Culture & People

History and facts about Dahab

Dahab (دهب) is a small town situated on the south-eastern coast of the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt, located approximately 100km northwest of Sharm El-Sheikh.
Formerly it was a Bedouin fishing village, and is still considered to be one of South Sinai's most treasured diving destinations. The arrival of international hotel chains and the establishment of other ancillary facilities has now made this a popular destination with tourists. The nearest international airport is located at Sharm el-Sheikh.
Dahab is world-famous for it's special "spirit": a mixture of deep relaxation and exciting adventures with local culture in one of the most beautiful areas of the world.
An old bedouin speech says: "Everyone drinking the water of Dahab will return one day" . And this is probably very true: even the toughest globetrotters return twice ... at least.

The word Dahab is Arabic for "gold" and is possibly a reference to the geographic locality; gold washed down from the desert mountains may have accumulated on the alluvial flood plain where the town was built. The name may also be a reference to the colour of the sands to the south of the town itself.

In the year 2004 Dahab counted about 1.000 bedouins and 300 foreigners. In the meantime the city has about 5.000 inhabitants, most of them egyptians from Kairo and Alexandria.
More about egyptian culture and mentality

Tourist highlights

* Dahab is world-renowned for its windsurfing. Reliable winds provide superb flat water conditions inside Dahab's sand spit. There is also an area behind the spit known to windsurfers as 'Speedy' which has more flat water and strong interupted winds, making it a perfect area for windsurfing at speed. A very small bay within 'Speedy', known as 'Baby Bay', is used for freestyle windsurfing (doing tricks). To the east, wavy conditions couple with strong winds to provide formidable conditions for keen windsurfers.

* It's a perfect place for SCUBA diving, Freediving and snorkelling, with many reefs immediately adjacent to waterfront hotels. The nearby Blue Hole and Canyon are internationally famous dive spots.

* The seafood restaurants along the waterfront of the down-town tourist area, known as Masbet, are good, with red snapper, calamari and lobster being highlights. The Bedouin-style seafood is based on baking in earthenware.

* There are camel, horse, jeep and quad-bike safaris. These are either parallel to the shoreline, up one of the several valleys or around the township.

* A two hour drive is sufficient to reach Mount Sinai and Saint Catherine's Monastery; ascents to view sunrise and sunset are popular.

* Kind of Tourists: Historically, most visitors to Dahab have been backpackers travelling independently and staying in hostels in the Masbet area. In recent years, development of hotels in the Medina area has facilitated the arrival of a wider range of tourists, many of whom visit Dahab specifically to partake in the windsurfing, diving and other activities.

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Dahab is divided in Azzalah, Masbat, Mashraba and Dahab City. Pay attention to the layout: While the rather exclusive hotels in Dahab City offer the advantage of the lagoon with a comfortable sandy beach and good windsurf possibilities, so are the “old Dahab” - hotels of Mashraba and along the Seafront (Masbat) having another advantage, being along the beach promenade, in the middle of the busy life of the pictorial bedoiun town with restaurants, bars and diving schools.

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