Level: 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. Resort nearby
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The Underwater Restaurant is probably the most unique snorkeling location in Eilat. A few feet below the surface of the Red Sea, you will explore an abandoned structure overgrown by corals, sea fans and sponges, attracting a kaleidoscopic reef life. Angelfish, lionfish, sergeants and morays all are common sightings around the restaurant, which offers one of the Red Sea’s most captivating underwater landscapes.
The underwater restaurant is located at Papaya Beach (or HaDayagim Beach), a small urban beach found between the Kisuki Watersport pier and the Aria Hotel. The location is easy to reach on foot from the resort area, for example, a 500 m walk from the Neptune Eilat, and a 600 m walk from the Leonardo Plaza). If you have a car, you can park just before the Aria Hotel.
Walk to the jetty of the Underwater Restaurant, a remarkable landmark just in front of the Ahla Dive Shop.
Recommended water entrance is from the pebble beach, next to the restaurant’s pontoon. If you are staying at the Aria Hotel, you can enter the water from the resort’s pontoon stairs (about a hundred meters from the restaurant).
The spot extends between the buoy line on the left (near the Kisuki Watersport pontoon) and the Aria Hotel jetty on the right. It includes the surroundings of the abandoned underwater restaurant, as well as the shallower areas that border the beach towards the south (on the right hand when you are facing the sea). Do not go beyond the buoys due to boat and jet ski traffic.
The main attraction of this spot is the abandoned underwater restaurant which is about 50m from the shore. This structure falling into the depths, and surrounded by a tangle of platforms, pillars and cables, seems straight out of a science fiction movie.
While the upper parts of the restaurant almost touch the surface, part of the construction sits nearly 65 ft/20 m below the surface, providing plenty of areas to explore. The structure is partially covered with coral and sponges, encouraged by the coral nurseries found on the small mesh platforms (↕10-13ft/3-4m).
The underwater restaurant supports a diversity of fish and invertebrates. Schools of twobar seabream patrol the concrete platforms at the very top of the structure (↕4-7ft/1.5-2m), while anemones inhabited by communities of Red Sea anemonefish are fixed near the windows (↕7-10ft/2- 3m). Below, many lionfish hide in the coral, and emperor angelfish and yellow-ear angelfish shelter around the underwater cables.
Once you’ve explored the restaurant, swim towards the Aria Hotel jetty. You will get to shallower areas (↕1-10ft/0.5-3m), poor in corals but visited by colorful fish. This area is popular with large clown coris, rusty parrotfish and purple-brown parrotfish, which seem to enjoy the surroundings of the jetty.
The rocky beds are also visited by pufferfish (several species, see comprehensive species list at the bottom of the page), wrasse, collector sea urchins, and occasional small moray eel and devil scorpionfish.
There are several restaurants north of the spot, in the beach area. The Aria Hotel is the closest accommodation to the Underwater Restaurant (just a 100-meter swim).
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.
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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.
Small coral patches scattered on sandy slopes
Level: Free shore access
Deep sandy beds with dolphins and pillars colonized by marine life
Marine reserve with coral reef and fish
Narrow fringing reef with large and colorful fish
Patch coral reefs with many colorful fish
Fringing reef with colorful fish