Free shore access
This spot have a free shore access: you can go snorkeling there freely and without having to book a tour or pay an entrance fee.
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Last updated on February 24, 2022
Ras Katy, located between the port of Sharm el-Sheikh and Faraana Beach, is one of the most famous snorkeling spots in the area. If it can be explored from the shore, we recommend advanced snorkelers to reach it by snorkeling for 400 to 700m from Faraana Beach. While swimming along the reef drop off overflowing with corals, you will encounter a great diversity of fish and invertebrates.
Ras Katy is a rocky point located in Sharm el-Sheikh, a few hundred meters west of famous Faraana Beach, bordered by numerous hotels and restaurants. It is part of a series of 4 very close spots, which follow one another along the southern coast of Hadaba, the southernmost district of Sharm el-Sheikh. This area is considered the best for shore snorkeling in Sharm. These 4 spots are, from West to East: Ras Katy, Faraana Reef, Temple Reef and Ras Um Sid. Due to their proximity, if you are a good swimmer you can consider exploring several spots during the same session, following the reef.
To reach this spot, three main options are available:
1/ Getting into the water from Ras Katy Beach. It is a public beach, located in a residential area. Use a mapping app or ask a taxi to drop you there. A small path goes down to the beach.
2/ Snorkeling from Faraana Beach area, either from the jetty of the Faraana Resort (approximately 400m), or from the jetty of the Reef Oasis Beach Resort (approximately 700m). This option is only for experienced snorkelers with good physical condition. Never do it alone, and check the currents before entering the water. It is when the current follows the east-west direction that the snorkeling conditions are at their best: you can get in the water in Faraana, get out at Ras Katy beach, and then walk back (or grab a taxi).
3/ Booking a boat trip. Some local guides offer 2-hours tours to snorkel the reef.
For the first two options, we recommend snorkeling this spot early in the morning only, because many glass bottom and dive boats then make the area dangerous.
Depending on the option to reach the spot, you will get into the water:
1/ From Ras Katy beach. Beware of the low water level on the reef flat, which can make access to the drop-off tricky.
2/ From a jetty. Ladders allow easy water entrance, directly on the drop-off.
3/ From a boat
Ras Katy is edged by a fringing reef, which is 30 to 50m wide depending on the location. On the reef flat, the water level is constant, on average 1-2ft/0.5m. At the end of the reef flat, you’ll reach the drop off, which falls on sandy bottoms (15ft/5m).
This spot features several large coral pinnacles, which outcrop below the surface about 20 to 30m from the reef edge. These are interesting areas to explore, but don’t swim there if boats are present in the area.
Although very busy, Ras Katy reef is still in good general condition, with a wide variety of corals forming a colorful underwaterscape. An array of reef fish species are commonly seen at reef, including hundreds of sergeant majors, Sohal surgeonfish, several species of butterflyfish, parrotfish, and small schools of Red Sea bannerfish.
There is no hotel or restaurant in Ras Katy, which is located on a rugged coastline bordered by housing estates. Several resorts, bars and restaurants are found in Faraana Beach, a few hundred meters from the spot.
These spots are accessible to anyone with basic snorkeling skills, and feeling comfortable in the water and with his snorkeling gear. You will enter the water from the shore (beach, pontoon, ladder, rocks) or from a boat. The water height in the sea entrance area is reasonable, but you will not necessarily be within your depth. Moderate currents can occur in the area, even when the sea conditions are good. The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas of the spot does not exceed 200 meters.
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.
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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.
Reef flat and drop off with colorful fish
Reef flat and drop off with many coral and reef fish
Free shore access
Vibrant reef drop off with colorful fish
Extensive fringing reef with vibrant sea life
Series of patch reefs with kaleidoscopic sea life
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