problem if you don't flaunt violating it. However it is always wise to take at least one dive with a guide whenever you dive a new area. Dahab is also home to some of the greatest free-divers on the planet. Some of them can dive the 100 metres to the bottom of blue hole where they take a short cave swim out to the open water. Dahab is also rife with wind and kite surfers.



Events and Festivals

  • Dahab Festival of Culture, Water Sports and Desert Adventure - Since 2011 Dahab has held an annual festival to promote the town for tourism. The next festival is due at the end of April 2013. The event will include bedouin culture with a bedouin tent area, camel race, herbal medicine, bedouin food and music, all along side the world class water sports (diving, wind surfing, Kite surfing, free diving) and arts, culture and healing. It really is a big get together and a show case for Dahab, as well as a chance to try many activities for free.



Getting There

There are limited options for getting to Dahab, as there is no airport or train line. Driving around the Sinai is also quite dangerous, so it is not recommended. However, there are nearby airports at Sharm el-Sheikh and Taba. It is also possible to come by land or sea from Jordan and Israel, though there are no boats serving as public transport.

Bus is the best option: East Delta Bus is the local bus service, which connects Dahab with Sharm el-Sheikh, Nuweiba and Taba. The trips take around 3 hours and cost between LE 20 and LE 30. There is a slightly inflated tourist price. The bus from Cairo takes about 8 hours and costs about LE 80 for a foreigner. Check the schedule online.

Another possibility is to get a taxi. Ask about price before you getting into. The price supposed be fixed.

From an international destination your best way to get to Dahab is to fly directly into Sharm el-Sheikh then take the bus for about LE30. It only takes about an hour, and by summer 2010 a new road will be opening that will cut that time down to 30 minutes.



Getting Around

The various Sinai towns are connected by Delta Bus. You can also take a local taxi, but make sure you settle on the price before the trip. You can rent scooters, mopeds and bikes to get around Dahab. You can also be taken on horses, camels and quads. But these are more for tours than transport. Most of Dahab is within easy walking distance. Only the more expensive hotels with "private" beaches are a little farther away, as well as the bus stop. You can get a cab ride from anywhere in Dahab to this area for LE5 per person with minimal haggling.




Most restaurants in Dahab serve fish and sea food, and pizza is also a popular dish. "Alladdin" and "Friend's Place" are two great restaurants in Dahab. Be sure to try some bedouin tea!

  • Ali Baba Restaurant The biggest and brightest of the typical Dahab beach side restaurants. Fresh local seafood, grill, steak and steaming hot pita bread and mezze with every meal. Bring your own alcohol. Holder of Cristial International's Certificate of Excellence for hygiene management. Tel: +2 010 19 29170 Email: info@alibaba-dahab.com;
  • The Kitchen Restaurant - The closest you get to fine dining in Dahab. Set over 3 floors in the centre of Dahab, next to Ghazala supermarket. Offers a wide range of modern and authentic Indian, Thai, Chinese and Sushi. Bring your own alcohol. Holder of Cristial International's Certificate of Excellence for hygiene management. Tel: +2 019 5959 764 Email: info@thekitchendahab.com;
  • Kitchen Express - Located in the centre of lighthouse, offering light meals and quick bites from the Italian kitchen. Indoor and roof top dining on site. Take away and free home delivery available every day till 2:00am. Tel: +2 019 4222 141;
  • Alladdin Restaurant;
  • Friend's Place;
  • Funny Mummy's provides great food in a clean environment. Cheap cold beers, a friendly staff, and the best sheesha in Dahab.





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Keep Connected


Internet access is easy to find and cheap. Most cities, such as Greater Cairo and Luxor, and even smaller tourist sites, such as Edfu, boast a plethora of small internet caf├ęs. The price per hour is usually EGP 2-10 depending on the location/speed. In addition, an increasing number of coffee shops, restaurants, hotel lobbies and other locations now provide free wireless internet access. Free wi-fi (Mobilnil) is also available at modern coffee shops such as Cilantro and Costa Coffee, where you obtain access by getting a 2-hour "promotional" card from the waiter, and if you go into almost any McDonald's, you will have access to a free WiFi connection.


See also International Telephone Calls

The international telephone code for Egypt is 20.

Egypt has a reasonably modern telephone service including three GSM mobile service providers. The three mobile phone providers are Mobinil, Vodafone and Etisalat. Principal centers are located at Alexandria, Cairo, Al Mansurah, Ismailia, Suez, and Tanta. Roaming services are provided, although you should check with your service provider. Be aware that using your home SIM card can be very expensive, especially when using internet services but also calling is much more expensive. Try to get a local SIM card for your cell phone instead. Also, it is possible to purchase tourist mobile phone lines for the duration of your stay, which usually costs around EGP 30.


Egypt Post is the national postal service in Egypt. Services are generally reliable, affordable though pretty slow, even if you send post domestically. International letters and postcards take days, if not weeks if send to the US or Australia. They do have express mail services though, but these are relatively expensive. Opening hours of post officies are mostly from 8:30am to 2:00pm or 3:00pm daily except Friday, when all of them are closed. The central ones might keep longer hours, generally until 8:00pm. You can buy stamps here, or at certain newspaper kiosks. In touristic areas, these are available at many shops as well. For parcels, it's much better to use international courier services such as DHL, TNT, FedEx or UPS.


Quick Facts


  • Latitude: 28.501
  • Longitude: 34.5134

Accommodation in Dahab

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