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Dahab - A travel report by Filippo
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Dahab,  Egypt - flag Egypt -  Janøb S¿nå'
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inzaghi's travel reports

The Red Sea is blue

  15 votes

Dahab travelogue picture
Most backpackers know Dahab to be a paradise for its superb backpackers' facilities at super low rates. Dahab is also best known for crystal clear blue diving waters, and a nightlife which is hard to beat. Incidentally, this town is also as good a first Egyptian overland stopover from Aqaba, Jordan as well as the starting point for an overnight adventure trip up Mount Sinai.

Favourite spots:
Dahab travelogue picture
While the shopping areas in Dahab are nothing spectacular - shops offering the same tired and beaten souvenirs like jewellery and papyrus - there are numerous t-shirt shops offering a myriad of designs including custom made ones. I had heavenly seafood almost every meal, but be sure to eat out and stay away from the hotel restaurants because you will end up paying double for half the fare, albeit in a better ambience.

What's really great:
Dahab travelogue picture
I particularly enjoyed wilding away lazy afternoons, sipping cool pineapple juice, while playing a game of chess of backgammon with a new found acquaintance under a thatched roof bungalow. The ocean laps by and the waves create sweet music to the ears - it is difficult to imagine being anywhere else but the proverbial paradise.

Sights:
Dahab travelogue picture
The Blue Lagoon is reputed to be one of the best diving spots at the Red Sea. Basically you go to Dahab to relax - and relax you definitely will - I planned two nights but stayed six! It's difficult to tear yourself away from paradise! Throw overboard all your weird ideas of crashing five tourist spots into one day. Chill out!

Accommodations:
Dahab travelogue picture
Gulf Paradise - for US$18 you can enjoy an air-conditioned double bungalow, all meals provided and perfectly cooked to order. The hotel is not located near to where the night life is (amongst the cheap backpacker area), but it is situated right where the super crystal clear diving/snorkelling water is. To get to this diving area, which I assume you would, you would have to walk a good 20-30 minutes in the hot sun if you were to live at the backpacker area. I decided that time was precious, so I paid that little more to enjoy the water all day long - even after sunset. The hotel manager cum tourist guide cum driver cum chef - he does everything! - also speaks good english, and he will either bring your food to your bungalow or to anywhere you choose - even int he candlelight by the beach!

Nightlife:
Dahab travelogue picture
Located within the Gulf Paradise is a huge, crazy disco, although when I was there it was closed down to due record low tourist levels.

Other recommendations:
STERN WARNING: AVOID the PENGUIN HOTEL like a terrible plague. I stayed there for one night after being touted mercilessly, only to realise that it was all along a huge scam. They promised me breakfast, and the next day after having had a huge one, they forced a hefty bill down my throat in a most threatening way. I got away in one piece only after numerous insults (and it can get bad in this part of the world) and after I threatened to go to the tourist police. Never cave in to scams like this, and always go to the tourist police who will almost always side with the tourists. Be forewarned!

Restaurants:
Dahab travelogue picture
Fish and Company International, for the freshest seafood in all of Dahab. Pick what you want while it is still swimming/crawling, tell them how you want it done, then sit back and enjoy freshly squeezed iced lime juice. Huge fish, prawns, pita, rice and an array of middle eastern dips together go for less than LE40.

Published on Tuesday August 13th, 2002


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Sat, Nov 13 2004 - 05:50 PM rating by shsmrsb

Thanks for the hotel warning. Other info is also useful.

Tue, Jan 06 2004 - 09:21 AM rating by tetodiver

Hello,Nice report about Dahab,i been the Manager of the Penguin Divers since May 2000, inever heard of you,or what are you talking about,all what i can say her are some of my visitors,after they been back to them own home..Dear Tarik and Jimmy,

Just a quick note to say thank you so much for a wonderful time staying at Penguin. Everyone was very friendly and helpful, and we had a fabulous time.

All the best for 2004.

Philippa and Scott
Hi Tarik,
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!!!
We wanted to thank you again for everething. It was great to be back again and I wish I was still there. It's has been snowing all day here and it's very cold!
Have a nice newyearsday and hope to see you again very soon!

Many greetings Lisette and Marjolijn

Wed, Dec 31 2003 - 04:43 PM rating by phoenix

About the penguini hotel:
I don't understand what happened when you visited the penguin hotel, but anyway it's a great place to go. All people there are really very friendly and help divers to get what they want. The rooms are cheap and agreable. The instructors and dive guides do a great job.

There was really nothing i could complain about during my time at the penguins.

Daniel

Sun, Sep 07 2003 - 12:23 PM rating by scotscraig

Excellent report, now I know for sure this is somewhere I have to visit. Hoping to travel to Egypt next year.

Thu, May 29 2003 - 10:20 AM rating by boogamon

Good review but have stayed at Penguin on a number of occasions. I dive with them whenever I am in Dahab and they rock! Free breakfast is not each as much as you can, it aint the hilton. But word or warning, the tourist police dont always side with the tourists as I have found out. Happy travels and if you back in Dahad try the Penguin again, ask for Jimmy. oh and if you liked that fish spot try the place to the left (if facing the sea) of the penguin. Cheers

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