Egypt is famous for its vibrant underwater life and visiting Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling offers you to see the Red Sea finest coral reefs. Let us help you to plan your holiday featuring the top locations and hotels to stay!
Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling spots
If it comes to snorkeling in Egypt, many people mention Sharm el Sheikh as the top destination to go. With stunning coral reefs, big schools of tropical fish, turtles, stingrays, occasional mantas and whale sharks can sightings make this location an underwater paradise. Although almost all hotels that have beach access offer snorkeling from but for the best holiday experience, we recommend you to look for a hotel that locates directly at one of Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling places. To know where are the corals the prettiest, we provide you here with a list that features details about the characteristic as well as what-to-see info of the best spots to snorkel in Sharm el Sheikh. Let’s discover the Montazah and El Fanar stunning coral reefs!
Al Montazah area
If you want to explore Sharm El Sheikh best snorkeling spots, the perfect place to stay is definitely the Al Montazah region. This area is just a 15 minutes drive from the Sharm el Sheikh Airport and has a wide variety of hotels to choose from. The long coastline of the Montazah is considered having the healthiest corals and divided into 3 areas, the Ras Nasrani, Ras Ghamila and Ras Bob reefs.
In Arabic, Ras Nasrani means Christian’s Head means. This rich coral wall can be found between the Grand Cyrene’s (ex Melia Sharm) and Melton Beach (ex Melia Sinai) hotels. From the Cyrene side, the water is deeper, but there is a shallow area from the Melton Beach’s side. Here you find a nice lagoon with sandy bottom, good light conditions and playful fish. Also napoleon wrasses can be spotted here, sometimes turtles too! By good visibility, you might see gorgonians in deeper waters (at about 18-20 m). If you leave the sandy lagoon and swim alongside the reef, water will be deeper; this area is for advanced snorkellers! Stay close to the coral wall and look after the currents! The Ras Nasrani’s long coral wall offers Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling experience! Sergeant Major Fish colonies, surgeonfish, colorful sea clams, scorpionfish, crocodile fish, and lionfish to see. Observe the wide variety of coral colonies that give home to thousands of fish! Looking at the deep you might spot blue eagle rays too! The luckiest snorkellers and divers use to see manta rays or even whale shark here!
The name Ras Ghamila means delightful Cape in Arabic. This area starts at Coral Sea Sensatori Resort, the end of the site is marked by a green beacon. If you go snorkeling here, always check the currents; sometimes they could be strong. The reef is relatively shallow (10-15 m) with sandy bottom. We were impressed by variable coral formations: coral heads, porite corals, pinnacles. The Ras Ghamila has the largest number of sea fans in the region. Except to see turtles, eagle and fantail rays, crocodile and lionfish! Big school of bannerfish, butterfly fish and of course clownfish, sergeant major fish, surgeon and parrotfish, hawkfish and pufferfish are also around. Macro photographers can find some nudibranchs and sea worms! Sometimes manta rays, sharks and whale shark visit this place too.
Easy snorkeling and diving place right next to the Melton Beach’s floating platform. Sheltered from wind and waves, currents are not strong here. The place got its name after Bob Johson underwater cameraman who worked in this region for many years. Although the reef is not so nice here but a nice place for novice snorkelers and beginner divers. Anemonefish, banner and butterfly fish, parrotfish, crocodile fish and rainbow wrasses, blue spotted eagle rays just a few species you might see here.
Ras Um Sid – El Fanar Beach
The El Fanar or Faraana Bay is definitely a heaven! This big bay is sheltered by high cliffs that guarantee an absolutely stunning view. The left corner of the bay is known as Ras Um Sid that is definitely a must-visit one of Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling spots. Thanks to the rich currents, the reef is teeming with life! You will be amazed by the amount of fish and the abundance of corals when snorkeling here! You can visit this spot even if you are staying at a different hotel through the El Fanar Beach against a small fee. The best is to stay one of the on-site hotels (our recommendations below). The Ras Um Sid is an easy-to-visit site, but the El Fanar Bay offers two further of Sharm el-Sheikh best snorkeling spots, the Temple Reef and the Ras Kathy area. However, these are recommended for advanced snorkelers only.
Tip: from our Egypt travel tips you can get some useful tips on how to prepare for a safe holiday!
Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling hotels
We know from our own experience that choosing the right place to stay is the crucial part of the holiday planning. It takes a lot of time and energy to go through on all the reviews and find the one that meets all the needs. With this Sharm el Sheikh best snorkeling hotels selection, we’d like to help you with some where-to-stay ideas with a list that includes the best resorts around the above-mentioned snorkeling places.
- Coral Sea Sensatori 5*: a modern hotel that meets European standards. Dedicated, English speaking staff. The huge well-kept garden and the promenade offers nice evening walks. The hotel has an adults-only section as well. Easy access to the Ras Ghamila beautiful reefs through the hotel’s own floating jetty. Find more info in our Coral Sea Sensatori Resort snorkeling post.
- Cyrene Grand Hotel 5* (ex Melia Sharm Hotel): with direct access to Ras Bob and Ras Nasrani reefs, the Cyrene Grand Hotel is a medium class hotel. It features a nice garden and excellent view to the Tiran Island. Recommended for those who seek a good value for money place to stay close to Sharm el-Sheikh best snorkel spots. See more photos of the hotel and its coral reef in the Cyrene Grand Hotel review!
- Coral Beach Montazah Resort 4*: a budget Egyptian hotel right in the middle of the Montazah area. You can enter the deeper water from the hotel’s jetty. Perfect location for travelers who seek a simpler accommodation close to Sharm el-Sheikh best-snorkeling sites. Swimming to the right from the hotel, you can discover the Ras Nasrani. On the left side, you can explore towards Ras Ghamila.
- Baron Resort 5*: Comfortable and relaxing hotel with excellent service, friendly staff, and great activities for adults and children. The water is relatively shallow in front of the hotel’s jetty, the house reef is stunning. It has a nice tropical garden with hundreds of palm trees, two huge swimming pools with waterfalls. Shops are also available in walking distance.
- Jaz Fanara Resort and Residence 4*: locating directly at the Ras Um Side, the Jaz Fanara Resort is definitely one of the best Sharm el Sheikh snorkeling hotels with a wonderful view and a familiar atmosphere. Staying here offers easy snorkel experience in shallow water for young and old. Please read our thoughts in our Jaz Fanara Resort review and see snorkeling photos!
- Reef Oasis Beach Resort 4*: right next to the Jaz Fanara hotel, the Reef Oasis locates in the middle of the Um El Sid hill overlooking the Temple Reef. Great for families and couple who wish to enjoy the Red Sea beautiful marine life while staying in a good all-inclusive hotel.
- El Faraana Reef Resort 4*: a simpler hotel at the right corner of the Um El Sid, next to the Farsha Cafe. The hotel provides access to the bay’s vibrant coral reefs through a floating platform. You can enter the water from the sandy beach too.