You may have already dived the Red Sea based in a hotel in Sharm El-Sheikh or Hurghada, or perhaps you’ve never dived the Red Sea before now. But either way, one of the best ways to experience the diving is by a Red Sea Diving Safari, which is to dive from a liveaboard dive boat.
A Red Sea diving safari is where you spend a week or more on a liveaboard dive boat diving up to three times every day. If you’re a beginner diver a Red Sea diving safari is the best way to build-up your experience cheaply, as the Red Sea liveaboards are some of the lowest priced boats you can find.
But don’t worry, the Red Sea is equally as good for experienced divers too, as there are plenty of fantastic dive sites for all diver levels of experience.
The best way to dive the Red Sea, and especially the best and more remote locations in the Red Sea, is by a scuba diving liveaboard. You can check the latest and best deals on Red Sea liveaboards using the following window:
What is a Red Sea diving safari experience like?
As a scuba diver, a Red Sea diving safari is possibly one of the best experiences you can do. A Red Sea diving safari is for both beginner divers and experienced divers to enjoy. A typical day on a Red Sea diving safari liveaboard is as follows:
- Early wake up for a morning dive before breakfast – I’ve always found this one of there best times to see sharks on a dive.
- Have a hearty breakfast, which is often served buffet style and is usually local food.
- Relax on the liveaboard chatting with like minded divers about your first dive of the day, read a book, sun bathe or edit your video footage.
- Get ready for the second dive of the day.
- Have lunch, which is often buffet style too, but can also be a BBQ, and then relax and enjoy chatting or doing whatever you like to do in-between dives.
- Third dive of the day, which is sometimes a night dive.
- Enjoy dinner with old and new friends discussing the day’s diving.
What are the benefits of a Red Sea diving safari
The benefits of a Red Sea diving safari in Egypt include the following:
- Enjoy diving on sites that are out of reach of the day boats.
- Spend time with likeminded people.
- Liveaboard diving safaris are great fun.
- Best way to do the most number of dives in a week.
- Best way to build diving experience as a beginner diver.
- Cost per dive tends to be cheaper than resort based diving.
- A better chance to night dive.
- Visit less crowded dive sites.
- More chances to see sharks in the more remote locations.
- Dive The Brothers and Elphinstone Reef not reachable by day-boats from Hurghada and Sharm El-Sheikh.
How much does it cost to scuba dive in the Red Sea, Egypt?
The cost to scuba dive in the Red Sea from a liveaboard boat ranges from the cheapest at $45 per day to the most expensive at $168 per day. If you pick a liveaboard at the mid price point of around $100 per day, you can’t go too far wrong to really enjoy a Red Sea Safari.
With the $100 price point in mind, you may like to take a look at the Seawolf Diving Safari boats. Seawolf Diving Safaris have three dive liveaboards to choose from and each of them are rate over 9 out of 10 but customers. Well worth considering for your Red Sea diving safari.
The prices of Red Sea liveaboards generally includes all your diving, which is normally around 18-20 dives per week, a full board meal plan and snacks, drinking water, tea coffee and soft drinks.
Some Red Sea dive safari boats include free WiFi, alcoholic drinks and free nitrox in their price, but if you want to find out more about all the Red Sea liveaboards and what each one costs and offers, please go to this article “The best Red Sea Liveaboard dive boats“.
In this article, you’ll find a very handy table of all the Red Sea liveaboards, which you can sort by price, whether or not free nitrox is included, the customer review rating, and so on.
But you may now be asking is the Red Sea good for diving if the liveaboards are that cheap?
Is the Red Sea good for diving?
The Red Sea is not just good for diving, but it has to be one of the best places to dive in the world. This is because of the crystal clear warm waters, the colourful reefs have an abundance of sea life, including loads of sharks if you like diving with sharks, and good wrecks like the Thistlegorm.
The SS Thistlegorm has to be my favourite wreck dive, and I was once fortunate enough to dive it at night too. Night diving on the Thistlegorm is extremely rare due to the strong local currents, and you need to be a very experienced diver to do it. This dive was my best and deepest night diver ever, where I saw two giant leatherback turtles sleeping on the wreck…it was awesome.
The wreck itself is an extremely interesting World War II wreck that was made famous by Jacques Cousteau. You might like to watch this video for a taster of the SS Thistlegorm dive.
When it comes to Red Sea reef diving, my favourite reef in the Red Sea is Elphinstone Reef, which is amazing for sharks. I have seen hammerhead sharks, Oceanic white tip sharks, a thresher shark and reef sharks on Elphinstone Reef. But others have also seen whale sharks and tiger sharks, which occasionally visit the Elphinstone Reef too.
Things to be aware of when diving Elphinstone Reef is to be careful around oceanic white tip sharks, as they can be very inquisitive. You may like to read this article and watch the video about the Brothers shark attack. Discover how the shark attack could have been avoided if the diver had followed the four rules of safe diving with sharks.
Plus be aware of the strong currents that run in a north-south direction, plus this is a bottomless dive where you’ll need to have mastered your buoyancy control. It is the strong currents and deep depths of this dive site that makes it more for advanced divers, and before you dive the Elphinstone you need to have drift diving experience.
And if that hasn’t convinced you that the Red Sea is good for diving, take a look at this video of sharks at Daedalus Reef on a south Red Sea diving safari.
In this video these divers experienced a white tip reef shark, a thresher shark, schooling hammerhead sharks, up close and personal with oceanic white tip sharks ,
But on top of that, there’s scuba diving the Brothers, which is another amazing dive site. The following video includes diving The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone, where you’ll also see the abundance of other sea life too.
This video also includes a night dive, which is normally the third dive of the day on a Red Sea diving safari.
Seeing that you may like the idea of scuba diving with sharks (especially if you want to dive Elphinstone or the Brothers), you may like to read this article about great white sharks in the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico.
You may be surprised by what you read, I certainly was!
If you would like to book and experience a Red Sea diving safari, you should take a look at this article about the best Red Sea dive liveaboards. As already mentioned, this article includes a handy table of all the Red Sea liveaboards to help you make your decision about which dive liveaboard to choose.
The table is packed with information about the key elements to each dive liveaboard, which include:
- Customer review rating out of 10.
- Price per day in GBP, US Dollar and Euro.
- Which ones include flexible booking terms.
- Which liveaboards have nitrox on board and which of these include it for free.
- Where specific dietary requirements are catered for, including vegan and vegetarian options.
- Whether the boat has internet, and if so is it paid for or free.
- Max number of guests, number of cabins and bathrooms, plus whether the cabins have air con and ensuites.
- Whether the dive liveaboard has dive courses, sidemount diving support, plus if the boat is tech diver or rebreather friendly.
- Minimum experience and minimum logged dives required to enjoy the Red Sea diving safari on the particular liveaboard.
Table of liveaboard diving in the Red Sea
This list of Red Sea liveaboards is in descending customer rating order, followed by Scuba Diving Luxury Rating (SDE Lux Rating, see below), so the liveaboards with the highest customer rating and the best SDE lux rating will be at the top of the list. If you want to change the list order, use the “Sort by” dropdown below.
|Discover Liveaboard||Customer Rating||SDE Lux Rating %||Flexible Booking||Dive Courses||Dietary Requirements||Nitrox||Gear Rental|
|Review: MY Carlton Queen; Book: MY Carlton Queen||0||77%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: MY Lighthouse Miracle 1; Book: MY Lighthouse Miracle 1||0||75%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: M/Y Star 4; Book: M/Y Star 4||0||75%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: MY Carlton; Book: MY Carlton||0||75%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: MY Alia; Book: MY Alia||0||73%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: MY Admira; Book: MY Admira||0||71%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: MY Vip One; Book: MY Vip One||0||71%||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Review: Gloria Royal; Book: Gloria Royal||0||60%||YES||YES||YES||NO||YES|
The Scuba Diving Earth Luxury Rating (SDE Lux Rating) is explained on each liveaboard review when you click the “Discover Liveaboard” link, and is my own Liveaboard Luxury Rating I’ve assigned to all liveaboards. Choosing between liveaboards is helped by customer scores, and if you get stuck choosing between two or three liveaboards, where each one has a high customer score out of 10, you can use the SDE Luxury Rating to help narrow down your choice.
Think about it like using Booking.com when searching for the best hotel. Booking.com also use a customer score where each customer rates hotels out of 10. This is similar to the liveaboard customer rating, which is also rated out of 10. But let’s say you only like to stay in hotels rated 8 and above on Booking.com, but you also want the hotel to have WIFI or parking, or to have a swimming pool etc. The features each hotel has is usually secondary to the score out of 10.
I hope you enjoyed this article about a Red Sea diving safari
I’d love to hear from you. Tell us about your adventures of diving and snorkeling, in the comments below. But in particular if you’ve been on the Master liveaboard. Please also share your photos. Either from your underwater cameras or videos from your waterproof go-pro’s!
If this article hasn’t answered all of your questions. If you have more questions either about snorkeling or scuba diving (or specifically about a Red Sea diving safari), please comment below with your questions.
There will also be many more articles about scuba and scuba diving safety tips (and on snorkeling too) for you to read and learn about this fabulous sport.
Have fun and be safe!