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Last updated on August 4, 2023
Marsa Mubarak, a sheltered bay south of Port Ghalib, has become famous for its huge sea turtles and resident dugong. Accessible from the beach or on a boat tour, the bay hosts a diversity of marine environments, including coral reefs, seagrass meadows, and a wide variety of species. Marsa Mubarak is considered the best chance you will have in the Red Sea to swim with dugongs, even though they are not always present in the bay.
Mubarak Bay is located about 1.5 miles south of the Port Ghalib marina, and almost in front of Iberotel Costa Mares resort. There are several options to reach the area:
If you explore this spot from the shore, you will enter the water from the beach. You can enter the water wherever you want but a prefered enterance is on the north side of the beach if you want to be closer to the reef.
If you take part in a tour, you will enter the water from your boat.
Marsa Mubarak boasts diverse marine environments, including a coral reef to the north and seagrass beds in the center of the bay.
To the north, a fringing reef is a home to many fish. The underwater relief is varied, including a drop-off and many small patch reefs (↕6-18ft/2-6m). This area allows you to observe the Red Sea reef life, including dozens of easy-to-spot fish species.
The most common seen are the Klunzinger’s wrasse, the Sohal surgeonfish, the Red Sea raccoon butterflyfish, as well as several species of parrotfish.
Closer to the beach and in the middle of the bay, extensive seagrass beds attract large green sea turtles (↕12-18ft/4-6 m). Busy grazing on the seagrass meadows, they are present in Marsa Mubarak almost every day.
Most of the time, turtles have large shark suckers attached to their shell, sometimes up to 3 or 4 on the same turtle. There are few other fish in this area, but bluespotted ribbontail rays are often reported being seen.
It is also in the seagrass beds that you may have the chance to encounter a resident dugong. It is mostly seen on the left side or in the center of the bay.
Marsa Mubarak is considered the best spots in the Red Sea for dugong encounters. You will have higher chances of spotting the dugong early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the bay is less crowded.
There are no restaurants on the beach. The nearest hotel is the beachfront Iberotel Costa Mares.
These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.
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.
a place you must visit when you are around. What an amazing experience to snorkel with the Dugong (seacow).
The turtles are also great with the shark suckers.
I went with a tour and big down side is the enormous crowds. if you stay in the resort you can avoid this.
personally I did not find a way to get to the spot without a tour.
I did not snorkel the reef side.
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Snorkeling spots are part of a wild environment and their aspect can be significantly altered by weather, seasons, sea conditions, human impact and climate events (storms, hurricanes, seawater-warming episodes…). The consequences can be an alteration of the seabed (coral bleaching, coral destruction, and invasive seagrass), a poor underwater visibility, or a decrease of the sea life present in the area. Snorkeling Report makes every effort to ensure that all the information displayed on this website is accurate and up-to-date, but no guarantee is given that the underwater visibility and seabed aspect will be exactly as described on this page the day you will snorkel the spot. If you recently snorkeled this area and noticed some changes compared to the information contained on this page, please contact us.
The data contained in this website is for general information purposes only, and is not legal advice. It is intended to provide snorkelers with the information that will enable them to engage in safe and enjoyable snorkeling, and it is not meant as a substitute for swim level, physical condition, experience, or local knowledge. Remember that all marine activities, including snorkeling, are potentially dangerous, and that you enter the water at your own risk. You must take an individual weather, sea conditions and hazards assessment before entering the water. If snorkeling conditions are degraded, postpone your snorkeling or select an alternate site. Know and obey local laws and regulations, including regulated areas, protected species, wildlife interaction and dive flag laws.
Lagoon and drop-off with colorful fish
Vibrant reef drop off with colorful fish
Vibrant reef drop offs with colorful fish, rays and sea turtles
Canyon and reef drop off with colorful marine life
Sheltered bay with coral reef and seagrass beds visited by turtles
Coral reefs and seagrass meadows visited by dugongs
Free shore access