The Blue Hole is a vertical 394-foot-deep underwater sink hole, located a few miles north of the city of Dahab. It isn’t just one of the Red Sea’s most popular dive sites, it is also one of the most dangerous dive sites in the planet. Many intrepid divers perish in its depths every year. In snorkeling, you will just move along the edge of the Blue Hole, colonized by a good diversity of corals, but it remains an exceptional underwater experience.

How to get there?

The Blue Hole is located 4 miles/7km North of Dahab. Every day, many scuba divers, free divers, snorkelers and onlookers make the journey from Dahab by jeep or camel, eager to discover and explore the Blue Hole. Many tours are organized daily form Dahab (from $20pp.) and Sharm el-Sheikh (approximately 60 miles south of Dahab). You can also get there with your own car, but you will absolutely need an all road vehicle to cover the last 4 miles.

Dahab Blue Hole snorkeling map, Egypt

Water entrance

You can get into the water in three points. The two first entry points (water access 1 and 2 on the map) are facing the Blue Hole, a few yard from the hole edge. You will easily locate them by observing the other snorkelers and divers entering the water (you will rarely be alone).

However, we recommend getting into the water on the northernmost entry point (water access 3), some 150 yards north of the Blue Hole. Since the prevailing current runs from north to south, it is better to enter the water on this point and let yourself slowly drift along the drop-off, and enter the Blue Hole through the “saddle”. Ask the local people present to point this entry point (a small canyon) to you.

Aerial view Dahab's Blue Hole snorkeling area

Exploration

Snorkeling the Blue Hole consists in moving along the vertical coral walls surrounding the sink hole, where large shoals of surgeonfish, couples of butterflyfish and small groups of Red Sea bannerfish find shelter. Opposite the shore, there is a shallow opening (2-20ft/0.5-6m deep), known as “the saddle”, opening out to the sea. This is probably the most interesting area. Here the seabed is the best preserved, with dense and multicolored groups of corals.

Dahab's Blue Hole reef drop-off, Red Sea

Thousands of sea goldie take shelter around the coral, and a wide range of interesting fish (angelfish, clownfish in their sea anemone, wrasse and grouper) can be seen. In the Blue Hole, there are no disturbing currents and the water is calm, clear and temperate.

If you enter the water on the entry point n°3, you will first move along a reef drop-off opening to the sea, before entering into the Blue Hole through the “saddle”.

Red Sea clownfish in Dahab's Blue Hole, Red Sea

The Blue Hole is possibly the deadliest dive site on Earth. Many intrepid divers perish in its depths every year, braving the 80 yard wide hole. The Blue Hole is very deep, do not explore this spot alone, do not practice apnea if you are not trained to, and stay close from the drop-off. The spot is very popular with scuba divers, free divers and snorkelers, who can be numerous in the water; so keep an eye out for others all the time.

Restaurants and accommodation

There is a choice of budget accommodation and restaurants on the site. In Dahab, 4 miles south of the Blue Hole, you can find a whole host of restaurants, supermarkets and accommodation for all budgets.

 

Species you may spot while snorkeling Blue Hole
COMMON NAME SCIENTIFIC NAME ABUNDANCE FISHBASE WIKIPEDIA
Sulphur damsel Pomacentrus sulfureus  
White-spotted puffer Arothron hispidus  
Green Chromis Chromis viridis  
Black-tailed butterflyfish Chaetodon austriacus  
Indo-Pacific sergeant Abudefduf vaigiensis  
Red Sea clownfish Amphiprion bicinctus  
Sea goldie Pseudanthias squamipinnis  
Diagonal butterflyfish Chaetodon fasciatus  
Eritrean butterflyfish Chaetodon paucifasciatus  
Raccoon butterflyfish Chaetodon lunula  

 

  • Level required Advanced
  • Maximum depth394ft/120m
  • Water entranceEasy, from the shore
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersHigh
  • Access costsFree
  • Restaurants nearbyYes
  • Public toilets & showersYes

MAP Spot

These spots are only recommended to good swimmers, in good physical conditions, and with excellent snorkeling skills. These spots can experience currents, moderate waves, important depths, tight or narrow passages, or tricky water entrance, and can be located near hazardous areas (channels, boat traffic, strong currents…). The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas can be important - up to 500 meters. The “advanced” category includes drift snorkeling (transported by currents) and snorkeling off the coast.

This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell.You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.